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Graduate School Fellowships in Support of Diversity

Graduate School Fellowships in support of diversity for incoming students

  • SUNY Graduate Diversity Fellowship—for recruitment of research degree students; awarded in contract colleges for incoming, new students
  • Deans Excellence Fellowship — for recruitment of research degree students; awarded in endowed colleges for incoming, new students
  • Deans McNair and McNair SUNY Graduate Diversity Fellowships — for recruitment of research degree students; awarded in contract and endowed colleges for incoming, new students who were McNair Scholars at their undergraduate institutions
  • Deans Mellon Mays — for recruitment of research degree students; awarded in contract and endowed colleges for incoming, new students who were Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellows at their undergraduate institutions

Recruitment fellowships designed to enhance the diversity of Cornell's graduate student population are available on a competitive basis to U.S. citizens or permanent residents applying for Fall admission. Students who wish to be considered for these fellowships must submit a supplemental diversity essay with their application materials. Students awarded a fellowship in support of diversity will be recognized as a Graduate School Dean’s Scholar and will be invited to participate in community and professional activities sponsored by the Office of Inclusion and Student Engagement and its partners. Students awarded a fellowship may receive a standard offer of admission and subsequently be offered this competitive fellowship in lieu of a standard funding offer.

The supplemental essay should detail how one or more of the following criteria applies to the applicant:

  1. first-generation college student
  2. member of a group historically underrepresented in higher education (African American, American Indian/Alaskan Native, Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander, Mexican American, Puerto Rican, or other Hispanic; permanent residents whose ethnicity corresponds to these groups also meet this criterion)
  3. McNair Scholar (the Graduate School will verify that the prospective student was a McNair Scholar while pursuing a baccalaureate degree at a U.S. institution)
  4. experiences overcoming any significant challenges in your path toward graduate school (examples include but are not limited to being of a gender historically underrepresented in your intended field of study, being a Veteran, being a single parent, and/or managing a disability)

Success in graduate education requires significant persistence and resilience. Therefore, students should also use their supplemental essay to address how their personal, academic, and/or professional experiences demonstrate their ability to be both persistent and resilient especially when navigating challenging circumstances.

How to apply:

  • Prospective students apply for fellowships in support of diversity through the admissions application.
  • To be considered, applicants must respond “yes” to the question on the admissions application asking if they wish to be considered for university assistantships and fellowships, including diversity fellowships. Applicants must also submit a supplemental essay that addresses how the above criteria apply.
  • The Director of Graduate Studies for the graduate field to which the applicant is applying must submit a nomination to the Graduate School for consideration by the Associate Dean for Inclusion & Student Engagement and the Dean of the Graduate School.

 

Provost’s Diversity Fellowship for Continuing Students

The Graduate School will award Provost’s diversity fellowships to Ph.D. students during the academic year. These fellowships are intended to support the degree completion of continuing students, and should be focused on advanced students likely to complete their degrees with the added financial assistance of this fellowship.   

Ph.D. students who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents and who are able to address how one or more of the following criteria apply to them are eligible:

  1. first-generation college student
  2. member of a group historically underrepresented in higher education (African American, American Indian/Alaskan Native, Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander, Mexican American, Puerto Rican, or other Hispanic; permanent residents whose ethnicity corresponds to these groups also meet this criterion)
  3. recipients of recruitment fellowships in support of diversity;
  4. graduate students who are single parents; and/or
  5. graduate students who have experiences overcoming significant challenges in their path toward completing a Ph.D. (examples include but are not limited to being of a gender historically underrepresented in your intended field of study, being a Veteran, and managing a disability)

To be eligible for an award, applicants must have received at least one year of support (assistantship, training grant, etc.) from their field.

Priority for the Provost's Diversity Fellowships will be given to students who meet all of the following criteria:

  1. have been enrolled in a Cornell graduate degree program for a minimum of two years
  2. will have passed the A exam prior to the fellowship
  3. expect to complete all requirements for the doctorate by the August of the academic year following their nomination. (For example, a student nominated by March 2017, must complete all requirements for the doctorate by August 2018.)

How to apply:

The application form is available on the Graduate School website at Provost Diversity Fellowship Form. Applications are to be submitted to the Graduate School through the Director of Graduate Studies rather than directly by the student. The student is responsible for making arrangements with the DGS. DGSs should submit all applications for their field to the Associate Dean of Inclusion and Student Engagement (grad_assoc_dean@cornell.edu) no later than 4:30 p.m. on March 2. (If the application deadline falls on a holiday or weekend, applications are due the next working day.) Decisions will be announced by early May.