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Funding Opportunities

Competitive financial assistance is available to many public administration and political science students. Rockefeller College offers graduate assistantships and fellowships to selected MA, MPA and PhD students and scholarships to selected undergraduate students on the basis of merit, previous academic achievement, and potential for success as a student at Rockefeller College. The financial assistance can take one of four forms: 1) Teaching and Research Assistantships, 2) Scholarships, 3) Center, Institute, and Program Fellowships and 4) Rockefeller College Internships These four forms are described below.

1) Teaching and Research Assistantships

PhD and MPA applicants are automatically considered for departmental assistantships when they apply by the funding deadline.  See admission pages for deadlines and requirements.



Work Requirement

Tuition Waiver

MPA Assistantship

1 Year

Approximately $9,000

18-20 hours administrative or research

Full-time tuition waived in some cases

PhD Public Administration Assistantship

4 Years (w/5th year possible)

Approximately $15,000

18-20 hours
teaching or research

Full-time tuition waived

PhD Political Science Assistantship

3-4 Years

Approximately $14,000

18-20 hours
teaching or research

Full-time tuition waived

Applicants should fill out the Graduate Assistantship/Fellowship Application as part of their online application for admissions.

2) Scholarship Opportunities

Jean Ellis Poletti Memorial Internship Fund and Arthur & Maria Kelly Smith Endowment

The Jean Ellis Poletti Memorial Internship Fund Award is awarded to a student participating in an internship at a local, state, or federal agency or at a nonprofit organization.  The Arthur & Maria Kelly Smith Endowment Award provides one or more annual awards to deserving graduate students at Rockefeller College to subsidize an internship in a public interest agency outside of government.  Students who submit an application will automatically be considered for both the Poletti and Smith awards, when applicable.  Applications submitted by April 1, 2014 will be given first consideration; applications may be accepted after the deadline until all funds are awarded. 

Rockefeller College Alumni and Friends Scholarship

Applications are accepted bi-annually each semester.
Please check back for deadline information.

The mission of Rockefeller College is to prepare students so that that can contribute to public service in a myriad of ways. The Rockefeller College Alumni and Friends Scholarship will be awarded to current graduate students who exemplify this mission – as citizens, professionals, and educators. This can be in the form of service to the College or community, through a professional position or internship that contributes to the greater good, or through a research project that focuses on the pressing challenges facing the world today.

Rockefeller College Alumni Scholarships

Applications are accepted annually each spring.
Please check back for deadline information.

Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy values academic excellence, public and community service. Our alumni support these values and provide financial assistance to the undergraduate students who go above and beyond in philanthropy and scholarship. This year up to seven scholarships will be awarded to undergraduate students in the Rockefeller College of Public Affairs & Policy who have demonstrated academic excellence and commitment to community service. Applications must be submitted by April 2, 2014.

The Herbert Roback Scholarship

The late Herbert Roback was a highly respected public servant. During his 34-year career, he encouraged talented and promising students to consider lifetime careers in the public service. To honor Mr. Roback, his family and friends established the Herbert Roback Scholarship Fund to perpetuate his work. To fulfill this goal, the National Academy of Public Administration annually awards one scholarship up to $7,500 to a graduate student currently enrolled, or admitted for enrollment, in a full-time master's degree program in public administration, public and international affairs, and/or political science. Applications must be submitted by May 1, 2014.

Carson Carr Graduate Diversity Scholarships

The University at Albany offers competitive, merit-based Carson Carr Graduate Diversity Scholarships to graduate students who will contribute to the diversity of the student body in their graduate or professional program.  Applicants must be United States citizens or have permanent residency, and must have completed an application for graduate study at the University. The Selection Committee will give special consideration to students who are of a race or ethnicity that is underrepresented in our graduate and professional programs, but will not make awards solely on that basis. Every applicant will be evaluated on his or her own merits.  The Carson Carr Graduate Diversity Scholarship deadline corresponds with applicant's departmental deadline for financial assistance (see admission pages for deadlines and requirements). 

Study Abroad Scholarships

Up to five $500 scholarships toward the cost of participating in a university-approved study abroad course during the 2014-15 academic year (including Summer 2015).

  • Proposed program/classes must have clear connection to student's course of study or research plans.
  • Beyond general academic criteria, priority will be given to:
    • Programs/classes in Political Science, Public Policy, or cognate fields
    • Rockefeller College majors
    • Students with no prior international experience
    • Undergraduates (including transfer students)
  • Awardees will be profiled in Rockefeller College publications before or after their time abroad.
  • Award will be made pending acceptance to the proposed program. (Particularly for Summer 2015 programs, some amendment to the proposed course of study may be acceptable, given the early application date. See Prof. Meredith Weiss for approval.)
  • Applications are due to Zakhar Berkovich ( by September 22, 2014. Electronic (email) submission preferred. Late applications will not be accepted.
    • Include a statement of no more than one, double-spaced page identifying the study abroad program to which you are applying and why you are a strong candidate, taking into account the criteria listed above.
    • Include an up-to-date degree audit or transcript.
    • Your faculty advisor must either also send a one paragraph recommendation to Zakhar Berkovich or send a copy of the reference he/she submits to the Study Abroad office.

Graduate Student International Research Stipends

Awards of $500-1,000 each (depending on applications received, for a total of $2,500 per semester), to be used toward international research travel costs. Only travel expenses may be covered.

  • Beyond general academic criteria, priority will be given to:
    • Students with a clear international research focus
    • Students without additional research funding
  • Awardees will be profiled in Rockefeller College publications before or after their time abroad.
  • Applications are due to Prof. Meredith Weiss (, Milne 213a) by October 6 for winter 2014-15 and March 2nd for summer 2015
    • Include a statement of no more than two, double-spaced pages explaining the research you plan to undertake, the relevance of this research trip to your overall research agenda, your preparedness for the research described (e.g., language, methods, contacts), the grants for which you have applied or will apply, and the funding you have already received.
    • Include an up-to-date transcript.
Your faculty advisor must sign off on the application statement (either via a signature on a hard copy of the statement or an email to Prof. Weiss).

3) Rockefeller College Center, Institute, and Program Fellowships

Each year Rockefeller College, its affiliated centers, and research partners offer a range of fellowship opportunities to incoming graduate students.  In most cases, these fellowships include a full graduate student stipend (currently approximately $15,000 for doctoral students and $9,000 for master's students) and a full tuition waiver ($8,870 for in-state and $15,160 for out-of-state students).  In exchange for financial support, students serve as research assistants for approximately 18-20 hours per week in the centers, institutes, and programs.  The research assistant positions give graduate students opportunities for policy research, applied policy analysis, and professional development.  In addition to the financial benefits, research assistants have a unique opportunity to take concepts and knowledge from the classroom and apply them to interesting and important real world policy and management problems.  In many cases, these positions lead to opportunities for paid summer employment. 

In addition, each semester the centers and institutes have numerous paid and unpaid internship and research assistant opportunities through on-going grants and contracts. Even if a prospective student's fellowship application is unsuccessful, he or she should continue to contact the centers and institutes each semester to learn about shorter term opportunities.

Application Information

4) Rockefeller College Internships

The College's Office of Career and Alumni programs can help students find paid internships to help defray the cost of their graduate education. To learn more about internship opportunities, visit our Careers and Internships page.