Financial Support

Financial Support

Almost all graduate students in Brown’s Department of Chemistry receive full financial support, which includes a generous stipend, full tuition coverage, and University-paid health insurance. Chemistry graduate students enjoy two layers of assurance. First, the Department of Chemistry is committed to support all graduate students who make good progress toward their Ph.D. Secondly, Brown University’s Graduate School guarantees support for all of Brown’s graduate students throughout their fifth year. With this double commitment of support, our graduate students are able to fully focus on their studies without having to worry about their financial wellbeing.

Fall 2016 CHEM0360 TAs: Our Teaching Assistants for second semester Organic Chemistry.Fall 2016 CHEM0360 TAs: Our Teaching Assistants for second semester Organic Chemistry.

Support for graduate students typically comes from the following sources:


Teaching is an integral part of the graduate experience at Brown. Typically, doctoral students in chemistry will work as teaching assistants (TA’s) for two semesters during their graduate careers. A TA’s financial award includes a stipend, tuition, health insurance, and health services fee.


Research assistants (RA’s) work with their Ph.D. advisor on research projects. An RA’s financial award includes a stipend, tuition, health insurance, and health services fee.


There are a limited number of fellowships that provide for the same level of financial support as TA’s and RA’s. Specifically:

  • First Year Fellowships: Upon recommendation by the Department, the Graduate School may award a limited number of fellowships to first year students. First-year fellows receive full tuition, a stipend, health insurance and a health services fee.
  • Dissertation Fellowships: Each academic year the Graduate School, acting on a recommendation by the Department, may provide select students with a dissertation fellowship.   Students in their last year of graduate study are eligible for nomination. The Dissertation Fellowships cover stipend, enrollment fee and health fee for either one semester or a full academic year.
  • GAANN Fellowships: The Graduate Assistance in Areas of National Need program provides fellowships to assist graduate students of superior ability who demonstrate financial need. The fellowship covers tuition, stipend and health care insurance. The Department of Chemistry is able to award three GANNN fellowships for the current academic year.
  • The Chemistry Department maintains a list of fellowships available from external organizations


Once they have obtained the first results in their research project, graduate students are encouraged to attend national and international conferences. In most cases, student travel is supported by a combination of funds from the Graduate School and the research group.

Graduate School Funds
Applications for graduate school funding must be submitted before travel. Download the application and submit it to the Graduate School at

William R. Potter Chemistry Graduate Student Conference Travel Grants 
The William R. Potter Fund provides grants to graduate students specializing in chemistry to support their travel to and participation in national chemistry conferences at which they present thesis research. All Chemistry graduate students and graduate students whose doctoral studies are directed by a Chemistry faculty member are eligible to apply.  Download the application and submit to Rose Barreira in the Chemistry Department. 

For further information about funding, please contact Rose Barreira, Chemistry Graduate Program Coordinator.

updated 10/12/16


Graduate Research Fellowship Programs for Chemists

Below is a list of  fellowships compiled by the Chemistry Department. This is just a sample of the many funding opportunities available to graduate students. Students are encouraged to apply for any programs for which they meet eligibility requirements. 

Successful applications can be viewed in GeoChem 201.

National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship (NSF GRFP)

The NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP) helps ensure the vitality of the human resource base of science and engineering in the United States and reinforces its diversity. The program recognizes and supports outstanding graduate students in NSF-supported science, technology, engineering, and mathematics disciplines who are pursuing research-based master's and doctoral degrees at accredited United States institutions. 

Fellows share in the prestige and opportunities that become available when they are selected. Fellows benefit from a three-year annual stipend of $34,000 along with a $12,000 cost of education allowance for tuition and fees (paid to the institution), opportunities for international research and professional development, and the freedom to conduct their own research at any accredited U.S. institution of graduate education they choose.

Department of Energy Computational Science Graduate Fellowship (DOE CSGF)

The Department of Energy Computational Science Graduate Fellowship (DOE CSGF) provides outstanding benefits and opportunities to students pursuing doctoral degrees in fields that use high-performance computing to solve complex science and engineering problems.

The program fosters a community of energetic and committed Ph.D. students, alumni, DOE laboratory staff and other scientists who want to have an impact on the nation while advancing their research. Fellows come from diverse scientific and engineering disciplines but share a common interest in using computing in their research.

More than 340 students at more than 60 U.S. universities have trained as fellows. The program's alumni work in DOE laboratories, private industry and educational institutions.

National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship (NDSEG)

The National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate (NDSEG) Fellowship is a highly competitive, portable fellowship that is awarded to U.S. citizens and nationals who intend to pursue a doctoral degree in one of fifteen supported disciplines, including chemistry, biochemistry, geology, and physics. NDSEG confers high honors upon its recipients, and allows them to attend whichever U.S. institution they choose. NDSEG Fellowships last for three years and pay for full tuition and all mandatory fees, a monthly stipend, and up to $1,000 a year in medical insurance (this excludes dental and vision insurance).

The Department of Defense (DoD) is committed to increasing the number and quality of our nation's scientists and engineers, and towards this end, has awarded nearly 3,400 NDSEG fellowships since the program's inception 23 years ago. The NDSEG Fellowship is sponsored by the Air Force Office of Scientific Research (AFOSR), the Army Research Office (ARO), and the Office of Naval Research (ONR), under the direction of the Director of Defense Research and Engineering (DDR&E).


National Nuclear Security Administration Stockpile Stewardship Science Graduate Fellowship Program (DOE NNSA SSGF)

The Department of Energy National Nuclear Security Administration Stewardship Science Graduate Fellowship (DOE NNSA SSGF) provides excellent financial benefits and professional development opportunities to students pursuing a Ph.D. in fields of study that solve complex science and engineering problems critical to stewardship science.

The fellowship builds a community of talented and committed doctoral students, program alumni, DOE laboratory staff and university researchers who share a common goal to further their science while advancing national defense. The friendships and connections fellows make in the program continue to benefit them throughout their careers.

The Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration (link is external) funds the DOE NNSA SSGF to train scientists vital to meeting U.S. workforce needs in advanced science and engineering.

Department of Energy Office of Science Graduate Student Research Program (SCGSR)

The goal of the Office of Science Graduate Student Research (SCGSR) program is to prepare graduate students for science, technology, engineering, or mathematics (STEM) careers critically important to the DOE Office of Science mission, by providing graduate thesis research opportunities at DOE laboratories.  The SCGSR program provides supplemental awards to outstanding U.S. graduate students to pursue part of their graduate thesis research at a DOE laboratory in areas that address scientific challenges central to the Office of Science mission. The research opportunity is expected to advance the graduate students’ overall doctoral thesis while providing access to the expertise, resources, and capabilities available at the DOE laboratories.

The SCGSR program provides supplemental funds for graduate awardees to conduct part of their thesis research at a host DOE laboratory in collaboration with a DOE laboratory scientist within a defined award period. The award period for the proposed research project at DOE laboratories may range from 3 to 12 consecutive months.

Department of Homeland Security Nuclear Forensics Graduate Fellowship Program

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Domestic Nuclear Detection Office (DNDO) established the Nuclear Forensics Graduate Fellowship Program (NFGFP) in 2008 to provide fellowships to graduate students pursuing doctoral degrees in nuclear, geochemical, and other disciplines directly relevant to nuclear forensics. This program aims to develop the next generation of highly qualified scientists to meet U.S. Government’s needs for nuclear forensics expertise and to build a viable student career path in nuclear forensics.


Winston Churchill Scholarship for Science, Mathematics, and Engineering

The Churchill Scholarship started in 1963 with three awards and has since grown to 14. It provides funding to American students for a year of Master’s study in science, mathematics, and engineering at the University of Cambridge, based at Churchill College. The Scholarship was set up at the request of Sir Winston Churchill in order to fulfil his vision of US-UK scientific exchange with the goal of advancing science and technology on both sides of the Atlantic, helping to ensure our future prosperity and security.

The Churchill Scholarship has been called the most academically challenging of the UK scholarships.

National Physical Science Consortium Graduate Fellowships in Science, Mathematics, and Engineering for Women and Minorities

The National Physical Science Consortium is a partnership between government agencies and laboratories, industry, and higher education. NPSC's goal is to increase the number of American citizens with graduate degrees in the physical sciences and related engineering fields, emphasizing recruitment of a diverse applicant pool.

NPSC's member universities do not require fellows to pay tuition. Most government agency fellowships must cover all or part of tuition. Partly as a result, the total cost of an NPSC fellowship is roughly half what it costs a government agency to provide its own fellowships.

The NPSC Graduate Fellowship is unique: open to all American citizens; lasting for up to six years; providing a $20,000 expense allowance; covering tuition; allowing a fellow also to hold a research or teaching assistantship; including one or two paid summer internships with a government agency; providing a mentor and the opportunity for a lasting relationship with the sponsor.


The Link Foundation Energy Fellowships

In an effort to foster education and innovation in the area of societal production and utilization of energy, the Link Foundation invites applications for:

2-year fellowships of $28,500/year for students working toward a Ph.D. degree. The Link Foundation also offers fellowships in the area of simulation and training, and fellowships in the area of ocean engineering.

HHMI Gilliam Fellowships for Advanced Study

The goal of the Gilliam Fellowships for Advanced Study program is to ensure the development of a diverse and highly trained workforce is available to assume leadership roles in science, including college and university faculty, who have the responsibility to teach the next generation of scientists. Students are chosen for their academic excellence, scientific potential, and commitment to the advancement of diversity and inclusion in the sciences.

Each fellowship will support students for up to three years of their dissertation research, typically in years three, four and five of their PhD studies.  Applicants must be in their second or third year of a PhD program in the life sciences or related sciences and have identified a thesis adviser.  They must have advanced to candidacy before appointment.  Students who are enrolled in an MD/PhD (i.e. Medical Scientist Training Program) program are not eligible.


Hertz Foundation Fellowship

The Graduate Fellowship Award is based on merit (not need) and consists of a cost-of-education allowance and a personal-support stipend. The cost-of-education allowance is accepted by all of the participating schools in lieu of all fees and tuition. Hertz Fellows therefore have no liability for any ordinary educational costs, regardless of their choice among participating schools.

Successful applicants have the choice of two Fellowship options:
Option 1 - Five Year Hertz
$32,000/ 9-month personal stipend*
Full tuition equivalent
Renewable for up to 5 years

Option 2 - Five-Year Coordinated
Hertz Period - Two Years
$38,000/ 9-month personal stipend*
Full tuition equivalent

Other Fellowship Period - Up to Three Years
$6,000/ year supplemental stipend* from Hertz
Requires Awardee to accept a 3-year Fellowship from another source

The Five-Year Hertz Fellowship award (Option 1) is renewable annually (upon a showing of satisfactory progress toward receipt of the Ph.D. degree) for a total Fellowship tenure of no more than five years.