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Graduate Fellowships

The 2017–2018 Graduate School Fellowships are open for nominations by departments. Students do not apply for fellowships, but will be nominated by the department. This page will provide background information, award details, eligibility and application requirements for each of the fellowships being offered this 2017–2018 fellowship cycle.

Fellowships for New Students

The following fellowships are for new students. These are students who are first-time enrollees in a graduate degree program in fall 2017.



Isobel Griscom established this endowment through a gift made in 1971, and the fellowship is designed to promote opportunities for graduate students who demonstrate successful academic and professional performance. Griscom was born in St. Elmo, Tennessee, and was a revered and respected Associate Professor of English, initially with Chattanooga University, which later became part of the University of Tennessee System. A tireless advocate of women’s rights, Griscom was active in the American Association of University Women and the League of Women Voters.

Award

This award will provide a stipend of $3,000, divided into monthly payments from August 2017 to May 2018. This is a non-renewable fellowship and no portion of the fellowship year may be deferred.

Eligibility Criteria

The program is open to graduate nominees who will be first-time enrollees in a graduate program in fall 2017 and who demonstrate successful academic and professional performance. Nominees must be admitted (or admitted conditionally) to a degree program by the Office of Graduate Admissions by February 8, 2017. This will be confirmed by the Graduate School. Recipients of this award must also be enrolled as a full-time student (minimum nine hours of graduate enrollment) for both fall 2017 and spring 2018.

Application Requirements

To nominate a candidate, the department must submit a letter of endorsement from the Director of Graduate Studies for the candidate’s program by February 8, 2017. This letter should address the nominee’s academic readiness and potential for success in the graduate program.



The Seaton endowment honors the memory of Bruce Painter Seaton and Eva Woody Seaton, who were married in Knoxville on October 14, 1922, and were lifetime residents here. Mr. Seaton served in the Knoxville Fire Department for 32 years, retiring in 1967 as assistant chief. He passed away in 1975, and Mrs. Seaton died August 10, 1992. Their daughter, Dr. Jennie D. Seaton, and other family members, including grandchildren and great-grandchildren, established this fellowship, designed to promote opportunities for graduate students who demonstrate successful academic and professional performance.

Award

This award will provide a stipend of $5,000, divided into monthly payments from August 2017 to May 2018. This is a non-renewable fellowship and no portion of the fellowship year may be deferred.

Eligibility Criteria

The program is open to graduate nominees who will be first-time enrollees in a graduate program in fall 2017 and who demonstrate successful academic and professional performance. Nominees must be admitted (or admitted conditionally) to a degree program by the Office of Graduate Admissions by February 8, 2017. This will be confirmed by the Graduate School. Recipients of this award must also be enrolled as a full-time student (minimum nine hours of graduate enrollment) for both fall 2017 and spring 2018. Nominees must also be on at least a 25% graduate assistantship.

Application Requirements

To nominate a candidate, the department must submit a letter of endorsement from the Director of Graduate Studies for the candidate’s program by February 8, 2017. This letter should address the nominee’s academic readiness and potential for success in the graduate program.



Established in 1990 with an endowment, the Herman E. Spivey Humanities Graduate Fellowship Program honors the former Vice-President of Academic Affairs who served from 1960 to 1968. Spivey fostered academic excellence and diversity at UT. These awards will be offered to selected nominees in arts and humanities programs who have excelled in undergraduate work and shown professional potential.

Award

This award will provide a stipend of $5,000, divided into monthly payments from August 2017 to May 2018. This fellowship is renewable for a total of three years, upon the endorsement of the department and approval of the Graduate School.

Eligibility Criteria

The program is open to graduate students who will be first-time enrollees in a graduate program in fall 2017 in a department in the arts or humanities (including Art, English, Modern Foreign Languages and Literatures, History, Music, Philosophy, and Theatre). Nominees must be admitted (or admitted conditionally) to a degree program by the Office of Graduate Admissions by February 8, 2017. This will be confirmed by the Graduate School. U.S. citizens, permanent residents, and international nominees are eligible. Full-time registration is required for fall 2017 and spring 2018 (a minimum of 9 hours each semester), and the nominee must be the recipient of an assistantship of at least 25% FTE.

Application Requirements

To nominate a candidate, the department must submit a letter of endorsement from the Director of Graduate Studies for the candidate’s program by February 8, 2017. This letter should address the nominee’s academic readiness and potential for success in the graduate program.



The J. Wallace and Katie Dean Graduate Fellowship Program was established in 2005 through an endowment provided by the Dean Trust. The Deans were longtime friends of the University of Tennessee and active community leaders in Knoxville. These awards will be offered to selected nominees who have excelled in their undergraduate work and who show promise for outstanding graduate work in excellent and demanding programs at UT. The Deans were particularly interested in using this fellowship to recruit “extraordinary students who have undergraduate degrees from top private and public universities.”

Award

This award will provide a stipend of $10,000, divided into monthly payments from August 2017 to May 2018. This is a non-renewable fellowship and no portion of the fellowship year may be deferred.

Eligibility Criteria

The program is open to graduate students who will be first-time enrollees in a graduate program in fall 2017 at UT. Nominees must be admitted (or admitted conditionally) to a degree program by the Office of Graduate Admissions by February 8, 2017. This will be confirmed by the Graduate School. U.S. citizens, permanent residents, and international nominees are eligible. Full-time registration is required for fall 2017 and spring 2018 (a minimum of 9 hours each semester), and the nominee must be the recipient of an assistantship of at least 25% FTE.
Although this fellowship is open to nominees from all colleges and programs, special consideration will be given to nominees from programs in the areas of physical and biological sciences.

Application Requirements

To nominate a candidate, the department must submit a letter of endorsement from the Director of Graduate Studies for the candidate’s program by February 8, 2017. This letter should address the nominee’s academic background, accomplishments, and potential for success in the graduate program.



The Lori Mayer Re-Entry Women’s Graduate Fellowship honors the memory of Lori Irene Mayer, who was a 1978 accounting graduate of UT. At the time of her death in October 1993, Ms. Mayer was controller at Whittle Communications, Inc. The fund for this fellowship more than doubled in size when a gift was received from her estate. The fellowship was designed to provide personal encouragement and financial support for returning adult women students.

Award

This award will provide a stipend of $5,000, divided into monthly payments from August 2017 to May 2018. This is a non-renewable fellowship and no portion of the fellowship year may be deferred.

Eligibility Criteria

The program is open to women with baccalaureate degrees who are U. S. citizens, 27 years of age or over, and who have been out of a formal educational program for at least five years. Applicants must be first-time enrollees in a UT graduate degree program in fall 2017. Applicants must be admitted to a degree program by the Office of Graduate Admissions by February 8, 2017. This will be confirmed by the Graduate School. Applicants should be individuals who demonstrate significant potential to contribute to the Graduate School’s educational mission and its diversity-related goals. Recipients of this award must also be enrolled as a full-time student (minimum nine hours of graduate enrollment) for both fall 2017 and spring 2018.

Application Requirements

To nominate a candidate, the department must submit a letter of endorsement from the Director of Graduate Studies for the candidate’s program by February 8, 2017. This letter should address the nominee’s potential for success in the graduate program.



The Graduate School seeks to recruit, enroll, and retain qualified students who will benefit from educational and social interactions with peers who come from different backgrounds and who have different life experiences, perspectives, and goals. The Graduate School also seeks to prepare its students with an array of educational experiences for dealing effectively in an increasingly diverse and global workforce. This graduate fellowship program is designed to achieve these goals. The wide-ranging attributes that will contribute to the educational mission of the Graduate School include but are not limited to ethnic and cultural backgrounds or life experiences, career goals, social or economic disadvantage, disability status, age, race, and sex.

Award

The award will provide a $15,000 stipend, divided into monthly payments from August 2017 through May 2018. Along with the stipend, the fellowship will cover in-state maintenance fees and out-of-state tuition. Graduate student health insurance will be provided. This is a non-renewable fellowship and no portion of the fellowship may be deferred.

Eligibility Criteria

The fellowship is open to first-time enrollees who have been admitted to a graduate degree program at UT for fall 2017 and who demonstrate significant potential to contribute to the Graduate School’s educational mission and its diversity-related goals. Competition is open to U.S. citizens, permanent residents, and international applicants. Employees are not eligible. Applicants must be admitted to a degree program by the Office of Graduate Admissions by February 8, 2017. Admission will be confirmed by the Graduate School. Recipients of this award must also be enrolled as full-time students (minimum nine hours of graduate enrollment) for both fall 2017 and spring 2018 semesters.

Application Requirements

To nominate a candidate, the department must submit a letter of endorsement from the Director of Graduate Studies for the candidate’s program by February 8, 2017. This letter should address the nominee’s potential for success in the graduate program and how they contribute to the diversity of the department.


Fellowships for Returning Students

The following fellowships are for returning students. These are students who are currently enrolled in a graduate degree program and will be continuing their degree program in the 2017–2018 academic year.



R. Bruce Shipley and Sara Swann Shipley of Johnson City, Tennessee established five charitable remainder trusts with the University of Tennessee between 1989 and 1999. When Mr. Shipley passed away in 2002, Mrs. Shipley terminated the trust and activated the Shipley-Swann Endowment. This fellowship is to award returning students who demonstrate academic excellence.

Award

This award will provide a stipend of $5,000, divided into monthly payments from August 2017 to May 2018. This is a non-renewable fellowship and no portion of the fellowship year may be deferred.

Eligibility Criteria

The program is open to students who are currently enrolled in a graduate degree program and will be continuing their degree program in the 2017–2018 academic year. Nominees must demonstrate successful academic and professional performance. Recipients of this award must also be enrolled as a full-time student (minimum nine hours of graduate enrollment) for both fall 2017 and spring 2018.

Application Requirements

To nominate a candidate, the department must submit an updated résumé/CV for the student and a letter of endorsement from the Director of Graduate Studies for the candidate’s program by March 22, 2017. This letter should address the nominee’s academic successes as a graduate student.



Mary Phipps Shepherd, a native of East Tennessee, graduated from the College of Education in 1932. While she was a student at UT, she served on the editorial staffs of the Volunteer, the Orange and White, and the Mugwump. She was a member of the Women Student Activities Council, the Panhellenic Council and Delta Delta Delta Sorority. Because of her great love for her alma mater, the University of Tennessee, she established this fellowship to help deserving students further their education.

Award

This award will provide a stipend of $3,000, divided into monthly payments from August 2017 to May 2018. This is a non-renewable fellowship and no portion of the fellowship year may be deferred.

Eligibility Criteria

The program is open to students who are currently enrolled in a graduate program and will be continuing in their degree program in the 2017–2018 academic year. Nominees must demonstrate successful academic and professional performance. Recipients of this award must also be enrolled as a full-time student (minimum nine hours of graduate enrollment) for both fall 2017 and spring 2018.

Application Requirements

To nominate a candidate, the department must submit an updated résumé/CV for the student and a letter of endorsement from the Director of Graduate Studies for the candidate’s program by March 22, 2017. This letter should address the nominee’s academic successes as a graduate student.



Oscar Roy Ashley was a 1927 graduate of the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, receiving a BA in English from the College of Liberal Arts (now known as the College of Arts and Sciences). After his death in 2001, his will stipulated the use of funds to create a campus-wide fellowship fund for UT. This fellowship is for deserving and talented returning students who have demonstrated excellence in academic performance.

Award

This award will provide a stipend of $6,000, divided into monthly payments from August 2017 to May 2018. This is a non-renewable fellowship and no portion of the fellowship year may be deferred.

Eligibility Criteria

The program is open to students who are currently enrolled in a graduate program and will be continuing in their degree program in the 2017–2018 academic year. Nominees must demonstrate successful academic and professional performance. Recipients of this award must also be enrolled as a full-time student (minimum nine hours of graduate enrollment) for both fall 2017 and spring 2018.

Application Requirements

To nominate a candidate, the department must submit an updated résumé/CV for the student and a letter of endorsement from the Director of Graduate Studies for the candidate’s program by March 22, 2017. This letter should address the nominee’s academic successes as a graduate student.



The Yates Graduate Fellowship Endowment is a legacy of the generosity of the estate of Arthur E. Yates (1915 – 1977), former president of Yates Bleachery Company and a dedicated friend of the University of Tennessee. The Yates Graduate Fellowship Endowment was established in June 2000 to encourage, recognize, and support outstanding graduate students. The current use of the endowment from the Yates estate provides awards to be given each academic year to doctoral students completing their dissertations.

Award

This award will provide a stipend of $10,000, divided into monthly payments from August 2017 to May 2018. This is a non-renewable fellowship and no portion of the fellowship year may be deferred.

Eligibility Criteria

A candidate must be a UT graduate student in good standing who will have completed admission to candidacy for the doctoral degree and reached dissertation stage or admitted to candidacy by fall 2017. Recipients of this award must also be enrolled as a full-time student (minimum nine hours of graduate enrollment) for both fall 2017 and spring 2018 semesters. Recipients of this award must maintain at least, but no more than, a 25% graduate assistantship in the department, and may not be an employee of the University of Tennessee.

Application Requirements

To nominate a candidate, the department must submit an updated résumé/CV for the student and a letter of endorsement from the nominee’s Major Professor by March 22, 2017. This letter should address the nominee’s potential for success in completing their dissertation during the 2017–2018 academic year. This letter should also address the student’s academic successes while pursuing the graduate degree.


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