University of Vermont

Department of Animal and Veterinary Sciences (ASCI)


A. Financial Assistance
     Financial support of graduate students usually comes in one of two forms:

  1. Graduate Teaching Fellowships or GTFs
These combine tuition remission and some General Fund support from the Experiment Station. A student is allocated to an approved Experiment Station project.  Currently the student is provided with 24 credit hours of tuition remission per year and a stipend, which is adjusted annually.  In return, the student will provide 20 hours of work/week to Department teaching or research support.  During the semester the teaching support will be the first priority for allocation of time.  Outside of the semesters, research activity, as designated by the principle investigator of the Experiment Station project to which the student is allocated, will be the first priority.
  1. Graduate Research Assistantships or GRAs
These are funded directly out of a research grant, without the support from the General Fund or Experiment Station.  Tuition remission is not provided but the remuneration is increased and the student pays his or her own tuition and fees. The level of support is adjusted to attempt to be equivalent to the GTF, once tuition and fees are paid.  However, in certain circumstances, lesser amounts are offered. Since the Department does not provide the funding of a GRA, their 20-hour time commitment is primarily to the principal investigator of the grant.  However, graduation from a Masters Program in the Department of Animal Sciences requires that GRAs complete a minimum of one course as a Graduate Teaching Assistant (or an equivalent such as 10 fifty-minute lectures or agreed extension activity) irrespective of the funding source.  Graduation from a Doctoral program has a requirement of at least 2 semesters of teaching support.  The rationale behind this is that the development of teaching skills is an essential and intrinsic part of an adequate graduate-training program.  Since students in the doctoral programs are most likely to pursue an academic career after graduation the requirement is appropriately increased.

B. Allocation and minimum expectations

The allocation of GTFs and GRAs to courses is the responsibility of the Chair of the Department of Animal Sciences. The Chair will normally consult the faculty over this allocation.

The expectation is that a GTF will assist with the laboratory section of a course each semester.  For GRAs the expectation is one course of teaching support for the Masters program or two for the Ph.D. program. Course instructors will determine if GTFs will be required to attend or prepare for lectures. A more detailed list of graduate teaching responsibilities is included under Section E below.

The course instructor will provide graduate students with a written outline of the requirements and the instructor's expectations.

C.  Evaluation

It is the expectation of the Chair that an evaluation is done of all courses every semester they are taught.  This should include an opportunity to evaluate the GTF's contribution.  In addition, a written evaluation of the graduate student by the instructor at the end of each semester with constructive suggestions for further training or program development is required.

D. Other Sources of Funding

Fellowship Grants: Students are encouraged to compete for national graduate fellowships, such as those made available by the National Science Foundation, the Smithsonian Institution, and the Grass Foundation.  Information on these fellowships is available from the office of the Graduate College and the Office of Sponsored Programs.

Mini Travel Grants: The Graduate College has a Mini Travel Grant support program that encourages and supports grad student travel to present student research at professional meetings. Guidelines and application forms are available through the Graduate office.

Graduate fellowships, (such as those made available by the National Science Foundation, the Smithsonian Institution, and the Grass Foundation).  Information on these fellowships is available from the office of the Graduate College and the Office of Sponsored Programs.

Sponsored Project Administration (SPA) in 217 Waterman Building is an important and helpful resource to you.  The staff publishes lists of grants available to students and will do computer searches of special funding sources for you.  Graduate students are urged to apply for grant funds such as Graduate College Mini-Grants, NSF-Doctoral Dissertation grants, Sigma XI research awards, and the special funds from the Smithsonian Institution and the American Museum of Natural History.  Sponsored Project Administration is ready to assist graduate students in locating appropriate funding sources.

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Last modified April 16 2013 12:15 PM

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