The department awards various University and Departmental Scholarships to its students. Information is also provided here about other departments and research centers on campus that have employed geography students.
State regulations permit departmental aid in the form of teaching assistantships to be offered only one year at a time. Assuming good performance by an incoming T.A. in his or her coursework and teaching duties, however, the department is committed to continuing these awards through a second year for an M.A. student and through a second and third year for a Ph.D. student.
Teaching assistantship duties vary considerably with the course and supervising instructor. For courses in cartography, GIS, remote sensing, soils, and statistics, TAs hold office hours to assist students and serve as the instructor for the laboratory portion of these offerings. In contrast, teaching assistants for the introductory physical geography laboratories have charge of their own classes (although they follow an established curriculum). Senior TAs also teach introductory sections of human, physical, and regional geography on occasion. A TA holding a half-time appointment is expected to devote twenty hours per week to teaching duties.
Research assistantships are awarded by invitation through the professor holding the grant or other source of funding. Normally, a student is selected because of special research skills that integrate well with the research project.
Stipends for half-time teaching appointments currently are approximately $16,000 for nine months. All teaching and research appointments made at 40% of full time or more carry eligibility for tuition at the reduced staff rate. This rate is set on a per-credit-hour basis, and at present is the same as the Kansas resident tuition. Teaching assistants also receive a tuition waiver based on the percentage of time they are appointed. For example, a half-time appointment currently receives 100% waiver of tuition. In addition, three hours of required campus fees are paid. The remaining campus fees must be paid by the student, however. Nonresident students appointed for less than 40% of full time pay the nonresident tuition. Teaching and research assistantships are normally available only to full-time, degree-seeking students.
Teaching Assistantships in Other Departments
Graduate students in geography are eligible to apply for teaching assistantships in several other departments and programs at KU. These include the following:
Please be aware that each program has its own application requirements and deadlines, teaching responsibilities, and salary rates. Inquire at the web sites listed above for specific details and application materials.
These competitive, four-year fellowships are offered by the university to superior students seeking the Ph.D. The current stipend is $28,500 each year for four years plus tuition and fees. The Self program is restricted to science students, which includes physical geography and geographic information science areas of concentration.
Graduate Initiative for Diversity
Graduate Fellowship for Diversity/Eunice H. Melik Diversity Fellowship
The Graduate Initiative for Diversity is intended to increase the participation in graduate study at KU by students who are from groups underrepresented in their field of study. A limited number of first-year fellowships are available to students who have been admitted to our graduate programs for fall 2010. Nominees are expected to possess an outstanding academic record. The fellowship provides a one-year stipend of $18,000 plus payment of up to 9 graduate credit hours of tuition and fees for the fall and spring semesters. Fellowships are awarded to students during their first year of study. The nominating program is expected to fund the student through GTA, GRA or grant activity for at least the next three years of their graduate program, contingent upon the student making good progress toward degree as determined by the program. Preference will be considered for those students supported by training grant programs. Funding rates for these subsequent years will be at the normal rate for such appointments as determined by the department.
The following must be submitted electronically with the nomination: completed nomination coversheet; nomination statement by department, including a statement that the student is from a group underrepresented in their field of study; student's personal essay; student's curriculum vitae/resume; transcripts of all college or university work; copy of GRE scores or other method of testing and/or evaluating quality; three letters of reference, and signed access waiver form indicating student's access to files or recommendations.
Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) Fellowships
A number of geography graduate students have been awarded FLAS fellowships for studying foreign languages relevant to their research interests. FLAS fellowships pay a stipend and tuition and are managed by their respective area studies centers. Currently, FLAS funding is available from:
Check the area studies websites for information about deadlines, stipends, and application materials.
Other Employment Opportunities
Several research assistantships are normally offered through the Kansas Geological Survey, the Kansas Applied Remote Sensing Program, KU Cartographic Services, and other units. In addition, student hourly and work-study employment with the Department of Geography is available. Students should visit University Career Center in the Burge Union for a complete list of student hourly positions at the University of Kansas.
Office of Student Financial Aid
For information, especially about loans and student hourly, work-study employment, write to:
The University of Kansas
Office of Student Financial Aid
50 Strong Hall
Lawrence, KS 66045
or visit the Office of Student Financial Aid web site.