Share How You Pay for Graduate School

Posted On May 12, 2015
Categories Uncategorized


Makeda RobertsName: Makeda Roberts
Degree Program: MA/PhD Program in Sociology
Research Focus: My research looks at the intersection of sexual practices, sexual health, and socioeconomic status in black and white women and how they change overtime.

How are you funding your graduate education?

I am funding my graduate education by being a participant in the SREB-State Doctoral Scholars Program.

How did you find out about that funding opportunity?

My undergraduate mentor, Claire Norris, Ph.D., was a former SREB-State Doctoral Scholar who graduated from LSU. Once I decided to apply to graduate school, she highly recommended the program.

Does your funding give you opportunities that you wouldn’t have otherwise? What are they?

Since the focus of the SREB-State Doctoral Scholars Program is to increase minority PhDs on college campuses, I get the opportunity to interact with fellow minority PhDs, future colleagues and people that can further advance my graduate and post-graduate experience. Aside from the financial assistance, the SREB-State Doctoral Scholar Program offers career and scholar counseling, early career support, an invite to the annual Institute on Teaching and Mentoring, and access to job postings, networking, and recruiting via a dense directory of scholars and supporters.

What’s the coolest thing you’ve gotten to do as a graduate student at Georgia State University?

The coolest thing I’ve done thus far is attending the Institute on Teaching and Mentoring at the Omni CNN Center Hotel where I met a plethora of people to add to my expanding network of colleagues, professors and research professionals.

Where’s your favorite place on campus?

With Saxby’s downstairs and the fast, free WiFi, the library happens to be my favorite place on campus.



Sara PopeName: Sarah Pope
Degree Program: PhD in Neuroscience
Research Focus: Neural Underpinnings of Imitation in Chimpanzees

How are you funding your graduate education?

I receive the Primate Social Cognition, Evolution, and Behavior (PSCEB) Fellowship through the University 2nd Century Initiative (2CI) Program. It provides up to 7 years of funding for PhD track students with research interests relating to primates. Also, I received a Chateaubriand Fellowship from the French Embassy of the United States to fund a portion of my research, which was conducted in France.

How did you find out about that funding opportunity?

For the Chateaubriand Fellowship, I had mentioned to my advisor that I would like to conduct a research project in France and he sent me several links to funding opportunities, including the Chateaubriand Fellowship Program. I applied and voila.
For the 2CI PSCEB fellowship, I was nominated through the Primate Social Cognition, Evolution, and Behavior Fellowship program, selected by the 2CI committee, and approved by the Dean of the College of Arts and Science.

Does your funding give you opportunities that you wouldn’t have otherwise? What are they?

Yes, absolutely. As part of the Chateaubriand funding I was encouraged to seek a dual-degree between GSU and the French university where my project was conducted. Now, in addition to my PhD from GSU, I’ll receive a doctorat en Psychologie from Aix-Marseille University. So, its given me a lot of opportunities both now and for my future career.

What’s the coolest thing you’ve gotten to do as a graduate student at Georgia State University?

I get to work with chimpanzees everyday, so its never boring but I think the coolest thing was living in Aix-en-Provence for 6 months and working with the baboons on a touch screen task I designed. Turns out, they did much better on it than the humans I tested!

Where’s your favorite place on campus?

The 8th floor of the Petit Science Center. You can’t beat the view.


Scot SeitzName: Scot Seitz
Degree Program: Ph.D. in Clinical and Community Psychology
Research Focus: My research interests include positive youth development, youth program evaluation, and incorporating evidence-based strategies into community programming.

How are you funding your graduate education?

My program offers a tuition waiver, so I only pay for fees each semester. I pay for these fees and my living expenses with a 12-month stipend that my program provides as compensation for my research work and teaching assistantship responsibilities. I also received a 4-year fellowship through the College of Arts and Sciences that provides additional funds to my annual stipend.

How did you find out about that funding opportunity?

I learned about the tuition waiver and the annual stipend through the Psychology Department’s website. I was offered the fellowship via email shortly after I was accepted into the program.

Does your funding give you opportunities that you wouldn’t have otherwise? What are they?

The funding enables me to focus 100% on coursework, research, and clinical work without having to work outside of the program. Because the funding is tied to a research position and a teaching assistantship, it also gives me opportunities to develop research and teaching skills.

What’s the coolest thing you’ve gotten to do as a graduate student at Georgia State University?

As a first-year graduate student, I was able to complete a hands-on clinical training practicum in which I co-facilitated a youth group.

Where’s your favorite place on campus?

The GSU gym!



Hersheda PatelName: Hersheda Patel
Degree Program: M.A./Ph.D. in Sociology
Research Focus: I am interested in how universities balance the needs for academic excellence, competitiveness, and diversity in enrollment — and how the nature of that balance affects students’ persistence and retention. I am currently investigating how specialization and mission differentiation allow universities to achieve upward mobility in the higher education stratification system. Furthermore, I am exploring how these organizational changes affect universities’ commitment to diversity.

How are you funding your graduate education?

I have a graduate assistantship in the Office of Graduate Services as the format editor for theses and dissertations. I work with graduating masters and doctoral candidates as they format their theses and dissertations according to the College of Arts and Sciences’ guidelines.

How did you find out about that funding opportunity?

My graduate director regularly sends out information regarding potential funding opportunities for unfunded students, which is how I heard about this position.

Does your funding give you opportunities that you wouldn’t have otherwise? What are they?

My graduate assistantship gives me the opportunity to see the backstage processes and people who make our graduate experience possible. I also have a much better understanding of the graduation process, which makes me feel much more at ease about going through the process myself.

What’s the coolest thing you’ve gotten to do as a graduate student at Georgia State University?

I truly love getting to work with amazing graduate students, and helping them on their journey towards graduation. The coolest part of my graduate assistantship is when graduate students thank me for helping them. Even though I help them with the smallest part of their journey, they make me feel like I made a difference. As a graduate student myself, it means a lot to be able to help other graduate students obtain the degree we are all working towards.

Where’s your favorite place on campus?

The plaza between Langdale Hall, Sparks Hall, and Library North is my favorite place on campus. There is always an eclectic mix of people in the courtyard, which is so representative of the Georgia State student body!