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Funding Opportunities for Graduate School

Funding Opportunities for Graduate School


Affording your college education may be easier than you think! There are several scholarship options for first-time, transfer, and current students at WKU.

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TopDollar Scholarship Portal

The TopDollar Scholarship Portal is one convenient way to apply for scholarships at WKU. In addition to the scholarships that are awarded by the University based on academic merit, there are numerous scholarships that are awarded by the College Heights Foundation through private funds established by alumni and friends, academic departments or programs throughout the University, or by community organizations and professional associations. Learn more about the types of scholarships that can be applied for via TOPDollar.

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Western Kentucky University awards graduate assistantships (GA) to select graduate students in programs across campus. Assistantships are one-year contracts beginning at the start of the fall semester that may extend to two years pending need, budgetary allowances, as well informal and formal evaluations of their previous work. GAs hired to work in the Department of Counseling and Student Affairs complete their 20 hours/week on campus supporting the department and faculty in activities related to marketing and recruitment (often scheduled on Saturdays), research, teaching, and administrative duties. GAs follow WKU’s administrative work schedule (i.e., working through finals weeks, fall and spring breaks). Graduate Assistants must maintain a GPA of 3.0 to maintain employment contract. In order to apply for a GA position in the counseling department, fill out the application and email it to the Department’s GA Coordinator, Dr. Lacretia Dyeby March 25th. (JUMP students are not eligible for Graduate Assistantships.) 

Graduate Research Assistantship (GR/GA): employed by the university to perform duties related to a scholarly project or program of research under the guidance and direction of faculty members. The duties of a research assistant involve applying and mastering conceptual and theoretical ideas, practices, or methods of scholarship.   

Graduate Teaching Assistantship (GT/TA): GT/TAs are available upon need and qualifications to help professors with units in undergraduate classes. They may serve as discussion leaders, graders, leaders of laboratory sections, or may assist in capacities such as preparation of assignments, and other administrative duties necessary for a course.

  • P.E.O. Educational Loan Fund (ELF): Intended to help qualified women attain a degree or certification from an accredited postsecondary educational institution. The maximum loan amount is $15,000 for master’s degrees.
  • P.E.O. Projects: Make a difference in women's lives with six philanthropies that include five projects that provide higher educational assistance.
  • National Health Service Corps: These programs offer scholarships and loan repayment programs available to mental and behavioral health professionals addressing a growing health care shortage in rural, urban, and tribal communities.
  • Public Service Loan Forgiveness: The PSLF Program is intended to encourage individuals to enter and continue to work full-time in public service jobs. Under this program, borrowers may qualify for forgiveness of the remaining balance of their Direct Loans after they have made 120 qualifying payments on those loans while employed full time by certain public service employers. View this PSLF step-by-step video guide to learn more.
  • National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC) Fellowships: By providing scholarships and fellowships to counselors-in-training, the Foundation increases the number of counselors committed to helping priority underserved communities. The Foundation offers scholarships and fellowships to master’s and doctoral counseling students, training awards to individuals earning the BCC certification, and professional development awards to CCE credential holders. View their list of scholarships including those related to serving military, rural, and minority populations (Deadlines: Sep & May).
  • American Counseling Association (ACA): Funding opportunities are available for students to participate in conferences (volunteer for half off the registration fee), essay contests, and research grants through ACA, the ACA foundation, and the ACA divisions.
  • Kentucky Counseling Association (KCA): There are summer scholarships and conference volunteer opportunities available for a student counselor at each of the participating universities with counselor education programs.
  • Chi Sigma Iota International (CSI): Once a member of this counseling honor society, there are research grants, fellowships, essay contests, and other opportunities to help fund professional development and engagement within the profession.
  • American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT): They offer a Minority Fellowship Program is available for master's level students in the MCFC program. Visit the application information to learn more. Their website also provides a variety of research and grant resources.
  • NAADC Minority Fellowship Program for Addiction Counselors. Up to $20,000 tuition stipend available to master's students interested in specializing in addiction/substance abuse and open to working with the needs of a racial/ethnic minorities and/or transition age youth after graduation. Funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). See the website for information or flyer for details and application requirements.
  • AAUW Career Development Grants provide funding to women who hold a bachelor’s degree and are preparing to advance or change careers or re-enter the workforce. Primary consideration is given to women of color and women pursuing their first advanced degree or credentials in nontraditional fields. Applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents whose last degree was received before June 30, 2010. Funds are available for tuition, fees, books, supplies, local transportation, and dependent care. Grants provide support for course work beyond a bachelor’s degree, including a master’s degree, certification program, or specialized training in technical or professional fields. Applications are open Aug 1 - Dec 15). Visit their website to learn more.
  • Kenton County Retired Teachers Association Scholarship: $600.00 scholarship for a Kenton County resident who is enrolled in the College of Education and is a senior or someone working on his/her post graduate degree/certification. View the KCTRAS information and application form.

STUDENT EMPLOYMENT AT WKU

The Student Employment Program at Western Kentucky University provides employment opportunities for students who are in need of part-time employment as they pursue a course of study at the University. The program is also designed to assist University departments in meeting their objectives through the use of qualified student employees.

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Eligibility Criteria

Application Process

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Department of Counseling
and Student Affairs

Gary A. Ransdell Hall 3036
1906 College Heights Blvd. #51031,
Bowling Green, KY 42101-1030
(270) 745-4953


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 Last Modified 3/7/22