Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering
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Tuition & Financial Aid


For information on the costs associated with attending the University of Minnesota, please see the University's Office of the Registrar main page.

Financial Aid

*IMPORTANT* Individual faculty members are not authorized to make official or final offers of financial aid. An offer of financial aid is not considered official unless received from the Director of Graduate Studies, Prof. Demoz Gebre-Egziabher.

There is no specific application form for departmental financial aid awards, as all admitted students are automatically considered. First consideration for aid is given to students who submit application materials by December 15th. Applications submitted after December 15th may be placed on a waiting list for financial aid. Application materials, including transcripts, statements of purpose, and letters of recommendation will be reviewed by the Admissions Committee when determining financial aid awards. Aid awards are typically in the form of graduate teaching or research assistantships and include compensation, a full tuition benefit, and the option to participate in a health insurance plan for which the University covers 95 percent of the premium. The number of teaching and research assistantships fluctuates with enrollment and availability of grant funds.  Approximately 10 to 15 graduate assistantships are awarded to new students each year.

Graduate Assistantships:

Assistantship appointments are either 50 or 25% and come in the form of research or teaching assistantships. A 50% appointment carries a stipend of about $ 1886 / month for the nine-month academic year along with waived tuition and health benefits (prorated for a 25% appointment). Fees billed by the University are NOT convered by any type of assistantship. Half-time research assistantships are, in general, for approximately 20 hours per week. Support from the Department beyond the first year is contingent upon the availability of funds. Priority for departmental positions is given to students making timely progress towards their degrees.

It is possible to hold simultaneous teaching and research assistantships within any academic semester. If simultaneous appointments are made, then each is typically a 25% appointment. Maximum appointments to teaching assistantship and/or research assistantship positions are 50%, except in unusual cases where graduate students who have qualified for doctoral candidacy may receive 75% appointments if a distinct service need exists.

Students must register in the semester in which they hold teaching assistantships (except during summer sessions providing they were registered the preceding spring semester).

Teaching Assistants: (Primary means of support for first year students.) Teaching Assistants work under the supervision of faculty or academic staff, providing assistance to the faculty in teaching or advising students registered for specific courses. Teaching Assistants may work under direct supervision of the faculty member responsible for a course or may be the instructor of record for an entire course.

Responsibilities: will vary according to the nature of the specific position assigned and according to the department's requirements:

  • Grading of examinations, reports, and/or assigning final grades
  • Preparation of examinations or class materials
  • Assistance provided to faculty in the teaching or advising of students registered in specific courses
  • Supervision or instruction of laboratory classes, recitation sections, or intern groups
  • Academic administrative duties directly related to administration of a course

It is the University of Minnesota policy that non-native speakers of English must have an English Language Proficiency (ELP) rating in order to be considered eligible for a teaching assistantship.

  • The AEM department requires all TAs have an ELP of 1 or 2.

Research Assistants: Research Assistants are appointments from faculty members who hold research contracts and grants. Once a student is admitted, a graduate research assistant appointment is possible through direct discussions with individual faculty. Please see individual faculty pages for more information on research topics. The faculty member providing support will serve as your academic adviser. Appointments vary, depending on the availability of funds and the academic progress of the student. Research appointments are made at any time in the calendar year depending on funding and other factors. It is expected that all students move to research appointments after their first year.

Responsibilities: Research assistants perform duties of a specialized nature connected with research assigned by the supporting department or principal research investigator. The research assistantship may provide the base for part or all of the student's thesis; it may provide technical skills specifically required by the degree program. May include collecting research material, performing experiments, doing taxonomic work, taking field notes, preparing bibliographies, abstracting, editing, etc.

More Information: Graduate Assistantship Information

Graduate Assistant Health Insurance Plan


Fellowships are awards based on academic merit and are available to new and currently enrolled graduate students.

Graduate School Fellowships: The Director of Graduate Studies for the program nominates student(s) to this all-University competition. GSF(s) are intended to assist in the recruiting of outstanding Ph.D. students by providing full-support academic-year merit fellowship. The nomination deadline is mid-January for the following academic year.

Departmental Fellowships: A select number of students are awarded departmental fellowships and typically used to as support in addition to the assistantship.

More Information: Graduate School Fellowship Office

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Last Modified: 2016-08-11 at 14:59:26 -- this is in International Standard Date and Time Notation