College Advice Blog

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May 23, 2012

Obtaining Stipends to Fund Your Graduate Education

Perhaps you have decided to go on to graduate school. If you are currently working, a graduate degree normally means a bit more money in your pocket, which is a great incentive. But there is a catch... 

Graduate school is normally more expensive and funding is harder to attain. Those in search of Master degrees or doctoral degrees have few choices before them. This is not to say it is impossible to find some assistance, but it may take a bit of searching on your part. 
First, consider your career. Teachers working in fields of high need, or in a low income area, at times qualify for aid. There are programs from the Federal government offering forgiveness of student loans provided the applicant is a teacher or plans on teaching in a high need field. There is always a real need for special needs teachers and educators willing to work in low income schools. Contact the specific state's education department for more information. If you are not a teacher but are considering teaching, various avenues for aid are available. 

Nurses wanting to go back to school can get tuition reimbursement if they agree to work for the hospital or entity who refunds tuition. Expect to spend one to three years in employment for each year of college tuition. Nurses who are willing to travel, or who work in specific locations, may also benefit from programs such as this. 
The military may not have been the first career choice, but if you have a degree already and want a graduate degree, joining the military for the G.I. Bill is a potential way to pay for graduate school. The military may also help pay for previous education, so it is certainly an option. 
Online programs are one of the better ways to earn an advanced degree. Many online colleges and schools employ adjunct workers. As an adjunct, a portion of your tuition can be used in lieu of a paycheck. There are many schools and programs like this available, such as Western International, who has a variety of options. 
Agreeing to participate in or perform an action research project is another possible way to pay for graduate studies. Depending on your field, various grants and stipends are available for motivated, hard working individuals and groups willing to share experiences. 
While funding for graduate school is difficult to secure, there are options available to you. You will have to be willing to spend your time looking, researching and inquiring. If you have a will, there is a way to afford higher education.
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