About Graduate Access Fellowships

Program closed for 2016-17 Academic Year. Nominations for 2016-17 are no longer being accepted (June 27, 2016).


The UA Graduate College's Graduate Access Fellowship (GAF) is intended to broaden the access of U.S. students to graduate education and to promote the diversity of our graduate student body. Each fellowship provides up to $4,000 to students admitted to a Master’s program, or $10,000 to those admitted to the PhD. The latter includes PhD-bound master's students in programs that require completion of the Master's before admission to the PhD, those pursuing an MFA requiring a minimum of 60 units, and those pursuing an MLA. Graduate Access Fellowships may be supplemented by other financial support provided by the academic program, but not by a major graduate fellowship from another source (such as University Fellows, National Science Foundation, Ford Foundation, Mellon, etc.). GAFs are need-based awards that require the recipient to demonstrate sufficient need to receive the funds by filing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

Eligibility and Procedure

Eligibility for these fellowships is restricted to:

  • Incoming*, domestic graduate students who have shown academic achievement despite facing challenging social, economic or educational obstacles.
  • Students who will enroll on Main Campus (Tucson), UA South, or the Phoenix campus. UA Online students are not eligible.

*Accelerated Master's Program (AMP) students are not eligible to apply for a GAF. GAF is a recruitment tool and AMP students are continuing in their program and therefore are not "new admits".

Prospective students may not apply directly. After a student completes the Eligibility Affidavit, departments can nominate those who, in addition to academic merit, meet two or more of the following eligibility criteria:

  1. Documented financial need as an undergraduate, e.g., Pell Grant eligibility, Work Study.
  2. First-generation student, i.e. having parents or guardians who have not earned a baccalaureate degree, or who did not earn one until the applicant was already in college.
  3. Other significant challenges in gaining access to higher education or personal experiences with disadvantage.

Instructions for Applicants

If you meet the above criteria and will be a newly admitted degree seeking domestic graduate student for the upcoming fall term and would like to be considered for this fellowship, please fill out the Eligibility Affidavit Form. The Graduate College will forward your affidavit to your academic unit for consideration.

Instructions for Departments

If you are a department program coordinator or admissions officer and already have a Graduate Access Fellowship website account, please login to see further instructions. If you do not yet have an account, please have your Department Head or DGS contact us about authorizing your account.