The Graduate School provides incentive supplements for external fellowship awards received by eligible doctoral students in good standing over the course of the academic year (defined as September-May) based upon the standard Graduate School academic year stipend. External fellowship awards are considered to be those awarded to graduate students via competitive external funding agencies based on the student’s initiative and application. Competitive internal or external fellowship awards and external fellowship grants based on faculty applications do not qualify for incentive funding under this policy.
Incentive Program for Doctoral Students
- The Graduate School’s incentive policy applies to doctoral students in good academic standing. Students enrolled in doctoral programs in the Division of Biology and Medicine are not eligible.
- The incentive policy only applies to external awards used during years 1 through 5 (including intervening summers) and during a year in which the student is scheduled to receive stipend support.
- The external funding must have been won on account of the student’s initiative. Grants by faculty, even when they benefit a graduate student, do not count. Therefore, graduate student support through research grants and contracts, and awards such as IGERT, GAANN, etc., are not part of this incentive plan.
- External funding sources include all sources outside of Brown University. In cases where regulations of the external agency prohibit, render ineffective or otherwise affect this incentive program, the rules of the funding source apply.
- Students in the humanities and social sciences receiving external funding in amounts close to the base Graduate School stipend may want to consider applying for Advanced Status.
Students who receive external funding that is equal to or more than 11⁄9 (111.11%) of the Graduate School fellowship stipend will receive the external funding with no additional Graduate School contribution. If external funding is less than 111.11% of the Graduate School fellowship stipend, students will receive a combination of external funding, Graduate School stipend, and incentive payment, not to exceed 111.11% of the Graduate School fellowship stipend.
Keep in mind that the length of time over which a student receives an external award will play an important role in determining whether and how the incentive policy applies. Please see examples of the incentive policy below.
Students typically cannot receive full (or close to full) support from more than one source at a time. A student can accept, for example, both a Javits and a National Science Foundation award, but must take them in sequential years. A student cannot hold a Javits (or NSF, etc.) in addition to Brown’s full University support. Students may be able to use more than one smaller external award concurrently depending on the amounts of the awards and whether the awards allow concurrent funding. Students with possible funding from more than one external award should reach out to the Graduate School at email@example.com for approval.
If an external award provides partial tuition, health fees, or insurance, the Graduate School will supplement this partial support up to the standard tuition and fee levels provided to doctoral students. If the award does not provide tuition or fees, the Graduate School will provide full standard doctoral tuition, health fee, and insurance coverage for funding-eligible students.
To qualify for a Graduate School incentive supplement, students must provide their external funding documentation to their Program Administrator and to the Graduate School as described on the External Funding webpage. A student’s eligibility for an incentive and the amount of the incentive will be reviewed and, if awarded, will be disbursed in the same manner as the regular Graduate School stipend.
Students applying for external funding should visit the External Funding webpage for further information.
Students in programs in the Division of Biology and Medicine should contact the Associate Dean of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies for further information regarding that Division's incentive policies.
To determine how the incentive policy will be implemented, funding can be broken down into monthly payment amounts. The following hypothetical Graduate School fellowship stipend amounts are for illustrative purposes only and may not reflect the actual standard fellowship stipend for a given year or program.
Base Graduate School fellowship stipend = $43,791.00
Maximum incentive supplement of 11.11% = $4,865.18
Incentive enhanced stipend (base fellowship stipend plus maximum incentive supplement ) = $48,656.18
*Annual stipend amounts are based on the fiscal year (July 1-June 30)
Base Graduate School fellowship stipend = $3,649.25
Maximum incentive supplement of 11.11% = $405.43
Incentive enhanced stipend (base fellowship stipend plus maximum incentive supplement ) = $4,054.68 per month
There are four scenarios to consider (using the hypothetical monthly amounts listed above):
- If a student has external funding that is less than the maximum incentive supplement ($405.43 per month), the student will receive the external funding plus the full base Graduate School fellowship stipend. Their stipend will be more than the base Graduate School fellowship stipend, but not more than 111.11% of the base stipend.
- If a student has external funding that is more than the maximum incentive supplement ($405.43 per month) and less than the base Graduate School fellowship stipend ($3,649.25 per month), the student will receive the external funding, top up funding to make the monthly payment equal to the base Graduate School fellowship stipend, and the maximum incentive supplement of 11.11% ($405.43 per month). Their incentive enhanced stipend will be equal to 111.11% of the base Graduate School fellowship stipend.
- If a student has external funding that is more than the base Graduate School fellowship stipend ($3,649.25 per month) and less than the incentive enhanced stipend ($4,054.68 per month), the student will receive the external funding and an incentive supplement that brings their total incentive enhanced stipend equal to 111.11% of the base Graduate School fellowship stipend.
- If a student has external funding that is more than the incentive enhanced stipend ($4,054.68 per month), the student will receive the external funding with no additional Graduate School contribution. Their stipend will be more than 111.11% of the base Graduate School fellowship stipend and completely dependent on the amount of the external funding.
Note that some external funding awards may not line up with Brown’s monthly payment cycle or Academic Year cycle. If this is the case for your funding, or if you have other questions about the best option for your situation, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.