7 votes

How did/do you fund your graduate education?

If you're doing a master's or a PhD, how do you pay for it? Or if you will be doing in near future, how do you plan to pay for it?

23 comments

  1. [2]
    Comment deleted by author
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    1. callmedante Link Parent
      Your experience sounds quite similar to mine, though I earned an MFA in acting instead. Despite the loans, I feel like it was the right choice for me. That said, I wouldn't recommend it to just...

      Your experience sounds quite similar to mine, though I earned an MFA in acting instead. Despite the loans, I feel like it was the right choice for me. That said, I wouldn't recommend it to just anyone, as each individual needs to do a cost/benefit analysis of such a huge investment. My wife is an undergrad theatre professor, and she recommends programs that pay you too attend, like hers did.

  2. [3]
    Cosmos Link
    Try to find a job where your company will pay you for it. Not sure about Turkey, but there are a lot in the US that do this. Only caveat is that they will often require you to use that degree for...

    Try to find a job where your company will pay you for it. Not sure about Turkey, but there are a lot in the US that do this. Only caveat is that they will often require you to use that degree for them for a few years after you graduate.

    4 votes
    1. [2]
      Gully_Foyles (edited ) Link Parent
      Defense and government work are very big on paying for masters since its such a critical career milestone for them. Can be worth dipping into those industries to get one knocked out, but look...

      Defense and government work are very big on paying for masters since its such a critical career milestone for them. Can be worth dipping into those industries to get one knocked out, but look before you leap I like to say.

      1 vote
      1. Rocket_Man Link Parent
        I'd like to mention this was my brother experience and it isn't always a nice as it sounds. He has a government job and they will reimburse him for the masters degree but only when it's completed....

        I'd like to mention this was my brother experience and it isn't always a nice as it sounds. He has a government job and they will reimburse him for the masters degree but only when it's completed. He's also expected to continue working while taking a fair number of credit hours. It can be done, but it can take a long time and years of increased stress.

        1 vote
  3. [3]
    vakieh Link
    I did my PhD a few years back (involved a blend of compsci and engineering with a smidge of econ and education) - I had a government scholarship and stipend that paid 100% tuition as well as a...

    I did my PhD a few years back (involved a blend of compsci and engineering with a smidge of econ and education) - I had a government scholarship and stipend that paid 100% tuition as well as a stipend that I topped up with a bunch of teaching (tutoring, lecturing, and (ugh) admin work), and then also included a dissemination requirements in grant/funding applications (conferences are fucking expensive).

    I found my spending exploded during my PhD because linkages to other institutions and industry are what turn a good PhD into a great one. So I spent more than half my time in other countries.

    3 votes
    1. [2]
      cadadr Link Parent
      I wonder how much free time you had back then, if you don't mind sharing.

      I wonder how much free time you had back then, if you don't mind sharing.

      1 vote
      1. vakieh Link Parent
        It came in waves - obviously teaching lines up with semesters, so when students are off (mostly) teaching is off, and there's times when a PhD is 'go away and do something else until you have an...

        It came in waves - obviously teaching lines up with semesters, so when students are off (mostly) teaching is off, and there's times when a PhD is 'go away and do something else until you have an idea'. It's a constant pressure though, so there's no time that's truly 'free'.

        3 votes
  4. Akir Link
    The same way as everyone else, rich parents student aid programs. I am actually taking college classes part time alongside a full-time job, which is excruciatingly slow. But because I am going to...

    The same way as everyone else, rich parents student aid programs.

    I am actually taking college classes part time alongside a full-time job, which is excruciatingly slow. But because I am going to a community college (a particularly good one, actually) and taking so few simultaneous classes, school isn't costing me a significant amount - even though it is costing me extra in periodic fees because I am taking so much time.

    3 votes
  5. cadadr Link
    I am going to be applying for an MA in Linguistics. I am among the priority group for state scholarships in my country (Turkey), but I doubt that alone will be enough, and it is not certain that...

    I am going to be applying for an MA in Linguistics. I am among the priority group for state scholarships in my country (Turkey), but I doubt that alone will be enough, and it is not certain that I'll obtain it. I don't want any more student loan either. So either way I'll try to find some freelance remote job, translations or maybe some light programming. If desperate, I'll do some language teaching, but I fear anything with office time can distract my actual focus, which is making a superb thesis as a first step to a career as a researcher.

    2 votes
  6. [4]
    acdw Link
    A main decider for which MFA program I went to was which one provided a full tuition scholarship in return for me doing a Teaching Assistantship. So that's what I did. I still had to pay fees...

    A main decider for which MFA program I went to was which one provided a full tuition scholarship in return for me doing a Teaching Assistantship. So that's what I did. I still had to pay fees though, which came out to about $500 a semester, and I'm still paying those off. I also discovered I do not like teaching.

    2 votes
    1. [3]
      cadadr Link Parent
      Where is this? I heard this sort of funding is available in some places in Europe, and I will be looking into those stuff for my PhD. I got to do a couple lessons during my undergrad, and I loved...

      Where is this? I heard this sort of funding is available in some places in Europe, and I will be looking into those stuff for my PhD. I got to do a couple lessons during my undergrad, and I loved it, so I assume I'll like teaching in general.

      1 vote
      1. [2]
        acdw Link Parent
        Flagstaff, AZ, USA. Though at least for English it's fairly common in the US, or was when I was looking into getting my MFA. It's common enough that I was told by multiple people, "If a university...

        Flagstaff, AZ, USA. Though at least for English it's fairly common in the US, or was when I was looking into getting my MFA. It's common enough that I was told by multiple people, "If a university isn't paying you to get your MFA, don't go there."

        I'm so glad you like teaching. My fiancee is a teacher, and she loves it, and I think it's so important for teachers to love teaching, and teachers are so important in general too. We need good ones that are passionate.

        2 votes
  7. Nmg (edited ) Link
    I am still waiting to hear about funding from my first choice university. It looks like I didn't get a departmental fellowship, however PhD programs in my field tend to be rather well funded. I...

    I am still waiting to hear about funding from my first choice university. It looks like I didn't get a departmental fellowship, however PhD programs in my field tend to be rather well funded. I will be making some emails and even phone calls shortly to ensure I get it. If not, I will continue working in industry until I get into a university that has a program I am sufficiently interested in and can fund me.

    2 votes
  8. DrewDru Link
    I got lucky enough to find a decent job two years ago. I have enough savings to pay for my post-grad in a local uni. Savings are enough to pay for the full course up front, so at least I know that...

    I got lucky enough to find a decent job two years ago. I have enough savings to pay for my post-grad in a local uni. Savings are enough to pay for the full course up front, so at least I know that once I start I'm not likely to drop out for financial reasons. It will place me in a situation where I can't afford to lose my job, but I'm super happy to avoid any loans.

    2 votes
  9. [4]
    pocketry Link
    I was in the Air Force and used the GI Bill to pay for my MBA. The GI bill is primarily designed for undergraduate work, so I had to pick a school with low tuition. Since I was working full time...

    I was in the Air Force and used the GI Bill to pay for my MBA. The GI bill is primarily designed for undergraduate work, so I had to pick a school with low tuition. Since I was working full time while taking classes part time, I was able to pay the small remainder out of pocket. I had some student loans from my undergrad that I just payed off in January!

    2 votes
    1. [3]
      Gully_Foyles Link Parent
      How long ago was this out of curiosity? Post 9/11 GI bill is very robust now and offers in-state tuition rates for state universities in any state as of 2015. If you were on Montgomery GI bill,...

      How long ago was this out of curiosity? Post 9/11 GI bill is very robust now and offers in-state tuition rates for state universities in any state as of 2015. If you were on Montgomery GI bill, then yes, that is more limiting in how much it can pay out. I'm planning to take mine to go back for a masters in computer science within the next year and a half.

      1. [2]
        pocketry Link Parent
        This was from 2012 to 2015. Now that I think of it more, I had to apply for a program called yellow ribbon something to make up the gap between cost and max tuition reimbursement. Graduate tuition...

        This was from 2012 to 2015. Now that I think of it more, I had to apply for a program called yellow ribbon something to make up the gap between cost and max tuition reimbursement. Graduate tuition is more than undergrad I think, which is why the program exists.

        1. Gully_Foyles Link Parent
          That's good you got yellow-ribbon. Luckily, I don't think I will have to do that in my case. I'm very thankful they've beefed up the benefits of the GI-Bill program. In-state tuition rates,...

          That's good you got yellow-ribbon. Luckily, I don't think I will have to do that in my case. I'm very thankful they've beefed up the benefits of the GI-Bill program. In-state tuition rates, housing allowance, and full coverage of costs at state schools for 36 months of classes is amazing.

  10. [3]
    Homicide Link
    Fellow Turk here! Planning on doing masters in Global Politics & Societal Change in Sweden next year so that I can (hopefully) find a paid PhD position somewhere in Europe. From the looks of it,...

    Fellow Turk here!

    Planning on doing masters in Global Politics & Societal Change in Sweden next year so that I can (hopefully) find a paid PhD position somewhere in Europe.

    From the looks of it, parents will have to pay for the tuition since my GPA is nowhere high enough to get any kind of scholarship whatsoever. I'll probably find a part-time job to pay for the rent and groceries.

    2 votes
    1. [2]
      cadadr Link Parent
      Hey, good luck with that!

      Hey, good luck with that!

      1 vote
      1. Homicide Link Parent
        Thanks, good luck to you too!

        Thanks, good luck to you too!

        1 vote
  11. Kenny Link
    I am getting a masters of science in communication and I am funding it through federal student loans while I work full-time.

    I am getting a masters of science in communication and I am funding it through federal student loans while I work full-time.

    1 vote