The Graduate School Advance to a Higher Degree

Purdue Fellowships FAQs

Purdue offers several internal fellowships for graduate students, including those incoming and those currently enrolled. The following “Frequently Asked Questions” address how Purdue awards and administers internal fellowships.

How are internal fellowships funded?

Internal Fellowships awarded by the Purdue Graduate School are funded from endowments established by generous donors and from the Purdue Research Foundation.

Through its fellowship program, The Graduate School financially supports its strategic initiative of increasing the enrollment and matriculation of graduate students who demonstrate superior academic achievements and scholarly abilities through two types of fellowships: recruitment fellowships for incoming graduate students and fellowships for currently enrolled students.

Which internal fellowships are available to incoming graduate students?

Recruitment fellowships, which include the Andrews, George Washington Carver, Knox, Lynn and Ross fellowships, support the initiative of encouraging highly talented individuals to enroll as doctoral students in Purdue graduate programs.

Students are not eligible for the recruitment fellowships if they have been admitted to and have enrolled in a Purdue graduate program.

Students who attended Purdue for their undergraduate degree program may directly apply for the Chappelle Fellowship, which has open applications between November and January each year.

How are internal Purdue fellowships awarded to incoming graduate students?

Prospective graduate students must first apply to their Purdue graduate program to be considered for an internal fellowship. The application to a graduate program is automatically used to consider the prospective student for internal fellowships; no additional applications are required.  Prospective students who are offered an internal fellowship will receive a fellowship offer letter with their offer of admission to Purdue.

Selection of recipients for Graduate School fellowships and awards is conducted by members of the Graduate Faculty.

Are there internal Purdue fellowships available for international students?

Yes, the Andrews and Ross Fellowships may be awarded to international prospective graduate students based on the individual’s graduate program application.

The Chappelle Fellowship is open to all Purdue undergraduates regardless of international or domestic status.

For current Purdue doctoral students, the Kruhe Fellowship is open to both domestic and international students.

Which internal fellowships are available for currently enrolled graduate students?

Fellowships for currently enrolled students include the Bilsland Dissertation Fellowship and the Kruhe fellowship.

I am a current Purdue graduate student. How do I apply for internal Purdue fellowships?

The Kruhe Fellowship is the only internal Purdue fellowship awarded by the Graduate School for currently enrolled Purdue graduate students. Applications are accepted from November to January; check Graduate School Awarded Fellowships for more information. 

The Bilsland Dissertation Fellowship is awarded by the College and Department, and each has their own process. Typically, the research advisor or department head will nominate a PhD student for the Bisland award. Interested students should discuss with their research advisor or graduate director.

What are the requirements for internal fellowship recipients?

Recipients of Graduate School fellowships must be enrolled full time in a degree-granting graduate program at Purdue. The Graduate School considers full-time status to be a minimum of eight credit hours in each of the fall and spring sessions, and six credit hours during the summer session.

Is my fellowship capable of being administered as an assistantship?

Andrews, Lynn, Purdue Doctoral, and Ross fellowships may be administered as fellowships or assistantships at the discretion of the department, school, or college, based on guidelines established for determining award administration. The Carver, Chappelle, Bilsland Dissertation, Knox, and Kruhe, are endowed fellowships and must be administered as fellowships.

Can my internal Purdue Fellowship be deferred or “put on hold” for a year?

In consultation with their graduate program business office, and then The Graduate School, fellows may elect to defer a fellowship in order to utilize other funding opportunities or account for temporary absence from the university. To defer a fellowship, the graduate program submits a request for deferral using The Graduate School Form 90, providing an explanation for the deferral request in the Special Instructions section. Deferrals will be made semester for semester, i.e., a spring semester for the following spring semester, and will equate to the original with two full semesters and one summer session. At no time will a summer session put on hold be allowed to be used for a fall or spring semester’s full funding. Requests for deferrals should be emailed to the Fellowship Office (

What happens to my internal Purdue Fellowship if I transfer departments?

On occasion, Graduate School fellows may decide to transfer to another Purdue graduate program. Graduate School fellows interested in transferring should contact their graduate program business office, and then The Graduate School Fellowship staff will work with the fellow and both graduate programs to negotiate the transfer of the fellowship package and any changes that may occur.

Graduate School fellows should be aware that the fellowship award package is an offer and commitment from the original graduate program and not the graduate program to which the fellow wishes to transfer. However, The Graduate School encourages, but does not require, the transfer department to fulfill the fellowship award commitment at the average stipend level consistent with Graduate School fellows enrolled in that graduate program. A new offer letter will be extended to the fellow by the transfer department, copying The Graduate School Fellowship Office.

What is the human resources (HR) classification for graduate students on fellowships?

Fellows are not employees and have no capacity utilization level (CUL) associated with their position classification. For fellowships, the employee group is designated as “fellowship predoctoral” and the employee subgroup is “fellowship.” For fellowships administered as assistantships, the employee group is “graduate student” and the employee subgroup is “fellowship administered as assistantship.” Please consult the Graduate Staff Employment Manual for details regarding classification of graduate student appointments. Awards administered as assistantships have a 50.00 CUL. International students are limited to a total of 50.00 CUL during the academic year, and business office staff should consult with the Office of International Students and Scholars (ISS)  to verify that such an arrangement is acceptable.

Can internal Purdue fellowships be terminated?

Yes, a Graduate School fellowship commitment may be terminated on the rare occasion that the fellow leaves Purdue or when the fellow fails to comply with Graduate School fellowship guidelines, for example, fails to maintain the award terms and conditions. When a fellowship is terminated, the fellowship account is closed, and the funds are returned to The Graduate School. Prior to the decision to terminate, the graduate program must consult with The Graduate School Fellowship Office. In general, terminated fellowships will not be awarded to another student.

When a fellowship is terminated, the graduate program will send a letter to the fellow, copying The Graduate School Fellowship Office (

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