All students accepted for admission to the Graduate School of Art who have applied for financial aid are automatically considered for available fellowships and scholarships as well as partial-tuition remission art scholarships. MFA awards range from 25% to 100% of tuition. Scholarships are awarded by the Graduate Admissions Committee, and awards are based on separate considerations of academic excellence and financial need.
An application for financial aid will have no effect on the admission decision. The Graduate School of Art strives to provide aid to as many fellows as possible. Financial aid packages most often consist of a combination of fellowships or scholarships, assistant in instruction positions, and loan assistance.
Through the Sam Fox Ambassadors Graduate Fellowship Program, the School will award 10 full-tuition scholarships each year to outstanding candidates for graduate study. Ambassadors will also receive an annual $750 travel stipend to support individual research or school-sponsored travel. The tuition waiver and stipend will be renewed annually for Ambassadors in good standing. Ambassadors will be selected from top applicants to the following degree programs: Master of Architecture, Master of Fine Arts in Visual Art, Master of Fine Arts in Illustration & Visual Culture, Master of Landscape Architecture, and Master of Urban Design. Recipients will demonstrate exceptional potential for advanced studies and creative research in their discipline. In addition to the tuition waiver and stipend, Ambassadors will participate in a series of events each year designed to build deep and meaningful connections across disciplines that advance their creative work and scholarship.
Merit-based scholarships — including the Ernestine Betsberg and Arthur Osver Scholarship, the Catherine M. & Stanley R. Miller Scholarship, the McMillan Graduate Scholarship, the Henrietta Wahlert Graduate Scholarship, and the Danforth Scholarship — are also awarded based on the strength of the student's application and portfolio. No additional application is necessary.
In addition, university-wide fellowships and scholarships are available that require a separate application. These opportunities include the Spencer T. and Ann W. Olin Fellowship for Women, the Chancellor's Graduate Fellowship, and the McDonnell International Scholars Academy.
Students are awarded assistant in instruction positions based on the strength of their applications and portfolios. Assistants in instruction work about 10 hours per week and earn up to $2,000 per semester. Students are paid on a biweekly schedule for work completed. Assistants in instruction are limited in number for first-year MFA candidates; notification of this award will be included in any scholarship offer. All second-year MFA candidates are eligible for assistant in instruction positions.
Admissions and awards of financial aid are for the specific academic year, but accepted applicants may request deferment of admission for up to one year. Fellowship, scholarship, and assistant in instruction awards are renewable for the second year of study. Students must reapply for loan assistance each year. Instructions for applying for financial aid are available on our Financial Aid webpage.
Tuition Payment Policy and Billing Procedures
Full-time students must be enrolled in a minimum of 12 credit units. Graduate students may not be enrolled in more than 16.5 credit units following the add/drop deadlines for the semester without the approval of the chair of their program.
If a student withdraws from the program, a written request for a refund must be submitted to the program chair for consideration. Approval is required to officially withdraw from the university. Tuition adjustments will be processed based on information received and according to Washington University policies as stated on the Financial Services website. Material fees for Graduate School of Art courses will not be refunded after the course drop deadline for the semester. For any student whose medical condition makes attendance for the semester impossible or medically inadvisable, the university will make a pro rata refund of tuition as of the date of withdrawal when that date occurs prior to the 12th week of classes, provided the condition is verified by the Habif Health and Wellness Center or a private physician. The date of withdrawal may correspond to the date of hospitalization or the date on which the medical condition was determined.