This fall the University of Georgia is welcoming its first cohort of extraordinary graduate students recruited through the new GREAT and GAIN fellowship programs.
By attracting some of the nation’s most promising graduate students to Georgia, these programs play a vital role in advancing the University’s Signature Research Themes while also helping keep our state’s workforce competitive in today’s globalized knowledge economy.
Georgia Research Education Award Traineeships, better known as GREAT Fellowships, are awarded to academically outstanding students who demonstrate superior potential in research that improves human health; promotes security and sustainability; and fosters economic and community vitality. GREAT Fellows receive a graduate research assistantship with an annual compensation of $27,000 and a tuition waiver, and the fellowship is renewable for up to five years of total support. Six GREAT Fellows were recruited to UGA this fall, and they are pursuing doctoral degrees in fields ranging from infectious diseases to plant breeding, genetics and genomics.
For students at the master’s level, the Graduate School has created the Georgia Impact Now Fellows program to help recruit outstanding students pursuing degrees in fields that are critical to Georgia’s economic vitality. GAIN Fellowships are renewable for up to two years of total support, and they provide an annual compensation of $20,000 and a tuition waiver. Eight GAIN Fellows were recruited to campus this year, and they are studying in fields such as engineering, accounting, and epidemiology and biostatistics.
The GREAT and GAIN Fellowship programs are among several enhancements to graduate education at UGA in recent years. In addition to launching new professional development programs for students, the Graduate School now offers training grant support for faculty members and has expanded the voluntary incentive program that provides matching funds for additional doctoral research assistants when faculty members are awarded grants or contracts that pay the cost of full-time, in-state tuition for one or more graduate research assistants.
Perhaps the most significant enhancement to graduate education this year is a new program known as Double Dawgs that gives our students more than 100 opportunities to earn both a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in five years or less. Some Double Dawgs programs are within the same discipline—like the linked bachelor’s/master’s program in computer science—while others span schools and colleges. Interdisciplinary Double Dawgs programs include linked engineering/MBA programs and programs that link bachelor’s degrees in English, history or biology with a master’s degree in education.
The Double Dawgs program helps students save time and money while positioning them for success after graduation. It, along with our many other enhancements to graduate education, underscores this institution’s commitment to providing unrivaled learning opportunities for our students.