Financial Aid and Employment Opportunities

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Financial Aid

Students seeking financial assistance as they pursue graduate studies at the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy should explore three primary funding sources at the University of Michigan: the Ford School of Public Policy, the U-M Office of Financial Aid, and the Rackham School of Graduate Studies.

The Ford School of Public Policy

The School offers financial assistance through merit-based fellowships. These fellowships are awarded after a student is admitted to the program. Fellowship award letters and emails will be sent a few weeks after students
are admitted. All applicants to the Ford School are considered for Ford School fellowships unless they indicate on the admission application that they do not wish to be considered for funding.

No separate application is required for our merit-based fellowships, with one exception: the Bohnett Foundation Leadership and Public Service Fellowship is competitive, and students must apply in the 2 weeks following their admission to the Ford School. The Bohnett Fellowship provides 2 years of tuition support and a paid summer internship with the City of Detroit mayor's office.

U-M Office of Financial Aid

The University of Michigan Office of Financial Aid administers all federal student assistance programs including federal and private loans, grants, and work-study eligibility. In addition, the Office administers a number of special awards (e.g. for students who majored in specific fields or who come from a particular geographic area) and students are encouraged to contact the Office about these possibilities. The programs administered by the Office of Financial Aid require specific applications.

You may also contact the office by phone at (734) 763-6600 or by mail at:

Office of Financial Aid
2011 Student Activities Building
University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1316

Rackham School of Graduate Studies

The Rackham Graduate School administers a number of fellowship programs with various eligibility criteria. Students should contact Rackham directly to get information about the specific available programs. These fellowships often require a detailed application and have deadlines that precede the start of the academic year.

Check Rackham’s website for a full list of funding opportunities.

Students may also contact the office by phone at (734) 764-8119 or by mail at:

Graduate Fellowships Office 
160 Rackham Building 
University of Michigan 
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1070

Employment Opportunities

Part-Time Work Opportunities

Many Ford School students seek employment opportunities that use the skills they are developing while in graduate school. There are a number of research and work-study positions available on campus. In the past, students have worked at the Institute for Social Research, the Institute of Science and Technology, the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs, the Transplant Policy Center, the Great Lakes Trade Adjustment Center, and the University’s Office of Government Relations. Students are also encouraged to seek positions as graduate student instructors (teaching assistants) or as research assistants.

In addition to working on campus, students are encouraged to consider the possibility of off-campus employment in policy-related positions. In recent years students have worked for the City of Ann Arbor, the Michigan Municipal League, Washtenaw County, the Ann Arbor Art Center, the Washtenaw Development Council, and the Non-Profit Enterprises at Work Center.