Graduate Assistant Program

A limited number of Graduate Assistantships are available at Fitchburg State. Current and entering graduate students are eligible for these positions that waive both tuition and fees for fifteen semester hours of graduate course work and also provide a stipend. Qualified students must apply and secure a position with the Department before securing final approval from the Dean of School of Graduate, Online and Continuing Education.


Students seeking appointments to graduate assistant positions must be accepted to a graduate degree program. Newly accepted graduate students must have an undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or better. Current graduate students must have a graduate GPA of 3.5 or better. Two letters of recommendation attesting to their work history are required.

Graduate Assistantships currently available for 2020/2021

Please email the graduate assistantship application (PDF), cover letter, resume and references to the department contact.

Once a Position with a Department has been Secured

Your application (including the following documents) should be forwarded to the School of Graduate, Online and Continuing Education Office for the Dean's final review.

Stipend and Award

Graduate assistants are paid up to $10,500.00 for the academic year, beginning August of 2020 and ending  June 30th of 2021. If the assistant is graduating in May 2021, their last day must be before graduate commencement 2021.  Graduate assistants must work 20 hours per week for 40 weeks in order to earn the full stipend.

The appointment and award include a tuition and fees waiver for up to 15 semester hours of graduate work to be completed within the academic year of the appointment. Tuition and fees waivers cannot be carried over to subsequent years. These waivers do not apply to Undergraduate Courses, Independent Studies, Directed Studies, Field Work, or other special scheduling courses.

Exceptions may be made regarding length of appointments. If so, awards will be prorated. Graduate assistants are not entitled to any fringe benefits, including vacation, sick leave or unemployment compensation, at the end of their contract.

Load and Academic Requirements to Maintain Assistantship

Graduate assistants must carry a minimum/maximum load of six semester hours of graduate work per semester (Fall & Spring) in their program, which is considered full-time. Under load or over load must be petitioned (Student Petition Form (PDF)) to the Dean of the School of Graduate, Online and Continuing Education.

The remaining 3 credit hours may be used during Winter session, Summer I, or Summer II. If the student is unable to take a class during one of those sessions, they may submit a student petition to take an overload of the additional 3 credits in fall or spring. The student petition must be approved by their academic advisor and the Dean of the School of Graduate, Online and Continuing Education.

Graduate assistants must maintain a GPA of 3.5 in their academic work. Graduate assistants are required to work 20 hours per week, which is considered a full-time work schedule. During official school breaks, students must petition (Student Petition Form (PDF)) to request permission for extended hours.

Graduate assistants are not allowed to secure a second position on campus.