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Research Assistantships for Diverse Scholars & Campus Visitation Program


The Research Assistantships for Diverse Scholars (RADS) are intended to increase access and opportunities to graduate education for U.S. students from underrepresented/ underserved communities and to increase graduate student diversity in our degree programs and Washington State University. The RADS awards are funded through a partnership of the Graduate School and the department/program of the prospective student. Priority is given to students who have participated in the Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program, Institute for the Recruitment of Teachers, or similar graduate education preparation programs.

Campus Visitation Program

The Campus Visitation Program provides RADS nominees with a unique opportunity to visit Washington State University and meet with departments, individuals and communities on campus. Travel costs, such as airfare, lodging and meals, are covered by the Graduate School. During the visit, students will have the opportunity to interact with faculty, staff, and graduate students in their prospective department and the larger campus community. Participants will receive information on additional funding opportunities, graduate student support services, and sociocultural networks. Only students who are nominated for RADS, or who have been offered funding from the prospective department, will be eligible to participate in the Campus Visitation Program.


To nominate a prospective student for a RADS award and/or for the Campus Visitation Program, department/program chairs must submit nominations as described below.  Nominations will be due in February 2017 for the 2017 visit. 

Nominations are to be addressed to Dr. Lori Carris, Associate Dean, Graduate School and sent electronically in PDF format to

Important Deadlines and Forms

Due Date For Nominations:

February 9th, 2017 @5pm

Dates of Campus Visitation Program:

March 5th through March 8th

Nomination Form:


Send PDF nomination forms to

Departmental Requirements and Guidelines

  1. The RADS program provides first-year funding for doctoral students in the form of a research assistantship (RA). Graduate programs must commit in writing in the letter of offer to fund the student with a research or teaching assistantship for the second and third years of doctoral study contingent upon academic progress.  A copy of this letter of offer must be submitted to the Graduate School with the request for RADS funding.
  2. The nomination to the Graduate School must include details regarding the mechanism or source of funding for the second and third years of doctoral study for the student (e.g. research assistantship from grant funds, teaching assistantship, etc.).
  3. The program must include a list of all similar funding received from the Graduate School for students entering their program in the past 5 years with a description of each student’s progress towards degree and the sources of continued funding that were used for those students.  Failure to provide financial support for a student in the second and third years of their doctoral studies will automatically disqualify the program from receiving additional RADS assistantship support for any student for a minimum of 5 years
  4. The department must identify a faculty mentor who can be contacted for feedback on the student’s progress during the first year and subsequent years, if needed.
  5. Priority is given to students who have participated in graduate education preparation programs such as the Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program, Institute for the Recruitment of Teachers, or similar. Students who have attended one of the Graduate School’s partner institutions* will also be given priority. Please be explicit in the nomination letter if the student participated in these preparation programs and/or attended a partner institution.
  6. Tuition waivers and RA stipends are provided for fall and spring academic semesters ONLY! Summer support is not included.
  7. Please refer to the Graduate School Policies and Procedures Manual for general guidelines regarding assistantships.

 Eligibility Requirements

  • U.S. Citizens or Permanent Residents
  • A member of one or more of the following groups: African American, Hispanic/Latino, Native American, Alaskan Native, Native Hawaiian, Native American Pacific Islander (as defined in section 320 of the Higher Education Act), and women in the Physical Sciences, Engineering, and Mathematics.
  • Students who are otherwise eligible for a graduate assistantship through the Graduate School. In addition, applicants should have received a bachelor’s and/or master’s degree (or equivalent) from an accredited university.
  • Have not earned a doctoral (Ph.D.) degree at any time, in any field; Have evidence of superior academic achievement (such as grade point average, class rank, honors, or other distinguishing achievements). Students applying to Master’s degree are also eligible if:
      • The student is Native American or Alaskan Native, OR
      • A Master’s degree is the terminal degree in the chosen field of study.
  •  Be committed to a career in teaching and research at the college or university level.


  • Funding by the Graduate School will be provided in the form of a research assistantship to doctoral students at a minimum of Step 32 or at a funding step that is comparable to the average assistantship stipend for students in that program.   The expectation is that the program will provide the student with a comparable, or higher, level of funding in subsequent year. The Graduate School will provide funding at a maximum of step 48. If the department would like to fund a student at a step higher than 48, the department  will need to provide additional funds.
  • Full non-resident and resident tuition waiver is included. All non-Washington residents must take appropriate steps to establish Washington residency during their first year at WSU (see Residency Requirements).
  • Graduate Student Health benefits are included with assistantship.

* Undergraduate partner institutions currently include Florida A&M University and Tennessee State University.