Presidential Fellowships

The Presidential Fellowship is the most prestigious award given by the Graduate School to recognize the outstanding scholarly accomplishments and potential of graduate students entering the final phase of their dissertation research or terminal degree project. 

The Presidential Fellowship provides financial support so that each Presidential fellow may devote one year of full-time study to the completion of his or her dissertation or degree project unimpeded by other duties. Competitions are held autumn and spring semesters.

Recipients of this award embody the highest standards of scholarship in the full range of Ohio State's graduate programs.

For more information about the Presidential Fellowship competition, please see the Presidential Competition Guidelines.


Previous Presidential Fellows

Autumn 2015Spring 2015 | Autumn 2014 | Spring 2014 | Autumn 2013 | Spring 2013 | Fall 2012 | Spring 2012


Named Presidential Fellowships

Several of the Presidential Fellowships are named fellowships because they are funded by Graduate School endowments or because they honor former deans of the Graduate School. These awards provide the same benefits as all of the other Presidential Fellowships.

The Elizabeth Clay Howald Presidential Fellowship is funded by an endowment established in 1934 with a bequest from Ferdinand Howald. There are no field of study restrictions associated with this fellowship.

The SBC Presidential Fellowship, funded by an endowment established in 1987, is open to eligible students pursuing research in digital technology and information technologies.


Students cannot apply directly for these fellowships. Nominations are made and submitted by graduate studies committee chairs. To be eligible, a student must have a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.6 for all Ohio State graduate course work, have completed all degree course work by the time the fellowship is activated, and have passed the candidacy examination (doctoral students) by the nomination deadline. Nomination System


Competitions are held autumn and spring semesters. Nominations are due by 5:00 p.m. on the third Friday of October for the autumn semester competition and the last Friday of March for the spring semester competition. 

Selection and decisions

Fellowship selection is made through a university-wide competition by a faculty committee. Autumn semester competition results are released by the early December, and spring semester results are released by early May.

Award conditions

The Presidential Fellowship provides three consecutive semesters of support, which is nonrenewable. Support includes a monthly stipend and payment of general/instructional fees, nonresident tuition, and any learning/ technology fee. Special fees such as the COTA, recreational facility, student union, and student activity fees are not included.

Fellowships awarded in the autumn semester competition must be started in spring or summer semester. Fellowships awarded in the spring competition must be started either in summer session or autumn semester.

Doctoral Presidential Fellowship recipients must enroll for a minimum of three credit hours. It is expected that enrollments will be limited to research and departmental seminars. Presidential fellows, however, may register for other degree-related course work with advisor approval. The Presidential Fellowship may not be used to support any course work taken for another degree program.

Master's-level recipients must enroll for a minimum of 12 credit hours of thesis research and no other course work each semester and 6 credit hours during summer semester on appointment. A Presidential fellow may not hold any other type of employment or appointment.

For fellows graduating prior to their Presidential Fellowship tenure expiration date, the fellowship will terminate at the end of the semester of graduation. For students completing degree requirements using the end-of-term deadline or otherwise leaving the university or fellowship appointment, the fellowship will be terminated effective at the end of the appropriate month.

Additional benefits
  • travel allowance of up to $250 to present a student's research at a national conference
  • university subsidy of 85% of the student health insurance premium
  • eligibility to purchase staff "B" parking permits
  • staff library privileges