Financial Aid

The Department of Educational Leadership and Policy, the Graduate School of Education, and the University at Buffalo offer a wide range of financial assistance opportunities, as does the State of New York and the federal government.

For detailed information, consult the Graduate School, the Graduate School of Education and the UB Office of Financial Aid. Students should keep in touch with the department on a regular basis if financial aid is required.

Scholarships and Fellowships

Eligible students can finance the cost of graduate education in a variety of ways. Learn more about available financing opportunities. If you would like to be considered for any of these fellowships, please contact the Department Chair Nathan Daun-Barnett (

Graduate Assistantships

The department offers a number of graduate assistantships to well-qualified students. These assistantships require 20 hours of work each week during the semester and generally carry a stipend of approximately $9,000 for the academic year, plus a tuition scholarship. Students receiving assistantships must register for a full graduate course load. This constitutes a minimum of nine hours. In addition to departmental assistantships, a number of graduate assistantships in other programs are offered each year.

The department makes an effort to help all full-time students find assistantship support for up to a maximum of four years. The department limits its own assistantships to a two-year term. Because the department's own opportunities for support are limited, departmental assistantship appointments will be guided by the following principles:

  1. Only doctoral students will be considered for departmental assistantship support.
  2. The department will provide assistantship support for a maximum of two academic years.
  3. The department will carefully review each graduate assistant every year and reappointment for a second year of support will depend on satisfactory work on the assistantship and satisfactory academic work.
  4. The department will help qualified full-time doctoral students to obtain assistantship support elsewhere in the University once the department's own two-year tenure is expired.
  5. The department will seek to have equitable mix of beginning and advanced doctoral students among its assistants. Students doing course-work will, in general, receive preference in assistantship appointment.
  6. The assistantship positions will, in general, be divided among the degree programs roughly in proportion to their enrollments. Enrollments will be defined as the total graduate credit production by the program.
  7. The department's own needs and priorities will be part of the allocation process. Requests for appointment and reappointment shall be submitted by announced deadlines and it is the responsibility of the assistant to ensure that all appropriate forms are completed by the deadline, March 15. Applicants interested in applying for an assistantship should complete the Graduate Assistantship Application and mail it to the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy by the deadline specified on the form.

Petitions for the reappointment of graduate assistants beyond the two-year maximum may be made to the department chair by the deadline for appointments each year and may, in extraordinary circumstances, be granted by the chair in consultation with the department executive committee.

D. Bruce Johnstone International Student Dissertation Research Travel Fund

The D. Bruce Johnstone International Student Dissertation Research Travel Fund, created and endowed by D. Bruce Johnstone, SUNY Distinguished Service Professor of Higher and Comparative Education, is intended to provide qualified doctoral students with financial support to help alleviate travel related expenses during the process of completing their dissertation research in their home countries and/or in other countries outside of the United States. The selected students are expected to pursue innovative and significant research on global and comparative educational topics.

Amount of Award

The amount of award shall be determined by the selection committee but ordinarily should be limited to necessary travel expenses (which may include round trip to the destination country as well as necessary in-country travel) and not to exceed $2,000. An award should be awarded one time during an academic year, in either semester.

Any disbursements made to individuals must be made in accordance with federal and state law and the policies of the State University of New York, which prohibit discrimination on the basis of age, religion, color, disability, national origin, race, sex, gender, sexual orientation, pregnancy, gender identity, predisposing genetic characteristics, marital status, veteran status, military status, domestic violence victim status or ex-offender status.


To be an eligible student, you must:

  1. Be on a student visa.
  2. Have written a dissertation proposal in a draft suitable for the advisor to approve the topic and methodology, as well as outline the need for a significant portion of the search to be conducted in a country or countries outside of the United States.
  3. Be a doctoral student from the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy. If there should be no eligible awardees in an entire academic year from ELP, the selection committee, at its discretion, may consider applications from doctoral students in the Graduate School of Education.

Application Requirements

Applications must:

  1. Include a letter to the selection committee stating the purpose of the research, the methodology, and the need for the international travel to the student’s home country and/or other countries outside the United States.
  2. Include a recommendation from the applicant’s dissertation committee chairperson approving the topic, methodology and the need for a significant portion of the research to be conducted in a country or countries outside of the United States, as well as an indication of the applicant’s progress toward a proposal defense.
  3. Attach a plan for the international travel to include tentative dates, places to visit, data to be collected in those places and evidence (e.g., letters of permission from ministries, government agencies, schools or universities) that the data can be collected.
  4. Include a travel budget, including approximate ticket prices.

How to Apply

Applicants must submit the complete application package to the Chair of the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy in an envelope. Applications will be reviewed after November 30th during the fall semester and will be considered in the spring semester by April 30th provided that there are funds.

If you have any additional questions about the travel fund, please contact Department Chair Nathan Daun-Barnett (