Graduate Support


Investing in the Success of our Future

We value the importance of high-impact, hands-on education and want to help graduate students achieve their goals through assistantships, fellowships, grants and financial aid. Because of generous support from our alumni, friends and industry partners, we are able to offer qualified students options to support their education. 

Full-time graduate students appointed to any assistantship of at least $8,000 per year are also placed into the Graduate Student Support Plan, which covers all tuition and health insurance premiums on behalf of the student. However, under this plan, out-of-state tuition is only paid the first year of study.  

The best place to start looking for financial support is through the NC State Graduate School. Browse fellowship and grant opportunities on their website. Additional financial aid is also available through University Financial Aid, which can fill in the gaps between educational expenses and available assets.

We help our students pursue their passions.

More than 70% of on-campus students receive funding, including tuition and health insurance.

Available Opportunities

Applying for an assistantship is simple. When filling out your Graduate School Application, check the box to request consideration for financial assistance. Documents submitted with your application will be used to assess merit.

Research Assistantships are often awarded to graduate students interested in working on current research projects. Keep in mind that grant cycles do not necessarily coincide with application deadlines, so many opportunities are filled from the current application and student pool. For questions about specific research opportunities and available funding, contact Forestry and Environmental Resources Faculty members about their individual projects.

Ongoing Funding Opportunities

  • Camcore Stipends: awarded to graduate students who conduct international research focused on furthering our knowledge about tropical and subtropical forest species.
  • Christmas Tree Genetics Awards: awarded to graduate students interested in Christmas tree breeding, propagation or pest resistance. For more information, contact John Frampton.
  • Forest Productivity Cooperative Assistantships: awarded to outstanding graduate students working with the Forest Productivity Cooperative on specific areas of research.
  • Gunnar and Lillian Nicholson Graduate Fellowships: awarded to Swedish graduate foresters studying forest genetics and forest management at NC State. Recipients receive funding for five years to earn a doctoral degree, including a $24,000 annual stipend plus all tuition, student fees and health insurance. Students also receive round-trip airfare once per year for travel to Sweden to promote the Nicholson exchange program. For more information, contact Erin Sills.
  • Tree Improvement Program Assistantships: awarded to graduate students working closely with the Tree Improvement Program on specific research, including genetic variation studies, modeling and development of breeding strategies, testing and selection, seed orchard management,  and the use of clonal propagation in breeding.

One-Time Funding Opportunities

  • PhD Fellowship Available in Bioproducts/Bioeconomy Development. The Forest Biomaterial Department at North Carolina State University is seeking candidates for a PhD Fellowship to do research in biobased products through an awarded USDA grant titled, Preparing Diverse and Rural Students and Teachers to Meet the Challenges in the Bioproducts and Bioenergy Industry (approximately $2.75 million over the next four years). The Fellowship is for a maximum of four years of support including a stipend of about $23,000, tuition, and benefits. For more information, contact Dr. Elizabeth Nichols,
  • Graduate Fellowships in Natural Resources, Engineering and Energy Poverty:  We are recruiting 3 Ph.D. students and 1 M.S. Student interested in the intersection of energy poverty with natural resources (1 Ph.D. and 1 M.S.) and with energy/environmental engineering (2 Ph.D.), starting Fall 2018 or  2019.  Due to the funding source, there is a strong preference for US citizens and permanent residents. The Fellows will become part of an interdisciplinary cohort that will benefit from disciplinary training and scholarship at NCSU (in Natural Resources or Engineering) and at UNC-CH (Anthropology, Environment and Ecology, Geography, Public Policy, or Sociology) and mentoring in diverse research and teaching methods. For more information, see
  • MS or PhD research assistantship in watershed ecology.  Candidates should be interested in urban-rural gradients, the role of forest patches in non-forest landscape matrices, or the relationships between ecological and social-economic complexity and function. Projects will focus on central North Carolina and include involvement of undergraduate researchers and potentially citizen science initiatives. Students should have a background in ecology, environmental science, or a related discipline, and good quantitative skills. Spatial analysis, including basic GIS are preferred. Creative and independent thinking are encouraged.  Interested candidates should contact and include a brief biosketch, including degree, GPA, GRE, and TOFEL (if applicable) scores,  and a brief overview of your motivation for this position, including project ideas. Members of historically  underrepresented identities are particularly encouraged to apply.  Applications will be reviewed as they are received, until a candidate is selected.
  • MS or PhD Research Assistantship in Coupled Human-Natural Systems.  The Kern group is looking to fill multiple funded graduate student positions (PhD is preferred) to conduct highly interdisciplinary and innovative research on complex emergent risks in coupled natural-human systems. Our research is broadly focused, bridging electric power systems and water resource systems analysis, environmental science, and finance/economics. Requirements: A quantitative background (natural sciences, math, statistics, engineering or economics) is strongly preferred. Applicants should have at least 6 months (or 1 semester) experience in computer programming (e.g., Matlab, Python, R, C++, etc.). Interest in doing
    computational work is more important than skill (the goal is to get a lot better, but you have to want to). Students from under-represented groups (women, minorities) are especially encouraged to apply. Compensation: For PhD applicants, 3 years of full tuition and living stipend ($25,000 per year research assistantship) are guaranteed.  For masters students, 2 years of support are guaranteed. If interested, please send an email to Jordan Kern ( with a letter of introduction, CV, and statement of research interests.

Funding for Current Students

  • Bruce and Barbara Zobel Endowment for International Forestry Studies: awarded to graduate students traveling to outside the US to study silviculture and production forestry. A committee grants $8,000 per year for a variety of activities like workshops, conferences, internships and research. This endowment encourages forestry students to gain an international perspective by obtaining first-hand experience with forestry in diverse environments around the world. For more information, contact Steve McKeand.
  • David and Angelica Harcharik Forestry International Studies Endowment: awarded to Forestry and Environmental Resources graduate students going beyond their their national borders in pursuit of scientific knowledge and the understanding of other cultures. For more information, contact Erin Sills.
  • Laarman International Gift Fund: awarded to graduate students conducting creative and important international research in Forestry, Fisheries and Wildlife Science, or Natural Resources. Awards are between $500 and $5,000. For more information, contact Steve McKeand.