Financial Support

There are several ways graduate students can receive financial support for their programs. The Department offers research (RA) and teaching (TA) assistantships. Graduate assistants are generally expected to work 20 hours per week on their assistantship. As well as providing a stipend ($28,000-$29,000 per year), graduate assistantships cover health insurance for 12 months and up to 9 credits of tuition in fall and spring semesters. Also, if the student takes additional credits, they are only charged the in-state tuition rate. You can indicate in your application if you wish to be considered for a graduate assistantship. Domestic and international students are both eligible to apply. However, the number of available assistantships is limited and not all students admitted to the program can be offered an assistantship.

Students not receiving graduate assistantships can finance their program in other ways. Many international students can apply for graduate training fellowships through programs operated in their own countries. The MSU Library also maintains a useful list of Graduate Scholarships, Fellowships, and Loan opportunities. You can also visit the MSU Office of Financial Aid. Some students also self-fund their programs.

The Foreign Fulbright Graduate Student Program is also available to students from many countries. Within the U.S., this program is administered by the Institute of International Education (IIE). Outside the U.S., the program is administered in 50 countries by a Binational Commission, and in the remaining countries by the U.S. Information Service (USIS).

In addition, the AFRE M.S. program is a graduate program partner of the United States Department of Agriculture Foreign Agricultural Service International Agricultural Fellowship Program (IAFP). The IAFP “provides graduate fellowships to qualified individuals who… attend two-year graduate programs in Agribusiness or Agricultural Economics at U.S. universities, provide[s] two summer internships – one domestic and one overseas, offers mentoring from Foreign Service Officers, and provides professional development activities” (source: One of the four inaugural IAFP fellows is currently an M.S. student in AFRE. See for more information.