Financing Your Master of Arts Degree

University Financial Aid and Fellowships 

Many graduate students, especially those supporting themselves, benefit from university financial aid. For application information, contact the Office of Financial Aid. The priority date for filing the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) is in early March; we encourage applicants to do so even if they have not yet heard about admission.

SF State also has an active Fellowships Office that can help graduate students apply for nationally competitive scholarships and fellowships, as well as system-wide scholarships and fellowships offered by the California State University system.

The Division of Graduate Studies provides information on significant financial aid opportunities, including the Graduate Equity Fellowship for outstanding students from economically or educationally disadvantaged backgrounds and the Provost Scholar Award for outstanding out-of-state students. It has also partnered with University Housing to provide a limited number of affordable housing units for graduate students.

History graduate students have also been successful in winning fellowships offered by the College of Liberal and Creative Arts. To do a search for such fellowships, consult the online database, Academic Works.

The graduate coordinators distribute information about outside fellowships or history-related employment opportunities to graduate students via the graduate student listserve when they become available.

Department of History Financial Aid and Fellowships

The Department of History has a number of fellowships in the range of $1,000 to $3,000 per academic year to enable students to enter and complete the M.A. program. Applicants and current students are automatically considered for these fellowships (with the exception of the Shirley Barnett Memorial Scholarship); faculty members nominate students for the fellowship and the Graduate Committee makes the final selection.

The Robert Pasker-Laurie Pitman Fellowship for Entering Graduate Students 
Support for one to four incoming students with the strongest academic records and best writing samples. 

The Jacques Hymans Graduate Fellowship
Support for a current student who is both academically successful and a contributor to the department. 

The History Department Graduate Fellowship
Support for one to four current students who have been academically successful.

The Paul O’Meara Memorial Scholarship
Support for a current student who has been academically successful and whose major field is Europe before or after 1500.

The Shirley Barnett Memorial Scholarship
Support for up to four incoming students over the age of 40 for up to five semesters. To apply, go to Academic Works. Deadline for applications is February 15th.

The department also provides the Herodotus Fund for Graduate Travel in History to assist graduate students to travel both domestically and internationally for presenting papers and doing research. Students who have had papers accepted at peer-reviewed conferences should contact the department chair about these funds.

Graduate Assistantships

The department has need of qualified graduate students as assistants for lower-division survey classes. Their major duty is to grade exams or papers, with the total time of 35 hours per course per semester. If you are interested, stop by the Department of History office and ask for an application. If you have further questions, contact Professor Sarah Crabtree at