Financial Support

BCB Funding

Students in the BCB Graduate Program typically receive Assistantship funding for their entire PhD career.  For first-year students, the BCB program either provides or obtains assistantship funding so they can take part in the rotations program. Beyond their first year, students' major professors either provide or help obtain financial support for their PhD BCB students in the form of a Research or Teaching Assistantship.  Assistantship funding provides a monthly salary plus tuition and health insurance scholarships.

All first-year BCB students receive funding

All graduate students admitted to the BCB program receive graduate assistantship support so they can take part in a BCB Rotations program to determine the laboratory in which they will do research for their PhD.  For Fall 2018, yearly assistantship stipend amounts will range from $24,000 to $36,000 depending on the assistantship or fellowship received. In addition to the assistantship, students will receive credits to cover the cost of tuition and health care coverage.

Graduate Dean Scholar Program

Those applying for Fall 2018 who are selected for admission to BCB by the admissions committee will be nominated for a Graduate Dean Scholarship.  Recipients of the scholarship will receive a $36,000 stipend for 3 years, if they remain in good standing.  Although BCB has a February 1 deadline for applications, applicants may wish to complete their application by January 1 to be considered for this scholarship.  Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis by the Graduate College which is administering this new scholarship program.

Eligible and Interested BCB applicants can compete for a "P3" Fellowship

BCB applicants who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents and who have an interest in Predictive Plant Phenomics can apply for the P3 Fellowship.  A $3 million grant was secured by a BCB faculty member and 7 assistantships are available for the Fall 2018 admissions cycle. Several departments and programs are participating in this fellowship program. Applicants compete with other PhD applicants from several departments and programs at Iowa State.

BCB applicants who are selected for the fellowship will be able to pursue a PhD in BCB with a Specialization in Predictive Phenomics in Plants. The website with more details on the research involved with this specialization is here.

Funding details

  • $34,000 stipend for first 12 months
  • Subsequent training years at laboratory assistantship rate
  • 100% tuition scholarship throughout training provided make good progress and maintain a 3.0 GPA
  • Paid Single Health Insurance while on the Fellowship or an assistantship
  • $1600 for Professional Travel available throughout training

Who is Eligible

  • US citizens, permanent residents (Green Card Holders), seeking a Ph.D.
  • Interest in plant research by biologists, statisticians, and engineers
  • Admitted by a Ph.D. graduate program
  • Women, under-represented, veterans encouraged to apply
  • Accepting Applications from Spring 2016 through Fall 2019

How to Apply for the P3 Fellowship

Apply to the BCB Ph.D. program and follow our program procedures and deadlines which are here.  Also, email with your resume/c.v. and include a statement regarding your interest. Indicate you have applied to our BCB program.

International applicants cannot participate in this Fellowship program unless they are permanent residents (green card holders) of the U.S.

All First-Year BCB Students

All first-year students are provided with a research assistantship and take part in the BCB Rotations program. Upon completion of the assistantship, BCB students are typically supported by either research or teaching assistantships arranged for and/or provided through their faculty mentors and their departments.

In addition to the P3 Fellowship described above, special competitive fellowships also are available for both U.S. and international BCB students who are admitted to the BCB program. For example, outstanding candidates admitted to the BCB program are eligible for a Graduate Dean Scholar Program (described above) which provides a stipend of $36,000 annually for up to three years.

Other fellowships provide additional funding on top of the existing amount provided in the assistantship award.  These include

  • the Graduate College Scholar Program which provides an award of $1,000 to $10,000 per year for up to three years;
  • the Miller Graduate Fellowship which provides an award up to $5,000 per year for 3 years,
  • the Brown Graduate Fellowship which provides a $10,000 grant, and
  • the Diane Brandt Graduate Fellowship for women which provides a $5,000 award. 

BCB will nominate students for these fellowships.