Michigan State University
Controller's Office

Administration Bldg
426 Auditorium Rd, Rm 305
East Lansing, MI 48824
517 355-5020

SECTION 23: Fellowship and Traineeship Appointments

Last updated: November 2016

I. General

  1. An eGraduate Fellowship Form must be prepared for each student receiving a fellowship or a traineeship grant.
  2. Fellowships or traineeships to be paid from funds awarded to Michigan State University by a federal government agency may require submission of separate appointment forms to the agency.  If more information is required, contact Student Accounts - Fees, Sponsored Aid & Fellowships, telephone 355-8380.

II. Forms

Forms are submitted electronically through the eGraduate Fellowship Application. To obtain security access to this site, contact Student Accounts - Fees, Sponsored Aid & Fellowships, telephone 355-8380.

III. Award Requirements and Restrictions

The University Graduate Recruiting Fellowships and the University Graduate Fellowships may be given to graduate students who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents.  Exceptions for awards to international graduate students require prior approval of the College and the Graduate School. Graduate Out-of-State Tuition Fellowships may regularly be given to international as well as domestic graduate students.

Any award providing for tuition will pay only for graduate course or research credits; undergraduate and visitor credits will not be paid.  Colleges are to monitor compliance with this stipulation.  Any forfeiture of fees resulting from dropping credits will be charged to the student.

Students should be provided full information regarding the requirements and/or restrictions of the award being granted by the department.

Colleges are required to file an annual report on fellowship expenditures with The Graduate School.

IV. Award Payments

  1. Authorization for payment of awards is provided by the approved fellowship appointment form.  To maintain proper accounting control over the accounts, no payments can be made until the appointment form is properly completed, approved, and processed by the Fellowship Section of the Student Accounts Office - Fees, Sponsored Aid & Fellowships Division.
  2. The eGraduate Fellowship Application is used to disburse awards to students.  The AWARD section of the form allows for disbursal of funds in coordination with the Disbursement Module in the Student Information System. There are two methods to disburse funds to students in the Student Information System. These methods are called Fixed Dollar Amount and Percent of Charges to Pay.  The Fixed Dollar Amount option will credit the student's account with the amount as indicated on the fellowship form.

    The options of "Percent of Tuition Charges to Pay" and "Percent of Fees to Pay" are called Charge Based Awards.  These awards pay a percent (whole percentages only) of tuition and fee charges that are on a student's account based upon the percent indicated on the fellowship form.

    EXAMPLE:
    A department would like to pay 100 percent of tuition and related fees for an out-of-state student.  The amount approximating the in-state portion of tuition and related fees can be charged to one account.  The amount approximating the out-of-state portion of tuition can be charged to a second account.

    The department would review the costs for the student to enroll as an in-state student verses an out-of-state student.

    For example:
    (Rates are examples only and do not reflect current tuition rates.)

    Graduate rates, 9 credits, in-state tuition
    $5,375.25
    Graduate rates, 9 credits, out-of-state tuition
    $10,559.25
    Tuition related fees
    $        0.00

    In-State student’s tuition
    $5,375.25 = 51% (Rounded to whole %)
    Out-of-state student’s tuition
    $10,559.25

    The department would then indicate on the fellowship form that for this student with out-of-state residency it would pay 51 percent of tuition and 100 percent of fees from Account A and the remainder of the student's charges would be paid from Account B.

    Account A would be charged $5,382.22 ($10,559.25 x .51 = $5,382.22) and Account B would be charged $5,177.03 ($10,559.25 - $5,382.22 = $5,177.03).

  3. Awards are disbursed as a credit and are applied against the student's tuition, fees and/or housing charges for the semester.  The student will receive this credit at the time of his/her registration billing or any time the award is processed throughout the remainder of the semester.
  4. Excess fellowship and scholarship funds are distributed to students just prior to the start of classes. Students must be registered for the semester in order to be eligible for the excess funds. The excess funds are processed either by direct deposit into the student's checking or savings account or in the form of a refund check. If the student has not signed up for the direct deposit program, a refund check will be mailed. Students can sign up for the direct deposit program in StuInfo.msu.edu.

V. Student Insurance

Departments wishing to pay for insurance coverage for students and/or their dependents must follow existing established procedures for adding funding to students’ SIS accounts. This can be done using the eGraduate Fellowship Application. Once the funding has been authorized, approved, and disbursed to the student account, any excess credit on the student account will be refunded to the student during the refund period for the semester. Students, in turn, may need to take steps to purchase and enroll in insurance coverage.

  • International Students – student automatically enrolled, student needs to enroll dependents if applicable
  • Medical Students – student automatically enrolled, student needs to enroll dependents if applicable
  • Domestic Students – student needs to enroll themselves and/or dependents

Students can enroll for the desired coverage in the MSU student insurance plan online at: http://www.aetnastudenthealth.com/msu2 by the enrollment deadlines. Students with questions about how to self-enroll in the MSU Student Health Plan can contact MSU Benefits for assistance at studentinsurance@hr.msu.edu or 517-353-4434 or 800-353-4434. **Due to insurance plan contracts summer 2013 enrollment is excluded from this process (please contact the MSU Benefits for enrollment information 517-353-4434). Additionally, to assist, a Guide to Establish Insurance Coverage has been developed outlining coverage periods, enrollment dates and actions needed.

If you have questions about how to award funds intended for insurance premiums to your students’ SIS accounts, please contact the Fees, Sponsored Aid, and Fellowship Office. (student.accounts@ctlr.msu.edu or 355-8380).

VI. Stipend Payments

Monthly stipend payments will be made to students receiving fellowships or traineeships only if these payments are required by an outside agency.  Stipend payments are scheduled for the 15th of the month. Payments to students will be processed and directly deposited into the student's checking or savings account.  Direct deposit enrollment can be found in StuInfo.msu.edu. A check will be produced if the student does not sign up for direct deposit and mailed to the local mailing address the student provides in StuInfo.msu.edu. If a local mailing address is not available, the check will be sent to the permanent address the student provides in StuInfo.msu.edu. These stipend payments are processed through Student Accounts - Fees, Sponsored Aid & Fellowships, not the Payroll Office.

VII. Amendment, Termination, or Cancellation

Fellowship or traineeship appointments may be amended or terminated once they have an approved status. You must indicate any changes on the existing record in the eGraduate Application. A clear comment must be provided at Step 5 to indicate the reason for the amendment or termination.

A form can be cancelled while in a routing status. Once at an approved status, the form must be amended.

VIII. Taxation of Payments

  1. All payments that exceed tuition, fees and other direct educational expenses are considered gross income and subject to taxation. The University does not provide personal tax advice or consultation. Individual tax questions should be directed to a personal tax advisor or the IRS.

    1. U.S. Citizens and Resident Aliens

      MSU is not required to withhold tax for U.S. citizens and resident aliens.

    2. Nonresident Aliens

      MSU is required to withhold income tax on fellowships awarded to nonresident aliens that exceed qualified tuition and related expenses. Students will be asked to provide the following documents to the Student Accounts Office - Fees, Sponsored Aid & Fellowships: (1) copy of social security card or International Taxation Identification Number (ITIN); (2) Treaty form, where applicable.

      IRS Form 1042-S, Foreign Person's U.S. Source Income Subject to Withholding, is issued annually to each nonresident alien fellowship recipient (including Post Doctoral Fellowship awards), whether or not the individual has taxes withheld. Form 1042-S, which is issued no later than March 15, reports all award payments made during the previous calendar year.  Questions concerning information reported on Form 1042-S should be addressed to the Student Accounts Office - Fees, Sponsored Aid & Fellowships, 355-8380.