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Funding Opportunities

There are a variety of funding opportunities available for enrolled Master of Urban Planning students. Please see below to learn of the opportunities. If you are a prospective student, please click here to learn about options available to you.

Research assistant (RA) positions may become available to enrolled students during the course of the academic year, depending on faculty projects and available grant support. These positions typically go to second year students, although they may go to first year students if there is a good match in skills and interests. In the event that a first year student secures an RA position, it is most likely to occur during the academic year (rather than securing it prior to entering the program).

Similarly, teaching assistant (TA) positions may become available if a MUP student has the required skills and if a PhD student cannot be identified to teach the class (PhD students have priority). In the event that a TA position does becomes available to a MUP student, it typically goes to a second year student and usually lasts for one quarter.

Available positions in the Department are advertised to currently enrolled students via an email listserv. Also, some RA’s and TA’s are directly coordinated between the faculty member and student, with the Department’s approval. Furthermore, MUP students can apply for RA’s and TA’s in other departments on campus.

Because RA and TA opportunities are variable depending on faculty projects, grant support, and other criteria, they are not considered a guaranteed source of funding for MUP students.

Positions paid at an hourly rate may become available to enrolled students during the academic year, depending on faculty projects and available grant support. These positions may go to first year or second year students depending on skills and interests. Hourly positions may occur in the Department’s research labs. Interested students may view the websites of the research labs or contact the faculty representatives of the research labs to determine if there are available positions.

All enrolled MUP students can apply for Departmental scholarships for their second year in the program. These are one-time awards that are usually applied to the recipients’ tuition accounts in autumn quarter of their second year. Scholarships can vary each year, but typically range from $1,000 – $5,000. The scholarships help cover living expenses and sometimes cover tuition. In recent years, about half of the students who applied for scholarships received one.

The scholarship process is announced in February of each year, and recipients are notified in April.

Many of our MUP students work part-time in planning-related jobs or internships off-campus to supplement their income. Internship and job announcements are routinely announced to MUP students via an email listserv and are also posted on the Department’s LinkedIn page. The Department recommends that students do not exceed working 20 hours a week. Most first year students find that they have room in their schedule to work part-time starting in spring quarter of their first year and beyond. Working in autumn and winter quarter in the first year is possible but can be challenging due to the high course load during those quarters.

Quarterly tuition awards may be available to students through the University of Washington Office of Graduate Student Equity & Excellence (GSEE). GSEE encourages the nomination of underrepresented minority graduate students who have achieved academic merit despite significant social, economic, and/or educational challenges (i.e., first generation or those whose educational training has not exposed them to a wide array of resources). They are based on academic merit, diversity contribution, financial need, and previous funding support through GSEE. The funding allocation is based on GSEE’s available resources, which vary from year to year. Students who are interested in a quarterly tuition award should contact Diana Siembor at

Furthermore, GSEE maintains a page for Diversity Funding Opportunities on their website.

Admitted applicants and currently enrolled students are encouraged to view the Graduate Funding Information Service (GFIS) funding resource page.

On this page, you will find a link to the GFIS Funding Resources Guide and the GFIS funding blog, through which some of our MUP students have had success applying for and receiving funding for opportunities listed here.

Please also see the GFIS Resources Handout.

Students can also seek employment and internship opportunities on the UW Career & Internship Center website. Opportunities are posted on Handshake, a recruiting platform which enables students and alumni to connect with employers, both domestic and international, for internship and employment opportunities.

Furthermore, students who are U.S. citizens and submitted a FAFSA may be eligible for work study.

Many MUP students rely on loans to finance their education. All U.S. applicants are strongly encouraged to submit a FAFSA for federal financial aid. For further information about the FAFSA, please see

For further information about UW financial aid, please visit the Office of Student Financial Aid website.

The estimated cost for one year tuition and fees for full-time enrollment during the academic year 2022-2023, assuming enrollment during Autumn, Winter and Spring quarters:

Resident tuition and fees: $18,018
Nonresident tuition and fees: $31,263

A complete list of tuition rates, student fees and a per-credit-hour breakdown of tuition rates is available at the University of Washington’s Office of Planning and Budgeting website.

MUP students pay the Urban Design and Planning tuition.

Students enrolled in a concurrent degree in which both programs are tuition-based pay the higher of the two tuition rates, per UW policy. Students enrolled in a concurrent degree that is part tuition-based and part fee-based, such as the MUP/MPH-Community Oriented Public Health Practice program, have a different tuition structure and should consult with staff in both programs to learn more.