PhD in Nursing Science Program

Financial Awards

Our dean is committed to supporting doctoral student education and works with the PhD program to identify mechanisms and sources of financial support for students. 

Applicants are encouraged to submit completed applications by December 1 to have the greatest opportunity for financial aid awards. Applications received after December 1 will be considered for fall admission and financial awards as they are available.

Graduate School Honor Fellowships

These highly competitive awards are in addition to a Vanderbilt University School of Nursing (VUSN) fellowship or VUSN tuition scholarship and are for a period of five years:

  • Harold Stirling Vanderbilt Graduate Scholarships: $6,000
  • University Graduate Fellowships: $10,000

 Vanderbilt School of Nursing Awards

Up To Full-time VUSN Service-Free Tuition Scholarships renewable for one year based on academic progress.

  • Centennial Ph.D. Fellowships are highly competitive and prestigious nursing research awards available for first year students determined on the basis of academic merit and potential for scholarship.
  • The Jonas Nurse Leaders Scholars
    The Barbara and Donald Jonas Family Fund established the Jonas Center for Nursing Excellence in 2006, which is a groundbreaking program that deploys philanthropy to advance the nursing profession through grants and programs design to develop outstanding faculty, advance scholarship and spark innovative practice. The Jonas Nurse Leaders Scholars at the Vanderbilt University School of Nursing is made possible by a grant from the Jonas Center for Nursing and Veterans Healthcare, an organization dedicated to improving healthcare through nursing. This program provides significant financial support for two PhD and two DNP nurse leader scholars  and 3 DNP Veteran health scholars from August 2014 to July 2016 to students who meet the qualifications. The program provides financial support for tuition and costs associated with attending the Jonas/AACN Leadership Conference in 2015 in Washington, D.C.
  • VA National Quality Scholars Fellowship

In addition, our Graduate School offers other mechanisms of financial support such as Dissertation Enhancement Grants.

External Funding Opportunities

The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) provides a Minority Nurse Faculty Scholars Program funded by the Johnson & Johnson Campaign for Nursing’s Future. The program provides generous financial support, mentoring, and leadership development to graduate students from minority backgrounds who aspire to teach in our nation’s schools of nursing. For additional information, go to:

Students are encouraged to explore all avenues of financial support. Full-time students are encouraged to apply for pre-doctoral funding through various external agencies such as the NIH, specialty organizations and foundations. Additional support for dissertation work and educational expenses may be available from other foundations and through educational loan programs.

Students who need more financial aid may apply for loans through the Federal Direct Loan Program. In order to be considered for Federal Loan programs, students must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and the Vanderbilt Nursing Graduate/Professional Financial Aid and Scholarship Application (First Year or 2nd Year/Returning). Questions about financial aid should be directed to: Kristie Smith, Director of Student Financial Services, Vanderbilt School of Nursing at 615-322-8986 

Additional Websites for Financial Assistance

Contact your own specialty professional nursing association(s) for other funding opportunities.

University Tuition Scholarships are service-free awards that pay all or part of tuition costs. The following graduate awards are normally supplemented by a full University Tuition Scholarship, which usually includes student health insurance coverage: University Fellowships, Graduate Teaching Assistantships, Graduate Research Assistantships, Traineeships, and Teacher Training Awards.

PhD Webinar Schedule for 2017-2018
Registration opens three weeks before each webinar
All webinars are held 12:00-1:00 PM Central Time

  • August 16
  • September 20
  • November 15
  • January 17