PhD students are fully funded, either by the National Library of Medicine (NLM) training grant, a research grant, or other sponsorship (e.g. private sponsorship or government). NLM fellows are chosen by the department based on established selection criteria. NLM funding is contingent upon the agency's continued funding of our training program. Fellows are appointed and may be renewed on an annual basis depending upon satisfactory academic progress and departmental needs. PhD trainees may receive NLM funding for up to 5 years at NRSA rates. CUMC will match up to the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences annual stipend rate. Postdoctoral trainees (whether nondegree, MA, or PhD) may receive NLM funding for up to 3 years at a postdoctoral stipend rate set by the agency.
Supplementary employment that provides additional compensation while pursuing your PhD studies requires advance approval from the student's research advisor, the training grant principal investigator and the Graduate Affairs Office of GSAS. NLM funded trainees must submit annual abstracts for possible submission to the mandatory annual summer NLM training meeting that takes place in either June or July. The funding agency also requires annual written updates on the student's research progress that includes lists of publications and outside presentations. Any summer courses taken by PhD and postdoctoral students are at their own expense.
PhD and Postdoctoral students not funded as a Graduate Research Assistant in their first year are required to do research rotations with different research faculty in the Fall and Spring semesters before selecting, with the Training Committee's approval, a permanent research advisor by early summer of their first year. A third and final research rotation during the summer is optional. The permanent research advisor or sponsor is expected to fund the student when other funding such as an NLM fellowship is not available.
With the exception of postdoctoral fellows funded by our National Library of Medicine (NLM) Training Grant (see http://www.dbmi.columbia.edu/education/program/postdocdegree_program.html), the Department is unable to provide financial support for those in the Free Standing Master's Program. Consequently, students must fund the degree through personal our outside resources (loans, scholarships, government sponsorship). Eligible students may apply for educational loans. For international students, the ability to work while pursuing a degree may depend upon visa status (see International Students and Scholars Office). Master's students seeking financial support such as educational loans should visit the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences (GSAS) Student Financial Services website: http://www.columbia.edu/cu/sfs
Postdoctoral Fellows, whether nondegree or degree are funded by the department through the National Library of Medicine (NLM) Training Grant (eligible to US Citizens and Permanent Residents). Those not eligible for funding as NLM fellows may inquire to faculty directly at any time throughout the year about any available positions as a postdoctoral research scientist on their grants. Those eligible for funding as NLM fellows should apply through the same admissions process (and same application) as that used for PhD and Master’s students through the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences in the Fall for the next academic year’s admission. Most postdoctoral fellows enroll in the MA or PhD program to earn a degree while in training.
Refer to Columbia's Student Financial Services webpage for information regarding paying for the program, inclusive of links to aid for which you may be eligible: http://sfs.columbia.edu/news/did-you-know-guide-paying-your-bill.