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Ask the Dean

We want to hear from you.

If you are a current student and you have a question that you would like to ask the Dean of the Graduate School, please submit it on the form below. Someone from the Dean's Office will respond to you shortly. 

Here are some of the questions that have been asked in the past.

Will my stipend increase every year, or does it stay the same amount?

  • Historically, the base stipend for Ph.D. students has increased slightly each year. The amount of the increase has been around 2%. 

Where does my funding come from and how long can I count on receiving it?

  • If you are a Ph.D. student, you will receive a stipend for living expenses and a fellowship that covers your tuition, usually for a minimum of five years. This funding comes from a variety of sources, including University Fellowships, Teaching Fellowships, training and research grant support and external fellowships. We try to make the funding process as painless and stress-free as possible so that you can concentrate on your academic work. Your program or department will work behind the scenes with the Graduate School to ensure you have the funding you need. For more information, we have developed a comprehensive page to outline Funding for Ph.D. Students. 

My adviser is awesome! Is there an award for graduate advising?

  • Yes! You may nominate outstanding faculty mentors for the Graduate Mentor Award. This award celebrates outstanding mentoring, support, and advising and is bestowed on faculty at Commencement Convocation each year. The winning mentors are chosen by a committee of students and faculty, based on written nominations.

Is there any funding if I have a personal emergency?

  • We understand that unexpected things come up. With help from the Graduate Student Assembly (GSA), we established a Dean's Emergency Fund to provide one-time funds to Ph.D. students for eligible expenses, such as a health issue, apartment fire, etc.. These funds are available to help ensure that your doctoral studies are not derailed. 

Can I ask a professor outside of Yale to be on my dissertation committee?

  • To answer your question, we should first clarify the distinction between Dissertation Committee members and dissertation readers. The advisers who guide you in your research form your Dissertation Committee. The composition of this committee is determined by your department or program. Some departments allow students to include faculty from another university; others do not. Be sure to check with your program when choosing Dissertation Committee members. Once you submit your dissertation, three to five faculty members will be assigned to evaluate it. They are called dissertation readers. In some programs, the same faculty members both advise and evaluate. At least two of the readers must hold faculty appointments in the Graduate School, and all readers must hold the Ph.D. degree as well as a faculty position or other appropriate qualification. The process for assigning readers is determined by the department, which is responsible for confirming the qualifications, contact information, and willingness of all readers before notifying the Graduate School, which will then review the department’s recommendation.

What are the Dean's priorities for the Graduate School?

  • Right now, I have three major goals. 1) I would like us to continue to embrace and support students from diverse backgrounds, of all types, 2) I want the Graduate School to continue to be a leader in STEM education and training, 3) I plan to support disciplines in the humanities and social sciences as they evolve to meet the changing demands of the job market and the world. 

If you are a current student and you have a question that you would like to ask the Dean of the Graduate School, please submit this form. Someone from the Dean's Office will respond to you shortly. Answers to commonly asked questions will be added to this page.

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