Graduate students in the M.F.A. acting program are typically awarded an assistantship that includes a tuition waiver covering most fees, and a stipend of a minimum of $15,750 (in 2014-2015) for working 20 hours a week. These hours are divided between teaching and administrative duties within the department. Academic merit fellowships and research/creative activity travel grant opportunities are also available on a competitive basis.
Acting M.F.A. Financial Aid
The standard graduate appointment is a 50% Full Time Employment (FTE) position requiring 20 hours of service per week or the teaching of three to four courses per academic year. Stipends for these graduate appointments are paid on a monthly basis and have all appropriate taxes and deductions withheld.
Appointment of associate instructorships and graduate assistantships, as well as the awarding of fellowships, is contingent upon:
- maintenance of a 3.2 academic average
- satisfactory performance of the duties of the appointment or fellowship
- enrollment in a specified minimum number of graduate hours
Persons seeking financial aid through a graduate appointment must submit an application for admission into the University Graduate School, complete with all transcripts, letters of recommendation, and Graduate Record Examination scores. If a student has skills in program areas other than for what he/she is applying, a separate statement outlining those skills should be included.
For some graduate students there is also the possibility of summer employment at the Indiana Festival Theatre, a professional repertory theatre run by the department on the IU Bloomington campus.
Two types of graduate appointments
Graduate assistants work in various areas of theatre production (costuming, lights/sound, props, stagecraft), administrative offices (audience development, dramaturgy, house management, production management), or departmental offices (accounts, advising).
Associate instructors teach first year courses in acting, oral interpretation, and theatre appreciation. These appointments are open to M.F.A. students and Ph.D. students who have completed 30 hours of graduate work.
Student academic appointees and fellowship recipients are automatically enrolled in the student insurance plan, with the cost of the student premium paid by the university. The plan includes dental, mental health, and prescription drug benefits. Eligible students may insure their dependents. Eligible dependents are the spouse/same-sex domestic partner (residing with the Insured student) and unmarried children under the age of 24.
Additional benefits include a sustainability conscious campus with free buses, free Adobe and Microsoft products, and a ubiquitous wireless Internet.