Recent updates, announcements, and communications from the Graduate School: Last updated 8/11/21

MSU Coronavirus update page

Student resource list

General information for current students

Faculty & Staff resources

You can contact the Graduate School using the "Chat with us" function found on the bottom of this page and our homepage. Staff emails can be found on our Staff Contact page.


November 2021 Grad School Help Desk Newsletter

The November 2021 Grad School Help Desk Newsletter is out! Read about upcoming events and opportunities.

Join the MSU Student Vaccination Sweepstakes!

It's your shot to win! All vaccinated students can enter. Top prizes include $5000 Financial Assistance awards as well as outdoor gear, electronics and experiences. Weekly drawings will run from Aug. 30 – Dec. 16.

FAFSA and federal stimulus fund consideration

Dear Graduate Students,

If you have not done so already, the Graduate School encourages you to fill out the 2021/22 FAFSA at

Having a FAFSA on file helps with scholarships, emergency funds, and in determining student loan eligibility. You are not obligated to borrow any loans that you are offered. The FAFSA also prioritizes student needs in regards to Federal stimulus funds. Completing the FAFSA will help MSU when considering how best to support its current students.

If you need help in completing the FAFSA, contact the Office of Financial Aid at [email protected].

CPS's mental health screening tool

Dear Graduate Students,

I hope you are well. I want to acknowledge the wide range of challenges that have been part of your life in the past year, including keeping healthy and looking after your family and friends, all while you make progress towards your graduate degree. What you are doing is truly impressive.

I also want to make sure you know how to access the mental health resources at MSU. Previous community health crises have led to an increase in stress-related mental health concerns, long after the physical disease is more under control. Since we have been all under stress at this point in the COVID pandemic, ongoing stress reactions could be happening in your life.

Counseling & Psychological Services (CPS) has an anonymous screening tool with a few questions to give you some guidance on how you are doing. This tool is accessible for all, and those who complete it will receive information about local resources and how to contact CPS. It is also available on CPS’s homepage in the box titled “Online Mental Health Screening.”

I just used this tool and I encourage you to do so, as well. It is a key step in managing our emotional and mental well-being.

Your Graduate Dean

Message from Family & Graduate Housing:

Dear Graduate Student,

Family & Graduate Housing is a great place to call home and we hope you'll consider living with us as you continue your education.

We are conveniently located on the outskirts of campus, allowing tenants to feel connected while also providing a quiet community atmosphere. Housing an average of 1200, our community is large enough to afford many opportunities to connect with individuals from all backgrounds, yet small enough to feel welcome and supported. Additionally, we offer some of the most affordable housing in Bozeman.

We have family unit availability and anticipate availability in our single-student units. We will have limited opportunity for single occupancy; most single student units are roommate configurations.

I invite you to visit our webpage,, to explore our housing options. With seven different neighborhoods, there is bound to be a living option that is right for you!  Be sure to check out the Prospective Tenants tab to see what living options you are eligible for. If you wish to apply for housing, click the Apply Now button at the top of the Prospective Tenants page to begin your application process.

Please let us know if you have any questions - we are here to help!

Stay well,

The Family & Graduate Housing Team
(406) 994-3730
[email protected]

GTA & GRA Bi-Weekly Payroll Project Information

The paycycle will switch from monthly to bi-monthly this spring, with the target transition date being Feb 26, 2021.

Dear GTA and GRAs,

We want to make sure you are aware that MSU will transition to a bi-weekly pay cycle this spring. The target transition date is Feb 26, 2021. You will receive two monthly paychecks for your spring semester GTA or GRA appointment – Feb 11 (for work done in Jan) and Mar 11 (for work done in Feb).  After that, instead of being paid on the 11th of the month, you will be paid bi-weekly on every other Wednesday starting Mar 24, 2021.

GTA and GRA appointments are still for full month periods (Jan 1 through May 31 for Spring).

If you are not set up for Direct Deposit, please consider signing up in order to receive the timeliest method for payroll deposit. Direct Deposit setup is accessible via MyInfo (>Employee Services > Pay Information> Update Direct Deposit).

Follow the link for more information on the Bi-Weekly Payroll Project, including an FAQ, videos, and calendars.

Graduate Admissions Review Considering COVID-19 Disruptions

A statement on how graduate admissions committees recognize and will consider disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

This information is also found on the Graduate Admissions Review Considering COVID-10 Disruptions page.

As the state’s land-grant university, Montana State University’s (MSU) mission is to integrate education, create knowledge and art, and serve communities in order to transform lives and communities. Since graduate education is central to these missions, our faculty are committed to enhance the quality of MSU’s graduate programs. We encourage graduate students who come from diverse backgrounds, have diverse perspectives and possess intellectual curiosity and resilience to apply.

With the global disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, we understand that potential graduate students now and into the future may be concerned about how their application may be viewed in light of shifts that have occurred throughout the higher education enterprise,  particularly the undergraduate experience. We acknowledge that the normal arc of preparation for graduate school may have been upset. As a result, MSU admissions committees will be flexible and take the interruptions and/or anomalies into account when reviewing applications. Admission committees recognize that students may have had more limited opportunities to fully participate in studios, internships, research experiences, field work, human studies, and other experiential learning opportunities, and that for some of these, students may have been accepted only to see the opportunities cancelled. Thus, we invite applying students to use the statement of purpose in their applications to describe their individual experiences during the pandemic, especially as they relate to difficulties and/or limitations you may have experienced. This is optional, you are not required to include these details in your statement of purpose.

We also understand that many universities (including MSU) created and allowed variances to their grading systems during the COVID-19 pandemic; including expanded options for Pass/Fail, Credit/No Credit, Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory among others. Our admissions committees will respect the adoption of those options due to pandemic disruptions. We recognize that the impacts from the COVID-19 disruptions may last multiple years, so these policies will be in effect for multiple admissions cycles, not just one. 

In addition, many departments have changed their requirements for standardized testing, e.g. some are no longer requiring GRE scores. Please contact the department you are applying to for specific requirements.

We would like to acknowledge Cornell University and the University of California - Los Angeles for providing their thoughts and approaches to managing graduate applications during this time.

Archived Announcements

For a list of older announcements, please visit the Announcements Archive page.