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Paul D. Coverdell Fellowship

Peace Corps Logo with red "feathers" on a blue background

The Paul D. Coverdell Fellowship program offers financial assistance to returned Peace Corps Volunteers (RPCV) who would like to study at the graduate level. All fellows complete internships in underserved American communities, allowing them to bring home and expand upon the skills they learned as Volunteers. These skills in adapting to new cultures, developing and managing projects, dealing with language barriers, and leveraging limited resources attract the attention of prospective schools. At Texas State, the Coverdell Fellowship is available for RPCVs applying to the International Studies master's degree program.

  Award Details

Participating returned Peace Corps Volunteers applying for the Coverdell Fellowship will receive an application fee waiver when applying to the International Studies master's degree program. The selected fellow(s) will also receive a scholarship, a nine-month assistantship, and an out-of-state tuition waiver (if applicable) for a total value of $38,000 for out-of-state students taking the thesis option, $39,000 for out-of-state students pursuing the non-thesis option, and $25,000 for in-state students.

  Eligibility Requirements

All returned Peace Corps Volunteers who satisfactorily complete their service have lifetime eligibility for the Coverdell Fellows program. Most returned Volunteers fall into this category. Satisfactory completion includes the following:

  • volunteers who completed the full two-year tour of Peace Corps service (not more than 90 days of emergency leave)
  • volunteers granted "early close of service"
  • volunteers granted "interrupted service" status because of circumstances beyond their control
  • volunteers who were medically separated

In addition, returned Peace Corps Response Volunteers and Global Health Service Partnership Volunteers who complete 12 months of service have lifetime eligibility for the Coverdell Fellows program. The 12 months may come through a single, year-long tour or a combination of shorter tours.

  Application Requirements

In order to be considered for the Coverdell Fellowship, you will submit the admission requirements for International Studies master's degree program, with the following modifications:

  • check "yes" to the Coverdell Applicant question in ApplyTexas
  • list your Peace Corps Volunteer work in your resume/CV
  • explicitly mention your Peace Corps Volunteer work in your statement of purpose
  • submit your official Peace Corps description of service as part of the application process.

  Enrollment Requirements

  • must complete service to an underserved U.S. community through a program-approved internship
  • must remain in good standing
  • may participate in outreach talks about the Peace Corps

  Selection Process 

Once applicants complete the application process, their grade point average (GPA) will be calculated. The program will be notified of Coverdell Fellowship applicants at the time of review. The program will then make an admissions recommendation to the graduate dean with whom the final admissions decision rests.

The Graduate College will notify students of their admission status via email. If admitted, the program will tell them whether or not they were accepted as Coverdell Fellows.

  Coordinator Information 

Dr. Sandy Rao
Assistant Dean, The Graduate College

The Graduate College
Suite 280, J.C. Kellam Administration Building
Texas State University
601 University Dr.
San Marcos, TX 78666