Assistantships & Financial Aid

Teaching Assistantships

The university provides our program with many (between 11-16 annually) teaching assistantships to award to incoming students. MFA candidates could potentially teach composition, literature, or creative writing, primarily from the main EWU campus located in Cheney. Most of our TA-ships (7-8 annually) are awarded in composition. These appointments grant recipients a full tuition waiver plus a monthly stipend, and involve the teaching of one composition course per term (classes are capped at 25 students). The university offers a one-week training session for incoming teaching assistants and year-long support from faculty and second year mentors. The duration of a TA-ship is two academic years, but in the second year the award covers resident tuition only, except in the cases of international students. For this reason, it is important that new teaching assistants take specific steps (under the helpful guidance of our office staff) to establish Washington State residency before the start of classes their first fall, in order to qualify as 12-month residents by their second fall quarter. 

To be considered for an assistantship, applicants must complete a Graduate Service Appointment (GSA) Application and have a complete MFA application file before February 22nd (postmark deadline) for the following academic year. Applicants for teaching assistantships must write an additional brief letter in which they describe their interest in and prior experience with classroom teaching. Teaching assistantships are awarded after February 22nd for the following year. No applicant can be considered for a teaching assistantship until all required material has been received. *Note that our program no longer requires GRE scores.

For more information on the teaching in the Composition Program, incoming students can connect with the Composition Program Coordinator, Kerri Boyd at

English 170 Graduate Assistantships

The Department of English offers a large, lecture-style Introduction to Literature course to undergraduates, and utilizes a number of course facilitators who run break-out sessions and online discussions with smaller sections of the large group. The department reserves between 4-8 of these facilitator positions specifically for incoming MFA students. This award involves approximately 20 hours of work per week, in exchange for a tuition waiver. No stipend is attached to this position. Interested program applicants should follow the same steps as those for a teaching assistantship.

Additional Aid Available to Second-Year MFA Students

Employment & Other Opportunities for EWU Students

Good to Know

The GSA tuition waiver does not cover a varying amount of mandatory student fees per quarter (as of 2019, about $300/quarter). Students with a GSA who have tuition waivers should expect to pay about this much each quarter in required EWU fees. For more information, please visit this EWU Student Financial Services page on Mandatory Fees or call EWU Financial Services at (509) 359-6200.