Graduate Student Employment and Benefits

The Office of Graduate and Professional Studies (OGAPS) is pleased to announce the addition of in house services for graduate student comprehensive employment and benefit information. The Graduate Employment Coordinator serves as a liaison between departments and a resource for graduate student. We understand these items can be sensitive and complicated. We are here to answer any questions you might have!

Points of Contact for Graduate Student Benefits

Graduate Assistantships

Graduate assistantships are awarded by academic departments on the basis of scholastic accomplishment, academic promise, and competence. 
There are four types of graduate assistantships (GA) available through the academic departments, colleges, Texas A&M University System (TAMUS) agencies and administrative offices:

  • Teaching (GAT)
  • Research (GAR)
  • Lecturer (GAL)
  • Non-teaching activities (GANT)

Most of these positions require employment of 20 hours per week. Although individual colleges may have higher requirements, graduate students holding assistantships must meet the GA registration requirements by the census date. The university does not mandate assistantships be terminated upon failure to maintain enrollment requirements after the census date. However, assistantships may be terminated by the employer upon failure to maintain the minimum enrollment requirement. Students serving in the four aforementioned GA titles are eligible for insurance benefits. Non-resident students may also qualify to pay tuition and fees at the in-state rate. 

*For additional information regarding graduate assistant title codes, please refer to the Graduate Assistant Position Requirements/Benefits table.

Resources for GA Requirements and Benefits

  • OGAPS Non-resident Tuition Waiver
  • OGAPS guidelines for employing graduate students at greater than a 50% effort
  • International Temporary Work Location Requests
    • The Texas A&M University Graduate and Professional School, in coordination with the Dean of Faculties, put together guidelines for International Temporary Work Location (ITWL) requests for Graduate Assistants. The purpose of these guidelines is to provide a consistent and uniform approach and understanding to ITWL requests. In addition, these guidelines layout the criteria for this type of request, the maximum authorized duration, the process for obtaining the approval of the request, and the terms and conditions of the ITWL.
    • Per section 4.1 of the guidelines, “ITWL requests require the justification of a "critical business need" which must be detailed and documented by the department head via memorandum through the college Dean, through the Dean of Graduate and Professional School, to the Provost.” The Graduate and Professional School asks that the department complete and include the Graduate Assistant ITWL Request Form with the memorandum.
  • Mandatory New Graduate Assistant Employee Hire Dates
  • For more details on graduate student assistantship requirements, check the TAMU Graduate Catalog or directly contact your department head, chair of the intercollegiate faculty, or your graduate advisor.
  • Visit the Jobs for Aggies website to learn more about assistantships positions and for general student employment opportunities.

Graduate Assistantship Benefits

The Grad Student Health Plan, HMO with low out-of-pocket costs, is exclusively available to benefit-eligible title codes* including Graduate Assistant Teaching (GAT), Graduate Assistant Non-Teaching (GANT), Graduate Assistant Research (GAR), Graduate Assistant Lecturer (GAL) and eligible dependents of students employed in the aforementioned titles. Eligibility for the university's employee group insurance benefits depends on the job title, the length of employment period, and scheduled weekly hours.

The Grad Student Health Plan is administered by Academic Health Plans (AHP) and underwritten by BlueCross BlueShield (BCBS) of Texas. Prescription drug coverage is included with enrollment with Prime Therapeutics. Dental & vision are also offered with Delta Care USA & Superior Vision.

Review the information below to learn more about insurance benefits and their costs.

OGAPS Postdoctoral & Graduate Student Fellow Benefits

There is a variety of Postdoctoral & Graduate Student Fellow Benefit opportunities at Texas A&M that might include health insurance and reimbursement. Each fellowship has different stipulations and the award letter provides the information necessary to make the determination.

Health insurance reimbursement receipts for students receiving TAMU fellowships administered by OGAPS should be submitted to Reimbursement may be requested monthly or for the entire year, if paid in full. All insurance reimbursements must be submitted by August 31st of the current academic year. Insurance reimbursements are processed by OGAPS typically within 1 to 3 business days. Once processed, the student receives a confirmation email and the reimbursement will post to student account in 5 to 10 business days.

International Graduate Students

The Texas A&M University student population is comprised of a diverse group of students that includes more than 6,000 international students from nearly 130 nations. To facilitate the OGAPS mission, we serve as an additional resource for international graduate student employment and health benefits.

Health Insurance

International students entering the U.S. on an F-1 or J-1 student visa must be covered under the Texas A&M University System Student Health Insurance Plan (SSHIP) or have equivalent insurance coverage that meets the waiver criteria outlined on the Student Insurance Waiver. Many graduate students at Texas A&M hold assistantships or fellowships that include health insurance contributions or reimbursements for the Graduate Student Health Plan. Check with your department or the OGAPS Graduate Employment Coordinator if your position has eligible benefits.  You may also visit the International Student Services Health Insurance website for additional details.

Depending on summer employment and enrollment status, international graduate assistants currently on F-1 or J-1 status may be charged the international System Student Health Insurance Plan (SSHIP) while also enrolled in the Graduate Student Employee Health Plan. The Graduate and Professional School collaborated with several divisions to define the steps necessary to prevent International Graduate Assistants from being charged SSHIP while enrolled in the Graduate Student Employee Health Plan during the summer 2021 term. The HR Liaisons and the Graduate Assistant’s timely adherence to the steps outlined in the Summer 2021 International GA Insurance Waiver Process Guidelines will result in the GA being included in the waiver report and the SSHIP fees being removed from the GA’s student billing account.


On and off campus employment is available through various sources to gain practical experience and earn extra funds. International Student Services can provide you with the resources you need for these employments and regulations. OGAPS can further advise with on-campus employment in regards to additional working hours (during allowed terms), benefits and best practices in Workday for those in graduate assistantships.

On-campus employment must either be performed on the school's premises, (including on-location commercial firms which provide services for students on campus, such as the school bookstore or cafeteria)” and are available under the Department of Homeland Security Regulation 8 C.F.R. §214, paragraph (f)(9)(ii)(B) or (C).

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