GAANN Funding: Department of Biological Sciences

The Department of Biological Sciences has received a significant grant from the U.S. Department of Education to establish a Graduate Assistance in Areas of National Need (GAANN) Program. The GAANN program provides fellowships (stipend and tuition) to doctoral students of superior academic ability in financial need, particularly from traditionally underrepresented backgrounds in the field of biological sciences. 

The GAANN program provides fellowships to students of superior academic ability who are pursuing a doctoral degree in the Department of Biological Sciences. The goal of the GAANN program is to provide doctoral degree funding for students from backgrounds that are systemically underrepresented in higher education and STEM fields.

The GAANN Fellowship award supports four individuals for up to three years. This will be used to help secure future excellence in teaching and research at the university level in biology, an area designated as a national need.

“We are pleased to receive this GAANN award as it will allow Marquette to help address the nationwide shortage of teachers and researchers in biological sciences,” said Dr. Michael Schläppi. “The effective training of high-quality scientists is of vital importance if we are to maintain the nation's research competitiveness. The implementation of our program will help in the effort to sustain an adequate supply of highly trained biologists in the U.S. work force.”

In order to be eligible for the GAANN, fellowship applicants must:

  • Be enrolled or accepted as a full-time graduate student in Marquette University’s Department of Biological Sciences
  • Demonstrate financial need based on student financial aid
  • Plan to pursue a PhD in biological sciences
  • Plan for a future career in teaching or research
  • Have United States citizenship or nationality with one of the following residency requirements:
    • Permanent Resident of US
    • Permanent Resident of the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands
    • Provide evidence from the Immigration and Naturalization Service that they are in the United States for reasons other than a temporary purpose with the intention of becoming permanent residents

Students who identify with groups that are underrepresented in higher education are particularly encouraged to apply. This includes but is not limited to Black, Indigenous, Latinx, Pacific Islander, female, and LGBTQ+ students.


GAANN Fellows are selected from the pool of graduate students in good standing, with special consideration for members of underrepresented groups.


Dr. Michael Schläppi
Professor of Biological Sciences
Wehr Life Sciences, 207
(414) 288-1480

Dr. Lisa Petrella
Associate Professor of Biological Sciences
Wehr Life Sciences, 506
(414) 288-7366


For more information about the GAANN Fellowship, please contact Michael Schläppi at or (414) 288-1480.