Library and Information Science

Merit Scholarships

All applicants are automatically considered for merit-based scholarships. Applicants who complete their applications by the priority deadline are considered for our most competitive awards. Awards are based on a holistic review of applications and are awarded by the Admission Committee based on the "merit" or strength of an application in comparison to all other completed and eligible applications for that same semester. Recipients may be required to take a certain number of credits and must maintain a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.0 during the semester(s) they are awarded. Applicants who receive an award will have an award letter included with their admission decision letter. International students are eligible for merit scholarships.

Graduate Student Assistantships (GSA)

GSAs are awarded by the Admission Committee based on a review of all applications that are completed by the priority deadline for each semester: October 15th for Spring and February 1st for Fall. Assistantships will be awarded based on availability of open positions. They are awarded to the top five applicants as determined by a review of the overall application. GSA's are paired with faculty who have similar interests, and work ten hours per week during the academic year. The Assistantship is a two-year award, and consists of tuition remission for two courses in both the fall and spring semesters, and hourly pay. GSAs are required to take at least three courses in the fall and spring, and maintain a cumulative grade point average of at least a 3.0. Award notification is sent with the admission letter. International students are eligible for a GSA.

Library Fellowship Program

Please refer to the position description below for details on how to apply to one or both positions. Please indicate which position/s you are applying to clearly in your email.

Dean's Fellowships

The following Dean's Fellowship positions are open for MS candidates starting in the Fall 2024 semester. 

The School of Library and Information Science awards a limited number of Dean's Fellowships to incoming Master of Science in Library Information Science (MSLIS) students with outstanding qualifications. Fellowships are designed to provide financial support to select graduate students and to enrich the student's experience through collaboration with faculty and staff, and to provide support for special projects.

Fellowships consist of a tuition scholarship, covering 2/3 LIS tuition, and a paid assistantship. For the assistantship, fellows are required to work 20 hours per week each semester, and are paid an hourly rate. Recipients are selected based on their skills, experience, and interests to support the needs of the college. Appointments are typically one year with the possibility of renewal for a second, final year.

The following Dean's Fellowships are open for MS candidates starting in the Fall 2024 semester: (deadline of February 1st and must have a completed application on file).

The following Dean's Fellowships were open for MS candidates starting in the Fall 2023 semester:

For fellowship details, please refer to the position description.

Restricted Awards

There is an opportunity within the online application to express interest in our restricted awards. Applicants will be notified at the time of admission if selected.

The following gifts are restricted funds, and may be awarded to one or more qualifying students

Allen Smith Endowed Scholarship for SLIS up to $34,000

This award was established in August 2008 by SLIS Dean Michèle Cloonan and friends, family, and colleagues of the late Allen Smith, a former SLIS professor. Through the estate of Allen Smith, a gift was made to this scholarship fund in 2009. This endowed scholarship annually supports one or more SLIS students who are in good academic standing and have financial need. First preference is given to one or more SLIS students with demonstrated interest in oral history, reference, and/or humanities.

David A. Chernin '87LS Endowed Scholarship up to $3,700

Established in 1992 by Dr. David A. Chernin '87LS. The fund will support one or more SLIS students with the following qualities: (1) an interest in medical librarianship with special focus on dentistry; (2) improving the organization of information in this area for increased access; (3) the procreative presentation of material to students, faculty and practitioners and (4) the preservation and presentation of historical collections and archives.

Elsa Ruth Olson Schlotterbeck '38 Endowed Scholarship up to $1,200

This fund was established in memory of Mrs. Schlotterbeck in December 2007. The annual earnings from this endowed fund shall be awarded to a student enrolled in the Graduate School of Library and Information Science, with preference given to a first generation College student in good academic standing with Financial need. The scholarship may be awarded to the same student in subsequent years if the recipient continues to be in good academic standing. If no student meets the established criteria in a given year, the scholarship may be awarded to a SLIS student in good academic standing with financial need.

Jacqueline and Marshall Kates Scholarship - up to $3,200

This addendum to the original deed of gift for the Jacqueline and Marshall Kates Scholarship, which was established in 1999 by Marshall and Jacqueline Kates '73LS, will allow for greater flexibility in the selection of students to receive scholarship support from this endowed fund. Income from the fund shall support deserving SLIS students, with first preference given to those interested in working within a one-person special library. If no such student can be identified, this award shall be given to a SLIS student working within a small special library. All other terms of the original deed of gift shall remain in effect as written.

Josephine Riss Fang Endowed Scholarship - up to $6,100

Funded by Anna and Paula Fang and their siblings to honor their mother who worked as a professor in SLIS from 1969 to 1989. It will be awarded to students pursuing librarianship, though it may be awarded to archivists when a librarian candidate is not available. It will be open to all students seeking to earn a doctorate or master's degree with a focus on international librarianship or preservation and conservation.

Patricia M. and Juan R. Freudenthal Endowed Scholarship - up to $6,000

Established in 1995 by alumni, family, friends, and colleagues in memory of Dr. Juan Freudenthal. The scholarship will be awarded to deserving SLIS students. Preference given to students interested in art librarianship.

Zdenka Munzer Scholarship Fund - up to $3,800

Established by bequest of Zdenka Munzer, L.S. '40. The income is to be used to give a yearly scholarship to a good, conscientious student among equally qualified students - with preference for the student coming from her native country - Czechoslovakia - if any among the applicants - to facilitate the studies of Library Science.

The following funds are intended to benefit students studying Library and Information Science. They may be awarded to one or more students.

  • Agnes S. Roach Library Science Scholarship up to $3000
  • Dolores M. Sayles '29LS Endowed Scholarship up to $21,000
  • Dorothy W. Budlong Endowed Scholarship Fund up to $1700
  • Eric Ryd Bequest for Stud Aid Endw – up to $11,000
  • Florence R. Robertson Fund - up to $1,500
  • Florence T. Blunt Scholarship Fund – up to $675
  • SLIS Endowed Scholarship – up to $1,200
  • Helen Noyes Bickford Scholarship Fund – up to $10,000
  • Irene Christopher '45LS Endowed Scholarship – up to $9,500
  • Jane E. Fisher '57LS Endowed Scholarship Fund – up to $2,100
  • June Richardson Donnelly Fund – up to $2,500
  • Lucille Wert Endowed Scholarship Fund - up to $16,000
  • Mary Heneghan '50 Endowed Scholarship – up to $4,100
  • Miriam M. Smith '12 Memorial Fund – up to $3,700
  • Rebecca B. Rankin Fund – up to $2,800
  • Ruth Leonard Scholarship – up to $7,000

Doctoral Students

The PhD program offers full tuition coverage for a limited number of students every year. In addition, scholarships, fellowships, and teaching opportunities are available to students in the SLIS PhD program. This includes the Thomas J. Galvin ‘56MS Endowed Scholarship Fund, which is offered annually. The Committee on Doctoral Studies reviews and approves financial support for doctoral student research projects and travel reimbursement.

The Dean’s Fellow for Data Analysis.

SLIS Scholarship Match Opportunity: ALA Spectrum Scholars

Over the last decade, Simmons has successfully recruited over forty Spectrum Scholars from the American Library Association's Spectrum Scholarship Program, one of the highest numbers among LIS programs. We take pride in the contributions of these students as active leaders on campus and in the profession. SLIS will match the $5000 Spectrum Scholarship to incoming graduate students matriculating in the Fall 2024 semester. Additional details can be found on the ALA Spectrum Scholarship Apply page.

Please Note: Scholarship restrictions may apply, including, but not limited to, maximum award limits. Simmons will match the $5,000 Spectrum Scholarship award with a $5,000 scholarship as long as the student's overall Simmons-sponsored scholarship funding will not exceed $25,000. Students who receive the Spectrum Scholarship from ALA must inform SLIS Graduate Admission ([email protected]) before the start of their program to be considered for a match.

Outside Scholarships

Scholarships are often available through regional and local library associations. Check your local library association for more information.