Graduate Assistantships

Graduate assistantships offer degree-related experience and financial support for graduate students enrolled in the Student Development Administration (SDA) program. These experiences are often an important factor when competing for positions after graduation. In order to be eligible for a graduate assistantship, students must be admitted to a graduate program at Seattle University and make satisfactory progress toward their degree during their assistantship. It is recommended that students take an average of 6 credits per quarter to complete the program in two years, but more or less can be taken depending on the student’s progress through the program. 

Graduate assistants are typically employed from late-August to mid-June. Graduate assistantship contracts are annual, with the intention that the student remains in the position for 2 academic years. Admission into the graduate program does not guarantee a graduate assistantship. You can select to apply for a graduate assistantship when you apply to the SDA program. 

Student Development Administration - College of Education

The Master's degree in Student Development Administration is designed for those who want to work with college students outside of the formal classroom. Creative educators are needed in all post-secondary institutions throughout the United States and increasingly in other countries. Nationally recognized for its "education of the whole person," this program fosters understanding student diversity, ethics and values, and the ability to adapt to specific educational environments. 

Apply for the SDA program by December 1 to be considered for a graduate assistantship for the following academic year.  If you have questions about the application process, please contact us at or (206) 296-5774.

Graduate Assistantship Application Process

When you indicate that you are interested in applying for the graduate assistantship program in your graduate admissions application, you will be asked to write a cover letter addressing the prompt below. Please note that the cover letter is separate from any personal statement or other SDA program application materials.

Prompt: In relation to Seattle University's educational mission and values, (a) share your current work history and leadership experience, and (b) describe which specific departments and/or areas in student development you are most interested in learning about through an assistantship and why.


Graduate assistant supervisors will begin reviewing materials after admissions decisions have been released. Admitted students will receive a Preview Days assignment along with an interview schedule. Interviews take place on the second day of Preview Days and are conducted in conference-style setting. Interviews are 30 minutes each and take place over a period of 4 hours. Applicants are assigned an average of 3-5 interviews.

You will be asked to submit to provide contact information for 3 references in advance; they can be the same as or different from those you submit for your SDA program application. If possible, references should be able to speak to your professional experience and skills. 


Graduate assistants are compensated with an annual stipend. The stipend for the 2019-2020 academic year is $15,605, before taxes, and is based on an average of 20 hours per week. The stipend is paid in three installments, one at the beginning of each quarter. Stipend funds can be used to pay tuition, but are not limited to that purpose and can be used at the student's discretion. Some graduate assistantships in Housing and Residence Life are also compensated with room and board. Additional details will be provided during the interview and hiring process. Currently, there is no tuition remission benefit associated with graduate assistantships.


The following positions were available for the 2018-19 academic year:


December 1, 2019

Deadline to apply for both the SDA program and the graduate assistantship program.

Early February 2020

Receive SDA program admissions decision. If admitted, receive Preview Days assignment.

Late February/Early March 2020

Preview Days Group 1: TBD

Preview Days Group 2: TBD

Late March 2020

Hiring decision notifications.

Mid-May 2020

Receive graduate assistantship contract and new hire paperwork.

Late August/Early September 2020

Graduate assistantship mandatory training.

Please contact Nancy Gregory, Administrative Coordinator, at or 206-296-2525 with questions regarding the graduate assistantship program.