Graduate Division Childcare Grants


PhD graduate students who have young, dependent children in childcare may be eligible for the childcare grant program provided by the Graduate Division. This program will provide funds to assist students with the cost of childcare for the academic year. Childcare grants are awarded once each year, beginning the fall academic term. Applications open during the summer, typically mid- to late-June.

Grants are based on household resources and may be used to pay for a wide range of possible arrangements, from in-home care to licensed daycare centers. These grants are treated as additional stipend income by the IRS and may be subject to state and federal tax.

Who is eligible?

To be eligible for consideration for a childcare grant, you must meet all of the following conditions. Special circumstances will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

  • Be a full-time PhD student registered at UCSF in a graduate academic program.
  • Have dependent child or children who are 12 or younger as of September 1 in the new academic year.
  • Demonstrate financial need for this grant.
  • Be a single parent or, if married, have a spouse who is a full-time student matriculated in a degree or certificate program, or who is gainfully employed full-time and earning income. Spouses who work half-time and attend school half-time will be considered employed full-time. Contingent on funding availability, if the spouse works part-time, a reduced childcare grant may be made available.
  • Meet satisfactory academic progress.

The Graduate Division will make an exception to the employment criteria for a non-student spouse who cannot work due to a disability. Please note this on your application so your situation may be considered during review. You may be asked to document your spouse's employment or student status.

How to apply

For the 2022-23 application cycle, we will be using DocuSign in order to make the application process as easy as possible.

U.S. citizens and permanent residents must submit by the deadline:

  1. Childcare Grant application (via DocuSign)
  2. Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Use school code 001319. Use your 2021 income when filling out the FAFSA application. You are required to complete the FAFSA before submitting the childcare grant application.

Note: The Graduate Division may request copies of your and your spouse’s signed 2021 federal income tax returns (1040, 1040A, 1040EZ, 1040NR, 1040NR-EZ, or Form 8843) or a non-filing statement.

International students must submit by the deadline:

  1. Childcare Grant application (via DocuSign)
  2. Confidential Financial Statement (CFS). This form is included with your DocuSign application and will be automatically routed to Financial Aid once completed.

Note: International students should NOT complete the FAFSA.

When to apply/timeline

Applications for 2023-2024 will open mid-June 2023. Awardees will be notified in early September.


All applicants must submit ONE of the following forms, depending on which version applies (links will become active during the application period). Please do NOT initiate multiple applications. Once you complete the DocuSign application below, using your UCSF email address, please do not start another. Links will become active during the application window.

  • Incoming PhD Students - U.S. Citizens or Permanent Residents new to UCSF in Fall 2022
  • Incoming PhD Students - International Students new to UCSF in Fall 2022
  • Continuing PhD Students - U.S. Citizens or Permanent Residents (all form fields for graduate advisor and program director are required!)
  • Continuing PhD Students - International Students (all form fields for graduate advisor and program director are required!)

How much is the grant award?

The number of awards and amount of each award depend on the number of eligible applicants, applicant financial need, the number of eligible children receiving childcare, and their childcare expenses. The total available funding available for each academic year may vary from year to year.

The grant award amount cannot exceed the cost of your childcare.

How eligibility for the grant is determined

You must demonstrate financial need to be eligible for the childcare grant program. Financial need is calculated as follows:

Estimated Cost of Attendance — Expected Family Contribution/Available Resources = Demonstrated Financial Need

Estimated cost of attendance: This estimated amount includes tuition, fees, an allowance for books and supplies, a reasonable allowance for living expenses, and childcare expenses as reported on the Childcare Grant application.

Expected family contribution/available resources: The Graduate Division calculates your expected family contribution based on your Childcare Grant application and the FAFSA or international student Confidential Financial Statement. Tax returns may be requested. The calculation is based on such items as your earnings; checking, savings, cash, and money market accounts; investments and real estate holdings other than your family's primary residence; business equity; untaxed income; income from assistantships; and other financial aid you are receiving through your academic program or department and Student Financial Services.

Receiving your grant funds

Payments are typically made in three equal portions in October, February and May, after your student tuition and fees are paid for that term. Students are encouraged to sign up for direct deposit through the UCSF Controller's Office.


Questions may be directed to [email protected].

See more resources for students with dependents.