MAPC Application Procedures for Graduate Assistantships (Non-Teaching)

All graduate assistantships, whether state supported or extramurally funded, are under the jurisdiction and regulations of the Communication Department Graduate Council. A Graduate Assistant (GA) is a person registered as a graduate student appointed to carry out special projects or research duties. Students appointed as GAs are expected to follow all SUU and department policies (See Policy 6.28)

The Communication Department offers different non-teaching Graduate Assistantships (GAs) to help fund our students. Applicants should indicate on the application (and on a separate sheet if necessary) which of these assistantships are of most interest and any specific qualifications that might make the student a good candidate for this award.

GAs may be assigned to one of the following duties. Please specify which one in the application:

  1. Social Media & Marketing
    GAs receiving this award will work under the direction of the Graduate Director. Duties include, but are not limited to, creating web content, contacting program alumni, developing social media plans and posting schedules, and taking photos consistent with marketing goals.
  2. Advertising Assistant – Thunderbird Advertising Group (TAG)
    GAs receiving this award will work under the direct supervision of Dr. Art Challis. Duties will include, but are not limited to assisting with the undergraduate advertising agency (TAG) in working with clients, and students. GAs will also work with student media in generating advertising revenue from audiences associated with Thunder 91, SUTV & The University Journal.
  3. Research Assistant
    GAs will work with no more than 2 professors in the department that will be rotated from semester to semester based on expressed need from faculty. Duties will include, but are not limited to gathering research articles, entering data, coding data, co-authoring projects or other various duties related to faculty research needs.
  4. Eye Tracker Lab Assistant
    GAs receiving this award will assist a faculty member in helping students and faculty to use the lab equipment. The eye tracker technology tracks peoples’ eye movements when looking at anything on a digital screen (websites, advertisements, social media posts, and more). These tools are useful in student and faculty research projects and the GA will assist where needed.


Assistantships are awarded on an annual basis and are competitively selected based on a number of factors. These decisions are made at the sole discretion of the Department Graduate Council. Assistantship applications must be submitted by March 15th and notification of awards will be sent on or before April 15th for the following academic year. All application materials should be submitted electronically to Angela Eyre, Communication Department Administrative Assistant,


GAs are employed by the university to conduct work in exchange for compensation. In this capacity they are expected to report in the same time-frame as faculty, e.g., during academic semesters and not during break or vacation times. As employees, GAs must report one week prior to commencement of classes both fall and spring semester. Exceptions to this policy may be negotiated at the time of employment, however, both parties must agree to the arrangement and approval must be obtained from Department Chair, or Graduate Director. Graduate assistants work on the average 5 hours per week and they will be paid a $500 stipend for completed work and receive a $1,000 tuition waiver (per semester). GAs are responsible for books, fees and all tuition not covered by the waiver.


  1. Normally, a graduate assistant will not carry an academic load in excess of 10 credit hours. A minimum of 6 graduate credit hours per semester is allowed when students are enrolled and working on their capstone.
  2. First year GAs are required as part of their contract obligation to attend any Graduate Assistant Training and Orientation sessions typically offered at the beginning of Fall semester.
  3. A GA may be terminated if the student does not satisfactorily perform assigned duties. Assistantships may also be terminated if a student does not make satisfactory progress toward the degree. Unsatisfactory progress includes, but is not limited to: earning a grade point average below a 3.0; or receiving grades of C in two or more program courses.
  4. Before accepting employment on or off campus (of 10 hours or more) the GA must inform the Department Chair & Graduate Director to ensure this work will not compromise performance of assigned duties. Failure to request approval of employment may result in the assistantship being rescinded.
  5. Renewal of an assistantship will be subject to a review of the assistant’s record. A new application must be submitted each year an assistantship is sought.
  6. GAs are not covered by university employee insurance; they do not receive annual or sick leave and they are not included in retirement plans.

Equal Opportunity: It has been and will continue to be the policy of Southern Utah University to be an equal opportunity institution. All decisions of admissions and employment are based on objective standards that will further the goals of equal opportunity. The University is committed to assuring that all programs and activities are readily accessible to all eligible persons without regard to their race, color, religion, gender, national origin, ancestry, age, disability, Vietnam-Era and/or disabled veteran status, any protected class under relevant state and federal laws, and in accordance with University policy.