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Graduate Assistants

Graduate Assistants are eligible for the Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP) and they are eligible for a State of Maryland Employee Health insurance Plan.  These are DIFFERENT PLANS -  graduate assistants must decide which plan would be best for their needs. If opting for a State of MD plan or an external plan, GA's must submit a wiaver for SHIP by the deadline (GA offer letters will be accepted).

SHIP (more info at

  • GA's must either enroll in SHIP or waive out of SHIP during the SHIP Open Enrollment period.
  • Cost is $976 for the Fall only plan, and $1,358 for the Spring/Summer plan.
  • Prescription drug plan included
  • The insurance carrier is United Healthcare
  • The premium cost is charged to the student's account
  • Coverage remains in effect until end of plan period.
  • SHIP is non refundable

State of MD plan  (more info at

  • GA's have 60 days from their GA start date to enroll in a State of MD insurance plan. 
  • Cost is $50 - 100 per paycheck (varies by plan)
  • Prescription drug plan is an additional cost
  • Insurance carriers available are Kaiser, United Healthcare, and Blue Cross Blue Shield
  • The premium cost will be deducted from student's GA stipend.
  • Coverage remains in effect while on GAship.

Information about Summer Coverage

Students who have the Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP) through July 31, 2024:

  • To continue with SHIP beyond July 31, 2024, eligible students can enroll in a new SHIP on the Academic HealthPlans website
  • The SHIP Bridge Plan is a special accommodation for students who are currently on SHIP through July 31 and plan to graduate in August. It extends SHIP just for the month of August.  Students who are not on SHIP through July 31, 2024 are NOT eligible for the Bridge Plan.  Students who graduate in May 2024 are NOT eligible for the Bridge Plan.  To enroll in the Bridge Plan, go to the Academic HealthPlans website and select "Student groups eligible for Voluntary Enrollment."    

Students who have a State of Maryland Employee Insurance Plan (Graduate Assistants only): 

  • If the assistantship continues from one academic year to the next, (Spring 24 to Fall 24), the State of Maryland health insurance coverage will continue uninterrupted through the summer. 
  • If the assistantship ends in Spring 24 and you are not reappointed in Fall 24 with an assistantship, then your insurance plan will terminate on the last day of the month that your assistantship ended (if the last day of a GAship is June 3, then insurance will continue through June 30).  This means that you will not have summer coverage.  
  • Please consult with your department's business office about your graduate assistantship status, start dates, and end dates.  Or refer Univeristy Human Resources (UHR) benefits page for questions about the State of Maryland Employee Health Plans. 

Summer SHIP Plans

Graduate students are eligible to enroll in the Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP) for the Summer Only plan (June 1 - July 31) if registered for at least one credit during Summer Session I.  Or, depending on your circumstances, you may be eligible to enroll in SHIP using a Qualifying Event process.  More information about SHIP enrollment can be found on the Academic HealthPlans website.


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