Trailing Nondegree Students

Trailing nondegree students are advanced degree candidates from another institution who accompany the adviser, a newly hired faculty member at Princeton, to complete degree-related research.


Trailing students must be approved by the Graduate School and the Office of the Dean of the Faculty at the time a prospective senior faculty member is being recruited. The duration of the status is normally 12 months, renewable for up to three academic years. The degree awarded will be from the student's home institution, not Princeton.

Application Requirements

  • Statement of Purpose - brief statement describing your proposed plan of study

  • Resume or curriculum vitae  

  • Register a sponsoring Princeton faculty member

  • Copy of your current passport (name page only) - international applicants only

  • Evidence of sufficient financial resources in English and U.S. dollars

Visa Information

(International applicants only)

All international nondegree students must arrive in the U.S. with a valid F-1 or J-1 student visa. The Davis International Center will assist with the visa eligibility documents (I-20 for F-1 students or DS-2019 for J-1 students) after admission is offered.

BEgin YOUR FALL  ApplIcation

Applicants who require additional accessibility assistance may contact [email protected]

Courses, Teaching, and Research

A trailing nondegree student is understood by the nature of the appointment to be working full time on research in order to complete degree requirements and may, at the faculty member's discretion, be appointed as an Assistant in Research (AR). A trailing student may not enroll in courses for credit while at Princeton and is not eligible to be appointed as an Assistant in Instruction (AI).

Financial Support

Visit the Financial Support section to learn about fees and student benefits for trailing nondegree students.