University of Utah Adds Medical and Dental to Graduate Subsidized Health Insurance Program (GSHIP)

Jolyn Schleiffarth works on medical insurance offerings for graduate students.

Medical insurance is one of the hot-button issues of 2017, and the confusion on the national stage has left many in the United States wondering whether their coverage will shrink or disappear in the coming months. Graduate students covered under the Graduate Subsidized Health Insurance Program (GSHIP) can breathe easy, however, for their insurance for the 2017-2018 academic year is increasing its coverage. The Graduate School is pleased to announce that, starting in Fall 2017, students enrolled in the Graduate Student Insurance program will be covered for vision and dental insurance coverage in addition to the current medical coverage.

Insurance administrators at the University have long wanted to increase graduate student coverage, but have been unable to do so because of the prohibitive costs often associated with vision and dental insurance. After months of dedicated work, however, the Office of Fellowships and Benefits in the Graduate School has brokered a deal with Educators Mutual Insurance (EMI) to bring cost-effective vision and dental coverage to students.

“We felt it was an important way to contribute to our graduate students’ well-being,” says Jolyn Schleiffarth, director of the Office of Fellowships and Benefits. “We hope that this added coverage will make it increasingly easy for students to focus on their important studies, and not be distracted by health-related worries.”

The price of the GSHIP saw a downturn in cost from last year, so the addition of vision and dental coverage causes only a small bump of about 10% in the price of insurance for students. Graduate students who serve as TA’s or RA’s under 100% tuition benefit are eligible for the increased GSHIP. Students who aren’t eligible are also able to sign up for the vision and dental coverage at their own cost.

For more information about GSHIP and the new insurance programs, email