Department of Political Science

College of Letters & Science

Awards and Scholarships

2014 Rhodes Scholarship triple major in political science, biochemistry, and biomedical engineering --Photo by Bryce Richter

Tips for a Winning Application:

  • Plan ahead. Keep a calendar of deadlines for scholarships.
  • Read all of the application instructions and the entire scholarship application before you complete it.
  • Read the eligibility requirements carefully.
  • Know your audience. Make sure the goals you express in your application match the goals of the scholarship program.
  • Show your strengths and explain your weaknesses. Highlight relevant extracurricular and community activities as well as academic achievement.
  • Be clear and concise. Always write your essays in a word processing app and then cut and paste it into the Scholarships website once you are satisfied with it. 
  • All scholarship applications also require a current résumé which will be reviewed as carefully as your application. Your résumé may include relevant experience and also may include any record of community service.   
  • Proofread your application. An appointment with a Writing Center instructor can help you make your application standout.
  • Have three people look at your essays: one who knows you, one who knows the project, one who knows neither. If they can understand you, so can the referees.
  • Request letters of recommendation from people who know you reasonably well. Don’t wait until the last minute to ask. 30 days in advance is pretty standard.
  • Make sure to submit your application by the published deadline. 
  • If at first you don't succeed, reapply, reapply, and reapply!
  • When you win a scholarship, be classy, remember to hand write a thank you note!