Frequently Asked Questions

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  • Who should consider applying for fellowships?

    Students planning on graduate or professional school (medical school, law school) across disciplines and areas of interest. Understand, however, that most fellowships are highly competitive so only those students with the most impressive records of achievement are considered.

  • What are award committees looking for?

    The most frequent criteria for national fellowships is an impressive record of academic excellence. Many have specific GPA requirements and other academic expectations. However, academic excellence alone is often not enough. Many fellowships also weigh criteria such as excellence in leadership, extra-curricular involvement, research, international study, and/or commitment to public service.

  • What are my chances of winning a fellowship?

    The likelihood of winning a fellowship varies greatly depending on the fellowship. Virtually all are highly competitive, so only the most impressive are likely to be selected. It is essential to study the criteria of any fellowship that interests you and be certain you are meeting each specific criterion listed. You can also enhance your chances of winning by taking extended time and care in preparing your application.

  • If I’m not a U.S. citizen, can I still apply for fellowships?

    Most fellowships listed on this website are available to U.S. citizens only, though some are more broadly available. If you are an international student, see the criteria for the fellowships that interest you to determine if you are eligible.

  • What is the difference between an internal and an external/official deadline?

    Official/external deadlines are the final deadlines established by each particular fellowship. Internal deadlines have been established by the Office of Scholars and Fellowships at the University of Richmond.

    These deadlines typically apply to fellowships requiring university nomination or endorsement and are in place to help applicants create more impressive applications. These fellowships often ask for letters from university officials, numerous reference letters (which must be written according to specific guidelines), essays, and interviews. The internal deadlines are in place to provide ample time for all involved in the application process and to allow for mock interviews.

  • How do I know which awards require an institutional nomination or endorsement?

    Each fellowship’s website will tell you for certain if it requires an institutional nomination or endorsement.

    Examples of fellowships that DO requirement nomination or endorsement include:

    Beinecke Scholarship
    Carnegie Endowment Junior Fellowship
    Fulbright Scholarship
    Gates-Cambridge Scholarship
    Goldwater Scholarship
    Luce Scholarship
    Marshall Scholarship
    Mitchell Scholarship
    Rhodes Scholarship
    Truman Scholarship
    Udall Undergraduate Scholarship

  • Can I apply for a fellowship after my graduation from Richmond?

    Many of the awards do allow applications after an undergraduate graduates. Some have specific age or year-of-graduation limits (e.g., for the Marshall, an applicant must have earned his/her first bachelor’s degree within the last three years) or other relevant criteria, while others are open only to applications during a particular year of undergraduate study (e.g., students are to apply for the Beinecke during their junior year of college).

    See the websites for the fellowships that interest you to determine if they allow post-graduate applications.

  • What if I have other questions?

    The staff of the Office of Scholars and Fellowships is available to answer questions from students, alumni, faculty, or staff.