Nationally Competitive Scholarships

What does "nationally competitive" mean?

When we say that a scholarship is "nationally competitive," it means that applicants from all across the United States are applying for the award. Often, this indicates an increased level of competitiveness for awards that may be sponsored by entities such as a Chicago-based organization, the State of Illinois, or often, the federal government.

In addition, these awards are generally viewed as the hardest to win; therefore, they tend to require a substantial amount of preparatory work. While many perceive that these awards generally go to students attending elite private institutions, this is not the case! UIC, along with many other state universities, has candidates who win these pretigious awards on a regular basis. Please see our Award Winners page for recent scholarship recipients from UIC!

Below is a listing of external scholarships that OSSP typically works on with students. Often times, they require university nominations -- if they do, the description of the award will indicate that.

The following scholarships have two deadlines: one preliminary, in the spring (April) of student's junior year; and one final, in the fall (August) of student's senior year:

Gates-Cambridge Scholarship - one of the most prestigious scholarships in the U.S. for students who have completed a bachelor's degree, study at the University of Cambridge in England in your field of interest for up to four years

Marshall Scholarship - (UIC STUDENTS APPLY THROUGH OSSP ONLY) one of the most prestigious scholarships in the U.S., sends students with a bachelor's degree to a British university to study for a minimum of two years

Mitchell Scholarship - (UIC STUDENTS APPLY THROUGH OSSP ONLY) one of the most prestigious scholarships in the U.S. for students who have completed a bachelor's degree, funding for one year of study at a university in Ireland

Rhodes Scholarship - (UIC STUDENTS APPLY THROUGH OSSP ONLY) one of the most prestigious scholarships in the U.S., for students with a bachelor's degree to pursue at least two years of study at the University of Oxford in England

Deadline varies or is not available:

National Institutes of Health (NIH) Graduate Partnership Program - for U.S. citizens or permanent residents who have completed bachelors' degrees and now would like to pursue a PhD in biomedical sciences

Rotary Ambassadorial Scholarship - (NOT BEING OFFERED THIS YEAR) for students who have completed a bachelor's degree to spend one year pursuing graduate study or study abroad in a country that has a sponsoring Rotary Club

USA TODAY All-USA College Academic Team - recognition for outstanding juniors and seniors at four-year universities in the United States

August:

September:

Fulbright Fellowship - (UIC STUDENTS APPLY THROUGH OSSP ONLY) for students who have completed a bachelor's degree, a year abroad conducting research in the country of your choice OR teaching English as a foreign language in one of over 40 countries

Javits Fellowship - (NOT BEING OFFERED THIS YEAR) one-year, renewable stipend for students in a social sciences, humanities, or the arts graduate program leading to the terminal degree in the field

October:

DAAD Study Scholarship - for undergraduates, recent graduates and current graduate students to study abroad in Germany

Gilman Scholarships for Spring Semester - (MUST BE A PELL GRANT RECIPIENT) awards up to $5,000 for study abroad with the possibility of an additional $3,000 to study a critical language

Merage Fellowship - (NOT BEING OFFERED THIS YEAR) (UIC STUDENTS APPLY THROUGH OSSP ONLY) for graduating college seniors who are immigrants, funding to pursue your American Dream at either graduate or professional school or for another relevant pursuit

Truman Scholarship - (UIC STUDENTS APPLY THROUGH OSSP ONLY) for current undergraduate students who demonstrate achievement in leadership, academics and public service who want a career related to public service

November:

Critical Languages Scholarships for Intensive Summer Institutes - all-expenses-paid scholarships to study critical languages abroad for the summer

Ford Foundation Fellowships - (CONTACT OSSP IF INTERESTED) meant to increase the number of professors who can and will use diversity as a resource for enriching the education of all students; Alaska Natives (Aleut, Eskimo and other Indigenous People of Alaska); African Americans; Mexican Americans or Chicanos(as); Native American Indians; Native Pacific Islanders (Hawaiian/Polynesian/Micronesian); and Puerto Ricans

Goldwater Scholarship - (UIC STUDENTS APPLY THROUGH OSSP ONLY) for sophomores or juniors conducting research in science, math and engineering and plan to make research an integral part of their future careers

Hertz Foundation Graduate Fellowships - for graduating seniors and current graduate students going on to pursue PhD studies in the biological, physical or engineering sciences

Jack Kent Cooke Graduate Arts Award - (UIC STUDENTS APPLY THROUGH OSSP ONLY) for graduating seniors or students who have graduated within the last five years who have not yet attended graduate or professional school; planning to pursue a graduate or professional degree program in the arts; for students with high levels of unmet financial need only

National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship - funding for graduating college seniors or first-year graduate students pursuing doctoral degrees in physical and life sciences, mathematics, engineering, and social sciences

Soros Fellowship - for graduating college seniors or first-year graduate or professional school students who are immigrants or first-generation Americans, funding for graduate or professional study

U.S. Department Of State Summer Internship Program - all majors, placements in Washington, DC, and at embassies and consulates abroad for summer; continuing undergraduate and graduate students only

December:

Carnegie Endowment Junior Fellows Program - (UIC STUDENTS APPLY THROUGH OSSP ONLY) international affairs, one year research fellowship in Washington, DC at the Carnegie Endowment

Glamour Magazine Top 10 College Women - annual competition by the national women's magazine to identify 10 outstanding female college juniors

Hispanic Scholarship Fund - various fields, awards and deadlines; for Hispanic students in high school, community college, or at a four-year university

National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate (NDSEG) Fellowships - graduate fellowships in math, ocean, physical, biological and engineering sciences

NSEP Boren Scholarship - (UIC STUDENTS APPLY THROUGH OSSP ONLY) for current undergraduate students pursuing a study abroad program outside of Western Europe, Australia or New Zealand who are studying a language and a topic critical to national security

January:

Pickering Graduate Foreign Affairs Fellowship - for undergraduate seniors planning to attend a graduate program in international relations and want a career in the Foreign Service

Rangel International Affairs Fellowship - for graduating seniors going on to graduate programs in international affairs or relations, planning on career in the Foreign Service

Udall Scholarship - (UIC STUDENTS APPLY THROUGH OSSP ONLY) for current undergraduate students studying environmental science, public policy or Native American Indian health policy

February:

Pickering Undergraduate Foreign Affairs Fellowship - for undergraduate juniors planning a career in the Foreign Service, funding to support senior year and first year of graduate work in international affairs

March:

Fulbright UK Summer Institutes - a 3-to-6-week summer program at a world-class UK university or cultural institution; immersive academic, cultural and social experience for freshman or sophomore American students who wish to deepen their knowledge of the United Kingdom and its diverse population whilst developing their communication, research and presentation skills

Gilman Scholarships for Fall, Academic Year and Summer Programs - (MUST BE A PELL GRANT RECIPIENT) awards up to $5,000 for study abroad with the possibility of an additional $3,000 to study a critical language

James Madison Scholarship - for graduating seniors in college or current teaching professionals planning to obtain their master's degree in social science or history education

JW Saxe Prize - award for undergraduate or graduate students for supplemental funding in taking a low-pay or no-pay public service internship or position

Phi Kappa Phi Graduate Fellowship - (UIC STUDENTS APPLY THROUGH OSSP ONLY) for graduating college seniors who are members of the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society going on to graduate or professional school immediately after undergrad

April:

McKelvie Scholarship - for undergraduate or graduate students whose career plans include public service positions within state or federal government

May:

Cirilo McSween (New York Life) $2,500 Scholarship - business majors, sponsored by the Rainbow-PUSH Coalition

Ora Lee Sanders $1,000 Scholarship - any field, sponsored by the Rainbow-PUSH Coalition

June:

July: