About the Beinecke Scholarship
The Beinecke Scholarship Program was created in 1971 as an endowment to provide substantial scholarships in order to encourage and enable highly motivated students to pursue opportunities available to them and to be courageous in the selection of a graduate course of study in the arts, humanities and social sciences (Ph.D. or terminal degree such as MFA). Since 1975 the program has selected more than 610 college juniors from more than 110 different undergraduate institutions for support during graduate study at any accredited university. Each scholar receives $4,000 immediately prior to entering graduate school and an additional $30,000 while attending graduate school. There are no geographic restrictions on the use of the scholarship, and recipients are allowed to supplement the award with other scholarships, assistantships and research grants. All of the funding must be utilized within five years of completion of undergraduate studies. These funds are awarded as a supplement to support provided by the graduate school and the award may be spread over up to five years to comply with institutional limits on the total amount of a student’s annual award. In the absence of institutional support or limits, scholars may receive a maximum award of $15,000 per year. Funds are sent directly to the financial aid officer of the institution and disbursed in accordance with the scholarship policy of the institution.
USC may nominate one applicant each year for the Beinecke Scholarship. An overall GPA of 3.8 or higher is strongly recommended.
For additional information, visit the Beinecke Scholarship website here.
- have demonstrated superior standards of intellectual ability, scholastic achievement and personal promise during his or her undergraduate career.
- be a college junior pursing a bachelor’s degree during the 2017-2018 academic year. “Junior” means a student who plans to continue full-time undergraduate study and who expects to receive a baccalaureate degree between December 2018 and August 2019.
- plan to enter a master’s or doctoral program in the arts, humanities or social sciences (PhD or terminal master’s like an MFA are preferred). Students in the social sciences who plan to pursue graduate study in neuroscience should not apply for a Beinecke Scholarship.
- be a U.S. citizen or a U.S. national from American Samoa or the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.
- have a documented history of receiving need-based institutional, state or federal financial aid during his or her undergraduate years. An institutional financial aid officer will be required to complete a Financial Data Sheet certifying that the student meets this criterion. During the selection process, the amount of financial need will be one of the factors considered with preference being given to candidates for whom the awarding of a scholarship would significantly increase the likelihood of the student’s being able to attend graduate school.
As of 2011, the level of financial need demonstrated by the applicant will be one of the factors considered during the selection process.
Nominees who are not currently receiving need-based financial aid due to receipt of a merit award or tuition exchange should work with a financial aid officer to complete the Financial Data Sheet with accurate information on how much need-based aid the student would receive if they were not receiving support from the non-need based source.
Generally the selection committee does not respond favorably to nominees planning to attend law school, business school or other professional school programs such as education, architecture, journalism, public health or occupational therapy that emphasize skills and practical analysis over theory and research.
Time at Institution
Generally the selection committee does not favorably respond to nominees who have been enrolled at the nominating institution (USC) for less than a full academic year unless the nominee can provide letters of recommendation from faculty at USC who can vouch for their ability to succeed at the graduate level after demonstrated excellence in USC coursework, research, etc.
Campus Nominations Process
Read the Nomination Material Instructions in Beinecke Scholarship 2017-2018 Announcement.
Academic Honors and Fellowships offers one-on-one advising for this award. It is highly recommended that you schedule an appointment to meet with Willa Erickson firstname.lastname@example.org before submitting an application for nomination.
Submission Deadline & Materials
The campus deadline is: Wednesday, January 17th, 2018 by 11:59pm.
To be considered for university nomination, turn in the following materials to Willa Erickson in STU 300 or via email email@example.com.
- A completed application form (typed)
- A current resume
- A personal statement of 1,000 words or less from the nominee describing his or her background, interests, plans for graduate study and career aspirations. The statement should include a discussion of some experiences and ideas that have shaped those interests, plans and aspirations.
- Three letters of recommendation from faculty members addressing the Beinecke Scholarship (must be signed)
- A copy of your transcript from all institutions attended
- A Financial Data Sheet completed by a financial aid officer certifying that you qualify for need-based financial aid
- If applicable: Other materials considered directly relevant to the nominee’s application (Artist’s Supplement) – if you intend to pursue an MFA or similar degree in creative writing, studio art, film, music performance and/or theater and dance, you should submit some or all of the following materials with your application:
- A creative writing sample
- A portfolio of work in an electronic format
- An external evaluation of the work
- Links to any online content directly relevant to your work
Access all required materials on the Nomination Materials & Forms webpage.
Previous USC Beinecke Scholarship Recipients
Caitlin L. Goddard – 1999
Undergraduate School: University of Southern California
Graduate School: New York University Graduate
Field: English and American Literature