About the Scholarship
Goldwater applicants must:
1. Be a full-time1 matriculated sophomore or junior pursuing a degree at an accredited 2- or 4-year institution of higher education during the 2021-2022 academic year,
2. Intend to pursue a research career in a natural science, mathematics or engineering,2
3. Have a college grade point average of at least a 3.00 on a 4.00 scale 3, and
4. Be a U.S. citizen from the 50 states or the District of Columbia; a U.S. national for those students nominated by institutions in Puerto Rico, Guam, Virgin Islands, American Samoa, and Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands; or a permanent resident. A permanent resident must submit a photocopy of their Permanent Resident Card, also known as the Green Card.
1Because of COVID-19, some students may not be enrolled full-time during the 2021-2022 academic year. Schools may nominate these students as part of the 2022 Goldwater competition. For the purposes of the 2022 review, the assumption will be made that all students will be enrolled full-time during the 2022-2023 academic year.
2The natural sciences, engineering, and mathematics fields and sub-fields used by the Goldwater Foundation to determine eligibility are those used by the National Science Foundation for its Graduate Research Fellowship Program. These include: Chemistry, Computer and Information Sciences and Engineering, Engineering, Geosciences, Life Sciences, Materials Research, Mathematical Sciences, Physics and Astronomy, and Psychology. To view a field’s sub-fields, click on the field in the table below.
While research in medicine is not supported by the National Science Foundation, students interested in pursuing careers in medicine or veterinary medicine are eligible for a Goldwater Scholarship IF RESEARCH IS A CENTRAL PART OF THE STUDENT’S CAREER GOALS.
3In the 2021 Goldwater competition, GPAs ranged from 3.37 to 5.0 on a 4.0 scale.
When reviewing nomination packets, Goldwater reviewers are attempting to determine who these individuals are among the nominees. Application materials will be as varied as the students who submit them. There are, nevertheless, some characteristics among applications that are worth noting. Nomination materials will be reviewed by discipline.
- Demonstrate a passion for doing research is by doing research. When you tell your research story, specify what you contributed to an experiment and what you got out of the experience, so the reviewer can evaluate your interest in and passion for doing research.
- Demonstrate ownership of the project, or some part of the project. You do not have to be involved in a research project that occurs on the world’s largest particle accelerator. You can demonstrate sophisticated and elegant thinking and analysis doing research on the ecosystem of the pond behind your dorm.
- Get involved in research as early in your undergraduate experience as possible! If you are going to be nominated as a sophomore for a Goldwater scholarship, the above discussion clearly suggests that you should start engaging in research during your freshman year of college (or even in high school).