About the Scholarship
The Rhodes Scholarships are the oldest and one of the most celebrated international fellowship awards in the world. It is an international postgraduate award for students to study at the University of Oxford. Each year 32 students from the United States are selected as Rhodes Scholars, through a decentralized process representing the 50 states, the District of Columbia, and the U.S. territories. Rhodes Scholars are chosen not only for their outstanding scholarly achievements, but for their character, commitment to others and to the common good, and for their potential for leadership in whatever domains their careers may lead. Rhodes also awards scholarships to non-US citizens. See Rhodes constituencies (and countries).
At the time of application, an applicant for the US Rhodes competition must be:
- Nationality/citizenship: You must be a citizen of the United States OR you must have been admitted to the United States as a lawful permanent resident, and must have maintained, and be expected to maintain, such legal status.
- Age: You must meet either of the below criteria:
- You must be aged 18-23 on 1st October 2023 (i.e. you must have been born after 1 October 1999 and before 2 October 2005). OR (for older candidates who completed their first undergraduate degree later than usual)
- You must be under the age of 27 on 1st October 2023 (i.e. have been born after 1 October 1996) AND you must also have completed your first undergraduate degree on or after 1 October 2022*.
- Academic achievement: You must have completed an undergraduate degree (usually a Bachelor’s) by July 2024, and you must have an academic background and grade that – at a minimum – meets or exceeds the specific entry requirements of your chosen course at the
University of Oxford (https://www.ox.ac.uk/admissions/graduate/courses/courses-a-z-listing).
Candidates will have a higher chance of successful admission to Oxford if they have: A GPA of 3.70/4.0 or higher (with no rounding)
Committees of Selection will have regard to those qualities which Cecil Rhodes expressly listed (below) in order to define the type of Scholar he desired. Proven intellectual and academic achievement of a high standard is the first quality required of applicants, but applicants will also be required to show integrity of character, interest in and respect for their fellow beings, the ability to lead, and the energy to use their talents to the full.
- Literary and scholastic achievements: GPA and difficulty of coursework are the standard places to demonstrate academic achievement. The Rhodes Trust has adopted a 3.7 minimum GPA requirement to be eligible to apply for a Rhodes Scholarship and the average GPA of recipients is 3.9. Academic merit is also be demonstrated through excellent recommendations from people who know the candidate and can make informed comparisons with many other students. Recommendations, should provide specific and well-documented details about the selection criteria outlined by Rhodes. The Committee is looking for proof that an applicant would not only be accepted into the graduate program they intend to pursue at Oxford, but thrive within it.
- Energy to use one’s talents to the full: Showing passion and vigor to pursue goals despite setbacks can demonstrate this characteristic. A scholar-athlete may model this within the competition arena while a musician might show it through a long term commitment to fine-tuning their craft.
- Truth, courage, devotion to duty, sympathy for and protection of the weak, kindliness, unselfishness and fellowship: Concern for others can be reflected in countless ways aside from direct hands-on charitable work. Reference padding, with sudden and extensive charitable activity in one’s junior year for example, is usually transparent to committees. One can be a great contributor to mankind without having spent hundreds of hours (or even any) while in college doing volunteer work.
- Moral force of character and instincts to lead, and to take an interest in one’s fellow beings: Formal leadership positions, such as elected office in student government or another organization, are one way to demonstrate leadership. The committee also values leadership in less formal roles, such as expanding on research in your field, organizing community action efforts, or lobbying for legislation or policy changes.
Rhodes/Marshall/Mitchell Campus Endorsement Zoom Open Office Hours:
- Thursday, June 1, 2023 from 12-1pm PDT
Marshall, Mitchell, Rhodes Scholarship Essay Overview Video Recording
Special Guest: 2018 USC Marshall Scholar Jamie Kwong
Marshall Scholarship Personal Statement Essay Example (password protected – please email AHF)