How do I find fellowships to apply for? There are so many – how do I decide which is best for me?
There are many scholarships listings out there, and it can quickly get overwhelming. Use the search engine on this site for starters. You should also ask your faculty mentors if they know of awards you might apply for, and check the database of associations within your discipline or area of interest. Staying organized will help you manage the information overload. Spreadsheets, binders, bulletin boards, electronic lists can all work – figure out what system will be best for you.
I know I want to do something significant, though am not sure quite what yet, or how I would get there. Am I ready to apply?
Maybe. It’s often the case that one of the most valuable parts of the fellowship application process is the self-exploration that it requires. Think through what you really want in order to help focus your search and select among the options. The Fellowships Office has a number of books that can help with life and career decision-making, and the Steinbright Career Development Center offers career counseling and assessments to help students figure out a path that makes sense for them.
I just found a perfect fellowship for me, but the deadline passed two days ago. Can I still apply?
No. Deadlines are non-negotiable in the fellowships world. Look for other awards with later deadlines, or try again next year if you are still eligible. And in the future, keep your eyes open for upcoming opportunities and sign up for our bi-weekly newsletter.
It’s April (or July) and I need funding for September. Can you help me?
No. In most cases, these nationally-competitive awards have deadlines 6-12 months prior to when the grant would start, in some cases even 18 months ahead. If you are in a crunch, you may be able to find some smaller awards on short notice by using other databases.
I had a bad semester because [I was sick, I had personal/family problems, I had two other jobs, etc.]. The rest of my grades have been excellent, but because of this one semester my GPA is lower. Can I still apply?
Yes. If your application is otherwise excellent, you may be able to explain limited exceptional circumstances somewhere in your application such as in a letter of recommendation or nomination.
Can I apply for more than one award? Can I accept more than one?
Generally speaking, yes, you can apply for as many awards as you have time for, and it often gets easier after you’ve done this once or twice. We encourage it.
Depending on the awards, however, know that you may not be able to accept them all should you be in the happy situation of being offered several. While many organizations will be fine with you receiving multiple awards as long as they are designated for different expenses, federal grants frequently have some limitations. Read the details of the award(s) you’ve received and be in contact with the program managers with any questions.