The Sperry and Hutchinson Company’s Board of Directors created the Beinecke Scholarship Program in 1971 to pay tribute to Edwin, Frederick, and Walter Beinecke. The Board established an endowment to give young people with great promise sizeable grants for graduate school. The program aims to inspire and empower highly motivated students to take use of their potential and to be brave while choosing a graduate program of study in the humanities, social sciences, or arts. Since 1975, 699 college juniors from 120 different undergraduate colleges have been chosen as part of the program to receive financial aid for graduate studies at any approved university.
Prior to starting graduate school, each scholar receives $4,000, and they each receive an additional $30,000 while they are enrolled. The scholarship can be used anywhere in the world, and winners are free to combine it with additional financial aid like assistantships and research grants. After completing their undergraduate studies, scholars are urged to start graduate school as soon as feasible. They must use up all of the funding within five years.
About The Beinecke African Scholarship Program
In collaboration with the Wildlife Conservation Society, the Beinecke African Scholarship Program was started in 1996. The program was created to make it possible for African students to study animal ecology or conservation at a university in the US.
From 1998 through 2002, just one scholarship was given out, but starting in 2003, two were given out each year, and students could enroll in universities outside of the United States. The Sperry Fund funds one of these two yearly prizes, while a Wildlife Conservation Society endowment established in support of the program funds the other.
There have been 40 Beinecke African Scholarships given out so far. Of them, The Sperry Fund has directly supported 23, The Prospect Hill Foundation has funded 1, and The Wildlife Conservation Society’s endowment has directly funded 16.
Beinecke Scholarship Application Eligibility
Up to 20 new scholarships will be given out each year, and roughly 135 schools and universities are invited to propose a student for one. Each year, only one nomination may be submitted from each invited school for the Beinecke Scholarship Program.
For information on the steps to be taken in choosing the school’s nominee, students enrolled at a participating institution who are interested in applying for a Beinecke Scholarship should get in touch with their campus liaison.
To be eligible for a Beinecke Scholarship, a student must:
- have shown the highest levels of intelligence, academic success, and personal promise during their undergraduate studies.
be a junior in college pursuing a bachelor’s degree in the 2022–2023 school year. A student who intends to pursue undergraduate studies full-time and anticipates graduating with a baccalaureate degree between December 2023 and August 2024 is referred to as a “junior.”
- Plan to enroll in a master’s, doctorate, or MFA program in the humanities, social sciences, or arts with a research emphasis. Students in the social sciences who want to study neuroscience at the doctoral level shouldn’t apply for a Beinecke Scholarship, nor should they if they want to pursue a career in commerce, law, public health, public policy, or social work.
- Being an American citizen, American Samoan national, or a citizen of the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.
- have a history of receiving need-based financial aid during their undergraduate studies; Pell Grant recipients are strongly preferred. Each nominee must fill out a Financial Aid Data Sheet attesting to their compliance with this requirement. The level of financial need will be one of the criteria taken into account throughout the selection process, and preference will be given to applicants for whom receiving a scholarship would greatly improve their chances of being able to attend graduate school.
Beinecke Scholarship Nomination Materials & Forms
The following documentation is required for each nomination:
- A certified eligibility form that has been finished (available on website).
- Filled-out application form (available on website).
- A current CV or resume
- A 1,000 word or fewer statement from the nominee outlining their research or creative interests for graduate school as well as their long-term career goals. A discussion of the most significant educational, professional, extracurricular, and personal experiences that have inspired or shaped the nominee’s goals and interests should also be included in the statement.
- A letter outlining the selection criteria for the nominee, written by the dean or other administrative officer.
- Three letters of recommendation from professors commenting on the candidate’s intellect, morals, and readiness for advanced graduate study.
- An unofficial transcript of the candidate. Official transcripts are required of successful applicants.
- MFA candidates are required to submit an artist’s supplement, which can be up to five pages of original writing. The candidate may compile chosen audio or visual materials online, and the artist’s supplement may instead include links to these websites.
By the deadline for nominations, each nominated student must also deliver a Financial Aid Data Sheet (found on the website) to the program director.
Beinecke Scholarship Application Conditions
A total of $34,000 is awarded to each Beinecke Scholar to fund their graduate studies. Prior to beginning graduate school, the student receives a direct payout of $4,000 as the initial payment. This award is meant to cover travel expenditures directly related to the start of graduate school as well as the costs of the graduate application process. A Beinecke Scholar will also be supported with an additional $30,000 during their graduate studies. To comply with institutional constraints on the total amount of a student’s annual award, these monies may be awarded over a period of up to five years as a complement to support provided by the graduate school.
Without institutional sponsorship or restrictions, scholars are only eligible to receive an annual grant of up to $15,000. These funds are delivered directly to the financial aid representative of the school where the student is enrolled, who then disburses them in accordance with the school’s scholarship policy.
The following policies also apply to the award:
- To be eligible for support, a scholar must be enrolled full-time in an accredited graduate program and in good academic standing.
- All funds must be used by the scholar within five years following graduation.
- A scholar is permitted to take a one-year leave of absence right after graduation, although it is typically expected that they would enroll in graduate school the following year and start receiving Beinecke support. A recipient of a National Science Foundation, Marshall, Fulbright, Rhodes, Gates, or comparable scholarship may defer receiving their Beinecke prize until they have finished their studies under those schemes. A scholar is still required to use the Beinecke funding within five years of graduating, though.
- The Beinecke Scholarship will not be given to students who are chosen for the Truman Scholarship.
- If a scholar is denied entrance to graduate school, they may ask the program director for permission to postpone financing for one more year.
Beinecke Scholarship Program Nomination Deadline
By 5 p.m. EST on the second Wednesday in February, deans or other designated administrative officers from each participating institution must scan nomination packets into a single PDF file and email it to the Beinecke Scholarship Program Director.
By this date, nominated students must also email the Beinecke Scholarship Program Director a copy of the Financial Aid Data Sheet.
Please inform your students that the internal deadlines for their nomination procedure at your participating institution will be earlier than February. For additional information, please get in touch with your campus liaison.
The Beinecke Scholarship Program Director should not receive any application papers from students unless they are the official nominee for their institution, as stated above.