What is a fellowship?
A fellowship is an academic grant funded by the government, a foundation, or a private interest. Oftentimes, the grant is associated with a program of study or research in a particular field, but many fellowships fund study in a wide range of subjects. The funds that are made available through fellowships are typically assigned to specific expenses, such as travel, tuition or coursework, research expenses, and living stipends. There are a wide range of fellowship opportunities that are supported through Seattle University's Office of Fellowships, from smaller, local competitions, to the well-known and highly competitive national scholarships. For a list of fellowships that are currently supported at Seattle University, visit our Fellowships page.
How do I know which fellowship is right for me?
Choosing an appropriate fellowship is the first, and in some ways most difficult step in the application process. The sheer number of opportunities alone can be overwhelming. Although the Office of Fellowships is here to help you navigate the vast number of opportunities, deciding on which fellowship is right for you will require a lot of research and reflection on your part. Here are some tips to help get you started:
- Make a list of your major academic and career interests. Try to be as specific as you can. Look for areas of overlap among your interests.
- List any extracurricular activities, volunteer experience, internships, professional experience, research, and sports accomplishments that you have to your credit.
- Review your academic performance (i.e., cumulative and major GPA, standardized test scores, academic awards and honors).
- Once you have gathered together all of this information, begin researching fellowship opportunities that you have heard about or are already interested in. If you're starting from scratch, visit the Fellowships section or the Additional Opportunities section of the Office of Fellowships webpage. This will take you to a list of the major fellowships that are supported here at Seattle University and additional opportunities as well. As you read about these opportunities, look closely at the eligibility requirements for each. Look for fellowships that address your goals and interests.
- Use the internet to search for relevant funding opportunities, but beware of internet scams. There are many websites that claim to offer scholarship information for a fee. We recommend that you do not give out your personal or credit card information to websites such as these. Realize that you should be able to find the information you need for free.
- Ask your professors if they know about any fellowships for which you might be qualified. Letting your professors know that you are interested in these kinds of opportunities may also open the door for asking for recommendations later on.
- Finally, visit the Office of Fellowships in Loyola 100! We collect a lot of information about the major fellowships supported here at Seattle University and other opportunities as well. We can help you make informed decisions about which fellowship to apply for.
Why apply for a fellowship?
In light of the fact that most fellowships are highly competitive, many people wonder why they should bother to take the time to apply for one. While it is true that winning a fellowship is a long and sometimes difficult process, here are a few good reasons to apply:
- Going through the application process helps define your interests. Most applications require you to reflect on your past experiences and relate them to your future goals. This can be a highly beneficial exercise, even if you don't win a grant!
- Writing project proposals for fellowship applications is good writing experience. You will find that the style of writing appropriate to fellowship applications is also relevant for graduate school applications, resumes, and grant writing in general.
- For many fellowships, being a finalist or semi-finalist is also a great accomplishment. Being a regional or national finalist for, say, a Truman scholarship looks great on resumes and graduate school applications.
- You can win a fellowship! Perhaps the best reason to apply for a fellowship is that if you don't apply, your chances of winning are zero. The long, arduous application process and daunting reputations associated with fellowships are often the first hurdles that applicants must overcome. If you can see the application process as an end in itself, and not merely a means to winning, then doing the work to apply won't seem nearly as difficult.
What services does the Office of Fellowships provide?
First and foremost, the Office of Fellowships is here to support you in your search for fellowships, grants, and other academic opportunities. We are a clearinghouse for information about the funding opportunities that exist for undergraduate and post-baccalaureate students. We can help you to find a fellowship that fits your interests, experience and goals.
While we are happy to offer guidance in choosing a fellowship, our primary mission is to support you during the application process itself. Here is a list of our major services:
- In conjunction with Seattle University's Writing Center, we offer proposal and autobiographical writing services.
- We will connect you to faculty representatives who advise on specific fellowships.
- We will offer logistical guidance and support throughout the application process.
- Through the use of practice interviews, we will help you prepare for any interviews that may be part of the selection process.
- We will arrange review committees of experienced faculty members to help you revise and fine tune your application.
- Finally, we will help you with the submission of your application to ensure timely delivery.
What's the difference between Fellowships and Additional Opportunities?
The Fellowships section contains fellowships in which The Office of Fellowships provides comprehensive advising services for every year.
Additional Opportunities are the fellowship, scholarship, and internship opportunities that The Office of Fellowships does not regularly work with. However, this does not mean The Office of Fellowships cannot support you. Please review the Additional Opportunities and we can explore how we can support your efforts.
Can you help me if I've already graduated?
Yes. If you are an alumnus of Seattle University, all the services of the Office of Fellowships are available to you. In fact, the majority of the scholarships we support provide funding for individuals who have already earned their undergraduate degree.
Check for the *Alumni Eligible tag in the Fellowships sections and check the eligibility requirements for fellowships in the Additional Opportunities sections.
Where can I find more scholarships?
For more scholarship opportunities:
- Visit Student Financial Services, which has a list of scholarships, or
- Ask your faculty if they know about any opportunities, or
- Search the web for fellowships that will work for you.