Selection Process

The Competition Process

Each year, a theme is selected for the Sullivan Leadership Award competition. The theme provides a focus for the readings, speakers and discussions throughout the process and encourages participants to investigate complex issues surrounding the year's topic. 

Admission decisions will be mailed to Sullivan Leadership Award applicants on or before December 22, 2017. Only qualified applicants who are offered Early Action admission to Seattle University will be invited to continue in the Sullivan Leadership Award competition event on January 20, 2018. Students offered Early Action admission have until May 1, 2018, to notify Seattle University whether they wish to accept admission and enroll.

Sullivan Leaders' Day—January 20, 2018

To be eligible for further consideration for the Sullivan Leadership Award, students invited to Sullivan Leaders' Day must come to the Seattle University campus for this event on Saturday, January 20, 2018. Students who are unable to participate in Sullivan Leaders' Day will receive continued consideration for other scholarships, but only applicants in attendance on Leaders' Day will be eligible for the Sullivan Leadership Award. A limited number of transportation grants are available for qualified applicants to attend Leaders' Day. Eligibility requirements can be found at the bottom of this page.

On Sullivan Leaders' Day, all participants will be asked to write a prompted essay in response to the articles selected for the year's theme.  They will also meet with current Sullivan Scholars, tour the campus, attend a panel presentation on the year's theme and participate in small group discussions. Approximately 350 students will participate in Leaders' Day. Students participating in the Sullivan Leaders' Day event should plan to be on campus from 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM.

The Sullivan Selection Committee decisions following Sullivan Leaders' Day will be mailed to all applicants on or before February 12, 2018.

Sullivan Finalists' Day—March 9, 2018

After evaluating the applications and the Leaders' Day essays, the Selection Committee will invite 45 finalists to return to campus on Friday, March 9, 2018, for the final round of the competition. These finalists will give brief oral presentations based on a book that will be provided and will be interviewed by committee members. There will also be a celebratory dinner for the finalists and their guests. Nine students will be selected from this group of finalists to receive the Sullivan Leadership Award. The 45 finalists should plan to be on campus from noon to 9 PM.

The Sullivan Selection Committee decisions following Sullivan Finalists' Day will be mailed to all Finalists in early April 2018. Nine Sullivan Leadership Awards are granted each year.

Travel Grants

A limited number of transportation scholarships are available for qualified applicants to attend Leaders' Day. Eligible students can apply for the travel grant on the Sullivan Leadership Award application. The following criteria are required to be considered for a travel grant to Leaders' Day:

  • Both a completed Common Application and Sullivan Leadership Award Application have been submitted to Seattle University
  • A commitment to participating in Leaders' Day if selected to receive a travel grant.
  • Eligible to receive a Common App fee waiver based on economic need.
  • Unable to participate in Leaders' Day without financial assistance to travel to campus.