Each Beinecke Scholar receives $4,000 immediately prior to entering graduate school and an additional $30,000 while attending graduate school. There are no geographic restrictions on the use of the scholarship, and recipients are allowed to supplement the award with other scholarships, assistantships and research grants. Scholars are encouraged to begin graduated study as soon as possible following graduation from college, and must utilize all of the funding within five years of completion of undergraduate studies. Historically, the Beinecke selection committee favored students planning to attend graduate school in the traditional liberal arts disciplines, but also made awards to students planning to attend graduate school in mathematics and the natural sciences. In 1998, the board of The Sperry Fund decided to limit eligibility for the award to students planning to attend graduate school in the arts, humanities and social sciences.
Conditions of Eligibility
To be eligible for a Beinecke Scholarship, a student must:
- Have demonstrated superior standards of intellectual ability, scholastic achievement and personal promise during his or her undergraduate career.
- Be a college junior pursuing a bachelor's degree during the 2012-2013academic year. "Junior" means a student who plans to continue full-time undergraduate study and who expects to receive a baccalaureate degree between December 2013 and August 2014.
- Plan to enter a master's or doctoral program in the arts, humanities or social sciences. Students in the social sciences who plan to pursue graduate study in neuroscience should not apply for a Beinecke Scholarship.
- Be a United States citizen or a United States national from American Samoa or the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.
- Have a documented history of receiving need-based financial aid during his or her undergraduate years. Primary evidence of meeting this criterion is a student's history of receiving need-based institutional, state or federal grants-in-aid. An institutional financial aid officer will be required to complete a Financial Data Sheet certifying that the student meets this criterion. The amount or level of financial need demonstrated by the student will be one of the factors considered during the selection process, and preference is given to candidates for whom the awarding of a scholarship would increase the likelihood of the student's being able to attend graduate school. If you received merit-based scholarships or awards (such as a Trustee Honor Scholarship) that replaced need-based aid, then you may also be eligible.
The on-campus deadline for applications for Grinnell's nomination for the Beinecke Scholarship is 5:00pm on Tuesday, January 22, 2013. Grinnell may nominate one student for this award. The final deadline for the nominee's application to the Beinecke Foundation is February 22, 2013. Completed applications should be submitted to Doug Cutchins, director of social commitment, 1233 Park St. Because the CRSSJ (1233 Park St.), which houses the Office of Social Commitment, is inaccessible to students with mobility disabilities, please contat soccom[at]grinnell[dot]edu if you would like to make alternative plans to submit your application materials.
Elements of Application
Students interested in applying for Grinnell's nomination for the Beinecke Scholarship should submit the following materials before the deadline stated above:
- Scholarship Nomination Permission Form and Waiver
- A completed appliation form
- A completed Financial Aid data sheet, completed in collaboration with (and signed by) Grinnell's Financial Aid office.
- Current resume
- A personal statement of 1,000 words or less describing your background, interests, plans for graduate study and career aspirations. The statement should include a discussion of some experiences and ideas that have shaped those interests, plans and aspirations.
- Three letters of recommendation from faculty members that assess the nominee's intellectual curiosity, character and potential for advanced graduate study.
- An unofficial copy of your transcript.
For the on-campus nomination process, please ensure all application documents comply with these submission guidelines. Applicants should also review this Advice on writing personal statements, and Advice from Joe Schall on writing personal statements.
All applicants are expected to adhere to these ethical guidelines.
Grinnell College nominees who have won the Beinecke Scholarship are:
- Sarah J. Purcell (1991)
- Jonathan C. Edel (1998)
- Rachel L. Melis (2000)
- Ilana Meltzer (2004)
- Holly Lutwitze (2007)
- Mateo Jarquin (2012)