University of Illinois

Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship






Applicants Bryan Plummer and Monique Richards describe the eligibility requirements for a Goldwater Scholarship.


One or two year awards to students who demonstrate strong evidence of contributing to the technological advances of the United States. Current junior or exceptional sophomore students who are U.S. citizens, U.S. nationals, or resident aliens are eligible. Applicants should be committed to a PhD in the research fields of mathematics, sciences or engineering.

2 day Goldwater information event:

Thursday Nov. 7th- 3:30-5:00 Information session & discussion w/ former Goldwater Scholar

Friday Nov. 8th- 3:30-5:00 Workshop on how to craft a Goldwater Application

*All sessions held in the Illini Union Bookstore, 5th Floor, room 514*

Who They Are Looking For




Bryan Plummer and Monique Richards describe some characteristics of a competitive Goldwater applicant.


Selectors seek students who demonstrate a strong commitment to a career in math, science, or engineering; display intellectual curiosity and intensity; and possess potential for significant future contributions in their chosen field. It is expected that Goldwater scholars will pursue advanced degrees. Students who plan to study medicine are eligible only if they plan a research career rather than a career as a medical doctor in private practice. Typical fields of study include, but are not limited to, applied science, astronomy, biochemistry, biology, chemistry, computer science, entomology, environmental science, genetics, geology, mathematics, microbiology, neurobiology, physics, zoology, and all fields of engineering. Illinois may nominate up to four students for the Goldwater Scholarship. Read more about recent Illinois Goldwater Scholars.

The Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship provides up to $7,500 per year for undergraduate educational expenses. Sophomores and juniors majoring in mathematics, sciences, and engineering who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents in the upper quarter of their class (typically a minimum 3.5 GPA) are eligible to apply.

Early Review

Students are encouraged to submit drafts of their Goldwater Scholarship applications online well in advance of the campus deadline in order to receive feedback from the National and International Scholarships Program. When submitted, the application comes directly to our office, and we will later release it back to you to make changes. Do not request letters online through the Goldwater system. After submitting the application online, send an email to the scholarships program with your supplemental essay as an attachment, and a few potential meeting times to receive feedback. We are willing to work with students through numerous revisions.

REQUIRED Campus Deadline: December 1, 2014 at 12:00 noon

A complete Goldwater application must be submitted to the National and International Scholarships Program in order to be considered for University of Illinois endorsement (a requirement to move forward in the competition).

Required information:

  1. A signed Scholarship Waiver (either scanned or in hardcopy)
  2. Official transcripts from all colleges attended
  3. 3 Letters of Recommendation - primarily scientific (drafts acceptable). Do not request letters online through the Goldwater system. Instead, have them emailed as attachments by the referee to
  4. A complete application form
  5. An essay of no more than two pages discussing a significant issue or problem in the applicant's field of study (see detailed Goldwater instructions). The essay must be typed with at least 11 point font. The essay will need to be submitted separately with the transcripts and other supporting documents.

Endorsed Applicant Deadline: 28 January 2014

Those students who have been endorsed will submit their final application packet, including updated transcripts with posted fall grades, to the National and International Scholarships Program. By this time, all letters also must be posted online.

Goldwater Website and Application

For official information on the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship, visit their website.