The application for Fall 2022 will open in September. Check back for updates.
Today’s Georgia State Presidential Scholars are tomorrow’s leaders and innovators. They are committed to performing significant work in their chosen fields—profit or nonprofit, industry, media, government, education, health care, art, science or technology. Presidential Scholars imagine a different world for themselves and others; one in which they use their passion and integrity to set positive examples for others and drive solutions to today’s most pressing social and economic problems. They engage in the Honors College, the broader Georgia State community and the world, excelling academically in and out of the classroom, contributing to the college and university through service and leadership, and learning about the history and future of Atlanta and the world through internships and study abroad. Presidential Scholars achieve beyond their dreams, obtaining admission to professional and graduate schools, winning national scholarships and fellowships, and moving on to exciting careers and accomplishments throughout their lifetime.
Presidential Scholars receive the following benefits each semester for eight semesters:
- Cost of tuition and fees (through HOPE/ZELL for GA residents)
- Cost of mandatory student fees
- Cost of housing
- A yearly living expense stipend
- A one-time $2,500 stipend for credit-bearing study abroad expenses
- Opportunity to compete for a paid University Assistantship to explore research and engaging work experience in an academic department
- Access to individualized classes and mentoring opportunities
This award totals up to about $32,000 per year depending on in/out-of-state student status and University Assistantship participation.
To be considered for this highly competitive scholarship you must:
- Apply to Georgia State University by the priority deadline of November 15, 2021.
- Be an incoming first-year student, planning to attend Georgia State for the first time in Fall 2022. Current Georgia State students are ineligible.
- Submit your complete Presidential Scholarship application by 11:59pm EST on November 15, 2021.
- Ask your recommender to submit their Letter of Recommendation by 11:59pm EST on November 22, 2021.
- Attend Scholarship Day interviews, if selected as a finalist. Scholarship Day will be on March 4, 2022. In-person attendance is required pending public health advisories. International finalists will have the opportunity to attend virtually in early March. Those invited to participate in Scholarship Day will receive details and instructions by mid-February.
For questions regarding the Presidential Scholarship, please contact the Honors College at PresidentialScholars@gsu.edu.
If you want to learn more about the Presidential Scholarship program and how you can strengthen your application, register for one of our free, virtual information sessions. We’ll discuss what makes the Honors College distinct, what the Presidential Scholarship offers top students, and tips for making your application more competitive. Current Presidential Scholars also will be in attendance to answer your questions.
Don’t miss out! Information sessions are on Wednesday, Oct. 6, and Thursday, Oct. 14 at 5:30 p.m. Eastern.
I'm a current student at Georgia State, or I attend another university and am planning to transfer to Georgia State. Am I still eligible to apply for the Presidential Scholarship?
I'm a dual-enrollment student. Am I still eligible to apply for the Presidential Scholarship?
I'm in high school, but I'm not yet a senior. Am I eligible to apply for the Presidential Scholarship?
Only high school seniors who are also applying to Georgia State for the upcoming fall semester are eligible to apply. However, you may submit this contact form asking us to notify you when the application cycle, during which you would be eligible to apply, has opened.
I'm a graduate student. Am I eligible to apply for the Presidential Scholarship?
I took a gap year before applying to Georgia State. Am I still eligible to apply for the Presidential Scholarship?
I was home-schooled. Am I eligible to apply for the Presidential Scholarship?
Do I need to be a U.S. citizen to apply?
Is there a minimum GPA required to apply for the Presidential Scholarship?
Is there a minimum SAT or ACT score required to apply for the Presidential Scholarship?
However, SAT/ACT scores are required for admission to Georgia State University. To be considered for the Presidential Scholarship, you must submit an application to Georgia State by the November 15, 2021 priority deadline.
When should I apply?
We encourage you to spend as much time on your application as possible, improving and perfecting it. Early application submission will not enhance your chances of receiving the scholarship.
However, we also encourage you to avoid waiting until the last minute to submit your application. If you wait until the deadline, a variety of scenarios could prevent you from submitting your application on time—Internet connectivity problems, power outages, miscalculating the Eastern Time Zone. We’ve seen it.
Late submissions will not be accepted under any circumstances.
What kind of information are you looking for in my essays?
The best essays are also the ones that make the most of the 300 words they are given. An essay that is few sentences long and leaves hundreds of words unused is not going to be as competitive as an essay that uses all the space to make the case for why they are the best candidate. At the same time, you don’t want to fill your essays with fluff. Make them impactful, meaningful, and full of substance. This can take time to cultivate which is why it’s best to revise your essay’s multiple times.
Where should I write and save my essay drafts?
Saving essays drafts to your computer hard drive or a USB drive can be risky. If those devices fail, are lost or become damaged, you will have to rewrite your essays.
Late submissions will not be accepted under any circumstances.
May I have a teacher provide feedback on my essays?
Whom should I select to write my letter of recommendation?
Letters from family members will not be accepted.
How do I ask for a letter of recommendation?
Ask them if they feel comfortable writing you a strong letter of recommendation.
Give them enough time to write you a strong, thoughtful, detailed letter—four weeks is optimal—and provide them with any materials they may need to complete it, such as your resume, application essay drafts, list of accomplishments, etc. Make sure to provide them with information about Georgia State and the Presidential Scholarship.
Once they submit your letter, write them a thank you note. Regardless of whether you receive the scholarship, they took time to help you pursue your goal.
My recommender has not received the email request to submit my Presidential Scholarship recommendation letter via the online application system. What do I do?
Ensure that your recommender has checked their junk or spam folder. Sometimes important things go there.
Ensure that you have properly typed the correct email address when requesting a recommendation from them. If no errors can be found, contact PresidentialScholars@gsu.edu, and include your name, your recommender’s name and email address, and a description of the issue in the body of the email.
5 Tips for Applying from a Presidential Scholar
- Do not leave this for the last moment! You do not want to rush this, considering that it is a long application. You also don’t want to run into any technical problems right as the application is about to close.
- Don’t overthink this. Do NOT answer with what you THINK the school wants to hear. Don’t treat this like a test that you have to study for, like you can research all the right answers. That will make your application look just like everyone else’s.
- Think about what makes you unique. When you consider which topics to write about, focus on the things that make you unique. If you have a unique cultural lifestyle or religion, focus on how that has shaped you. What extracurriculars do you do that are true to you and how have they impacted your views and goals? These are the questions you should be asking. So it’s old advice, but it’s true. Be yourself and just show passion for whatever it is that you care about.
- Pay attention to tone. Maintain a professional tone, but at the same time, let your personality and voice influence your style. Write like YOU, not like a language arts robot.
- Think carefully about your letter of recommendation. Another big part of the application is your recommendation letter. Be careful in who you select to ask for this favor. Make sure it’s someone who knows you well, who has seen you display passion and leadership and can testify to it. And especially remember, this IS a favor that someone is doing for you. Ask them kindly and with gratitude, and preferably in person, not over email. Once the letter has been written, follow up with a hand-written thank you card. Believe me, it goes a long way.
What is Scholarship Day?
Candidates invited to participate in Scholarship Day will receive details and instructions about the event by mid-February. In-person attendance at Scholarship Day is mandatory to be considered for the Presidential Scholarship pending public health advisories. International students will have the opportunity to attend virtually in early March.
When will I find out if I've been invited to Scholarship Day?
I have a prior obligation at the same time as Scholarship Day. If invited, may I request an alternate date to interview?
I attended Scholarship Day. How soon will I find out whether I've been selected for the Presidential Scholarship?
5 Tips for Scholarship Day from a Presidential Scholar
- Do some research before Scholarship Day. So, you’ve been selected as a semi-finalist and will have an interview on Scholarship Day. You’re probably nervous. It’s ok to do a little research, but not the kind you think. Besides, you don’t even know what the questions are going to be. What you should figure out is what excites you about Georgia State, and what you would love to do there. Find out if there are any opportunities that you want to explore. This “research,” should be fun and make you excited, which is what interviewers want to see—not scripted answers.
- Practice your interview technique. You can meet with a friend who has an interview of some sort and the two of you can practice giving each other tips on soft skills. Pay attention to things like hand shakes, steady voice, confidence and enthusiasm. Try to avoid saying “um” and “like” and practice good posture. Kindly correct and help each other. Believe me, having practiced what you do with your hands and how to sit will make the big day less stressful when it comes.
- Choose your outfit. When you pick what to wear for Scholarship Day, make sure it’s professional, of course. But it’s equally important that whatever outfit you pick, you look like you and you feel like you. Be comfortable in your own skin, and be confident in who you are. Let your clothes help you with that.
- Keep your focus. Answering interview questions is pretty similar to answering your essay prompts on the application. Focus on your unique attributes and your passions and express genuine excitement. Use your personality to your benefit. They will notice the way you answer more than the perfect and careful selection of your words. It’s totally normal to be nervous, but remember that everyone else is in the same boat.
- Relax and rest. Once it’s over, it’s over. Please don’t torture yourself about all the things you should have said or what you should have done. I know it can be really, really hard, but try and think about something else the next three weeks. You can write a thank you note to your interviewers, which I would recommend, but beyond that, it is out of your hands. And for those of you wondering, no, I didn’t exactly follow my own advice for this one. I was definitely a nervous wreck. But it’s easier to tell others to do it than do it myself.
How have Presidential Scholars excelled at Georgia State?
Removing the financial burden of college expenses has allowed our scholars to focus on and expand their academics and extracurricular experiences and opportunities.
How many students are in the Presidential Scholarship program?
What is required of Presidential Scholars?
All Presidential Scholars are required to maintain a 3.5 GPA, full-time status (12 credit hours or more) and attend the yearly Founders Lecture, Induction & Welcome Ceremony, and other Honors College events. They are also required to meet yearly with Interim Dean Dr. Sarah Cook.
Are Presidential Scholars required to live on campus?
Can Centennial Merit Scholarships be applied on top of the Presidential Scholarship?
Are there opportunities for other scholarships within the Presidential Scholarship program?
The Honors College also offers scholarship opportunities specifically to honors students every year. There is also a Scholarship Resource Center on campus to help you apply for Georgia State scholarships.