Distinguished Scholarships

Distinguished scholarships are nationally competitive awards. A good application for a distinguished scholarship requires planning, multiple drafts, and consultation with advisors. Finalists often travel for in-person interviews with the scholarship committee.

The work is definitely worth it, as many distinguished scholarships will cover complete tuition costs for study abroad, graduate school, and other opportunities.

Meet Clark Honors College students who are recent distinguished scholarship winners!

Resources & Support

Getting started earlier is better! There are resources available at the Clark Honors College and the University of Oregon to help determine which distinguished scholarships are the right fit for you, and to help you prepare your application. Many scholarships require a preliminary application at the university level, with earlier deadlines than for the national award. Be sure to check with the Office of Distinguished Scholarships for the most current information.

Finding the Right Fit

Distinguished scholarships listed below have different application deadlines throughout the academic year, so visit Office of Distinguished Scholarships website for up-to-date information.You can also use the below links to filter results based on your area of interest:

Winston Churchill Foundation

Churchill Scholarships offer American students of exceptional ability enrolled at one of the institutions participating in the program the opportunity to pursue graduate studies in engineering, mathematics, and the sciences at Cambridge. The scholarships also provide the opportunity to experience life in Britain, to forge friendships with British students and those from other countries who are enrolled at Cambridge, to see something of Europe and lands beyond, to see the United States from a new perspective, and to gain personal insights about oneself that come from living abroad and adjusting to new customs and challenges. Award covers all Cambridge University fees and tuition, plus living and travel expenses, for a total value of $48,000 to $50,000.

Eligibility: Must be a U.S. citizen, either native born or naturalized


The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) is a publicly funded independent orgranization of higher education institutions in Germany. The DAAD supports more than 100,000 German and international students and researchers around the globe each year. It also promotes internationalization efforts at German universities, helps developing countries build their own systems of higher education, and supports German Studies and German language programs abroad.

Eligibility: Depending on your individual situation, you may have to apply either from your country of residence or from your country of origin.


The Fulbright program promotes mutual understanding among nations through educational and cultural exchange. Students study, research, engage in creative arts practice, intern in public policy, study contemporary music and document their research in multimedia formats, or teach English and U.S. American culture in more than 150 countries. Awards are for graduating seniors, current graduate students, and alumni. Alumni are eligible to apply through the UO for up to three years beyond graduation, unless you have subsequently matriculated at another US university. Please note that all currently enrolled students (as of the fall term in which the deadline falls) must apply through the UO by the internal deadline, and that all items are due at this date.

Eligibility: Applicants must be U.S. citizens at the time of application. Permanent residents are not eligible.


The Mitchell Scholars Program, named to honor former US Senator George Mitchell’s pivotal contribution to the Northern Ireland peace process, is designed to introduce and connect generations of future American leaders to Ireland, while recognizing and fostering intellectual achievement, leadership, and a commitment to public service and community. Up to 12 Mitchell scholars who may be seniors, alumni, and graduate students no older than 30, are chosen annually for one year of postgraduate study in any discipline offered by institutions of higher learning in Ireland and Northern Ireland. Award covers tuition, housing, a $12,000 living expenses stipend, and international travel.

Eligibility: Must be a U.S. citizen

Rangel International Affairs Program

The Rangel Program is a collaborative effort between Howard University and the US State Department that seeks to attract and prepare outstanding young people for careers as diplomats in the Foreign Service of the US Department of State. The Program encourages the application of members of minority groups historically under-represented in the Foreign Service and those with financial need. There are two major components to the Rangel Program: an International Affairs Graduate Fellowship Program that provides support for graduate school, professional development, and entry into the US Foreign Service, and an undergraduate International Affairs Summer Enrichment Program that provides undergraduates with the opportunity to enhance their skills, knowledge, and understanding about US foreign policy.

Eligibility: Must be a U.S. citizen


Rhodes Scholarships, the oldest international fellowships, bring outstanding students from many countries around the world to the University of Oxford. The first American Scholars were elected in 1904. Rhodes Scholars are elected for two years of study at the University of Oxford, United Kingdom.

Eligibility: Must be a U.S. citizen or a lawful permanent resident of the United States continuously for the five years prior to the application deadline.


The Gilman Scholarship Program offers awards for undergraduate study abroad and was established by the International Academic Opportunity Act of 2000. This scholarship provides awards for US undergraduate students who are receiving Federal Pell Grant funding at a two-year or four-year college or university to participate in study abroad programs worldwide.

Eligibility: Must be a U.S. citizen


For juniors and seniors who plan to be scientists, mathematicians, or engineers. Awards can cover the junior and senior years or just the senior year. Recipients receive up to $7,500 annually to help cover tuition, fees, books, and room and board.

Critical Language Scholarships

The CLS Program is a program of the US Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. It is a fully funded overseas language program for American undergraduate and graduate students. With the goal of broadening the base of Americans studying and mastering critical languages and to build relationships between the people of the United States and other countries, CLS provides study opportunities to a diverse range of students from across the United States at every level of language learning.

Eligibility: Must be a U.S. citizen. Non-citizens, including permanent residents, are not eligible, even if they anticipate naturalization by the beginning of the program.

Paul and Daisy Soros Fellowships for New Americans

These fellowships provide opportunities for continuing generations of able and accomplished new Americans to achieve leadership in their chosen fields. The fellowships are grants for up to two years of graduate study in the United States.

Eligibility: Green card holder or naturalized citizen, if born abroad; a child of naturalized citizens, if born in the United States


The Truman Scholarship seeks juniors with leadership potential who are committed to careers in public service and are interested in graduate study. Students must have a record of campus and community service, outstanding communication skills, and a strong academic record. Recipients receive up to $30,000 for graduate studies in the United States or abroad that are related to public service. The scholarship also includes a week of leadership training and an optional summer institute. Truman Scholars are required to work in public service for three of the seven years following completion of their graduate degrees.

Eligibility: Must be a U.S. citizen, except for persons from the Pacific Islands who are eligible only if they are U.S. nationals or permanent residents of the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands. Resident aliens (green card holders) are not eligible. Students in the process of being awarded U.S. citizenship will need to become citizens prior to the date of the award (usually in late May of the year of selection).

James C. Gaither Junior Fellows Program (fomerly Carnegie Junior Fellows)

Each year the endowment offers 8–10 one-year fellowships to uniquely qualified graduating seniors and those who have graduated during the past academic year. They are selected from a pool of nominees from close to 400 participating colleges. James C. Gaither Junior Fellows work as research assistants to the endowment's senior associates.


The Hollings Scholarship Program provides successful undergraduate applicants with awards that include academic assistance (up to $8,000 per year) for full-time study during the 9-month academic year; a 10-week, full-time internship position ($650/week) during the summer at a NOAA facility; and, if reappointed, academic assistance (up to $8,000) for full-time study during a second 9-month academic year. The internship between the first and second years of the award provides the scholars with hands-on, practical educational training experience in NOAA-related science, research, technology, policy, management, and education activities. Awards also include travel funds to attend a mandatory Hollings Scholarship Program orientation, conferences where students present a paper or poster, and a housing subsidy for scholars who do not reside at home during the summer internship.

Eligibility: Must be a U.S. citizen

RISE (Research Internship in Science and Engineering)

RISE is a summer internship program for undergraduate students from the United States, Canada, and the UK in the fields of biology, chemistry, physics, earth sciences, and engineering. It offers unique opportunities for undergraduate students to work with research groups at universities and top research institutions across Germany for a period of two to three months during the summer. RISE interns are matched with doctoral students whom they assist and who serve as their mentors.

Eligibility: Must be currently enrolled at a university or college in the United States, Canada or the UK as a full-time student in the field of biology, chemistry, physics, earth sciences or engineering (or a closely related field)


Boren scholarships provide unique funding opportunities for US students to add an important international and language component to their educations. Boren awards focus on geographic areas, languages, and fields of study critical to US interests and under-represented in study abroad.

Eligibility: Must be a U.S. citizen at the time of application


For juniors and seniors (including those in the fourth year of a five-year track) from a variety of fields who have demonstrated a commitment to environmental or natural resource issues through a combination of coursework, research, internships, jobs, or extracurricular activities. American Indian or Alaska Native students are also eligible for fields related to native health care or tribal policy. Recipients get up to $7,000 for tuition, room and board, or other educational expenses.

Eligibility: U.S. citizen, U.S. national, or U.S. permanent resident

Rotary Peace Fellowships

Awards for completion of a master's degree program in international affairs, peace studies, or a related field at one of seven designated universities around the world. Note that a bachelor's degree and three years (or the equivalent) of full-time "paid or unpaid relevant work experience" are required at the time that the award begins. Please see the Rotary website and contact the local (or your home district) Rotary Club for assistance.  

Gates Cambridge

Gates Cambridge Scholarships are full-cost awards for graduate study and research in any subject available at the University of Cambridge. The scholarships are highly competitive and are awarded to citizens of any country outside of the United Kingdom on the basis of the candidate's academic excellence, a good fit between the scholar and the university, evidence of leadership potential, and a commitment to improving the lives of others.


Marshall Scholarships finance young Americans of high ability to study for a degree in the United Kingdom. Up to 40 scholars are selected each year to study at the graduate level at a UK institution in any field of study. The scholarship allows the scholars, who are the potential leaders, opinion-formers, and decision-makers in their own countries, to gain an understanding and appreciation of British values and the British way of life. It also establishes long-lasting ties between the peoples of Britain and the United States. Each scholarship is held for two years. Award covers university fees, tuition, books, a thesis grant, research, and daily travel, plus fares to and from the United States.

Eligibility: Must be a U.S. citizen at the time of application