UW-Madison deadline: February 26, 2024
Foundation deadline: March 29, 2024 (4:00 p.m. CT)

*Candidates must be nominated by UW–Madison and may not apply directly. Students interested in applying should contact the Undergraduate Academic Awards Office for more information about the application process. Contact: 608-265-2428,


The Beinecke Scholarship Program was established in 1971 to provide scholarships for the graduate education of young men and women of exceptional promise. Eligibility is limited to students planning to pursue a a research-focused master’s or doctoral program in the arts, humanities and social sciences. Approximately 20 scholarships are awarded each year.


Each scholar receives $5,000 immediately before entering graduate school and an additional $30,000 while attending any accredited graduate school. Recipients are allowed to supplement the scholarship with other awards, and must utilize all of the funding within five years of completion of undergraduate studies.


To be eligible for a Beinecke Scholarship, a student must:

  • Be a college junior who is enrolled full-time and expects to graduate between December 2024 and August 2025
  • Be a United States citizen or a United States national from American Samoa or the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands
  • Plan to enter a research-based or creative graduate program in the arts, humanities, or social sciences (NOT: JD, MD, MPH, MPP, MBA, MAT, etc.)
  • Have a documented history of receiving (or being eligible to receive) need-based financial aid during undergraduate years


  • Clarity of research/creative focus (including undergraduate research experience or creative work)
  • Evidence of academic success and relevant academic background
  • Knowledge and fit of proposed graduate programs
  • Quality and breadth of recommendation letters
  • Financial need, with preference given to candidates for whom the awarding of a Beinecke Scholarship would significantly increase the likelihood of the student’s being able to attend graduate school


  • Submit a complete campus application to the UAA Office by the campus deadline (see section below).
  • The campus nomination committee reviews applications and selects one nominee to compete nationally.
  • The nominee may revise their application materials before the national deadline in mid- to late February.
  • Scholars are announced in May.


Please submit the following materials via email by 4:30 p.m. on the campus deadline to the Undergraduate Academic Awards Office,

  • Application Form.  Please download and complete.
  • Personal Statement of 1,000 words or less describing your research or creative interests for graduate study and career aspirations beyond these studies. It should also include a discussion of the most relevant academic, professional, extracurricular, and personal experiences that have influenced or shaped your interests and plans. (Sample essays are available at this BOX link.)
  • Résumé listing research experience, internships, honors/awards/publications, community service, and work experience.  Please also include a section listing the names, titles and email addresses of the three individuals writing letters of recommendation on your behalf.
  • Transcript(s) from all colleges attended (for the campus competition an unofficial transcript or a copy of your UW-Madison student record is fine, as are photocopies of transcripts from other institutions).
  • Financial Aid Data Sheet. Please download and complete.
  • Three Letters of Recommendation from professors.  Letters should assess your intellectual curiosity, character and potential for advanced graduate study. Please ask your recommenders to email letters to The letters must be received by the campus due date.
  • Artist’s Supplement, if you plan to pursue an MFA degree. Creative writing samples should be submitted as a separate PDF, while a hyperlink to a folder containing visual work should be provided at the top of the personal statement.
    • Creative writers: a maximum of five pages of double-spaced text, though playwrights, poets, and screenwriters should submit the text in the format appropriate to the genre (i.e., not double-spaced, if inappropriate).
    • Visual artists (except filmmakers): a digital portfolio containing up to ten images of current work, with an image resolution of at least 300 dpi.
    • Performing artists (including filmmakers): video sample(s) no longer than five minutes in total.


For official information on the Beinecke Scholarship (which supersedes any information provided here), please see the Beinecke Foundation website.


Beinecke Scholarship Webinar December 9, 2021
Previous Beinecke Scholars