University of Wisconsin–Madison



UW-Madison deadline: July 15, 2019
Foundation deadline: September 27, 2019  (5:00 p.m.m Eastern Time)

*If applying as a senior undergraduate, you 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,


Named in honor of former US Senator George Mitchell’s contribution to the Northern Ireland peace process, the Mitchell Scholars Program introduces and connects generations of future American leaders to the island of Ireland. Up to twelve scholarships are awarded each year to American students.


The scholarship provides tuition, accommodations, a living stipend and international travel stipend for one year of postgraduate study in any discipline at a university in Ireland or Northern Ireland.


  • U.S. citizen
  • Between the ages of 18 and 30 years on September 30th of the application year
  • Hold a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution (not necessarily in the U.S.) before the scholarship term begins
  • GPA ≥ 3.8
  • Extensive service and leadership experiences recommended


  • Academic excellence
  • Leadership
  • Commitment to community and public service.

All three areas are equally important, and membership or participation in a long list of extracurricular activities is less convincing than demonstrating a significant, tangible impact on an applicant’s community or school. The scholarship foundation recommends studying the profiles of current and past scholars to learn more about the qualities they seek in a scholar.


To be considered for nomination, senior undergraduates must submit a complete campus application to the UAA Office by the campus deadline (see section below). The campus committee reviews applications and endorses top candidates. Endorsed candidates may revise their application materials before submitting to the national level of competition in September, using the official Mitchell online application. The national selection committee identifies roughly 30 semi-finalists who are interviewed via Skype.  Approximately 20 finalists are then invited to Washington, DC for interviews with the selection committee in late November.


Please submit the following materials by 11:59 p.m. on the campus deadline. Items 2-5 below will be submitted via the online campus application form (link below). Letters of recommendation are to be submitted separately via email to the Undergraduate Academic Awards Office,

  1. Campus Application Form
    You won’t be able to save your work to the online campus application, so plan to fill it out and submit at one sitting. Use a PDF of 2019 campus application as a guide to plan your answers.
  2. Personal Statement (no more than 1,000 words) describing your academic and other interests.  Help the reader understand who you are and how your academic passions and future goals have evolved.  Reflect on and analyze some of the significant activities/experiences that have shaped you. Read over Professor Caroline Levine’s “Advice for Writing a Personal Statement.” (Professor Levine was a Marshall Scholar and serves on the campus nominating committee.)
  3. Proposed Academic Program Essay(s) For each scholarship you check on the application form, write an essay (no more than 500 words each) giving reasons for your first choice academic program and university. How is the academic program a good fit for you? How will the program (as opposed to a top-ranked program in the U.S.) add value to your education and further your educational and career goals? If you want to pursue a research degree (as opposed to a taught master’s), outline the research you wish to undertake and list the name and title of the faculty member who has agreed to work with you if you receive the scholarship. See Researching British Universities.
  4. A “Résumé” or List of principal activities (two pages, no smaller than 11 pt font) Organize to showcase your strengths.  You may want to include sections on education (universities attended, majors, degrees earned); research and publications; academic honors, awards and scholarships; service/volunteerism; employment and internships; other activities/interests.  For each activity you list, be sure to include your title/role, the name of the organization, dates active, and a brief explanation of your involvement/responsibilities.  Emphasize your leadership experiences. Don’t assume the reader will be familiar with UW-Madison or the surrounding community.
  5. Transcripts from all colleges attended (for campus purposes, an unofficial transcript or a copy of your UW-Madison student record is fine, as are photocopies of transcripts from other institutions).
  6. Letters of recommendation (4-8 total) primarily academic. If you are applying for the Rhodes, you must submit at least five letters (four must be from professors who have supervised your coursework or research).  For the Marshall and Mitchell you must submit at least four letters.  If you are applying for nomination to more than one scholarship, your recommenders do not need to submit a separate letter for each scholarship.  For the campus competition, they can submit one “combined” letter, recommending you for all the scholarships for which you are applying. They can address the letter to “Members of the UW-Madison Nominating Committee” and email an electronic copy to, or mail to the address below.  Should you receive university nomination, your recommenders will need to submit a separate letter to each of the scholarship foundations.  Please read over and give your recommenders a copy of Effective Recommendation Letters for UK-Ireland Scholarships.

See the Mitchell Scholarship Website for official information on the Mitchell Scholarship (which supersedes any information provided here).


Researching British Universities
Effective Recommendation Letters
Previous Mitchell Scholars