The Marshall Scholarship seeks to support students who have achieved academic and intellectual excellence by enabling them to pursue graduate studies at a university in the United Kingdom. The scholarship was created in 1953 by the British govenment, and is meant to serve as a gift to the United States of America for its post-World War II Recovery Plan, known as the Marshall Plan.
Each scholarship includes:
- A personal allowance for residence and cost of living
- Tuition fees
- Grants for books, travel in connection with studies, and other miscellaneous expenses
- Travel to and from the United States
According to the Marshall Commission, the objective of the Marshall Scholarship is to:
- To enable intellectually distinguished young Americans, their country's future leaders, to study in the UK.
- To help Scholars gain an understanding and appreciation of contemporary Britain.
- To contribute to the advancement of knowledge in science, technology, the humanities and social sciences and the creative arts at Britain's centres of academic excellence.
- To motivate Scholars to act as ambassadors from the USA to the UK and vice versa throughout their lives thus strengthening British American understanding.
- To promote the personal and academic fulfilment of each Scholar.
At least forty Marshall Scholarships are awarded each year. They may be held at any British university and cover two years of study in any discipline, usually at the graduate level. The scholarship covers all tuitions and fees; it also provides a monthly stipend and some funds for travels and books. The Marshall Commission maintains a very useful website, and interested students should familiarize themselves with the "Rules for Candidates," the "Memorandum of Guidance," and the various resources about British universities and academic programs.
The Marshall Scholarship has four basic conditions of eligibility:
- U.S. citizenship (at the time of application)
- Must apply within two years of graduating from their undergraduate program and take up award within three years of graduating from college in the United States
- Cumulative grade point average of 3.7 or above
- Must NOT be studying for or hold a British university degree
Candidates for the Marshall Scholarship should demonstrate "distinction of intellect and character," as well as "strong motivation and seriousness of purpose." Both in their academic work and other activities, strong Marshall applicants will show evidence of the potential to be leaders in society. Finally, a strong Marshall application will offer a well thought-out rationale for the proposed academic program.
Internal stage: Prospective applicants must register at the Marshall Scholarship Homepage in order to access the online application. In this first stage, you submit your application electronically to the Office of Fellowships, Opportunities, and Undergraduate Research (50 University Heights, suite 017; 656-4658) before the UVM deadline as listed on the fellowships page. This application includes the following elements:
- A 3-page application form, including a section asking about "personal interests and non-academic activities" and a "brief statement of future career aims."
- Personal statement of not more than 1000 words describing your "academic and other interests and pursuits."
- A description (not more than 500 words) of your "proposed academic programme, giving reasons for your choice of course and preferred university."
- A description (not more than 500 words) of what "'the USA-UK special relationship' means. Describe how you might strengthen ties between the USA and the UK in your field of study and through your extra-curricular activities, whilst in the UK and upon your return to the US."
- Four letters of recommendation.
- An official transcript.
On the basis of that application and interview, the Committee will prepare an official letter of support for your application for nominees. You will also receive some feedback on your application and have a short time period in which to revise materials for your final application. The better and more polished your initial application; the likelier you are to have a strong interview, a strong letter of support, and the strongest possible final application.
External stage: Revised application must be submitted to FOUR two days prior to the external deadline as listed on the fellowships page.
After The Application is Submitted
Candidates selected for interview will be notified by early November. They must take a printed and signed copy of their application and four passport-size photos to their interviews. The final selection will be announced shortly after the interview. Successful applicants will be offered a scholarship in writing, and will be asked to accept or decline this offer, also in writing, within 12 days of receiving it.