Goldwater Scholarship: Important and Helpful FAQs

Even though the cost of higher education continues to rise sharply each year, the establishment of generous organizations such as the Goldwater Foundation is definitely a boon. Through its noble programs, it offers an unlimited Goldwater Scholarship to deserving students each year.

Goldwater Scholarship
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And, while 2021 may still be a difficult year for all of us, that hasn’t stopped the Goldwater Foundation from continuing to share.

Instead, the Goldwater Scholarship Foundation looks forward during its 2021 competition to selecting students who have the potential to become tomorrow’s research leaders.

In fact, the Foundation understands these are unusual and difficult times. Therefore, it plans to be as flexible as possible in its 2021 nomination review.

However, before you proceed any further, shall you read the following list of FAQs to broaden your understanding of the Goldwater Scholarship?

What is the Goldwater Scholarship?

Barry Goldwater Scholarship or simply the Goldwater Scholarship is a scholarship that Congress launched in 1986. Additionally, Congress established the scholarship together with the Excellence in Education Foundation in the same year.

In fact, by designing the scheme, Congress aimed to present it as a living memorial. Specifically, it was a tribute to honor the lifelong work of Senator Barry Goldwater.

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In reality, Senator Barry Goldwater has served his country for 56 years as both a soldier and a statesman. Interestingly, his service includes 30 years in the United States Senate as well.

Actually, the Congress awards these scholarships to college juniors and sophomores who aim to pursue research careers in specific fields, including:

  • Natural Sciences,
  • Mathematics, and
  • Engineering.

In particular, Goldwater Foundation aspires to help ensure that the United States is producing a number of high-quality professionals. What’s more, these professionals are what the state needs in those critical areas.

Fascinatingly, during its more than 30-year history, Congress has awarded Goldwater Scholarships to thousands of scholars. Specifically, most of these scholars also actively snatched other opportunities after winning the Goldwater Scholarship.

For starters, they also won topnotch awards such as:

  1. National Science Foundation’s Graduate Fellowship,
  2. Rhodes Scholarships,
  3. Churchill Scholarship, and
  4. National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship

Fortunately, these schemes are very supportive of the work of the graduate schools of the Goldwater Scholarship recipients.

And today, you can find Goldwater alumni carrying out research that helps protect the country, finding cures for catastrophic diseases, and teaching future generations of scientists, mathematicians, and engineers.

Who are eligible for the scheme?

First of all, you should know in advance that to become a Goldwater Scholarship candidate, someone must nominate you for the position.

Specifically, US 2- and 4-year accredited academic institutions that have appointed a Goldwater Campus Representative (GCR) with the Goldwater Foundation may nominate up to four students per year.

Meanwhile, a four-year school may nominate a fifth student if one or more of the shortlisted candidates is a transfer student.

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Then, to be eligible for nomination for the Goldwater Scholarship, you must:

  • Be a full-time matriculated sophomore or junior pursuing a degree at an accredited 2- or 4-year institution of higher education during the 2020-2021 academic year,
  • Intend to pursue a research career in natural science, mathematics, or engineering,
  • Have a college grade point average of at least a 3.00 on a 4.00 scale, and
  • Be a U.S. citizen from the 50 states or the District of Columbia; a U.S. national for those students nominated by institutions in Puerto Rico, Guam, Virgin Islands, American Samoa, and Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands; or a permanent resident. (A permanent resident must submit a photocopy of their Permanent Resident Card, also known as the Green Card.)

What fields of study are available to choose from under the Goldwater Scholarship?

  1. Chemistry
  2. Computer and Information Sciences and Engineering
  3. Geosciences
  4. Life Sciences
  5. Materials Research
  6. Mathematical Sciences
  7. Medicine
  8. Physics & Astronomy
  9. Psychology

What benefits will the Scholars receive?

Generally, each Goldwater Scholar receives an amount equivalent to tuition fees, mandatory fees, books, and room and board per year. However, this does not include the amount of support provided by other sources up to a maximum of $ 7,500.

Scholars who receive grants as sophomores can expect to receive support for a maximum of two years or until graduation, if earlier. Nevertheless, it will be a maximum of one year or until graduation (if earlier) for Scholars who receive grants as juniors.

When is the nomination deadline for candidates?

Please upload all nomination materials to the Goldwater Foundation’s online nomination website before the last Friday in January at 5 pm Central Time. Specifically, the materials for this nomination include:

  • Student Questionnaire,
  • Research Essay,
  • Three Letters of Recommendation,
  • Transcripts,
  • Institutional Nomination Form, and
  • Student’s Permanent Resident Card (if applicable).
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Also, please note that the committee will not review incomplete or late nominations.

How do I nominate candidates?

To nominate your student as a candidate for the Goldwater Scholarship, follow these guidelines.

1. Review the eligibility requirements.

And make sure that you fulfill them all. If you believe that you are not competitive enough for that, do not rush to count yourself out without first consulting your GCR.

2. Identify your school’s Goldwater Campus Representative.

In fact, you can identify your school’s GCR by going to the Campus Representative Locator.

However, if you cannot find your school on the list, please call the Goldwater Help Center at 507-931-8335. Alternatively, you can also contact them by email at

3. Complete a Student Profile and Pre-Application and contact your Goldwater Campus Representative.

Firstly, complete the Student Profile and Goldwater Scholarship Pre-Application here.

When submitted, your student profile and pre-application are emailed to your campus’s GCR. If you do not hear from your CR in a reasonable period of time, contact your CR at the email address or telephone number provided in the Campus Representative Locator.

If you are unable to contact this person, call or email the Goldwater Help Center.

4. Complete the Online Goldwater Application.

In particular, the online application has several components, including:

  • Online questionnaire,
  • Research essay,
  • Three letters of recommendation,
  • Transcripts, and
  • A copy of your Permanent Resident Card (for a Permanent Resident).

5. Nomination.

Finally, you must upload the names and full set of application materials for students to the Goldwater nomination website. This can only be done by the Campus Representative of your institution.

Most importantly, make sure to upload all of them before the application deadline or by the last Friday in January at 5 pm.

Typically, Campus Representatives have a final campus deadline where they must have the final materials for the nominees. Therefore, you may want to check with your Campus Representative in advance.

Where can I get additional resources as a recommender?

To assist your students to nail their application forms, you should also read the following guides:

  1. Letter Format and Submission Requirements
  2. Letter Writing Guidance – Recommenders

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