Top University of Washington Scholarships for New Students

The University of Washington (UW) offers scholarships in everything, starting from academic pursuits and research activities to community service and musical talents. The good news about these University of Washington scholarships is that every student, including freshman and transfer student, is considered for some scholarship programs automatically as part of his or her admission or financial aid applications. Below, we’ve put together a list of University of Washington scholarships specifically for ScholarshipStory readers. We also provide relevant information that will help you decide which one is the best fit for you.

University of Washington Scholarships
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1. Presidential Scholarship

The Presidential Scholarship is a $10,000 award given to selected Washington residents who show exceptional leadership, community engagement, and promise. It’s one of the most prestigious and competitive University of Washington scholarships renewable for up to four years. Washington residents are considered automatically with their application to the UW.

However, students do not apply for the scholarship. As previously mentioned, they are considered automatically when they apply to the UW in Seattle. Thus, the scholarship is open to all Washington residents. As participants in the program, Presidential Scholars (recipients of UW’s Presidential Scholarships) will be expected to:

  • Attend the Presidential Scholars orientation;
  • Create a personal leadership development plan;
  • Enroll in at least 12 credits per quarter at the UW’s Seattle campus;
  • Meet regularly as a cohort with the Husky Leadership Initiative; and
  • Pursue a minor in leadership or participate in the Husky Leadership Certificate program.
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If you are interested in learning more about the Presidential Scholarship, please contact Philip Ballinger at, Tomitha Blake at, Lolie Farinas at, or Francesca Lo at

2. Purple & Gold Scholarship

The Purple & Gold Scholarship is awarded to U.S. students who are not residents of Washington state. These include U.S. citizens, permanent residents, refugees, and undocumented residents. Amounts vary by recipient, are given for four years and may be used only for the Seattle campus. Unfortunately, students admitted to UW Academy are not eligible for the Purple & Gold Scholarship.

Selection, by the Office of Admissions, is predominately academic but also incorporates activities, achievements, leadership, and socio-economic factors. The scholarship, which is not need-based, is renewable for four years as long as the recipient maintains good academic standing.

All admitted U.S. non-resident applicants are automatically considered for the Purple & Gold Scholarship based on their admission application. In other words, no other application is required, including the FAFSA.

3. UW Diversity Scholarship

The UW Diversity Scholarship is one of the generous University of Washington scholarships specifically for freshmen. It is privately supported by the charitable contributions of many individuals, organizations, and local business, including Costco and Boeing. The program awards $10,000 per year for four years to high-achieving high-need students who are entering the UW as freshmen from communities that are traditionally underserved in education.

The following factors may be considered in the selection process:

  • Academic record (curriculum, grades)
  • Financial need, as evidenced from the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or Washington Application for State Financial Aid (WASFA)
  • Part of an underserved group such as youth in foster care, historically underrepresented minority students, and students who are the first in their family to pursue a college degree
  • Personal background and community service
  • Residency in the state of Washington
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Students whose admission applications indicate that they may meet the scholarship criteria will be reviewed automatically. To be considered, students are encouraged to file the FAFSA/WAFSA.

4. Army ROTC Tuition Scholarship

The Army Reserve Officer’s Training Corps Scholarship is a merit-based scholarship offered to UW students who are eligible and desire to serve in the U.S. military as a commissioned officer. A student can apply for a full tuition (no cap) or room and board scholarship (up to $10,000 a year) to UW. Additionally, cadets receive a monthly stipend of $420 month ($3,780 per year) and a quarterly book allowance of $400.

These are the minimum eligibility requirements to apply:

  • Recipients must be U.S. Citizens
  • Between the ages of 17-30 years’ old
  • Have high moral character
  • Be medically qualified
  • Enrolled as a full time student and in ROTC Military Science courses
  • Pass a physical fitness test
  • Be in good academic standing with a minimum 2.5 GPA to apply
  • Accept an appointment as a commissioned officer upon graduation

Then, scholarship winners must serve for four years either on active duty or in the U.S. Army Reserves or Army National Guard. All who graduate and complete ROTC training are commissioned as Second Lieutenants in the U.S. Army. For additional information, please contact Lisa Pirak at

5. Martin Family Foundation Scholarship Programs

These programs are part of the University of Washington scholarships for transfer students. Basically, the Martin Family Foundation supports the Martin Achievement Scholarship and the Martin Family Foundation Honors Scholarship. Both are designed to enable exceptional students of Washington community colleges to complete their bachelor’s degrees on the UW’s Seattle campus.

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For students selected, the Martin Achievement Scholarships provide $5,000 toward the final year at their community college. The recipients are expected to be enrolled full-time throughout that final year at their community college, and apply for transfer admission to UW in Seattle by the admission deadline.

On contrary, the Martin Honors Scholarships provide $12,000 per year for up to three years for student selected to receive the scholarship, and admitted to UW Seattle. The recipients are expected to be enrolled full-time throughout the regular academic year, including fall, winter, and spring quarters.

Learn more about these University of Washington scholarships by contacting the Office of Merit Scholarships, Fellowships & Awards at

6. Washington Space Grant Consortium

The Washington NASA Space Grant Community College Transfer Scholarships are awarded to promising community college students planning to transfer to the UW to continue their studies in science, technology, engineering, or math (STEM). These competitive scholarships are open to accomplished high school seniors, Running Start students, and Early Entrance students. Applicants must be U.S. citizens and Washington state residents.

Awards are based on high school academic achievement, standardized test scores, personal essays, recommendations, and future academic promise. UW Space Grant scholarships range from $2,000 to $5,000. Scholarships are awarded for one year at a time. Scholarship recipients may apply for award renewal for up to three years, depending on availability of funding. Candidates for renewal must be enrolled in an eligible major, earn a cumulative GPA of 3.3 or better, and maintain program requirements for their majors.

For more information, please contact

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