Presidential Scholarship, University of Iowa, USA

Publish Date: Oct 05, 2015

Deadline: Dec 21, 2015

Presidential Scholarship, University of Iowa

The Presidential Scholarship at the University of Iowa

Since the Presidential Scholarship was established in 1979, the University of Iowa has honored our most promising young scholars with our highest levels of funding, recognition, and community.

Each year up to twenty scholars are chosen to receive funding for up to four years or until the completion of the student’s bachelor’s degree (whichever comes first). The amount of each Presidential Scholarship is determined by the scholar’s residency status. These totals are outlined below:

  • Iowa residents: Up to $74,000 (up to $18,500 a year up to four years)
  • Nonresidents: Up to $80,000 (up to $20,000 a year up to four years)
  • International Students: $40,000 ($10,000 a year up to four years)

In addition to the scholarship, each student has access to a spectrum of distinctive activities designed to foster extraordinary intellectual, professional, and personal growth, including:

To be eligible for the Presidential Scholarship, individuals must:

  • apply to and be admitted to the University of Iowa,
  • earn at least a 3.80 high school GPA (on a 4.00 scale); and
  • achieve a minimum ACT composite score of 30 or a combined SAT critical reading and math score of at least 1330.

The Presidential Scholarship is awarded on the basis of an individual’s demonstrated record of:

  • intellectual curiosity,
  • exceptional academic ability,
  • integrity in scholarship, service, and leadership,
  • commitment to community, and
  • respect for difference.

Wondering what we mean by “integrity in scholarship? Not sure what “respect for difference” is in the context of this competition?

  • Click here to find out more about our selection criteria.

Contact on campus:

Prospective students or admitted applicants may contact the University of Iowa Honors Program at with questions or concerns.

Iowa residents: Up to $18,500 a year; Non-residents: Up to $20,000 a year; and International students: $10,000 per year. Renewable for an additional three years or until you receive your bachelor’s degree (whichever comes first).
ScopesOffice of Admissions, Honors Program

Supplemental Questions

  1. You have the opportunity to share a list of up to 10 of the most meaningful extracurricular activities you were engaged in from ninth grade to the present.

    Examples of extracurricular activities may include, but are not limited to the following pursuits:

    • Paid employment
    • Experiential learning- research, internships, apprenticeships, or specialized training (ROTC)
    • Athletics - HS, intramural and club teams
    • Performance - musical, theatrical or physical performance
    • Production/Publishing - local/school radio, television, newspaper, literary journal, yearbook
    • Competitive Speech - speech or debate team, Mock Trial, or Model UN
    • Volunteerism – service to your school, church, or local communities through student or area clubs, honor societies, non-profit organizations, hospital work, student government, electoral politics, advocacy on behalf of others or an idea/belief
    • Creative Arts/DIY – creative writing, fashion design, sewing/quilting, furniture construction, software/app design, cooking/baking, podcast creation, etc.

      Remember! Be sure to use the space available to include details about leadership roles, major events or initiatives, or specific projects that distinguish your experience. If you choose to list activities like “National Honor Society” or “Fellowship of Christian Athletes,” remember that each high school chapter of organizations like these chooses their own priorities and projects. Please provide information on how important the experience was for you or how much of an impact you made on the group’s success.
      • 1. Name of Activity or Organization:
      • 2. Dates Active (MM/YY to MM/YY):
      • 3. Hours Participated per week:
      • 4. Leadership Roles or Special Recognitions:
      • 5. Brief Description of Activity:
    • Respond to two of the three questions offered below. Your responses for each question should not exceed 350 words.

1. Everyone belongs to a community of some sort. As a member of your family, your class, your team, your neighborhood, or some other group, you will share some experiences with some, but not others. Tell us about a time where your connection to your community was strengthened by its differences instead of its similarities.

2. Share a story about yourself that provides some insight into the kind of person you are. For example, the story can relate a personal experience; an unusual test of character; your involvement in volunteer work or a humorous anecdote.

3. Describe a time you were able to do something better after a difficult start because of your connection to another person or group of people.

  • 1. First Answer
  • 2. Second Answer


Respond to the question posed below. Your response should not exceed 750 words.

Tell us about an idea you find fascinating. How has it changed you? You might choose a scientific theory, a piece of creative work, a social movement, a political dynamic, an ethical dilemma or a category that is not represented here. Any idea is on the table with this prompt. Just remember that whatever you choose to explore, you must help your readers understand both the concept and its' impact on your intellectual life.

Please upload your official transcript file in one of the following formats: Microsoft Word (.doc or .docx), Adobe (.pdf).

Please Note: Filename can only contain the following characters: a-z, A-Z, 0-9, ., _ (underscore), or - (dash)

We understand that any uploaded transcript is considered unofficial. For the purposes of our selection process, having the applicant upload the transcript file does not impact the legitimacy of the document.

Do not ask your high school to send a transcript to the University of Iowa in support of your scholarship application. Rather, we require that you upload the transcript document into the Iowa Scholarship Portal yourself. We ask that you save the file with the following identifying information in the title: First Name, Last Name, Phone Number (ex. John Doe 319-123-1234).

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