Promising Scholar Award


ProcessNomination DeadlineNotification by
Round 1February 2, 2022 | 3PM PSTFebruary 10, 2022
Round 2February 23, 2022 | 3PM PSTMarch 3, 2022


The purpose of the Promising Scholar Award is to recruit highly qualified incoming graduate students from diverse backgrounds who add to the academic and scholarly excellence of the university.

The award is administered by the Division of Graduate Studies in partnership with programs, schools and colleges, the Office of the Vice President for Research & Innovation, the Division of Equity and Inclusion, and the Office of the Provost to leverage our collective resources in support of our shared goals to increase the number of outstanding UO graduate students of diverse backgrounds and experiences.

Please download the Promising Scholars Award guidelines.

2021-2022 Promising Scholars

Fifty-nine prospective graduate students were awarded this prestigious award for the 2021-2022 academic year.

Award Details

Benefits to Students

  • $6,000 top off stipend
  • GE support, or comparable funding, for 2 years of study
  • Invitation to participate in the Graduate School's fall awards reception
  • Quarterly socials and professional development opportunities

Finances of Award

Top Off Stipend

$6,000 stipend from the Division of Graduate Studies, distributed to the student in one of several options detailed on the application. 

  • In three installments (i.e., $2,000 in three consecutive terms) in the student’s first year in the program
  • Provided at once in a single term (e.g., the first fall term to defray the cost of relocating)
  • As a single summer research or travel award/supplement
  • Divided in half and provided during the summer after their first and second years as a research or travel award/supplement

GE Support or Comparable Funding

Awardees receive at least two years of GE support or comparable funding from their program. The GE support must be at a minimum .40 FTE appointment, or the typical FTE in the department, if higher. GE support could be a teaching, research or administrative appointment and it is the department's responsibility to secure this funding. 

Eligibility and Criteria

The following criteria will be considered as part of the evaluation process:

  1. Students with strong academic promise that have been offered admission.
  2. Underrepresented populations, such as:
    • Female-identifying students pursuing degrees in STEM fields
    • Economically disadvantaged students
    • Underrepresented racial/ethnic minorities
    • Students with disabilities
    • First-generation students
  3. Students pursuing doctoral degrees, including in those programs that initially classify their doctoral students as master’s students.
    • However, students seeking admittance into master’s programs in fields where doctoral degrees are not offered will also be considered.
  4. Programs are also welcome to nominate international students.

Consideration of Multiple Nominations and Number of Awards

Programs can nominate up to 6 admitted applicants per round, who must be ranked in order of preferred consideration. Any nominee not selected for funding in the first round may be resubmitted again for consideration in the second round.

We encourage programs to keep their recruit apprised of their award status via a notification such as: “You’ve been nominated for a prestigious Division of Gradute Studies award. We will alert you as soon as a decision about that nomination has been communicated to us.”

Awards are not transferable to other admitted students to same program.

If, after April 15 (the earliest date by which prospective students may be required to decide upon funded offers), awards remain uncommitted as a result of students’ declining the award, a new deadline will be set and additional nominations will be reviewed with as quick a turnaround as possible.

Nomination Instructions

Click here to view detailed instructions.

For questions about the submission process or funding components, contact the Division of Graduate Studies.