Beinecke Scholarship

Support graduate study in the humanities and social sciences at the masters or doctoral level. Professional programs are ineligible.

The Beinecke Scholarship: At a Glance


  • U.S. citizens and nationals
  • Third-year students
  • Intent to pursue a research-based degree (PhD) in the arts, humanities or social sciences
  • Documented history of receiving need-based financial aid

Selection Criteria: 

  • Superior academic achievement
  • Ability to formulate innovative research questions
  • Potential to contribute to chosen field
  • Potential for success beyond post-graduate training

Candidates for the Beinecke can affirm the following: 

  • I have a GPA of 3.7 or higher
  • I have conducted research and completed advanced coursework in my field
  • I can articulate a vision for my future scholarship
  • Prior coursework and research experiences substantiate my ability to pursue my research agenda in graduate school
  • I can secure three strong letters of recommendation from full-time faculty

Extensive Description

The Beinecke Scholarship provides assistance to third-year students who plan to attend graduate school in the arts, humanities and social sciences at the doctoral level. The funding (total package of $35,000) is designed to encourage scholars, "to be courageous in the selection of a graduate course of study." Founded in 1971, the Beinecke Scholarship has funded more than 650 college juniors. Participating universities are able to nominate one student to the national competition.

Scholars receive $5,000 prior to entering graduate school and an annual stipend of $15,000 for two years of graduate study.

Read about Madeline Ouimet, UChicago's 2021 Beinecke Scholar.
Read about Eyshe Beirich, UChicago's 2022 Beinecke Scholar.
Read about Amanda Chacón, UChicago's 2023 Beinecke Scholar.

Deadline Information

Campus Application Draft 1 Deadline: Monday, November 27, 2023

Final Application Deadline: Monday, December 11, 2023

National Deadline: Friday, March 29, 2024


  • A scholar must be attending an accredited graduate school as a full-time student in good academic standing in order to receive funding.
  • A scholar must utilize all funding within five years of graduation.
  • A scholar is allowed to take a one-year leave of absence immediately following graduation, but is normally expected to enter graduate school and begin receipt of the Beinecke funding in the following year. Extenuating circumstances are considered.
  • A scholar who is unsuccessful in gaining admission to graduate school may petition the program director for permission to defer funding for an additional year.


Eligibility Requirements


  • At the time of application, applicants must be a college third-year pursuing a bachelor’s degree expecting to graduate in the following academic year.
  • Applicants must plan to enter a master’s or doctoral program in the arts, humanities, or social sciences. Students in the social sciences who plan to pursue graduate study in neuroscience should not apply for a Beinecke Scholarship.
  • Applicants must be a United States citizen or a United States national from American Samoa or the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.
  • Applicants must have a documented history of receiving need-based financial aid during his or her undergraduate years. Primary evidence of meeting this criterion is a student’s history of receiving need-based institutional, state or federal grants-in-aid.

Selection Criteria:

  • Applicants must have demonstrated superior standards of intellectual ability, scholastic achievement and personal promise during their undergraduate career.
  • This scholarship considers both academic merit and need-based criteria.

Application Process

Students must be nominated by the University of Chicago to apply for this award. The University may nominate one student to move forward to the National Competition.

In order to be nominated by the University, students must submit a first draft of their personal statement by 11:59 pm on November 27, 2023, the Campus Application Draft 1 Deadline, to Arthur Salvo ( Following the first draft, full applications must be submitted via the Beinecke Campus Application. The Final Application Deadline is 11:59 pm on December 11, 2023, and includes the following:

  • A completed Application Form.
  • A current resume.
  • A personal statement of 1,000 words or less from the nominee describing his or her background, interests, plans for graduate study and career aspirations. The statement should include a discussion of some experiences and ideas that have shaped those interests, plans and aspirations.
  • Three letters of recommendation from faculty members that assess the nominee’s intellectual curiosity, character and potential for advanced graduate study.
  • Transcripts (unofficial are OK).
  • Supplementary materials (up to 5 pages in length) for students who plan to pursue an MFA
  • Submit all these materials via the Beinecke Campus Application Platform HERE
For more information on this opportunity, please contact: 
Arthur Salvo