ABOUT US: THE TRUMAN FOUNDATION
The Harry S. Truman Scholarship Foundation – the federal memorial to our thirty-third President – awards merit-based scholarships to college students who plan to pursue careers in government or elsewhere in public service. Truman Scholars receive up to $30,000 for graduate or professional school, participate in leadership development activities, and have special opportunities for internships and employment with the federal government.
THE SCHOLARSHIP: AWARDS AND PROGRAMMING
The Foundation provides:
- Up to $30,000 in support for graduate studies toward a public service-related degree. The Foundation has supported Truman Scholars in many fields of study, including agriculture, biology, engineering, environmental management, physical and social sciences, and technology policy, as well as traditional fields such as economics, education, government, history, international relations, law, political science, public administration, nonprofit management, public health, and public policy;
- Truman Scholars Leadership Week. This event, held at William Jewell College in Liberty, Missouri, introduces new Scholars to the services provided by the Foundation and the many pathways to public service. Scholars participate in seminars and workshops with distinguished Truman alumni and other public service leaders, a policy analysis project, a graduate school and career fair with representatives from the schools and programs most attended by Truman Scholars, and community service events in the Kansas City area. This event is mandatory for all students selected as Truman Scholars;
- Summer Institute. Immediately after college graduation, Scholars have the opportunity to participate in a ten-week long Summer Institute in Washington, DC. The Foundation arranges internships with government agencies and nonprofit organizations, seminars and workshops, meetings with Washington policymakers and Truman alumni, and opportunities for community building among Scholars;
- Truman Fellows Program. After Summer Institute, Scholars may elect to stay on in Washington, DC for a full year in the Truman Fellows Program. Scholars are placed in public service jobs – most with the federal government – while participating in a graduate level public policy course, mentoring opportunities, and a community service program.
Each nominee for the Truman Scholarship must be:
- a full-time junior-level student at a four-year institution pursuing a bachelor’s degree during the 2011-2011 academic year. ‘Junior’ here means a student who plans to continue full-time undergraduate study and who expects to receive a baccalaureate degree between December 2011 and August 2012, or a student in his or her third year of collegiate study who expects to graduate during the 2011-2011 academic year, or a senior-level student who is a resident of Puerto Rico or the Islands as defined below;
- nominated by the Truman Scholarship Faculty Representative at his or her institution;
- in the upper quarter of his or her class; and
- a United States citizen or a United States national from American Samoa or the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands. Resident aliens (green card holders) are not eligible.
- has an extensive record of public and community service;
- has outstanding leadership potential and communication skills; and
- is committed to a career in government or elsewhere in public service, as defined by the Foundation.
In 2011, one scholarship will be available to a qualified resident nominee in each of the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and, considered as a single entity, the Islands: Guam, Virgin Islands, American Samoa, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands. (Residency is generally determined by home address for school registration, family’s primary residence, and voter registration.) The Foundation will select up to 15 at-large Scholars in 2011.
THE NOMINATION PROCEDURE
- The Institution of Higher Education. Candidates must first be nominated by the Truman Faculty Representative at their institution. Each accredited four-year institution may nominate up to four students for the 2011 awards. Four-year institutions may also nominate three additional students who completed their first two years at a community college. Institutions may nominate candidates who are participating in junior year abroad programs. Participation by Two-Year institutions. Two-year institutions may nominate up to four former students who, by February 1, 2011, will be enrolled as full-time students with junior-level academic standing at accredited four-year institutions.
- The Truman Faculty Representative. The president of each participating institution appoints a Truman Faculty Representative who establishes a process to select the institution’s nominees. Candidates typically undergo an on-campus selection process to become one of the institution’s nominees. Faculty Representatives also help nominees prepare for the competition and submit the nomination materials to the Foundation by the specified deadline via our online application process. Interested persons should visit www.truman.gov to find a Faculty Representatives at a particular institution or to obtain guidance on establishing a Faculty Representative at an institution.
- The application and nomination materials. Once a Faculty Representative has decided to nominate a student, he or she must login to the Foundation website and submit a Nomination Form. The candidate will then receive an email from the Foundation with the instructions on how to access the online application. In the meantime, candidates may use the sample application on the website as a guide.
The complete applicaton must be received by February 1, 2011.
THE SELECTION PROCESS
- The Finalist Selection Committee. A committee examines all nominations and selects about 200 Finalists to be interviewed for Truman Scholarships. Finalists are selected on the basis of:
- extent and quality of community service and government involvement;
- leadership record;
- academic performance, writing and analytical skills; and
- suitability of the nominee’s proposed program of study for a career in public service.
- The Regional Review Panels. Regional selection panels interview Finalists in March and select Truman Scholars largely on the basis of:
- leadership potential and communication skills;
- intellectual strength and analytical ability; and
- likelihood of ‘making a difference’ in public service.
SCHOLARSHIP CONDITIONS AND ACCOUNTABILITY
The award may be used only for tuition, fees, books, room and board, or other specifically approved expenses. Payments from the Foundation may be received to supplement, but not to duplicate, benefits from the educational institution or from other foundations, institutions, or organizations. The combined benefits from all sources may not exceed the costs of tuition, fees, books, and room and board as prescribed by the institution.
Scholars may defer, for up to four years, Foundation support for their graduate studies after completion of their undergraduate studies. Scholars in graduate study programs supported by other means and Scholars in the Armed Forces may request additional years of deferral.
Scholars are required to work in public service for three of the seven years following completion of a Foundation funded graduate degree program as a condition of receiving funding. Scholars who are not employed in public service for a total of three years, or who fail to provide proof to the Foundation of such employment, will be required to repay any funds received along with interest. The Foundation will have an appeals process for those Scholars in special circumstances.
The Foundation may withhold or terminate a scholarship due to unsatisfactory academic performance or failure as judged by the Foundation to pursue preparation specifically for a career in public service.