Frequently Asked Questions

How many nominations can one school submit?

We highly recommend that each school limit their nominations to no more than four students. We recognize that there are many excellent students within each educational institution, but we ask that schools be selective in their nominations keeping in mind that the Presidential Scholarship is a highly selective process. In the 2014-2015 competition, over 1000 applications were received for the Presidential Scholarship.

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What attributes and qualities is the selection committee looking for in a Presidential Scholar?

Each Presidential Scholar is talented and unique, contributing to the University community both in and outside the classroom in diverse ways. Some common characteristics of Presidential Scholars are a love of learning and a commitment to enhancing their local community as well as the broader civic community. The Presidential Scholarship Committee seeks to attract academic, culture, and civic leaders who are actively engaged in learning both through the classroom and in their extracurricular activities. There is no GPA requirement.

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How is financial need taken into consideration for the Presidential Scholarship?

The Presidential Scholarship Selection Committee is sensitive to the financial needs of the Presidential Scholarship applicants and will take into consideration demonstrated financial need when making final decisions on the awards. However, award decisions are comprised of multiple factors including: demonstrated academic performance, active participation in their school and the broader civic community, leadership, civic engagement, creativity, expertise in a particular field, and ability to respond effectively to adversity. The Presidential Scholarship Selection Committee takes a holistic approach to understanding students within their contexts and looks at multiple criteria in making a final award decision.

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If a student does not receive the Presidential Scholarship but is a finalist, is he/she eligible for other awards?

We recognize that Presidential Scholarship finalists are exceptional, talented students. Presidential Scholarship finalists (those who are invited to participate in the interview process) are offered the highest of our partial scholarships ($12,500/yr) and can be considered, if eligible, for other scholarships and awards through the University’s Office of Financial Assistance. Students are encouraged to complete the process of applying for need-based financial aid since nearly 80% of the University's financial aid budget is awarded primarily on the basis of need.

Please note: The Presidential Scholarship and the Villanova Scholarship are two different and distinct separate scholarship processes.  If you are offered an interview for both, we strongly suggest that you consider taking advantage of both opportunities.

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What are the commitments of a Presidential Scholar?

Although Presidential Scholars naturally choose to commit themselves to multiple academic and extracurricular activities, the University provides support and guidance for Presidential Scholars to help them reach their utmost potential. Presidential Scholars are provided with academic advising from the Director of the University Honors Program and are expected to participate in the University Honors Program to an extent that is appropriate to their course of study. Furthermore, Presidential Scholars are involved in cultural, intellectual, and service activities throughout the academic year. Additional guidance and support are provided by the Center for Undergraduate Research and Fellowships and the Center for Multicultural Affairs.

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How is the Presidential Scholarship renewed?

Presidential Scholars are expected to maintain current standing on the Dean’s List as defined by their respective colleges and adhere and uphold the values and traditions of the University. Presidential Scholarships are renewed annually. If a student does not make the Dean’s List in any given semester, he/she will most likely be placed on probation the following semester. Final decisions regarding the renewal of scholarships are made by the Co-Chairs of the Presidential Scholarship Committee.

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What is myNOVA and its relationship to the Presidential Scholarship?

The myNOVA Prospective Student Portal allows prospective students to receive personalized information about Villanova and is a great way to learn more about Villanova’s academic programs and campus life. Prospective students who are nominated for the Presidential Scholarship will be able to access the Presidential Scholarship application through the myNOVA Prospective Student Portal and will receive notifications about their status in regards to the Presidential Scholarship through this portal. To receive information regarding full time undergraduate admissions information and to join the myNova Prospective Student Portal please go to: and provide your contact information.

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Why does the application ask if students would like to be considered for the Presidential Scholarship for historically underrepresented students?

Each year, the University awards a number of Presidential Scholarships to historically underrepresented students who have demonstrated leadership in their ability to make significant academic and social contributions to their school and communities. The University is committed to diversity within the classroom and campus climate and believes that learning is best achieved through sharing diverse perspectives and ideas. The Presidential Scholarship for historically underrepresented students is one way the University upholds its commitment to providing an excellent education to all of its students.  In addition, students who identify as historically underrepresented are reviewed by their College committee and the Underrepresented Scholarship Committee.

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What constitutes historically underrepresented students?

We ask Presidential Scholarship applicants to self-identify as historically underrepresented students. In general, students who are African American/Black, Latino/Hispanic, American Indian/Native Alaskan, Asian/Pacific Islander or are the first in their family to pursue a college education or who come from a low income family (normally Pell Grant eligible), would be considered to be historically underrepresented.

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Important Information

The deadline to be nominated for the Presidential Scholarship is at 11:59pm (PST) on December 1, 2015.

The Presidential Scholarship Application will close at 11:59pm (PST) on January 2, 2016.

All inquiries may be directed to our office via email or by phone at 610-519-8803.

Further Information
For more information regarding the Presidential Scholarship Program, visit the following web sites: Center for Undergraduate Research and Fellowships and The Center for Multicultural Affairs. For more information regarding the Program’s particular commitment to enrolling Underrepresented Students, contact the Center for Multicultural Affairs at 610-519-4075.

Important Dates

December 1, 2015
* Nomination form must be received by the Center for Undergraduate Research and Fellowships.

* Application for admission must be received in the Office University Admission for Presidential Scholarship consideration.

January 2, 2016 
Deadline for submission of all Presidential Scholarship application materials (online). The Presidential Scholarship Application will close at 11:59pm PST on January 2, 2016.

Week of January 25, 2016
Notification of finalists

February 14-16 2016
Presidential Scholarship Interview Program

Week of February 29 2016
Notification of awardees

May 1, 2016