Harry S. Truman Scholarship Program
Established by Congress in 1975, the Harry S. Truman Scholarship Foundation awards scholarships to college juniors (at the time of application) who have outstanding leadership potential and intend to pursue careers in public service. In 2012, one or more scholarships 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.
Brown can nominate four candidates for this scholarship each year. Juniors planning a career that has a public service component and who are United States citizens or United States nationals from American Samoa or the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands are eligible to apply. Criteria for selection are a strong desire to be a “change agent,” outstanding potential for leadership, and academic performance. The candidates are judged on the basis of analytical ability, leadership, communications skills, independence, initiative, sensitivity to others, demonstrated interest in government and/or community service, prospects of performing well in graduate school, and commitment to a career in public service. A variety of disciplines can lead to public service careers; for example, engineering, mathematics, physical sciences, biology, and environmental studies, as well as traditional fields such as history, political science, government, public health, public administration, economics, and international relations. Authentic leadership and commitment to making a difference as well as an imaginative approach to conceiving of these things are desirable qualities for students interested in this award.
$30,000: $3,000 for the senior year and $27,000 for graduate study ($9,000 per year depending on the length of the scholar’s graduate degree program for up to three years). In addition to funding, the Truman involves a leadership week and a summer institute both of which give Truman scholars a chance to explore pressing policy and public service concerns as well develop connections and learn from each other.
Brown holds an internal competition to determine our nominees. A complete application is due by the campus deadline. We require one copy of the following:
- A completed application form; the form can be downloaded from the Truman site; note: for the campus competition, students use the sample application.
- Full answers to all of the essay questions that are part of the Truman application including a policy memo.
- Three letters of recommendation. One must be written by a Brown faculty member familiar with the applicant’s academic abilities and prospects for success in graduate school; another must be written by someone who can discuss the applicant’s commitment to a career in public service; and the third will come from someone who can attest to the applicant’s leadership abilities and can speak directly about the leadership example the applicant uses in question 7. Please have letters addressed to Linda Dunleavy, Associate Dean of the College for Fellowships.
- Official Brown University transcript as well as an official transcript from any other school attended for post-secondary studies.
All application materials (except for the official transcript) can be sent electronically to Linda_Sutherland@brown.edu, delivered to University Hall Suite 213 or sent to:
Fellowship Program Coordinator
Box 1828, Brown University
Providence, RI 02912
After reviewing the applications, Brown’s Truman committee will contact about 8 finalists for the 4 nominations and invite them to interview.
- Susan Yue, '12
- David Poritz, '12
- Ariel Charlotte Werner, '09
- Caitlin Elizabeth Whelan, '08