Ronald Reagan College Leaders Scholarship Program

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Frequently Asked Questions

Who is eligible to receive a scholarship under this program?

This program is limited to undergraduate degree candidates at accredited, 4-year degree-granting institutions in the United States or its possessions who have successfully completed their first (or freshman) year and have begun their second (or sophomore) year of study. Students may apply for a scholarship to be made available at the start of the third (or junior) year of study. Winners may apply for renewal for the fourth (senior) year of study. Students in their third (i.e., junior) year may apply for a one-time scholarship for the senior year. Students at two-year schools may apply as juniors for a one-time award for the senior year upon transfer to a four-year institution. Applicants also must be citizens of the United States.

Sophomores are preferred under this program. The overall reason is so that the Foundation can "adopt" proven rising stars for the second half of their college careers, helping enable them to invest more in achieving leadership success as activists, academically and in extracurricular initiatives.

NOTE: This program is limited to college undergraduates. It is not available to freshmen, graduate students, students enrolled in online schools, or students about to begin their senior year of college except those receiving a renewal, and awards cannot be carried over to post-graduate studies. Awards under this program may not be used to subsidize study abroad. This program is also not open to high school students. Students currently enrolled at two-year colleges may apply if they will be enrolled at a four-year school by the application deadline.

What is the purpose of the Ronald Reagan College Leaders Scholarship Program?

The trustees of The Phillips Foundation voted to establish this program to recognize outstanding young Americans who are making a difference at their college or university and in their community as leaders of their peers and, ultimately, in the nation as leaders in activities promoting the cause of freedom, American values, and constitutional principles. It seeks especially campus activists who are in the forefront of the battle against "political correctness" and ideological conformity on campus. It is intended to help alleviate the financial burdens associated with higher education so that awardees will have more time and be better able to successfully pursue both their extracurricular leadership activities on behalf of these ideals and their academic goals.

How do I apply for a Ronald Reagan College Leaders Scholarship Program Award?

Download an application and additional information or contact The Phillips Foundation at the address below to request an application form and prospectus if you are unable to print the form. All applicants must include with their submissions:

  • A Dean's or Registrar's certification of enrollment in good standing,
  • A short written narrative highlighting personal background and scope of activities consistent with promotion of the ideals for which the award has been established,
  • Supporting documentation (newspaper articles, tapes, letters, etc.) providing evidence of leadership activities, and
  • At least two letters of recommendation or reference.

We strongly encourage you to type your form, or at least to print clearly and neatly to make sure we do not misread your information because it is illegible. Please try to limit your submission package to no more than 25 pages. Also, please note that enrollment verification is not the same as a transcript. You may include a transcript with your materials, but proof of enrollment is required.

What is the timetable on applications?

The application deadline is January 15, 2013, meaning that your application must be postmarked on or before that date or, if using a delivery service (UPS, Federal Express, etc.) show clearly that delivery was contracted for on or before that date. It does not mean your application has to reach us by that date -- simply that it must be on its way by then. The Trustees intend to select the award winners in March and written notification of the results is made in late March or early April. Checks will be issued in August or September to coincide with the beginning of the next academic term.

How are award winners chosen?

A selection committee of The Phillips Foundation will review all applications. The Phillips Foundation may, at its discretion and expense, invite applicants to appear for a personal interview prior to approving an award. A vote of the Trustees will ratify the choices for Ronald Reagan College Leaders Scholarship Program awards. Among other benchmarks, the Trustees look for exceptional leadership accomplishments in combating "political correctness," evidence of a good understanding of the principles of the American Founding, and evidence of success in the classroom as well as in extracurricular leadership initiatives.

How much is the scholarship?

A one-year scholarship shall be in the maximum amount of $10,000, although the Trustees reserve the right to make awards in lesser amounts. Taxes, if any, shall be the responsibility of the scholarship winner. While it is anticipated that at least two awards will be made each year, the Foundation reserves the right to make no award or multiple awards in a given year depending on the quality of the applications received. See our Press Releases link for a history of the number and amounts of scholarships awarded in previous academic years.

Anything else I should know before applying?

Just remember the key requirements: the scholarship becomes available for the junior year and winners may apply for a renewal to cover the senior year, you must be a full-time student at a four-year school and a U.S. citizen, and you need to show evidence of leadership and activism. Check out the biographies of previous winners to get an idea of the types of students who have had success with us. Please avoid using binders, report covers, etc. If your application is successful, multiple copies will be made. Binders make this much more difficult. Be sure to carefully review all the information at this site, supply all requested information, and make sure your application and accompanying materials are submitted by the deadline. In your essay, the Trustees will give special consideration to your description of the political or ideological climate at your school and what you are doing to address it.

The Phillips Foundation
1 Massachusetts Avenue, NW, Suite 620
Washington, DC 20001
Attn.: Jeff Hollingsworth
Tel. 202-250-3887 ext. 628