An applicant for the Churchill Scholarship must be a citizen of the United States, either native born or naturalized, and must be a senior who is enrolled in one of the institutions participating in the Scholarship Program or a student who has graduated from one of those institutions within the past 12 months. Upon taking up the Churchill Scholarship, a Churchill Scholar must hold a bachelor’s degree or an equivalent, and may not have attained a doctorate.

Please see a list of Programs of Study eligible for the Churchill Scholarship.


  • 12 noon on June 19, 2020: Mandatory Pre-Application Form due
  • 12 noon on October 5, 2020: On-campus deadline
  • November 2, 2020, 5pm Eastern Time: Official deadline (materials due at Churchill Foundation)


The Churchill Scholarship provides funding to American students for a year of Master’s study in science, mathematics, and engineering at the University of Cambridge, based at Churchill College. The Scholarship was set up at the request of Sir Winston Churchill in order to fulfill his vision of US-UK scientific exchange with the goal of advancing science and technology on both sides of the Atlantic, helping to ensure our future prosperity and security. For more information, please see the scholarship website.


At least fourteen Churchill Scholarships are offered annually. The Scholarship is tenable from nine to twelve months, in accordance with the academic program, and covers all University and College fees, plus a living allowance (amount dependent upon length of program). Please see the scholarship awards webpage for more information.

Application Process

First, thoroughly read the application instructions on the official Churchill website. Give particular attention to the requirements for the letters of recommendation. Be sure you meet the earliest October deadline for admission to Cambridge University (this is usually the Gates Cambridge Scholarship deadline), as application to Cambridge is a prerequisite for the Churchill application. 

Applicants must submit a Churchill Pre-Application Form by 12 noon on Friday, June 19, 2020.

You are expected to work on the application independently over the summer but it is strongly recommended that you seek guidance from Marynel Ryan Van Zee, Director of Student Fellowships, and your faculty advisor(s) or recommenders.

By Monday, October 5, 2020, at 12 noon, please hit ‘submit’ in the on-line application system.  Marynel will be able to return your application to you for further revision, should you be selected as a Carleton nominee and asked to continue polishing your materials. 

Letters of recommendation, which must include the cover sheet that you will have provided to your recommenders, are due to fellowships@carleton.edu by the same deadline

For application materials, visit the official website.

Selection Procedure

Carleton may nominate two candidates from among the applicants and a Carleton committee conducts a review of applications to determine which candidate(s) will receive the college’s nomination. Director of Student Fellowships Marynel Ryan Van Zee handles the submission process for all application materials.

If you are chosen as a Carleton nominee, you will receive additional instructions and assistance with the application.

The Churchill Foundation Screening Committee evaluates the applications and endorses those considered most qualified for a scholarship. Applicants are notified in January whether or not they have been endorsed by the Screening Committee.

Selection Criteria

Outstanding academic achievement, especially in the major, as indicated by course grades. The Foundation does not require a minimum GPA, but recent Churchill Scholars have had a GPA of at least 3.7 and usually 3.9 or above.

Proven talent in research and a capacity to contribute to the advancement of knowledge in the sciences, engineering, or mathematics by pursuing original, creative work at an advanced level as demonstrated by awards, prizes, research, and letters of recommendation. Applicants in the sciences and engineering will demonstrate extensive laboratory experience, internships, or other related work, while applicants in mathematics will show substantial independent work or other projects.  A very large number of Churchill nominees have won either the Goldwater Scholarship or received honorable mention in that competition.

Outstanding personal qualities. Understanding the time commitment required by research, the Churchill Foundation does not seek so-called “well rounded” applicants; instead, it seeks applicants with what we call interesting “jagged edges.” Nonetheless, it should be noted that successful applicants display a bewildering array of talents activities outside of academic pursuits, especially in music, athletics, social service, among other activities.

The Winston Churchill Foundation of the United States is committed to a policy against discrimination based on sex, sexual orientation, gender, marital or parental status, race, color, religion, national origin, or disability or any other characteristic protected by law.

For more information, please see the official Criteria for Selection page. Other Conditions also apply.

On-Campus Contact

Marynel Ryan Van Zee, Director of Student Fellowships, Laird 131, x4300/mryanvanzee.

Recent Carleton Recipients

2013 – Tom Callister ’13

2012 – Michael Coughlin ’12
Media: Pioneer Press article, 3/4/12