Presidential Scholarship FAQ
The "Presidential" is the most prestigious scholarship awarded by our university and includes a full tuition waiver as well as a generous stipend renewable for four years. As many as 24 Presidential Scholarships may be awarded. Finalists who do not receive the Presidential Scholarship will be considered for the Provost Scholarship, which also includes a full tuition waiver and a stipend renewable for four years.
In 2022, we received 1,040 completed applications and awarded 24 Presidential Scholarships and 9 Provost Scholarships. Approximately 1 in 32 applicants received a Presidential or Provost scholarship that year.
No, ACT/SAT scores are no longer required for the Presidential Scholarship application and are not taken into account for the award decisions.
No. The size (number of students) of the applicant's high school is not a statistical indicator of success for these awards. The selection committee recognizes that applicants from smaller schools may not have all the opportunities available to students at larger schools.
Yes. Home-schooled students have historically been successful in this competition at a rate similar to public or private school applicants, but should call us for recommendations on how to best represent themselves using the standard application process.
Yes. Your high school GPA is important, but is one of several criteria considered by the selection committee. The diagram below is from the 2022 application class. Most of the awardees had a reported GPA of 4.00, but a few students were awarded a scholarship with less than a 4.00 GPA.
The diagram above represents the reported GPAs, which may or may not have been weighted. Furthermore, high schools assign GPA points and weigh courses in a variety of ways. Based on your transcript, we will calculate a non-weighted GPA. We will also consider the number of credits earned eligible for both high school and college credit, AP, IB high level, or dual credit courses.
These grades will not be taken into consideration, unless your quarter/trimester/semester ends prior to you submitting your application. The majority of our applicants will report grades from only the 9th, 10th, and 11th years because at the time of submitting the application they have not completed the first 12th year grading cycle. If you are identified as a semi-finalist, we may request grades from the first semester of your 12th year.
Some indication of class standing is important to us. If your school does not rank students, please ask your school counselor to provide a confidential or percentile ranking (for example, top 1%, top 5%, etc.) as part of the counselor recommendation. This information will only be available to the review committee; it will not be visible to applicants.
Presidential Scholars must complete 32 credit hours per academic year and maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.5. Provost Scholars must complete 30 credit hours per academic year and maintain a 3.3 cumulative GPA. Both Presidential and Provost Scholars must be continuously enrolled as full-time students and are expected to be active members of the Honors College.
Using Fall 2021/Spring 2022 tuition costs, the four-year value of a Presidential Scholarship exceeds $38,000 for Montana residents and $121,000 for non-residents. The Provost Scholarship exceeds $26,500 for Montana residents and $108,000 for non-residents. Both scholarships cover tuition, but not fees. the Presidential Scholarship includes a $4,000 stipend (shown in the value above), which is first applied to fees, including room and board. Any remaining amount after such fees have been deducted will be returned to the student as a cash award. The Provost Scholarship includes a $1,000 stipend (shown in the value above), which is first applied to fees, including room and board. Any remaining amount after such fees have been deducted will be returned to the student as a cash award. Please note that our university has a freshman housing requirement.
No. It is possible that some finalists (those invited to interview) may not be selected for either scholarship.
No. Your Presidential Scholarship application will serve as your application to the Honors College. We will notify you of your status when we make interview invitations in early February 2023.
No. A Presidential or Provost Scholarship may not be deferred. If you intend to accept the scholarship, you must enroll at Montana State University in the fall of 2023.
1. You must first apply to MSU and be admitted. You will need your Net ID (an MSU ID assigned to you upon admission) to proceed with the Presidential Scholarship application process.
2. Begin and submit the general scholarship application in Cat $cholarships. You will be able to edit the contents of the general application after submission, so you can submit it before completing the application. You will not gain access to the supplemental questions for the Presidential Scholarship until your general application has been submitted.
3. When you gain access to the Presidential Scholarship application, scroll to the bottom of the application and input the names and emails of your counselor and recommenders first. Once you save that information, your recommenders will receive an email from our system that prompts them to complete their recommendations. We recommend that you check with your references to make sure they received the emails that prompt them to complete their recommendations. If they didn't receive the link, you can resend it through the "References" tab in Cat Scholarships. Please contact the Honors College if they still don't receive the link.
4. The submission deadline for student's materials is Friday, December 2, 2022 at midnight, Mountain Daylight Time. Please note that technical assistance will only be available until 5 PM, MDT, on that day, so we strongly encourage applicants to submit their applications early so technical glitches may be addressed. Late submissions will not be accepted for any reason, including time zone miscalculations and technical glitches after 5 PM, MDT. The deadline for counselor and recommender uploads has been extended to Wednesday, December 7 at 5 PM, MDT.
5. It is the applicant's responsibility to ensure that their counselor and recommenders have submitted their materials by December 7, 2022 at 5 PM, MDT.
Please don't hesitate to call our office at 406-994-4110 or send an email at [email protected]