The Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Program was established by Congress in 1986 to honor Senator Barry M. Goldwater, who served his country for 56 years as a soldier and statesman, including 30 years of service in the U.S. Senate.
It is expected that students selected as scholars will pursue advanced degrees, and nearly all Goldwater Scholars intend to pursue doctoral degrees. In awarding scholarships, the Foundation Board of Trustees will consider the nominee's field of study and career objectives and the extent to which that individual has the commitment and potential to make a significant contribution to his or her field.
Students who plan to study medicine are eligible for a Goldwater Scholarship only if they plan a research career rather than a career as a medical doctor in a private practice.
Final Bowdoin Deadline:
*Information derived from https://goldwaterscholarship.gov
- Applicants must be a full-time matriculated sophomore or junior pursuing a degree at an accredited institution of higher education during the academic year in which they are applying. See the Goldwater website for detailed definitions of "sophomore" and "junior."
- Applicants must have a college grade-point average of at least "B" (or the equivalent) and be in the upper fourth of his or her class. Typically, though, awardees have a GPA of at least 3.8.
- Applicants must be a United States citizen, a permanent resident, or, in the case of nominees from American Samoa or the Commonwealth of the Mariana Islands, a United States national. Nominations from permanent residents must include a letter of the nominee’s intent to obtain U.S. citizenship and a photocopy of the Permanent Resident Card (formerly known as the Alien Registration Card).
- Applicants should be aware that the Office of the Dean of Student Affairs is involved with the campus review process. Students with serious social or academic violations, such as those that are included as part of their permanent record at Bowdoin, are advised to consult with the Director of Student Fellowships and Research early in the process. Students may also consult with their dean for guidance.
Bowdoin’s Internal Selection Process. Since Bowdoin is allowed to nominate only four students annually for the Goldwater, our internal campus committee will review the materials listed below to select Bowdoin’s four nominees. By the Initial Bowdoin Deadline, applicants must:
- Electronically submit Bowdoin's internal application for the Goldwater Scholarship. You may access the application here.
- Bowdoin's internal application will ask you to answer questions about yourself, your coursework, and your research projects (click here for form) and research skills (click here for form). These documents can also be downloaded in the internal application. You will also be expected to complete several short answer essays, as well as upload a copy of your unofficial transcript, your resume, and your research essay.
- As you think about your short answer essays and your research essay, we encourage you to read through the "Goldwater Tip Sheet" created by our office. You may find this helpful in crafting your answers and formatting your essays.
- Email to Gina Pappas (email@example.com) a signed and witnessed "Permission Form and Waiver".
- Have three recommenders submit draft letters of recommendation to the Office of Student Fellowships and Research. Faculty members should electronically submit their letters to Gina Pappas (firstname.lastname@example.org) by the "Initial Bowdoin Deadline".
Your application will be received by the Office of Student Fellowships and Research and will only be seen by members of Bowdoin's internal Student Fellowships Committee. If you are selected as one of Bowdoin's four nominees, the Office of Student Fellowships and Research will grant you permission to begin an official application through Goldwater's website. You will be able to continue making edits, up until the final Bowdoin deadline.
Please be reminded that Bowdoin’s Honor Code applies to the fellowship application process.
Materials for the Final Application. If you receive Bowdoin’s nomination, it is your responsibility to continue revising and collecting your materials and to remind your recommenders of all relevant deadlines. By the "Final Bowdoin Deadline", a Bowdoin nominee must:
- Electronically submit the online Goldwater Scholarship application, including your research essay.
- Your essay may be single or double spaced and use 12 point or larger Arial font. Margins should be 1inch on all sides. Page length should not exceed 3 pages. Your essay must include your name and the name of your academic institution at the top of each page. Save your Research Essay as a PDF file. Although the upload site accepts JPG and PNG file formats, PDF files are preferred.
- Submit electronically via email the following materials to Gina Pappas:
- Official transcript(s) from other institutions which the nominee attended with grades for courses taken
- Voluntary Survey Form (optional) – original copy only
- Have three recommenders submit their letters to Gina Pappas via email. Recommenders are encouraged to familiarize themselves with the information on the Goldwater Recommenders page and be aware that letters of recommendation should be no more than two pages, have one-inch margins on all sides, be single spaced, use 12 point font, be printed on letterhead, and signed.
Once your application materials are submitted, the Office of Student Fellowships and Research will be responsible for uploading the following to your online application:
- All three letters of recommendation
- Your unofficial academic history from Bowdoin (official Bowdoin transcripts are not required)
- Your official non-Bowdoin transcripts
- The Institutional Nomination (which the College is responsible for completing)
The Office of Student Fellowships and Research will then submit your application to the Goldwater Foundation.
More about the selection process. An independent review committee appointed by the Foundation will evaluate all valid nominations and recommend the most outstanding nominees from each state for consideration by the Foundation Board of Trustees. Nominees are evaluated on demonstrated potential for and commitment to a career in mathematics, the natural sciences, or engineering and outstanding academic performance. All nominees and will be notified of their final status by the end of March.
Zoë is an Earth and Oceanographic Science and Biochemistry double major, excited about the single-celled organisms that facilitate nutrient and chemical cycles in the ocean. She was awarded a Goldwater Scholarship, one of the country's oldest scholarships for science, engineering, and math, that supports college sophomores and juniors "who show exceptional promise of becoming the next generation of research leaders." She has pursued research both on and off Bowdoin’s campus, most recently on the microbial ecology of undersea caverns called blue holes. Zoë plans to pursue a PhD in biological oceanography after graduation.
Anneka grew up in Vermont spending lots of time outside with her family and asking lots of questions, which has ultimately inspired a fascination with processes that govern the natural world. At Bowdoin, she is a Biology major and Earth & Oceanographic Science minor particularly interested in studying the intersection of climate science and biology in extreme environments such as the Arctic and high altitude regions. As a Goldwater scholar she will receive $7,500 toward tuition for her senior year.
Liam Taylor '17
Liam is a Biology major with a focus on ecology and evolutionary biology. He is also a computer science minor, hoping to understand how computational strategies can inform biology and vice-versa. Liam spent his first two Bowdoin summers at the Bowdoin Scientific Station on Kent Island, where he helped continue the decades-long investigation into the demographics and breeding biology of the Leach's Storm-Petrel. He spent his third summer on campus studying the computational behavior and evolution of animal spatial systems. In his senior year, he will pursue an Honors project investigating the population biology of two other major Kent Island study species: Tree Swallows and Savannah Sparrows.
Ellis Ratner '14
A computer science and physics major with a mathematics minor, Ellis is primarily interested in robotics and artificial intelligence, focusing on localization, mapping, and planning algorithms for autonomous robots. He has spent the past three summers conducting research and developing robotic systems. He is a member of Bowdoin’s RoboCup (robotic soccer) team, the Northern Bites, and plans on attending graduate school in robotics and artificial intelligence and continuing research in this area.