What is the Bill Gates Scholarship?
The Bill Gates Scholarship is all kind of scholarship funded by The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (abbreviation: BMGF), previously known as The William H. Gates Foundation. Raised in the tradition of giving, both Gates and Melinda have the spirit of giving back to society. By believing that the path out of poverty begins when the next generation can access a great education, the foundation has been donating money both for students through many scholarship programs and for the schools/universities/colleges by providing the things needed to support the education.
The recipient of the Bill Gates Scholarship is expected to give back to their communities as well. There are many scholarship options that are adjusted due to a different target of recipients. For your information, besides having the scholarships that are fully funded and managed directly by the BMGF, there are also other scholarships administered by other foundation/university in which the BMGF was/is the only or one of the donators.
1. The Gates Scholarship
This scholarship is a highly-competitive and prestigious for exceptional, minority, high school seniors. Ever since launched in 2018, The Gates Scholarship, or also known as TGS, has been funding 3,000 students until now, with a number of 300 students per year. Besides providing the general fund that covers tuition, room, books, and transportation, this scholarship also ready to aid you further by ensuring that the scholars have access to the resources and services they need, from the freshman year to graduation day. This scholarship aims to facilitate scholars with opportunities to reach their full potential.
If you are interested in applying, kindly visit https://www.thegatesscholarship.org/.
2. Gates Cambridge Scholarship
Just like its name, the Gates Cambridge Scholarship was established in 2000 by a donation of $210 million from the BMGF to the University of Cambridge, making this as the largest single donation to a UK university. The scholarship offers full funding (also opens for possible discretionary components, such as children allowance, maternity/paternity funding, etc) for 90 postgraduate students, pursuing any major available at the University of Cambridge, from all over the world. The main goal of this scholarship is to build a global network of future leaders committed to improving the lives of others.
For better information, please visit https://www.gatescambridge.org.
3. Gates Millenium Scholars Program
Established in 1999, Gates Millenium Scholars Program was granted $1.6 billion as an initial fund from The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The goal of this program, administered by United Negro College Fund, is to increase the representation of African American, American Indian/Alaska Native, Asian American, Pacific Islander American, and Hispanic American students, who were severely underrepresented before, in these following disciplines: Computer Science, Education, Public Health, Mathematics, and Library Science. This scholarship selects 1,000 new students prior to entering college each year and supports them through undergraduate to doctoral programs.
Unfortunately, the GMS Program is now closed and no longer accepting new applicants as the goal of supporting 20,000 outstanding students has been achieved. There may be some possibilities that they open the program again, so just keep on checking their website.
4. D.C. Achievers Scholarship
Concerned about the critically low college graduation rates of the students in the public and public charter schools of the District of Columbia, The College Success Foundation-District of Columbia, or in short known as CSF-DC, was formed in 2006 as a nonprofit education foundation.
Then, in 2007, the CFC-DC was generously funded by the BMGF to provide the D.C Achievers Scholarship. This scholarship is intended for the low-income students in the District of Columbia, particularly in Wards 7 and 8. After 11 successful years of sending hundreds of students to college with the fund from the BMGF, this program has transitioned away from scholarship provider to be focusing on preparing the students to be better candidates of the various scholarships that are available for them. You can see the details of their current program here.
5. William H. Gates Public Service Law Program
This program, named in honor of William H. Gates Sr. (who is Bill Gates’ father) for his commitment to public service, is dedicated to the University of Washington (UW) law students. The William H. Gates Public Service Law Program, with a total of $33.3 million over the next 80 years funded by the BMGF, was the 80th birthday present for William H. Gates, who was a UW law student too.
Accepting five new first-year students entering the JD (Juris Doctorate) program each year, this scholarship covers tuition, books, room, and incidental expenses. The winner of the scholarship is obligated to work in public service for five years following graduation.
To get the latest update, please visit https://www.law.uw.edu/careers/gates.
6. University Scholars Program
Created in 1998 by the Office of the Vice Provost of Interdisciplinary Studies, the USP (stands for University Scholars Program) has been supporting incoming undergraduate, graduate, and professional school students at Duke University (the alma mater of Melinda Gates) with a gift of $20 million from the BMGF. The amount received of each recipient varies according to their department programs. At the minimum, graduate and professional school students will receive the equivalent of one-year tuition. As for the undergraduates, the program covers full tuition, room, and mandatory fees for eight semesters.
It’s not possible to apply directly for the USP because the candidates are nominated by the Director of Graduates Studies for the graduates, and the Admissions and Financial Aid offices for the professional school students, considering the financial need and outstanding performances in academic with interdisciplinary spirit. As for the undergraduates, you can apply for the scholarship by submitting required financial aid forms such as PROFILE, FAFSA, W-2, and tax forms. Scholars chosen as the USP recipient are expected to remain contributing to the USP for the duration of their tenures as students of Duke University.
For more information, please visit https://jhfc.duke.edu/usp/.
Who is Eligible for The Bill Gates Scholarship?
As there are many options of The Bill Gates Scholarship, the eligibility and selection criteria surely also differ. You should check for more detailed information on their website, but these are the general overviews of the eligibility.
- Senior high school students | undergraduate students | postgraduate students | professional school students
- a US citizen, national, or permanent resident | a citizen of any country outside the UK
- Belong (but not limited) to these following ethnics: African American, American Indian/Alaska Native, Asian American, Pacific Islander American, and Hispanic American
- Attend the corresponding college or university
- In good academic standing with a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.3 on a 4.0 scale
- Plan to enroll full-time and finish education in the meantime
The Bill Gates Scholarship Application Period
Besides focusing on fulfilling the criteria, it’s also important paying attention to the important dates of The Bill Gates Scholarship. Here is the timeline of the application period.
|The Gates Scholarship||July 15||Sept 15||Dec – Jan||March||April|
|Gates Cambridge Scholarship||Sept 3||Oct 10||Oct – Dec / Dec – Feb||late Jan / early March||early Feb / late March|
|Gates Millenium Scholars Program||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|D.C Achievers Scholarship||N/A||mid Oct||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|William H. Gates Public Service Law Program||Nov 15||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
Noted that the dates may change anytime, so to be sure and get real-time data, please directly check on their website.
Red color means the scholarship is now closed.
How can I apply for The Bill Gates Scholarship?
These are the portal links of The Bill Gates Scholarships. To get the application form, you just have to go to their website, register your account, and submit all the requirements needed.
- The Gates Scholarship
- The Gates Cambridge Scholarship
- The D.C. Achievers Scholarship
- The William H. Gates Public Service Law Program
- The University Scholars Program for undergraduate students
Most of the scholarships open only for first-year students, so when you just enter the college, directly check, prepare, and register for the scholarships.
Ideal Candidate of The Bill Gates Scholarship
Meet all the eligibility requirements may be enough, but there’s no loss to equip yourself with more soft skills and hard skills as the stakeholders will surely prefer those who have these features:
- Academic Excellence
Applicants are expected to have outstanding academic performance as the seeds of being a professional in their corresponding disciplines.
- Leadership Ability
This is a must-have ability as you are prepared to be a leader. It can be shown or exercised through participation in community service, extracurricular, or other activities.
- Exceptional Emotional Intelligence
It is not enough to score high just in IQ. To be a successful human being, you need to have a great EI such as emotional maturity, motivation, perseverance, empathy, self-control, etc.
- Diversity Spirit
The increasing diversity of society happening all around the world, specifically in the US. In order to sustain and advance the quality of human life, you need to maintain a high diversity spirit because the future depends on the collaboration of diverse leaders.
- Giving Back Commitment
Having the chance to improve yourself with the fund donated by others, you are also expected to have the spirit or commitment of giving back to society, in particular, your background community. Your contributed acts will improve the lives of others.
By having the listed traits above, you have a greater chance to secure your place among the winners of the scholarship.