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Mitchell Scholarships

The Mitchell Scholars Program is a national competitive fellowship sponsored by the US-Ireland Alliance. The Mitchell Scholars Program, named to honor former US Senator George Mitchell's pivotal contribution to the Northern Ireland peace process, is designed to introduce and connect generations of future American leaders to the island of Ireland, while recognizing and fostering intellectual achievement, leadership, and a commitment to public service and community. Up to twelve Mitchell Scholars between the ages of 18 and 30 are chosen annually for one year of postgraduate study in any discipline offered by institutions of higher learning in Ireland and Northern Ireland. Applicants are judged on three criteria: academic excellence, leadership, and a sustained commitment to service and community. The Mitchell Scholars Program provides tuition, housing, a living expenses stipend, and an international travel stipend. 

Mitchell Scholars Program candidates are judged on three criteria:

  • Scholarship: Academic excellence and intellectual distinction. Although the Scholars program does not require a minimum GPA, it is understood that a prospective candidate must have the academic ability and preparation to succeed in a postgraduate program.
  • Leadership: An outstanding record of leadership which may be evidenced through a variety of activities and accomplishments. These efforts may be on- or off-campus, local, regional, or global.
  • Commitment to Community and Public Service: A record of and sustained commitment to service and community, on campus, locally, nationally, or internationally.

W&M Campus Application Procedures

Read all of the information on the Mitchell website carefully, particularly the FAQ section and Scholar profiles.  Currently enrolled applicants must go through the campus application process and be endorsed by the W&M nomination committee.

If you believe you are a qualified candidate, request a preliminary application questionnaire. Note that this is an in-depth questionnaire that will take some time to complete.

I. Preliminary Application - due by noon on Monday, July 15

The preliminary application questionnaire, a Banner transcript, and a list of activities of not more than 2 pages (all in Word format) may be submitted to [[lmgrim, Lisa]] at any time and no later than 12:00 noon on Monday July 15, 2013.  Potential applicants are encouraged to submit these materials well in advance of July 15.  

II. Campus Application - due by noon on Monday, September 2

Members of the campus nomination will review the prelimary application materials and respond to potential applicants within fourteen days of submission. Candidates who are asked to submit a full application will also receive instructions for their recommenders.  

Note that a request for a full application is not a guarantee of the College's endorsement. 

 The full campus application is due by 12:00 noon on Monday, September 2. In addition to the materials already submitted, the full campus application includes:

  1. A personal statement of not more than 1,000 words. The personal statement or essay is your opportunity to share your personality, passion and drive with the selection committee that cannot be communicated elsewhere in the application materials. A candidate should devote careful thought to the essay, which should describe a candidate's field of interest and justification for proposed study in Ireland or Northern Ireland. Selection committee members will place special emphasis on the personal statement. 
  2. A list of at least three specific proposed graduate programs at three different universities in Ireland and/or Northern Ireland. It is essential that candidates list at least three different university choices and may list as many as five. Listing only one or two university choices will significantly weaken a candidacy. University placement may be a factor in the selection process. It is important that candidates spend sufficient time examining the various programs at universities in Ireland and Northern Ireland to determine the programs in which they are most interested and for which they are qualified. Candidates are not required to apply to a university in Ireland or Northern Ireland directly in order to apply for the Mitchell. Information about higher education in Ireland and Northern Ireland can be found at the following link: Institutions of Higher Learning in Ireland and Northern Ireland. Candidates should closely examine degree residence requirements because while Master's programs can be one or two years in duration, the Mitchell Scholars Program only provides tuition, fees, accommodation, and a living stipend for one year. Candidates also must have sufficient academic and professional preparation for each proposed post-graduate program; please carefully review prerequisites for each academic program.
  3. Four letters of recommendation. For full-time students, at least two of these recommendations must be from persons with whom the candidate has done academic work. For those who are not full-time students and have not been for the past year, at least one of the recommendations must be from someone with whom the candidate has done academic work. You must give each person asked to write on your behalf a copy of the Letters of Recommendation information sheet for W&M applicants as well as a copy of your personal statement.  The recommenders must email their letters to [[lmgrim, Lisa Grimes]] by the 12 noon Monday, September 2 deadline.  If the candidate is nominated by the College, s/he will register the recommenders on the Mitchell website and they will upload their letters directly.
III. Interviews - September 5-13

The campus nomination committee will review the applications and issue invitations to those selected for interviews. Interviews will be held shortly after the campus deadline. The interview will last approximately 20 minutes. At the completion of the interviews, the committee will select the College's nominees and all applicants will be notified of their status.

IV. Fine Tuning - September 14-October 1

Candidates chosen as nominees will have time to fine tune their application materials prior to submitting them to the Mitchell Scholarship. The final applications must be submitted online no later than October 1, 2013.

V. Video Interviews

Once your application has been received and certified as complete after the initial deadline, you will receive information about the required video interview.  You will have approximately 48 hours to submit the video interview.  The video portion of the application must be complete and submitted by 5:00 pm Eastern Time on October 4, 2013. The interview will take less than 10 minutes, and you will have the opportunity to do practice interviews.

VI. Semi-Finalist Skype Interviews 

These take place the week of October 28, 2013.

VI. Finalist Weekend
November 22-23, 2013

VII. Mitchell Scholar Selection Announcement

November 24, 2013