Goldwater Scholarships

United States
Term: Academic Year

Provides awards to highly qualified sophomores and juniors in the sciences, mathematics and engineering who intend to pursue research careers in these fields

Goldwater Scholarships provides up to 450 scholarships each year to highly qualified rising juniors and seniors in the sciences, mathematics and engineering who intend to pursue careers in these fields.

A program of the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation, each scholarship covers eligible expenses for undergraduate tuition, fees, books, and room and board, up to a maximum of $7,500 annually. Junior-level scholarship recipients are eligible for a maximum of two years of scholarship support, and senior-level scholarship recipients are eligible for a maximum of one year of scholarship support.


A candidate for nomination as a Goldwater Scholar must:

  1. Be a full-time matriculated sophomore or junior pursuing a degree at an accredited 2- or 4-year institution of higher education during the 2021-2022 academic year (Because of COVID-19, some students may not be enrolled full-time during the 2021-2022 academic year. Schools may nominate these students as part of the 2022 Goldwater competition. For the purposes of the 2022 review, the assumption will be made that all students will be enrolled full-time during the 2022-2023 academic year);

  2. Intend to pursue a research career in a natural science, mathematics or engineering (The natural sciences, engineering, and mathematics fields and sub-fields used by the Goldwater Foundation to determine eligibility are those used by the National Science Foundation for its Graduate Research Fellowship Program. These include: Chemistry, Computer and Information Sciences and Engineering, Engineering, Geosciences, Life Sciences, Materials Research, Mathematical Sciences, Physics and Astronomy, and Psychology. To view a field’s sub-fields, click here). Please note, while research in medicine is not supported by the National Science Foundation, students interested in pursuing careers in medicine or veterinary medicine are eligible for a Goldwater Scholarship if research is a central part of the candidate's career goals;

  3. Have a college grade point average of at least a 3.00 on a 4.00 scale 3; and

  4. Be a U.S. citizen from the 50 states or the District of Columbia; a U.S. national for those students nominated by institutions in Puerto Rico, Guam, Virgin Islands, American Samoa, and Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands; or a permanent resident.

Selection Criteria

The Goldwater Foundation expects that most scholars will pursue advanced degrees. 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.

The Goldwater seeks candidates who show commitment and potential to make a significant contribution to their field. Applicants must demonstrate how their academic program and educational plans will prepare them for their career goals.

University nomination

Columbia University may nominate a total of five eligible undergraduates for consideration each year. Students in Columbia College, Columbia Engineering and the School of General Studies who will be current sophomores or juniors at the time of application are eligible. The internal campus competition places students into consideration for nomination. Students may not apply directly for this fellowship without having first been nominated.

Columbia students apply for nomination by clicking "Start Your Application" and completing all application materials before the internal deadline. Letters of recommendation should be submitted directly to by the internal deadline as well.

Fact Sheet

Columbia College, Columbia Engineering, Columbia General Studies, Junior, Sophomore, U.S. Citizen, U.S. Permanent Resident
Fellowship Type:
United States
North America
Academic Year

Dates & Deadlines

Academic Year
Application Deadline: 
Wednesday, December 20, 2023
Internal deadline, Application opens September 5th, 2023!