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President's Scholarship Competition Frequently Asked Questions

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First, congratulations are in order! Because of your 3.95+ cumulative high school GPA, you are eligible to compete for the scholarship. The President's Scholarship covers 100% tuition up to 124 credit hours toward your first degree. In other words, your first bachelor’s degree is on us! Apply by December 1 and be admitted by December 15 for full consideration to participate in the President's Scholarship Competition.

NOTE: Students must be admitted to the university and meet all eligibility requirements by December 1st to participate in the President's Scholarship Competition.

Minimum of TWO DAYS before your competition date (Midnight, November 8 and Midnight, Jan 17): Complete the online President’s Scholarship Questionnaire (PSQ) that will assess non-cognitive traits like leadership, community service, and goal orientation. Your answers to the PSQ will be anonymized.

The PSQ should take 15-45 minutes and you should be prepared to complete the assessment in one session. Once you have begun the PSQ, you cannot save your progress and must complete the entire assessment. If you encounter technical difficulties during the assessment, you may email our Office of Admissions at to have your PSQ reset.

Competition Dates - November 10th, January 19th: You will be asked to complete a timed President’s Scholarship Essay (PSE) at one of these on-campus events. You will sign up on a first-come-first-served basis for either Friday. On your assigned competition day, you will complete your essay on a given prompt, meet with faculty from your major of choice, have a free lunch on us, and tour the school!

February 1st – March 1st: A committee comprised of SVSU faculty will review the President’s Scholarship Essays and assign a score to each. These scores will be combined with the PSQ and your cumulative high school GPA to award 30 President’s Scholarships. Recipients will be notified by mail.

To be considered for the President’s Scholarship, applicants must complete each phase of the competition within the established time frame. Unfortunately, if you did not complete the questionnaire in time, you will not be able to move on to the next phase of the competition.

Absolutely! We welcome parents. (Note you may bring a maximum of 2 guests.) During the essay-writing portion of the day when students will be busy, we will be presenting information about scholarships and financial aid to parents/guardians who choose to attend. After the essay is completed, you will be able to attend the rest of the day’s events together.

Each year, 30 scholarships are awarded to incoming freshmen. This year, we will use a combination of cumulative high school GPA; an assessment of non-cognitive measures like leadership, community service, and goal-orientation; and a timed essay to determine the recipients.


SVSU has nearly $2M in private scholarships available for new freshmen awarded on the basis of academic excellence, leadership, and extracurricular involvement. You can apply for all of the scholarships for which you qualify at beginning November 1 with a priority consideration of  February 1st.

Our top private scholarship is the Robert & Ellen Thompson Working Families Scholarship which is $5500 per year toward your first SVSU degree for a total of $22,000! President’s Scholarship competitors meet all of the academic requirements for the scholarship and are highly encouraged to apply at

Students who do not initially receive the President's Scholarship will retain their initial academic scholarship and are also placed onto a waitlist for the President’s Scholarship. We know that many students and families are unclear about what being on the waitlist will look like. The questions below will explain more about that process.

If a President's Scholarship becomes available after the initial awarding, the scholarship committee will review the files of all applicants remaining on the waitlist and immediately send a new award letter to the next best candidate based on their President’s Scholarship Score (PSQ+PSE+GPA).

In recent years, as few as one and as many as five students have gotten upgraded awards. However, we cannot predict the exact number for this year.

Initial awards for the President's Scholarship will be mailed out no later than March 1st, 2023. All other candidates will be notified by mail as well if they have been put into a waitlist. It is difficult to predict the timing of any upgrades for students on the waitlist; however, most final offers are determined by the end of May.

We would love to talk to you and your family one-on-one about your questions and any other scholarship opportunities.