Scholarships & Grants

The Department of English is proud to offer many scholarships that recognize and support outstanding undergraduates. Every scholarship listed below can be awarded to multiple recipients. Award amounts typically range from $1,000 to $2,000. You are eligible for a scholarship if you are a declared BA English major in CLA. (The department also offers research and travel grants.) We encourage you also to apply for a CLA Continuing Student Scholarship. Students may be awarded a maximum of one departmental scholarship and one CLA scholarship.

Scholarship recipients must maintain their English major status and be full-time students for both semesters of the award year. If you plan to graduate at the end of the fall semester, you are eligible for half the award amount.

To be considered for a scholarship, complete the English Major Scholarship Application by March 4, 2022. The application will ask you to enter responses to the 3 questions below. To craft a strong response, use clear, polished prose and provide specific examples and concrete details.

  1. What have you valued the most about your coursework as an English major? (250 words maximum)
  2. How will the English major play a role in your future career goals? (250 words maximum)
  3. How has your perspective on equity, diversity, and inclusion informed your work as an English major? (250 words maximum)

The Hawkins, Atkinson, and Phelan Scholarships require supplementary materials described below. The other scholarships we award require no additional materials.

Donald V. Hawkins Scholarships

Donald V. Hawkins Scholarships foster and support student excellence with awards of $4,000. They are made possible by an endowment in honor of Donald V. Hawkins and his love for the University of Minnesota.

Eligibility: Full-time students with at least a 3.3 GPA for English major courses who will be juniors or seniors next year.
Apply: To be considered for this scholarship, complete the Hawkins section of the English Major Scholarship Application: provide the names of two English faculty members who have agreed to recommend you and upload one paper written for an English class. 

Beverly Atkinson Scholarships for Non-Traditional English Majors

Beverly Atkinson Scholarships recognize and encourage non-traditional English majors who have overcome remarkable odds to pursue their college degrees. Examples of non-traditional students include, but are not limited to, displaced homemakers (of any gender), students with disabilities, individuals starting their college careers after age 23, students with family responsibilities, individuals experiencing mid-career changes, etc.

Eligibility: English majors who are registered for at least 12 credits per semester.
Apply: To be considered for this scholarship, complete the Atkinson section of the English Major Scholarship Application: submit a 2-3 sentence statement explaining the extraordinary demands in your life that have taken time away from your academic pursuits. 

Anna Augusta Von Helmholtz Phelan Scholarships in Creative Writing

This scholarship recognizes English majors who demonstrate promise in creative writing. It was established by former students of Anna Phelan, who taught journalism and creative writing at the University of Minnesota.

Eligibility: English majors who will be juniors next year.
Apply: To be considered for this scholarship, complete the Phelan section of the English Major Scholarship Application: provide the names of two faculty members who have agreed to recommend you, and upload a sample of your creative writing (6-8 pages of poetry or 15-20 pages of fiction or literary nonfiction).

Additional English Scholarships

To be considered for all of the scholarships below, complete the English Major Scholarship Application by March 4, 2021. No additional materials are needed.

Sharon Borine Scholarships

These scholarships are made possible by the generosity of Sharon Borine and her family. Borine received a BA in English from the University.

Jessie M. Comstock Memorial Scholarships

These scholarships are awarded in memory of Jessie M. Comstock.

Joan C. Forester Scholarships

These scholarships are awarded to attract and support strong students majoring in English at the University of Minnesota.

Robert Etheridge Moore Scholarships

These scholarships are made possible by a gift established by a former student of Professor Moore, whom the student described as one of the four best teachers he had in 11 years of higher education. Professor Moore was a lively and influential teacher with expertise in literature, opera, and visual arts of the 17th and 18th centuries.

Captain Dewitt Jennings Payne Memorial Scholarships

These scholarships come from a fund established by the late Olivia Payne Stover in memory of her brother, Captain Payne, who was the first American aviator killed in World War I.

Contact Rachel Drake at englmaj@umn.edu if you have questions about any aspect of the application process, your eligibility, or the supplementary materials that some scholarships require.