Rhodes Scholarships

The Rhodes Scholarship was founded in the early twentieth century by Cecil Rhodes to promote international understanding and peace. Mr. Rhodes hoped that his plan of bringing able students from throughout the English-speaking world and beyond to study at Oxford University would aid in the promotion of international understanding and peace. Each year, 32 scholars from the United States are among more than 95 Rhodes Scholars worldwide who take up degree courses at Oxford University. 

Extraordinary intellectual distinction is a necessary but not a sufficient condition for election to a Rhodes Scholarship. Rhodes Scholars exhibit excellence in qualities of mind and in qualities of person which, in combination, offer the promise of effective service to the world in the decades ahead. The Rhodes Scholarships, in short, are investments in individuals rather than in project proposals.

Prospective Rhodes Scholars are judged by four standards:

  • literary and scholastic attainments;
  • energy to use one’s talents to the full (as demonstrated by mastery in areas such as sports, music, debate, dance, theatre, and artistic pursuits, including where teamwork is involved).
  • truth, courage, devotion to duty, sympathy for and protection of the weak, kindliness, unselfishness and fellowship;
  • moral force of character and instincts to lead, and to take an interest in one’s fellow beings.

Underlying these standards is the aim that Scholars be physically, intellectually, and morally capable of leadership. Persons who, in Mr. Rhodes’ phrase, will “esteem the performance of public duties as [their] highest aim.” From this statement one may infer that he expected his Scholars to play an influential part in the betterment of society, wherever their careers might lead them.

Requirements

General

  • GPA above or approaching 3.9
  • Applicants must be at least 18 but not yet 24 years of age on October 1st, 2020
  • University endorsement
  • Eight letters of recommendation (at least four from professors)

Personal Statement

The personal statement addresses your general interests and activities. What inspires you? Discusses your aims and priorities and the contributions you have made and hope to make to the world and/or your local community. Includes your reasons for wishing to study at Oxford, which courses you wish to pursue and why. Not to exceed 1000 words

Please note the following policies regarding the personal statement:

  • The Rhodes Trust prohibits any discussion (at any time) about the content of the personal statement. 
  • The Office of Fellowships cannot provide input on the personal statement, even pre-draft.
  • The Rhodes selectors wish to hear from you, as a candidate, focusing on your qualifications, your preparation of proposed course at Oxford, and your articulation of short or long-term career and life ambitions. 

Application Process

To be considered for University endorsement, candidates must first complete the internal application process and submit all materials by June 1st, 2020.

How to apply for Internal Nomination

The Office of Fellowships & Awards will review applications and accepted students will be notified accordingly. Endorsed students will work closely with this office on the final application.

Deadlines

Deadline for internal application for university endorsement : June 1st, 2020

Please note: this deadline is for juniors, seniors and young alumni who wish to matriculate at Oxford. You should pay careful attention to the deadlines and the academic year as our internal deadlines are a year and a half in advance of the matriculation date. 

External Fellowship Deadline: October 2020

Please contact GOFAR at gufa@georgetown.edu for further information.

Endorsed students/finalists for Rhodes are eligible to apply for Georgetown’s Allbritton Scholarship and Healy Scholarship.

Rhodes Scholars in the News