Undergraduate Scholastic Awards

The President’s Freshman Award

This award is presented annually to undergraduate degree candidates and degree-seeking provisional students who have earned a 4.00 (A) cumulative grade-point average based on at least 12 graded Penn State credits completed their first semester of admission. Candidates are eligible for this award if they have not exceeded 35 Penn State credits earned. (CEEB advanced placement credits, International Baccalaureate credits, and credits taken prior to High School graduation are not counted in the total credits earned for purposes of this award.)

During the presidency of Eric A. Walker (1956-1970), and with the approval of the Board of Trustees, the number of awards was increased and in 1960, the President’s Freshman Award was established.

The President Sparks Award

This award is presented annually to those undergraduate degree candidates who have earned a 4.00 (A) cumulative grade point average based on at least 36 graded Penn State credits completed by the end of the fall semester of the academic year the award is given. Candidates are eligible for this award if they have not exceeded 59 total credits earned. (CEEB advanced placement credits, International Baccalaureate credits, and credits taken prior to High School graduation are not counted in the total credits earned for purposes of this award.)

In 1919 the President Sparks Medal was awarded to one student attaining the highest average. Edwin Erle Sparks was president from 1908 to 1920.

The Evan Pugh Scholar Award – Juniors and Seniors

The Evan Pugh scholars are those juniors and seniors who are in the upper 0.5 percent of their respective classes and have completed at least 48 graded Penn State credits at the end of the fall semester of the academic year the award is given. Candidates are eligible if they have been full-time Penn State undergraduate students for at least four semesters prior to selection. The juniors this year have cumulative grade-point averages of 3.98 and above. The seniors this year have cumulative grade-point averages of 4.00.

The Evan Pugh Scholar Awards began in 1933 and were given to the top five persons in both the junior and senior classes. The award is named for Evan Pugh, Penn State’s first president (1859-1864).

W. Lamarr Kopp International Achievement Award-Undergraduate

This annual award recognizes one undergraduate student who has contributed significantly to the advancement of the international mission of the University. It is named for the retired deputy vice president for international programs. The designation “achievement” includes, but is not limited to, the display of excellence in an academic course of study and/or research with a significant international component, participation in international programs and/or field projects, leadership in improving relations among people from different regions of the world, and service to the international community.

Contact: Office of International Programs | 222 Boucke | (814) 865-6348

The Astronaut Scholarship Foundation Award

The Astronaut Scholarship Foundation was created to ensure that the United States would maintain its leadership in science and technology by supporting promising students in science and engineering. Scholarship candidates must be nominated by faculty members and must be in an engineering, science or mathematics field. Scholarship nominees are those students who have shown initiative, creativity, and excellence in their chosen field.

Contact: University Fellowships Office | 212 Boucke | (814) 863-8199

Marshall Scholarships

Marshall Scholarships finance young Americans of high ability to study for a degree in the United Kingdom. Up to forty Scholars are selected each year to study at graduate level at an UK institution in any field of study. As future leaders, with a lasting understanding of British society, Marshall Scholars strengthen the enduring relationship between the British and American peoples, their governments and their institutions. Marshall Scholars are talented, independent and wide-ranging, and their time as Scholars enhances their intellectual and personal growth. Their direct engagement with Britain through its best academic programmes contributes to their ultimate personal success.

Contact: University Fellowships Office | 212 Boucke | (814) 863-8199

Goldwater Scholarship Award

The Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship, established by Congress in 1986 to honor former U.S. Senator Goldwater, is a distinguished undergraduate scholarship initiative that was created to encourage outstanding students to pursue careers in mathematics, the natural sciences, or engineering and to foster excellence in those fields. This highly prestigious and competitive award is granted to up to 300 students nationwide and is based on the student’s field of study, career objectives and the extent to which that individual has the commitment and potential to make a significant contribution to his or her field.

Contact: University Fellowships Office | 212 Boucke | (814) 863-8199

Gates Cambridge Scholarships

Gates Cambridge Scholarships are prestigious, highly competitive full-cost scholarships. They are awarded to outstanding applicants from countries outside the UK to pursue a full-time postgraduate degree in any subject available at the University of Cambridge. Winners are chosen for their outstanding intellectual ability, leadership potential, and commitment to improving the lives of others. The program aims to build a global network of future leaders committed to improving the lives of others.

Contact: University Fellowships Office | 212 Boucke | (814) 863-8199