Marshall Scholarship

Marshall Scholarships finance young Americans of high ability to study for a graduate degree in the United Kingdom. Up to fifty 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.

Program Objectives

  • To enable intellectually distinguished young Americans, their country's future leaders, to study in the UK.

  • To help Scholars gain an understanding and appreciation of contemporary Britain.

  • To contribute to the advancement of knowledge in science, technology, the humanities, and social sciences, and the creative arts at Britain's centers of academic excellence.

  • To motivate Scholars to act as ambassadors from the USA to the UK and vice versa throughout their lives thus strengthening British American understanding.

  • To promote the personal and academic fulfillment of each Scholar.

Types of Scholarships Offered

There are two types of scholarships offered, please click on the link below to download the routemap to determine what option is best for you ahead of applying. 

Marshall Routemap

The One Year Marshall Scholarship is tenable for one academic year (ie 12 months) and cannot be extended.

The Two Year Marshall Scholarship is tenable for two academic years (ie 22 months), but may be extended by the Commission, though not beyond the end of a third academic year. Third-year extensions are granted by the Commission on a limited basis, for strong academic reasons, subject to the availability of funds.

Who is Eligible

Before completing the application candidates are advised to consider the objectives of the Marshall Scholarship Programme and to be aware that the selection committees are seeking candidates who have the potential to excel as scholars, leaders and as contributors to improved UK-US understanding.

To be eligible for a Marshall Scholarship, candidates must:

  • Be citizens of the United States of America (at the time they apply for a scholarship);
  • By the time they take up their scholarship hold their first undergraduate degree from an accredited four-year college or university in the United States;
  • Have obtained a grade point average of not less than 3.7 on their undergraduate degree at the time of application. We do not accept rounded GPA's.
  • Have graduated from their first undergraduate college or university before beginning their graduate studies in the United Kingdom.
  • Not have studied for, or hold a degree or degree-equivalent qualification from a British University or GCSE or A Levels taken at school in the UK.

See Study in the UK - Marshall Scholarships and  Who We Are at the Association of Marshall Scholars — Association of Marshall Scholars for more information.

Important Dates

  • Up to June 1:  Complete the Declaration of Intent to Apply Form to be interviewed about your interest in the Marshall Scholarship and to request a formal nomination review from GVSU. 
  • August 16: Complete the application requirements for the internal Grand Valley review. A short zoom interview with a small faculty committee occurs in August/early September. You will receive feedback on your essays so that you can continue to work on them.
  • August/Early September: Thorough review of your application in collaboration with Dr. Tooley (to be sure that your essays are progressing well, that your letters of recommendation have been requested and are complete).
  • September 28, 2022 by 5:00 PM Eastern Time: All application materials must be submitted through the online application. The application will then be processed by your endorsing institution for submission.  No changes will be able to be made to the application after this date.
  • September 30, 2022: Final submission of the application including the three letters of recommendation and letter of endorsement must be submitted online by the endorsing institution.
  • You will be able to track your application's progress online. 

Before you Apply

  • Read the Rules for Candidates carefully. Consider the objectives of the Marshall Scholarship Programme (see opening paragraph of the Rules for Candidates)
  • Review the evaluation criteria. The Selection Committees are seeking candidates who have the potential to excel as scholars, leaders and as contributors to improved UK-US understanding
  • Review the information on the Marshall Partnership Scholarships.

Process for Applying

Candidates fill out the form and submit it through the system to their undergraduate institution, the institution ensures that the application is complete and decides whether or not to endorse it. If the Institution decides to endorse the application they will add the letter of endorsement and will then submit it through the system to the appropriate regional committee. Candidates should contact the appropriate contact at their institution if they are considering applying for a Marshall Scholarship.

Application Components

The Marshall online application includes information you enter, essays you copy and paste into the application, and letters you request from recommenders. You must also upload scans of official transcripts. All online components are due by the deadline above. The application opens in May/early June. You can enter information and return to it, saving as you go. Start early and proofread regularly! When you submit your application by the internal deadline, it will not go to Marshall. It will instead go to a section in the portal where your fellowships advisor can access it. Open a Marshall Scholarship application.


Fields include biographical information, education history, proposed courses of study, paid/unpaid employment experience, publications; personal interests/activities, lists of extracurricular activities, travel history, languages, and awards. You will not be able to simply upload a resume, however, this information should be entered in a similarly-brief (list) format, not in narrative form. Candidates will be asked in what region of the US they wish to apply, which may be either the region of their permanent address or the region of the College. Choose the place that will be most convenient for you for the Marshall interview, should you be selected as a finalist. You will also enter the names and contact information of recommenders. You will be asked if you wish to waive your right to view recommendation letters. You should do so.


Post Scholarship Plan (150 words) describing your immediate plans upon completion of your Marshall Scholarship and why two years spent undertaking a degree in the UK would enhance these plans. As well as describing your plans for employment or further study, you should indicate how you would develop ongoing connections with the UK, through your UK institution or some other contacts you propose to make while in the UK. Please also include a brief statement of your future (long-term) career plans.

Covid-19 statement (150 words) explaining your circumstances during Covid-19 and the impact on you.

personal statement (750 words) describing your intellectual development, and other interests and pursuits. 

A Proposed Academic Programme (500 words) describing your proposed academic program, giving reasons for choice of course(s) and preferred university(ies). For research degrees, candidates should give an outline proposal of the research they wish to undertake and with whom they would like to work and any contacts they have made with faculty there; candidates should also include a brief outline of why they have chosen their second choice courses and institutions. Note that applicants will need to indicate 1st & 2nd choices for the first and second years of study. If the first choice institution in either or both years is Cambridge, ICL, KCL, LSE, Oxford, or UCL, none of these universities may be named as a second choice for either year. Marshall offers a linked list of British universities here and a database to "Find a Course in the UK" ("course" = degree program).  Also consult UK institutions ranked by subject from 2014 (you can find an accessible spreadsheet version of UK institutions ranked by subject here), and the Russell Group websiteHere is the most recent (2021) assessment of UK universities ranked by subject, and here is an explanation of the methodology that led to that ranking. As you write this essay, keep in mind that it will factor into the reviewers' assessment of your academic merit.

Leadership essay (500 words) describing a situation in which you were working with a group of people and recognized and responded to a need for leadership. The objective is to help the committee understand the candidate’s leadership conviction and drive, style and potential rather than provide a list of achievements." See the Marshall understanding of leadership potential.

An Ambassadorial Potential essay (500 words) explaining why you want to undertake your studies in the UK, and in what particular ways you think that you will benefit personally and professionally from the experience? Discuss how work in your field of study (including your own research) can enhance the USA-UK relationship. Further, explain what you might do to contribute to improved relations in this area now and following the scholarship. See the Marshall understanding of ambassadorial potential.  

One-Year Choice Explanation: (for 1-yr Marshall applicants only; 300 words) The one-year Marshall Scholarship is aimed at applicants who have strong reasons for wishing to study in the UK but are unable to commit to the two-year scholarship. Please read the objectives of the Marshall Scholarship outlined in the Rules and provide a statement that outlines why you are unable to apply for a two-year Scholarship.

Page last modified March 13, 2024