Admission

Applicants to the McDonnell International Scholars Academy must be admitted to a doctoral or master’s degree program at Washington University in St. Louis. The McDonnell Academy steering committee selects scholars based on outstanding academic potential and on applicants’ commitment to learning about international issues and global leadership.

Apply: the McDonnell Academy accepts applications October 1 through February 1 every academic year.

Admission for Scholars from Partner Institutions

Eligibility

To be eligible to apply to the McDonnell Academy, an individual must be a graduate of one of our university partners and must also apply to one of a select group of full-time doctoral or master’s degree programs. Application to the Academy is separate from, and in addition to, an application to a doctoral or master’s degree program at Washington University in St. Louis. The Academy application includes a 1,000-word essay requirement.

Financial and Programmatic Support from the McDonnell Academy

For the 2015-16 academic year, scholars will receive:

  1. full tuition for study in a doctoral or master’s degree program. This support will continue as long as the scholar is making satisfactory progress toward a degree.
  2. a 12-month living stipend for each year that the scholar is making satisfactory progress toward a degree. This stipend is set at $27,000 for the year beginning August 16, 2015.
  3. a one-time travel allowance of up to $1,500 for travel to St. Louis for a period of study as an Academy scholar.
  4. an annual travel allowance of up to $2,000 for a trip to the scholar’s alma mater.

Admission for U.S. Scholars

The Academy recruited U.S. scholars as part of its 2015-16 cohort. U.S. scholars will comprise up to 25% of each cohort.

Eligibility

To be eligible to apply to the McDonnell Academy as a U.S. scholar, an individual must be a U.S. citizen and is expected to have spent most of his or her life and earned previous degrees in the U.S.

U.S. scholars are expected to participate in all the activities organized by the Academy in St. Louis and elsewhere (e.g., cohort trips to New York and Washington, D.C.). In addition, they are expected to spend at least three months during their time as a scholar at one of the 28 partner institutions in the Academy. This might involve activities such as working in a laboratory where collaborative research with Washington University is being conducted, fieldwork or advanced language training at a partner institution.

We do not expect applicants to provide specific plans at this point for an extended stay at a partner institution, but some indication of background and interest in international issues and why it would be useful to spend time at an institutional partner is desirable. These are matters to be included in the required essay portion of the Academy application. Knowledge of a relevant foreign language and previous international experience are also desirable and should be noted in this essay.

In addition to applying to the Academy, U.S. scholar applicants must also apply to one of a select group of full-time doctoral or master’s degree programs. Application to the Academy is separate from, and in addition to, an application to a doctoral or master’s degree program at Washington University in St. Louis.

Financial and Programmatic Support from the McDonnell Academy

For the 2015-16 academic year, scholars will receive:

  1. Full tuition for study in a doctoral or master’s degree program. This support will continue as long as the scholar is making satisfactory progress toward a degree for up to five years.
  2. A 12-month living stipend for each year that the scholar is making satisfactory progress toward a degree. This stipend is set at $27,000 for the year beginning August 16, 2015.
  3. Travel support for one or more extended trips to a partner institution of the Academy, to be arranged on a case-by-case basis. The Academy will also help in arranging on-site activities and support for living expenses at the partner institution.

Corporate Fellows

Scholars selected as corporate fellows have special opportunities to work as interns with their McDonnell Academy corporate sponsor(s). The Academy’s steering committee appoints corporate fellows; no additional application is required.

Changing Application Information

If you need to change or update information on your submitted application, please send an email to mcdonnell@wustl.edu with the subject line, “Application Change.” In this email, state your name, university partner, the WUSTL degree program to which you have applied and your changed information.

Application Decisions

The McDonnell Academy steering committee reviews each application thoroughly. Decisions are typically made by the end of March and no later than mid-April. Please keep in mind that application review can be a lengthy process and the timeline is subject to change.

Applicants are notified of admission decisions via email. There is no online resource available that allows applicants to check the status of their applications.

On average, 12-15 scholars are admitted to the McDonnell Academy each year.

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