What is a Nationally Competitive Award?

Nationally competitive scholarships and fellowships are awards that are funded by sources independent of the University of Kentucky including non-profit groups, government agencies, and companies. Criteria for scholarships vary but generally include academic performance, financial need, community affiliations, and unique elements important to the sponsoring organization.

One of the primary responsibilities of the Office of Nationally Competitive Awards is to administer the campus nomination process for 13 major awards that require an institutional endorsement. For these particular opportunities, students must apply first to a campus review committee, which will then select the students who will represent the University of Kentucky. Nominees will receive feedback on their application and will be officially nominated by the institution. 

There are many scholarship opportunities that allow direct application.  For those awards, the Office of Nationally Competitive Awards provides advice and assistance to students preparing an application. The primary goal of this office is to recruit and prepare UK students with strong academic and extracurricular records to help them be successful in pursuing national competitive opportunities. UK students have received many of these awards and a partial list of award recipients can be found on the Recipients Page.