Churchill Scholarship

Location: Cambridge, United Kingdom Experience Type: Nomination Based Fellowship Awards

Churchill Scholarships provide funding for one year of graduate study in engineering, mathematics, or the sciences at Cambridge University. Outstanding science students are encouraged to apply. Grinnell was invited to nominate students for the Churchill Scholarship starting in 2007.

Eligibility: open to U.S. citizens who are members of the Classes of 2024 or 2025

Intent to Apply Deadline: Friday, May 24, 2024 THROUGH Early Fall semester

Intent to Apply URL: UK – Marshall, Rhodes, and Churchill Fall 2024 Intent to Apply

Campus deadline: Monday, September 30, 2024 from 1 – 5 p.m. CST

Foundation deadline: Friday, November 1, 2024 by 5 p.m. EST

Scholarship URL:

Churchill Campus Application Checklist, Fall 2023 (Fall 2024 will be available by Mid-June)


About the Award

Established in 1959, the Winston Churchill Foundation was founded by American friends of Churchill who wanted to fulfill his wish of always having young American graduate students at Churchill College at the University of Cambridge. The Foundation’s Scholarship Program offers U.S. citizens of exceptional ability and outstanding achievement the opportunity to pursue graduate studies in engineering, mathematics, or the sciences at Cambridge. One of the newer colleges at the University of Cambridge, Churchill College was built in tribute to Winston Churchill, who in the years after the Second World War presciently recognized the growing importance of science and technology for prosperity and security. Churchill College thus focuses on the sciences, engineering, and mathematics. The first Churchill Scholarships, three in number, were awarded in 1963 and funded one year of study. There have been some 430 Churchill Scholars, and eight Churchill Fellows have gone on to win the Nobel Prize.

At least fourteen Churchill Scholarships are offered annually. The one-year awards lead to the Master of Philosophy (MPhil), the Certificate of Post-Graduate Study (CPGS, in only a few fields of study), or the Master of Advanced Study in Mathematics (MASM, formerly known as CASM, the Certificate of Advanced Study in Mathematics). The Scholarship is tenable for nine, ten, or twelve months, depending on the academic program. The Churchill Scholarship is worth between $42,000 and $48,000, depending on the exchange rate. It covers all University and College tuition and fees (currently about $25,000). In addition, Churchill Scholars receive a living allowance of £10,000 if enrolled in a nine-month academic program, £12,000 if enrolled in an eleven-month academic program, and £13,000 if enrolled in a full-year academic program. They receive an allowance of up to $1,000 for travel to and from the United Kingdom, reimbursement of applications fees for a UK visa, and a personal travel allowance of $500 to allow scholars to travel around the UK, in Europe, or farther afield. The Foundation also offers the possibility of a Special Research Grant of up to $2,000; this grant may cover travel for presentations at international conferences, short stays at another university or institute for special research, and other activities. Married students should consult with the Foundation about additional support.



An applicant for the Churchill Scholarship must be a citizen of the United States, either native born or naturalized, and must be a senior who is enrolled in one of the institutions participating in the Scholarship Program or a student who has graduated from one of those institutions within the past 12 months. (Grinnell is a participating institution.) Upon taking up the Churchill Scholarship, a Churchill Scholar must hold a bachelor’s degree or an equivalent, and may not have attained a doctorate.


Selection Criteria

The criteria for the selection of Churchill Scholars include:

  • Exceptional academic talent and outstanding achievement, especially in the major, as indicated by course grades. The Foundation does not require a minimum GPA, but recent Churchill Scholars have had a GPA of at least 3.7 and usually have 3.9 or above.
  • A capacity to contribute to the advancement of knowledge in the sciences, engineering, or mathematics by pursuing original, creative work at an advanced level as demonstrated by awards, prizes, research, and letters of recommendation. Applicants in the sciences and engineering will demonstrate extensive laboratory experience, internships, or other related work, while applicants in mathematics will show substantial independent work or other projects.
  • Outstanding personal qualities. Understanding the time commitment required by research, the Churchill Foundation does not seek so-called well-rounded applicants; instead, it seeks applicants with what we call interesting “jagged edges.” Nonetheless, it should be noted that successful applicants display a bewildering array of talents activities outside of academic pursuits, especially in music, athletics, and social service (among other activities).

The Winston Churchill Foundation of the United States is committed to a policy against discrimination based on sex, sexual orientation, gender, marital or parental status, race, color, religion, national origin, or disability or any other characteristic protected by law.


How to Apply

Grinnell may annually nominate up to two students or alumni for this award. Individuals interested in applying for Grinnell’s nominations for the Churchill Scholarship should meet with Ann Landstrom and follow the Campus Application Checklist (see above). Note that applicants interested in the Churchill Scholarship must also apply for graduate admission to Cambridge by the October deadline.


Ethical Guidelines

All applicants are expected to adhere to these ethical guidelines.


Application Alternative

If studying abroad at Cambridge interests you, you might also consider applying for the Gates Cambridge Scholarship.