Bonner Scholarship

Rhodes is part of a national consortium of Bonner Scholars, an innovative and pioneering program for scholarship and community service, supported by the Corella and Bertram F. Bonner Foundation of Princeton, NJ. The Bonner Scholarship is for entering students who have a passion for service and social justice, and who require financial assistance in order to attend Rhodes. If you are passionate about effecting positive change in the world, you may be a good candidate for this award. Each year, we select 15 incoming first-year students with exceptional records of leadership, community-service and/or social-justice work to participate in a unique, four-year leadership program. Since 1992, the Bonner Scholars Program has supported a growing spirit of service at Rhodes, helping us move from a strong history of volunteerism towards campus-wide service based learning, civic engagement, and community based advocacy.

As a Bonner Scholar, you will be challenged to connect your academic studies, personal beliefs, leadership skills and philosophy of service to real-life organizations and situations.

In return, we expect you to:

  • Fulfill 10 hours of weekly service and leadership activities each semester
  • Make community service and leadership development one of your highest priorities
  • Maintain a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.50
  • Participate in special activities and twice annual retreats
  •  Attend a group service trip during spring break your first year
  • Attend a weekend service trip in the spring of your sophomore year
  • Work full time in community service for two summers

What benefits will I receive as a Bonner Scholar?

  • A scholarship of $10,000 per year
  • A stipend of $1,250 per semester based on fulfilling the weekly service requirement
  • Your documented need (as determined by the FAFSA) met through institutional and federal funding (if eligible), which may include subsidized loans
  • $1,000 living stipend and $1,500 in earnings for each of the two summers you participate in service projects
  • An additional $500 available to senior Bonner Scholars for a final summer service project or for a special project during senior year
  • A $2,000 loan reduction award for students who complete the program
  • A four-year program of leadership development, reflection and service activities

How do I qualify?
Requirements for the Bonner Scholarship:

  • Early Decision I: Application for admission, FAFSA, and CSS Profile completed by November 1; Bonner Scholarship Application completed within 7 days of completed application for admission; Notifications made within 2 weeks of application for Bonner Scholarship.
  • Early Decision II: Application for admission, FAFSA, and CSS Profile completed by January 1; Bonner Scholarship Application completed within 7 days of completed application for admission; Notifications made within 2 weeks of application for Bonner Scholarship.
  • Early Action: Application for admission, FAFSA, and CSS Profile completed by November 15; Bonner Scholarship Application completed by November 21; Notifications made by January 15.
  • Regular Decision: Application for admission, FAFSA, and CSS Profile completed by January 15; Bonner Scholarship Application completed by January 21; Notifications made by March 15.
  • SAT or ACT scores that are competitive for admission
  • A high school record that is competitive for admission
  • Exceptional record of leadership, community service and/or social justice work
  • The average Expected Family Contribution (EFC) as determined by the FAFSA and CSS PROFILE for the entire Bonner cohort must be $7,500 or less. Students with EFC of $15,000 or less are encouraged to apply, although students with higher EFC often qualify based on the characteristics of other applicants.

Bonner Scholarship Application 

Use your Rhodes College application portal email address and password to access the Bonner application. 

Funding for this program is provided by the Corella and Bertram F. Bonner Foundation.