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Scholarships, Honors & Awards

Image of Meeting of Three Individuals for Scholarships, Honors & Awards

The college recognizes its outstanding students in a variety of ways: placement on the Dean’s List, induction into honorary societies, and the granting of general college honors and departmental honors, as well as college-wide awards and scholarships to graduating seniors. College-wide awards are presented and honors status is conferred at the annual Baccalaureate Convocation for graduating seniors.

College Committee on Honors and Awards

The college’s Committee on Honors and Awards of the Academic Senate selects the recipients of college-wide honors and awards and recommends to the Senate criteria for graduation with honors as well as criteria for other college-wide honors and awards. It evaluates all proposals for new college-wide awards involving academic excellence and works to stimulate recognition and appreciation of high academic achievement.

College-Wide Awards

The committee presents awards to outstanding graduating students at the Baccalaureate Convocation. Faculty may nominate students for the awards, and the committee reviews records of all candidates for graduation with high grade-point averages. In making its selection, the committee considers such factors as an outstanding achievement in one or more fields of study, high grade-point average, and breadth of courses taken as well as evidence of originality, creativity, and promise of future contributions to society. Some of the awards have special criteria, such as admission to graduate and professional schools, and contributions to the college and community. No one may apply directly for these awards. The college-wide awards are listed below.

The Paul Klapper Scholarship is provided annually by the staff of Queens College and other friends in memory of the college’s first president to encourage scholarly accomplishment, moral and intellectual integrity, and good citizenship. This award is made to a graduating senior who plans to go on to graduate work.

Queens College Retirees Association Scholarships are presented annually to graduating seniors who have maintained high academic standards, have shown promise of contributing to the quality of life in New York City, and have plans for continued education. These scholarships include:

The Queens College Retirees Association Scholarship. Established in 1984, it is named each year after a retired faculty or staff member who has contributed significantly to the mission of the Retirees Association.

The Wilbur E. Gilman Scholarship of the Queens College Retirees Association

The Charlotte and Howard A. Knag Scholarship of the Queens College Retirees Association

The Mardel Ogilvie Scholarship of the Queens College Retirees Association

The Lucile Lindberg Scholarship of the Queens College Retirees Association

Queens College Retirees Association—Nancy Meltzer Scholarship

The Molly Weinstein Memorial Award is presented annually to two or three graduating seniors who have a superior record of scholarship and intend to pursue a career in college teaching.

The Salman Hamdani Memorial Award is presented to a graduating senior who has maintained high standards in scholarship and character and has been accepted to medical school. The award is provided by the family of Salman Hamdani, a June 2000 graduate of the college who was a chemistry major and pre-med student. As a New York State Certified Paramedic, ambulance driver, and New York Police Academy cadet, he made the ultimate sacrifice while rescuing victims from the North Tower at the World Trade Center on 9/11.

The William E. Marames Memorial Scholarship is presented annually to a graduating senior who has achieved academic excellence and who will be attending Fordham Law School.

The A. Joseph Geist Law Fellowship is offered annually by the A. Joseph and Cecile A. Geist Foundation, Inc., to be used for tuition by a pre-law student who has been accepted for admission to an accredited law school, has maintained high standards in scholarship and character, and has contributed to the best interests of the college.

The Helen T. Hendricks Scholarship is presented annually to a graduating student who has maintained high standards in scholarship, made an outstanding and valuable contribution of service to others in the Queens College community and/or in the community at large (particularly to minority students on campus), and been accepted to a professional school. The award is made by a group of alumni to acknowledge the contribution made to their educational experience by Helen T. Hendricks, a member of the college staff.

The Jeffrey Vigliarolo Memorial Scholarship is awarded to a graduating student of high scholastic achievement who plans to attend law school after graduation. It is funded through the Jeffrey Vigliarolo Scholarship Fund Established by the family and friends of Jeffrey, a member of the class of 1981.

The Marc and Zoe Belth Memorial Award is presented to a graduating senior who has demonstrated academic excellence and who plans to attend graduate school to pursue studies in some aspect of the analysis of thought or cognition, such as philosophy, psychology, linguistics, or education. Professor Belth, a professor of education, was especially interested in the nature of the process of thinking.

The Alumni Association of Queens College Award is presented annually to a graduating senior who has maintained an outstanding academic record, has contributed to the best interests of the college, and has been accepted for graduate study at Queens College.

The Jeffrey B. Berman Memorial Award is presented annually to a graduating senior who has made significant contributions to the needs and interests of students with disabilities on campus, or who has demonstrated academic achievement while meeting the challenges imposed by experiences with disability.

The Saul Weprin Memorial Scholarship in the Public Interest is awarded to a graduating senior who has demonstrated a commitment to public service or community service. Recipients are selected on the basis of their academic excellence and evidence of a strong commitment to and interest in pursuing a career in the public interest. This scholarship has been established at Queens College by the National Speakers Conference and Mrs. Saul Weprin in memory of Saul Weprin, former speaker of the New York State Assembly.

The Herbert and June Bienstock Memorial Scholarship is awarded in memory of a beloved member of the Queens College community who dedicated his life to justice for working people and equal access and opportunity for all people, in all aspects of American life. To honor Prof. Bienstock’s commitment to equal access and opportunity, a scholarship is awarded annually to a graduating senior who has demonstrated a commitment both to academic excellence and to fostering a campus of equal access and opportunity for all members of the community.

The Queens College Women’s Club Awards recognize graduating seniors who complete the baccalaureate degree with academic excellence.

The Judge Charles S. Colden Award is presented to a graduating senior who has maintained a high standard in scholarship and character and has generally contributed to the best interests of the college.

The Harvard Sitkoff Civil Rights Award is presented annually to a graduating senior who has maintained high academic standards and exhibited a special interest in furthering the cause of civil rights.

The Chaney-Goodman-Schwerner Award is offered annually to a graduating senior who has made a significant contribution toward fostering human relations and eliminating the divisions that separate peoples.

The Donald E. Kirkpatrick Award is given annually to a graduating senior of outstanding academic achievement whose activities have been in the best interests of the college and its goals.

The Roarers Memorial Award was established by the Roarers Fraternity in memory of departed members. It is presented annually to a graduating senior who has maintained a good academic record and made an outstanding contribution to the college through community service.

The Creativity Award recognizes a graduating senior who has demonstrated both scholarly excellence and extraordinary achievement in intellectual innovation or artistic expression in a chosen field of study that is not limited to the major discipline. Such achievement will be evidenced in performance, material or conceptual invention, or literary form.

The Joe and Carol Brostek Scholarship is presented annually to graduating seniors who are planning to pursue graduate studies and have demonstrated academic excellence while serving in campus leadership positions that have benefited Queens College.

The Michael Wreszin Prize is for a graduating senior whose social activism on and off-campus in the cause of economic and social justice, civil rights, and peace best exemplifies the values to which Professor Michael Wreszin devoted his life.

The Joan Thornton McManus Memorial Prize for Academic Excellence is made annually to a student with the highest grade-point average upon completion of the baccalaureate degree. To be eligible, a student must have completed at least 112 credit hours of quality point-bearing grades at Queens College.

The David Syrett Scholarship is given to a graduating senior with an outstanding academic record who plans to attend a PhD program in history, philosophy, or economics, preferably at an American university.

The E. Richard Covert Memorial Scholarship is given to a graduating student who has demonstrated strong academic and leadership skills as well as a commitment to engaging students, faculty, and staff in creating and sustaining an environment that supports quality student life. This scholarship was established in honor of Dr. E. Richard Covert, who served as dean of students for ten years and who touched the lives of countless QC students during his nearly three decades as a member of the faculty and administration.

Office of Honors and Scholarships

Honors Hall 16; 718-997-5502;fax718-997-5498

email: scholarships

Hours: 9am–5pm

The Office of Honors & Scholarships administers the Queens College Scholars Program; these are scholarships awarded to entering students through the Office of Undergraduate Admissions. The National Fellowships Advisor of the office is the college’s representative for major national scholarship competitions. Either the National Fellowships Advisor or a member of the Honors and Scholarships staff is available to discuss these scholarship opportunities with students, and also to work with students interested in applying for such awards. In addition, the Office of Honors and Scholarships oversees a number of college-based scholarships for which Queens College students may apply. A sampling of major national scholarships appears below.

Queens College Scholarships

Each year the Queens College Scholars program offers a variety of scholarships to incoming Fall freshmen and transfers with strong academic credentials. These scholarships are supported by gifts to the college from foundations and alumni. Applications are handled by the Undergraduate Admissions Office in Jefferson Hall.

Internal Scholarships

Queens College offers many internal scholarships, ranging from book awards to half- or full-tuition scholarships. Each semester the Office of Honors & Scholarships reviews student applications for such awards. The eligibility criteria vary from academic excellence to major or career emphasis. The criteria are sufficiently broad to encompass the vast majority of the college’s student population. Students are encouraged to apply for these awards by completing the Internal Scholarship application found on the Honors & Scholarships’ website.

National Scholarships

The following are examples of national scholarships for which students may apply.

Ford Foundation Predoctoral Fellowships for Minorities identifies individuals of demonstrated ability and provides them with opportunities to engage in advanced study leading to the PhD or ScD degree and to inspire others to follow an academic career in teaching and research. Applicants must be U.S. citizens or nationals. They also must be in one of the following groups: Alaskan Natives, Black/African Americans, Mexican Americans/Chicanos, Native American Indians, Native Pacific Islanders (Polynesian or Micronesian), or Puerto Ricans. Students who are at or near the beginning of their graduate study or who are enrolled in or planning to enroll in a research-based PhD or ScD program are eligible.

Fulbright Scholarships support one year of graduate research and/or study abroad in selected countries. Students design their own individualized projects or programs of study. Applicants must be U.S. citizens and hold a BA degree or the equivalent before the beginning date of the grant.

Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Program is an undergraduate scholarship program created to encourage outstanding students to pursue careers in mathematics, the natural sciences, and engineering disciplines. Applicants must be in the upper quarter of their class and be U.S. citizens, resident aliens, or U.S. nationals.

The Beinecke Brothers Memorial Scholarship is a highly competitive award intended “to provide substantial scholarships for the graduate education of young men and women of exceptional promise. The program seeks to encourage and enable highly motivated students … to be courageous in the selection of a graduate course of study in the arts, humanities and social sciences.”

British Marshall Scholarships support two years of study for a degree in a university in the United Kingdom. Applicants must be U.S. citizens and hold a bachelor’s degree; they must also have a minimum required GPA of 3.7 (or A–). The Marshall selectors are seeking candidates “of high ability and wide interests who plan to take up careers not only in higher education but in commerce and industry, the arts and professions, and public life generally.”

Image of Four QNS College Graduates.

National Science Foundation Fellowships are awarded each year to students intending to pursue research-based MA or PhD degrees in mathematics, physical and life sciences, behavioral and social sciences, computer and information science, engineering, or the history and philosophy of science. All applicants must be U.S. citizens, U.S. nationals, or permanent residents. The GRE general test and subject test are required.

Rhodes Scholarships support two to three years of study at the University of Oxford (England). Applicants must be U.S. citizens, hold a bachelor’s degree, and be between 18 and 24 years of age on October 1 of the year of application. Candidates have traditionally been selected based on their intellectual distinction, leadership ability, community involvement, and “the energy to use their talents to the full.”

Harry S. Truman Scholarships are awarded each year to college juniors who wish financial support to attend graduate or professional school in preparation for careers in government, the nonprofit sector, or elsewhere in public service. Successful applicants must have extensive records of public service, a commitment to a career in public service, outstanding leadership potential, and intellectual strength and analytical abilities. The scholarship provides $3,000 of support during the senior year and $27,000 for graduate studies. Nominees must be studying full-time, be in the upper quarter of their class, and be U.S. citizens or nationals.

The U.S. Department of State’s Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship aims to diversify the study abroad experience. The program supports students with financial need and funds study abroad opportunities of varying lengths to accommodate a range of students’ schedules.

All these are highly competitive scholarships. Students are encouraged to visit the Office of Honors & Scholarships to obtain more information on these scholarships as well as other opportunities that support graduate and undergraduate studies

Headed for Graduate or Professional School?

Here’s some advice from CUNY students who are ahead of you on the road. These students are not only going to graduate school; they’re going there with major national scholarships: Fulbrights, Marshalls, Mellons, Ford Foundation, and National Science Foundation. These CUNY students succeeded at the national level. You can, too. Start work now!

Student Award Winners Say:

  • Take charge. Take responsibility for your career. Make it your top priority. Create the opportunities you need to build a strong portfolio. Aggressively seek information on scholarships, schools, and professions.

  • Distinguish yourself. Every scholarship and graduate school applicant has a high GPA and good GRE scores. You must stand out in order to succeed. Building a strong portfolio documenting your interests and abilities is crucial to your success. Your portfolio will include letters of recommendation and a personal statement. Sometimes it also includes a writing sample. Start building your portfolio now.

  • Build your portfolio. Do independent studies. Work as a research assistant. Find internships. Get into positions of responsibility in activities and organizations connected with your career interests and goals. Get involved.

  • Build relationships. Only people who know your work well can write the strong, detailed letters of recommendation that are absolutely necessary for your success. Independent studies, internships, and assistantships are all ways to build professional relationships. There are other ways. Find them.

  • Be organized. Make yourself aware of scholarship and school application deadlines. Gather application materials. Make a calendar of deadlines for yourself. Get recommendation forms to professors early, and follow up with phone calls.

  • Write your personal statement early. Application deadlines may be as early as October. Many people should read and critique your personal statement. You may also need time to tailor the statement to more than one graduate school or scholarship program. Your personal statement consists of two parts: a concise statement of who you are and a clear, detailed plan of the research you wish to do while in graduate school. It is a marketing document in which you show the school or foundation why you are worthy of their financial support. For major national scholarships, you may be asking for $30,000 a year. You must demonstrate that you deserve it.

Who Can Help?

At Queens College:

Office of Honors & Scholarships