Application Process

By December 1

In order to be considered for a Presidential Scholarship, students must:

  1. Apply to Villanova University through the Common Application by Dec. 1

  2. Be nominated by one of the following:
    • Chief academic officer of their high school (principal, president, headmaster)
    • Guidance counselor or an official school designee 
    • Representative from a home school entity or non-profit educational organization dedicated to helping disadvantaged high school students with the college search process
    • Nominators must submit the Nomination Form by Dec. 1

If you need assistance filling out the Common Application or the Villanova Supplement to the Common Application, please contact the Admissions Office.

Once CRF has received the Nomination Form, the nominee will receive a confirmation email, which includes the link to an online interest form. Upon completion of this form, the student will receive the Presidential Scholarship application materials with additional instructions. This email will provide access to a downloadable PDF with eight short answer questions, which must be uploaded via the student's application status page by January 2

The emails will come from presidentialscholarship@villanova.edu. Please make sure that all email accounts are set up to receive messages from this email address.

Nominators and nominees will receive confirmations by email. Please do not call our office to confirm receipt of nominations, unless you do not receive a confirmation email.

Students will not have access to the Presidential Scholarship Application until they have received the nomination confirmation email and have completed the online form indicating their interest in being considered for the Presidential Scholarship.

By January 2

The Presidential Scholarship Application will be available to the student via email once the nomination is received and the student has completed the online form indicating their interest in consideration for the Presidential Scholarship.

Please note: The Presidential Scholarship Application cannot be submitted until the student has applied to Villanova University through the Common Application.

  • To apply, eight short essays need to be completed (word limit is 200 words per essay).
    • Essays can be viewed by downloading the application from the email by saving the PDF attachment to your computer.
    • Essay responses can be prepared directly on the downloaded fillable PDF document and saved to your computer until they are ready for submission. (To save the application to your computer, use the "Save As"  function on Adobe Acrobat Reader).
    • To submit your completed application, upload your document using the "Browse" function and then click "Submit."
    • Once you click "Submit," your application submission is final and you will no longer have access to the Presidential Scholarship Application.
    • You will receive a message on your browser that the application has been submitted successfully and your checklist will be updated to show that your Presidential Scholarship application has been completed.
  • The Presidential Scholarship Application must be submitted online through the online application portal by January 2.

Please Note: In the online interest form (included in the nomination confirmation email), students will also be asked if they would like to be considered for the Presidential Scholarship for historically underrepresented students (members of a low-income family - usually Pell Grant eligible, African American/Black, Latino/Hispanic, American Indian/Native Alaskan, Asian/Pacific Islander, and those who are the first in their family to pursue a college education).

Students can be considered for the Presidential Scholarship for historically underrepresented students in addition to the Presidential Scholarship for their respective college (Arts, Sciences, Engineering, Business, or Nursing). Eligibility for the Presidential Scholarship for historically underrepresented students is limited to U.S. Citizens and Permanent Residents. If you are offered an interview for both, we strongly suggest that you consider taking advantage of both opportunities.


Application for the Presidential Scholarship in no way ensures acceptance to Villanova University.

Late January

The Presidential Scholars Program (PSP) selection committees review all University Admissions Application materials, as well as the Presidential Scholarship Short Essays. The PSP selection committees review applications and announce Presidential Scholarship Finalists during late January. Applicants can view their status (Finalist, Non-finalist) on the application portal at that time.

Mid-February

Presidential Scholarship Finalists are REQUIRED to attend the interviews on campus in February. Finalists are expected to stay on campus for the entire three days.

Late February

All finalists will be notified of the selection committees' decisions at the end of February.

For more information about The Presidential Scholarship, contact:

presidentialscholarship@villanova.edu
610-519-8803

Contact Information

Center for Research and Fellowships
Garey Hall 38
800 Lancaster Avenue
Villanova, PA 19085
crf@villanova.edu
610-519-8803

Dr. Michael T. Westrate
Director, Center for Research and Fellowships & Presidential Scholars Program
michael.westrate@villanova.edu
610-519-5928

Catherine M. Stecyk
Associate Director, Center for Research and Fellowships
catherine.stecyk@villanova.edu
610-519-8766

John J. Shanley
Assistant Director, Center for Research and Fellowships
john.shanley@villanova.edu
610-519-8852

Chelsea T. Benincasa
Program Coordinator, Center for Research and Fellowships & Presidential Scholars Program
chelsea.benincasa@villanova.edu
610-519-5935