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College of Humanities & Social Sciences

Awards, Scholarships and Research Grants

The Political Science Department annually presents two awards to students in the program.  These include the Award for Outstanding Graduating Senior and the Hoover Prize (for best presentation at the Political Science Association student conference).

In 2020, the Department is delighted to announce the establishment of the Vernon Damani "Dr J" Johnson Scholarship to honor the important ways in which “Dr. J” has shaped so many lives through his dedication to teaching, social justice, and racial equity.  The scholarship will be awarded to a Political Science student with a demonstrated commitment to social justice activism, financial need, and a GPA of 3.0 or better.  Students must be a Political Science major to be eligible.  To learn more about the scholarship and how to apply, please visit the link below.  The revised application deadline in this inaugural year is October 15, 2020.


In addition to these awards, the department also offers declared PLSC majors several scholarships opportunities including:

  • The Ken Hoover Memorial Scholarship:  One scholarship is available to a Political Science major or a PPE major, second-year student (or 3rd or 4th), merit-based with need as a tie-breaker.  "Applicants should be inquisitive, excited by ideas, and civic/community minded."  Typical award amount is $2,500.


  • The Clement Family Scholarship:  One scholarship is available to a full-time student majoring in political science with interest in public policy. Financial need will also be a consideration. Applicants are required to submit a one-page essay answering the following: "What are your career goals?  What are your interests in public policy and human (community) services, and how do you see these working together towards meeting your professional goals?" Typical award amount is $3,000.  Award not available for more than two consecutive years.


  • The Bill McDonald Memorial Scholarship:  One scholarship is available for a Political Science major to use during their time at WWU, who is planning to attend Graduate School.  Preference is given to those emphasizing public policy.  Typical award amount is $2,500.


  • The Public Affairs Research Fund (PARF):  One scholarship is available for a Political Science major to offer support while attending Western.  Equal merit/need is considered.  Typical award amount is $2,500


To Apply:  The department typically accepts applications for the scholarships listed above during the Spring quarter.  In AY 2019-2020, the application deadline is April 1, 2020.   All applications should be submitted by email to Erica Steele.  For additional information and application procedures, please contact the Political Science office (AH415).  Email:  Erica Steele, Phone: (360) 650-3469.

Click here for the Scholarship Application Form.


CHSS Scholarships

The College of Humanities and Social Sciences also offers several scholarships. Information about each scholarship and the awarding criteria can be viewed by selecting the links below.  For general CHSS Scholarship guidelines and application procedures, click here.


Other Scholarships

Through the Scholarship Center the university offers a number of scholarship programs that are not restricted to a specific major, department or college. For information about other fellowships and academic awards, please contact the Fellowship Office.  A list of fellowship/scholarship ideas is available here


Research Awards

Public Affairs Research Fund:  The Political Science department has PARF funding available to support undergraduate majors.  Funds can be used for student field trips and conference participation. The maximum amount of the award is $250 with no more than 50% of a project funded.  Funding limited to one conference.  To request the funds, the student must submit a written proposal in advance of the activity including a proposed budget.  The proposal should be 1) sponsored by a faculty member in the department who is responsible for the terms of the award and 2) approved by the Budget Committee and majority of the department.  Requests should be submitted to Joan Blackwell in AH 415 via hard copy or email with necessary attachments.


Research and Creative Opportunities for Undergraduate Students:  Through the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs, students can apply for support to engage in scholarly/creative work in their disciplines.  Any registered undergraduate in good standing may apply.  Grants will normally be awarded in the range of $100 - $500 per project.