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Washington Semester Scholarships

American University's School of Professional & Extended Studies offers a limited number of partial scholarships to qualified students to facilitate their participation in their programs. Scholarship opportunities are open to students who have already been admitted to the Washington Semester program.


All eligible students who submit a scholarship application are considered for the following two scholarships:

Dean's Ambassador Scholarship:

Students in this category must demonstrate a high level of academic achievement (3.5 GPA or higher), community engagement, extracurricular activities, honors, and potential contribution to their academic field of study while enrolled in the School of Professional & Extended Studies. The recipients of this award are identified through the evaluation of their admission application and supplemental materials.

Program of Study Scholars:

Students in this category will be deemed scholars within their program of study. Students must have an average to above average GPA (3.0 or higher*). They must demonstrate moderate to high financial need, and should have contributed in some way to their field of study. Students are eligible to receive one or more of the following scholarship awards:

  • Tuition Adjustment- based on member school agreements
  • Tuition Scholarships
  • Room & Board Grant

Travel Grant

Travel Grants are only applicable to students participating in one of the Washington Semester Program travel electives. If a student is awarded a travel grant and then later decides not to participate in a travel elective, the student will forfeit the travel grant. 

Work Award

Work awards are a form of financial assistance, which provides students the opportunity to work part-time within the School of Professional & Extended Studies. Please note: a Work Award is not a Federal Work Study grant.

SPExS Leadership Scholarships:

The Leadership Scholarships can be awarded in a variety of financial assistance including in the form of Tuition, Room & Board (including meal plan coverage) scholarships, Travel Grants, and/or Work Awards. The dollar amount will vary based on funding and need. The Scholarship Committee expects students to have a 3.0 GPA or higher* and demonstrated leadership experience.

  1. Education Award: Awarded to students that are the first in their immediate family to attend a college or university. Students applying for an Education Award should desire a future career within their program of study.
  2. Advancement Award: Awarded to underrepresented populations. This award is provided to increase diversity and opportunities for students from these populations within the School of Professional & Extended Studies. Students attending specifically designated colleges such as historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs), Tribal Colleges and Universities (TCUs), and Hispanic-serving institutions are encouraged to apply. Students applying for an Advancement Award should desire a future career within the program of study.

Science, Health, and Technology Scholarship:

Awarded to students pursuing study in the areas of Science, Health, and Technology. This is specifically designed for students in the Washington Semester Public Health Program and the Graduate Gateway Biotechnology Program. Special consideration is given to applicants from underrepresented or underserved populations including women, though all students are encouraged to apply. Students are asked to complete a separate application to be considered for this award, highlighting their background in these fields and future career plans. 

*Exceptions may be made for students below 3.0 GPA that have demonstrated need.

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