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Mitchell


CONTENTS

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1. SNAPSHOT

The Mitchell Scholarship covers all costs for study at a UNIVERSITY in IRELAND or NORTHERN IRELAND. Smith endorsement required. Final campus deadline end-September. Begin applications in SPRING JUNIOR YEAR.

2. OUTLINE

Irish University Program

The George J. Mitchell Scholarships, established in 1998, are named in honor of the former United States Senator who served as chairman of the peace negotiations in Northern Ireland. Administered by the US-Ireland Alliance, the fellowship is endowed by the Government of Ireland and sponsored by the Northern Ireland Executive.

One year of graduate study &/or research in any feasible field at a tertiary college including the seven universities in Ireland and two in Northern Ireland. BEGIN APPLICATION AS JUNIOR.

The most advantageous time to register for a fellowship is in the spring, starting mid February. Statistics show that those who register earlier fare far better. The deadline to register for the Mitchell is the end of August. Petitions to register later may be considered from students who show exceptional promise to be successful in fellowships competitions.

Graduating senior at least 18 but not yet 30 years old on October 1. U.S. citizen. Also open to Smith alumnae. All applications require formal Smith endorsement. GPA 3.6+.

Intellectual distinction. Service. Leadership. Extra-curricular activity. Honesty. Integrity. Fairness. Candidate and project promote understanding between U.S. and Ireland.

"Candidates demonstrate strong records of achievement in: academic excellence, leadership, community service."

12 awards a year covering cost of tuition and room, plus $11,000 and a travel stipend. 5% or 1 in 20 chance (245 apps in 03 for 12 spots = 4.89% chance). 20 finalists invited to D.C. interviews expenses paid.

For variations in eligibility and selection criteria check: www.us-irelandalliance.org. (See also scholar "reflections" journals: an excellent way to learn about the Mitchell Scholarship.) To find participating universities in Ireland and Northern Ireland:
www.us-irelandalliance.org.

Feasibility. Prior to applying, check that the proposed course of study is available at the university elected and that you have the required undergraduate background for it.

Plan to begin your application early Spring Semester of your junior year.

Prioritize university choices. Chances of acceptance are increased by choosing more than one university. At least two choices must be given. Lack of an alternate university can lead to an otherwise successful application failing. The US-Ireland Alliance seeks places at the universities on the successful applicants' behalf. Awards are confirmed after placement is secured.

For Mitchell application and interview strategies from past winners, look at the Live to Learn Fellowships Resource link here.

3. OTHER DESCRIPTION

The US-Ireland Alliance has established the George J. Mitchell Scholarships to educate future American leaders about the island of Ireland and to provide tomorrow's leaders with an understanding about, an interest in, and an affinity with, the island from which 44 million Americans claim descent. Twelve Scholarships were awarded in both the 2000-2001 and 2001-2002 academic years. Scholars are eligible to attend institutions of higher learning in Ireland, including the seven universities in the Republic of Ireland and the two universities in Northern Ireland, for one academic year of graduate study.

Website: www.us-irelandalliance.org

4. ELIGIBILITY

Also see: http://www.smith.edu/fellowships/eligibility.php for further information about eligibility.

WHEN TO BEGIN WHICH BY SCHOOL YEAR
  • Juniors Start Application After Spring Break
  • See tips on writing an effective resume
  • ADD expanded section listing every "public" service, community involvement of any and all kinds.
(POST-)GRADUATE OR UNDERGRADUATE FELLOWSHIP
Graduate Fellowship

DOMESTIC & FOREIGN, OR FELLOWSHIPS ABROAD
Fellowship Abroad

WHERE IN THE WORLD TO USE
Irish Fellowship (Ireland, Northern Ireland)

GPA AND RELATED MINIMUMS
  • Cumulative GPA and Related Minimum-Level Academic Requirements
  • 3.8 minimum, intellectual distinction
  • (Community involvement, contribution to society, leadership or initiative, all count as much as grade level. Fellowships = character, not intellectualism alone.)
CITIZENSHIP REQUIREMENTS
U.S. citizens only

AGE, SCHOOL-YEAR, OTHER RESTRICTIONS Only graduating seniors in application year, or graduates, at least 18 but not yet 30 years old on October 1 of application year.

DURATION OF FELLOWSHIP, AMOUNT OF AWARD
$30,000 estimate provides tuition and housing for one year, plus a travel stipend and $11,000 for living expenses.

CHANCE OF AWARD: ODDS FOR EACH COMPETITION
  • Mitchell 5% or 1 in 20 (245 apps in 03 for 12 spots from 20 finalists = 4.89%)
  • It is prudent for seniors applying for high-odds fellowships (Gates, Luce, Marshall, Mellon, Mitchell, Rhodes) seriously to consider also applying for the Fulbright which, even though easier to win, carries immense prestige through its high name recognition.
  • The Fulbright is an ideal gap year for those planning to go on to graduate school.
  • Much material prepared for one fellowship application can be modified to fit another.
  • It is recommended that graduating applicants work also with the Career Development Office so that fellowship applications form part of an overall postgraduate planning strategy. Contact them at x2570 or x2582.
HOW SMITHIES HAVE FARED IN COMPETITIONS
0 fellows out of 3 applicants in the 2 years 2002-2003

COMPETITION CRITERIA IN JUDGING CANDIDATES
How the Foundations Evaluate and Rate Candidates, What They Seek in Candidates & How You are Judged, Plus Other Vital Criteria Considered by the Foundations (PLEASE ALSO CONSULT THE NOTES IN THIS CATEGORY SECTION)

Take very seriously the criteria they seek in candidates:

1. Academic excellence = minimum 3.8 plus strong recommendation letters extolling academic merit.

2. Strong record of leadership or initiative in community service, broadly defined. Substantially demonstrated accomplishments of real significance. Not just a list of belonging to organizations. Being a member is not enough. But activities that have reaped results, that have made a measurable impact, actually changed things for the better, or have been innovative and have achieved some definite good.

Take even more seriously the biographies of past scholars as spelt out in the profiles on the website to get an accurate idea of the level required in each of these areas. What exactly is meant by "strong"? George Mitchell is used as a model of the kind of student they are looking for to feature in public service: future leaders, future George Mitchell's.

Only two scholars are placed at any one Irish university. It is imperative obviously that a second choice be given, also bearing in mind that the two most popular schools are Trinity and Queens. Selected finalists have not been named scholars because preferred candidates had already filled the four spots at these two schools. So if you pick either of these schools as your first choice, and want to increase your chances of the scholarship, choose some other school as your second choice.

FORMAL APPLICATION YEAR & TIME OF YEAR
Formal Application Year (Fall Term) Seniors
Early Fall Fellowship (due early October)

J-TERM GRADUATE ELIGIBILITY
  • Applications open to seniors graduating the January following the October that applications are finally due.
  • Winners announced upon university acceptance of finalists selected in the November following the October closing date.
  • First use of fellowship will be at the beginning of the next Irish fall semester in the calendar year following the application year.
  • Check website &/or email foundation for rule variations and changes before ruling yourself in or out.
LEVEL OF SMITH COLLEGE SPONSORSHIP
Official Endorsement

REAPPLYING FOR FELLOWSHIPS
Can win only once. Can apply again only after not winning.

DEFERRING FELLOWSHIPSM
Confirm your specific situation directly with sponsoring foundation or fellowship administrators. Mitchell Cannot normally be deferred. Special circumstances may apply.

 5. WEBSITE
     http://www.us-irelandalliance.org