20 Great Scholarships for Political Science

Whether you’re a conservative or liberal, scholarships for political science can help you afford pursuing your interest in government affairs. Political science majors are available from the bachelor’s to doctoral level to examine key legislative, elective, and judicial processes.

According to CNN, political science is among America’s 10 most popular majors producing newly minted professionals for success. Political science primarily unlocks jobs in the public and nonprofit sector, especially with local, state, and federal agencies. Graduates of political science programs excel as lobbyists, diplomats, elected officials, policy analysts, city planners, campaign managers, correspondents, and more. A political science degree can also prepare you for attending law school.

Resource: 20 Best Deals on Small Colleges for Politically Active Students

Capitalize on the following political science scholarships to specialize your liberal arts education in politics.

1. APSA Minority Fellowship Program

Deadline: October 30th

Since 1969, the American Political Science Association (APSA) has supported a Minority Fellowship Program to award $4,000 in two payments to outstanding graduate students who are entering their first or second year of a doctoral political science program. College seniors or master’s students must be U.S. citizens of underrepresented ethnic backgrounds, including African Americans, Asian Americans, Pacific Islanders, Latinos/as, and Native Americans, who have an interest in collegiate teaching.


APSA Minority Fellowship Program
1527 New Hampshire Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20036
(202) 483-2512
Scholarship Link

2. Bruce B. Melchert Scholarship Fund

Deadline: March 15th

Named after a Life Loyal Teke who served as Executive Vice President for 12 years, the Bruce B. Melchert Scholarship Fund awards $1,000 annually to Tau Kappa Epsilon Fraternity members who are earning bachelor’s degrees in political science or government. Eligibility criteria includes attending an accredited four-year U.S. college, having completed at least 30 college credits, carrying a cumulative GPA of 3.0, and seeking political service professions.


Bruce B. Melchert Scholarship Fund
7439 Woodland Drive Suite 100
Indianapolis, IN 46278
(317) 872-6533
Scholarship Link

3. Catherine Baker Knoll Scholarship

Deadline: April 1st

The Pennsylvania Democratic Party joins with the Pennsylvania Democratic Committee Women’s Caucus annually to present the $1,000 Catherine Baker Knoll Scholarship and honor the Keystone State’s first female elected official. To qualify, political science majors must be women, pursue bachelor’s or master’s degrees full-time, attend accredited in-state colleges, show active involvement in community organizing, and be committed to public service careers. Preference is given to Pennsylvania residents who are registered Democrats.


Catherine Baker Knoll Scholarship
229 State Street
Harrisburg, PA 17101
(717) 920-8470
Scholarship Link

4. Charles and Kathleen Manatt Fellowship

Deadline: March 15th

The International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES) grants three annual scholarships for political science, including the $5,000 Charles and Kathleen Manatt Fellowship. Accepted fellows must be pursuing master’s or PhD programs in political science and conducting research that examines democracy, election administration, or civic participation. Applications are accepted from graduate students in the Midwestern states of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma, the Dakotas, and Wisconsin.


Charles and Kathleen Manatt Fellowship
2011 Crystal Drive 10th Floor
Arlington, VA 22202
(202) 350-6845
Scholarship Link

5. Constitutional Officers Association of Georgia Scholarships

Deadline: April 1st

Every spring, the Constitutional Officers Association of Georgia (COAG) encourages tomorrow’s leading public servants by presenting four scholarships for $500, $600, $1,000, and $1,500. Eligible Georgia residents must be graduating with a high school diploma or GED to enroll full-time in an accredited college with a declared major in government, political science, finance, law enforcement, or pre-law. Scholarship packets must include a letter of acceptance and 1,000-word personal essay.


Constitutional Officers Association of Georgia Scholarships
P.O. Box 1644
Decatur, GA 30031
(404) 377-1364
Scholarship Link

6. Enid Hall Griswold Memorial Scholarship

Deadline: February 10th

As a nonprofit women’s organization devoted to promoting patriotism, the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) has over 3,000 chapters to grant numerous scholarships like the $5,000 Enid Hall Griswold Memorial Scholarship. Each year, two exemplary college students studying political science, economics, government, international relations, or history are chosen. Attending an accredited four-year university in the United States with junior or senior status is required.


Enid Hall Griswold Memorial Scholarship
1776 D Street NW
Washington, DC 20006
(202) 628-1776
Scholarship Link

7. Harry S. Truman Foundation Scholarships

Deadline: February 7th

Perhaps the most competitive scholarships for political science, the Harry S. Truman Foundation Scholarships attract over 600 applications from full-time undergraduate seniors who are interested in attending an accredited U.S. graduate school. Eligible scholars must plan to work in government after earning a master’s or doctoral degree in public administration, political science, public health, international affairs, or public policy. In exchange for $30,000, recipients must sign three-year service agreements.


Harry S. Truman Foundation Scholarships
712 Jackson Place NW
Washington, DC 20006
(202) 395-4831
Scholarship Link

8. Henry A. Zuberano Scholarship Award

Deadline: February 15th

Valued at $1,000, the Henry A. Zuberano Scholarship Award is bestowed annually by the Hawaii Community Foundation (HCF) to assist full-time college students who are pursuing bachelor’s degrees in political science, public administration, international business, or international relations. Qualified undergraduates must reside in Hawaii, attend an accredited college within U.S. territories, possess a cumulative GPA of 2.7 or higher, and demonstrate leadership capacity for government affairs.


Henry A. Zuberano Scholarship Award
117 Keawe Street Suite 109
Hilo, HI 96720
(808) 935-1206
Scholarship Link

9. Howard Penniman Scholarships for Graduate Study

Deadline: May 1st

The Pi Sigma Alpha Honor Society sponsors the Howard Penniman Scholarships for Graduate Study to distribute $5,000 to five inducted chapter members who have successfully been admitted into their first year of a master’s or doctoral program for political science. Three copies of the application are required with official transcripts, a goals statement, resume of related activities, two faculty recommendations, and their Chapter Advisor’s nomination.


Howard Penniman Scholarships for Graduate Study
1527 New Hampshire Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20036
(202) 349-9285
Scholarship Link

10. Jerry Clark Memorial Scholarship

Deadline: May 30th

In honor of his 20-year leadership of the Political Action Department, the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) confers the $5,000 Jerry Clark Memorial Scholarship to college sophomores with declared majors in political science. Suitable applicants will attend four-year accredited colleges full-time, be related to AFSCME members, obtain a minimum 2.5 GPA, demonstrate sincere interest in political activism for working families, and have unmet financial need.


Jerry Clark Memorial Scholarship
1625 L Street NW
Washington, DC 20036
(202) 429-1000
Scholarship Link

11. Kansas Federation of Republican Women Scholarship

Deadline: March 1st

Administered by the Greater Salina Community Foundation (GSCF), the Kansas Federation of Republican Women Scholarship grants at least $1,000 annually to junior, senior, and graduate students who are pursuing majors in political science, public affairs, history, law, or public administration. To qualify, candidates must have a primary residence in Kansas, attend an accredited U.S. college, be registered Republicans, actively participate in the political process, and achieve a minimum overall GPA of 3.0.


Kansas Federation of Republican Women Scholarship
119 West Iron 8th Floor
Salina, KS 67402
(785) 823-1800
Scholarship Link

12. Matt Fong Asian Americans in Public Finance Scholarship

Deadline: February 19th

In memory of the former California treasurer, the Asian Pacific Fund awards the Matt Fong Asian Americans in Public Finance Scholarship for $2,500 to two undergraduates pursuing bachelor’s degrees in accounting, political science, public affairs, business, or related fields. Interested candidates must be at least 50 percent Asian, attain sophomore standing or higher, enroll full-time at California colleges, carry a minimum 3.0 GPA, and demonstrate a history of community service.


Matt Fong Asian Americans in Public Finance Scholarship
465 California Street Suite 809
San Francisco, CA 94104
(415) 395-9985
Scholarship Link

13. McManus Washington Internship Scholarship

Deadline: May 1st

Another of the scholarships for political science funded by Pig Sigma Alpha is the McManus Washington Internship Scholarship, which presents a $2,000 scholarship and $2,500 housing stipend. Eligible members who are majoring in political science at accredited U.S. institutions are invited for a summer internship at The Washington Center. Selection is based primarily on academic merit and involvement in the Honor Society’s activities, but an extra $1,000 can be available for significant financial need.


McManus Washington Internship Scholarship
1527 New Hampshire Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20036
(202) 349-9285
Scholarship Link

14. National Washington Crossing Foundation Scholarships

Deadline: January 15th

Ranging from $500 to $5,000, the National Washington Crossing Foundation Scholarships celebrate patriotic U.S. citizens who are completing 12th grade and pursuing higher education in political science, public administration, government, or similar fields for public service careers. Entrants must submit a typed, one-page essay stating how they’ve been inspired by the leadership of George Washington in his renowned cross of the Delaware. Applications should also include a transcript, resume, and letter of recommendation.


National Washington Crossing Foundation Scholarships
P.O. Box 503
Levittown, PA 19058
(215) 949-8841
Scholarship Link

15. Ossie Davis Scholars Program

Deadline: January 31st

The United Negro College Fund (UNCF) administers the Ossie Davis Scholars Program to bestow renewable, need-based awards of $6,800 to African American freshmen who are majoring in political science, communications, visual/performing arts, social sciences, and humanities. Qualified finalists must be U.S. citizens or nationals, attend historically black colleges or universities, present a minimum 3.0 GPA, and exhibit desire to proactively use artistic activism for resolving societal concerns.


Ossie Davis Scholars Program
1805 7th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20001
(800) 331-2244
Scholarship Link

16. President Ronald Reagan Scholarship

Deadline: August 15th

Named for the admired 40th U.S. President, the President Ronald Reagan Scholarship is awarded by the California Federation of Republican Women (CFRW) for $2,000 yearly to female undergraduates who are studying political science, government, communications, or pre-law. Interested U.S. citizens must legally reside in California for 12+ months, be registered Republican Party members, have completed at least two years of college, and attach three letters of recommendation.


President Ronald Reagan Scholarship
770 L Street Suite 950
Sacramento, CA 95814
(916) 442-4084
Scholarship Link

17. Samuel Huntington Public Service Award

Deadline: January 17th

Endowed by the Chief Executive Officer of the New England Electric System, the Samuel Huntington Public Service Award is offered by National Grid with a $15,000 stipend. Graduating political science majors who are finishing their senior year could utilize the funding to engage in meaningful, one-year public service activities either domestic or abroad. Accepted applications must include a project proposal, detailed budget, official transcript, resume, and three letters of recommendation to reach the interview round.


Samuel Huntington Public Service Award
40 Sylvan Road
Waltham, MA 02451
(800) 465-1212
Scholarship Link

18. Spence Reese Foundation Scholarship

Deadline: March 31st

The Boys & Girls Club of Greater San Diego has established the Spence Reese Foundation Scholarship to present $4,000 annually for four years to male students who are pursuing higher learning in medicine, law, engineering, or political science. Qualified applicants must be graduating from high schools in the San Diego Metro and entering four-year colleges anywhere in the United States. Online applications need to include transcripts, SAT/ACT scores, and reference letters.


Spence Reese Foundation Scholarship
4635 Clairemont Mesa Blvd.
San Diego, CA 92117
(858) 866-0591
Scholarship Link

19. Thomas R. Pickering Foreign Affairs Fellowship

Deadline: January 15th

Through the Woodrow Wilson Foundation, the Thomas R. Pickering Foreign Affairs Fellowship awards up to $37,500 as one of America’s most lucrative scholarships for political science. Each year, undergraduate and graduate fellows are selected to follow in the esteemed diplomat’s footsteps for careers in the Department of State Foreign Service. Mandatory qualifications include being a U.S. citizen, attaining at least junior standing, maintaining an overall GPA above 3.2, and fulfilling summer internship obligations.


Thomas R. Pickering Foreign Affairs Fellowship
5 Vaughn Drive, Suite 300
Princeton, NJ 08540
(609) 452-7007
Scholarship Link

20. Women in Defense HORIZONS Scholarships

Deadline: July 15th

Founded in 1988, the Women in Defense HORIZONS Scholarships award $16,000 each year to female upperclassmen and graduate students who are majoring in political science, government relations, law, international relations, security studies, or related fields for careers in national defense. Eligible WID members must attend an accredited university at least part-time, hold 60+ college credits, exhibit financial need, have U.S. citizenship, and sustain a 3.25 GPA or higher.


Women in Defense HORIZONS Scholarships
2111 Wilson Blvd. Suite 400
Arlington, VA 22201
(703) 522-1820
Scholarship Link

Political science degrees provide a phenomenally practical college education that will pave abundant career paths shaping our government. Your major can significantly pay off because political scientists earn an average annual salary of $103,210. Career goals in politics come at a cost though. Affording tuition for an advanced degree or even law school is necessary for most budding political scientists. Fortunately, scholarships and grants can help lower the financial strife of following your C-SPAN fascination. Consider these 20 great scholarships for political science to develop your diplomatic skills for public service.