- Types of Scholarships and Where to Look
- How to Apply
- Mason Scholarship Application
- Outside Scholarship List
- Guidelines for Outside Scholarships
- Scholarships Requiring Documentation
- Instructions for Submitting Checks to OSFA
- Scholarship Tips
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Related Information
There are many different resources for students to use when searching for scholarship opportunities. Mason’s Office of Student Financial Aid (OSFA) provides a listing of Mason Scholarships (Internal) and Outside Scholarships (External) for undergraduate and graduate students to browse. The OSFA posts scholarship opportunities throughout the year. Below you will find general information to help you get started.
Types of Scholarships and Where to Look
Mason Merit Scholarships
Incoming freshmen must submit their admissions application by November 1st to be reviewed for merit-based scholarships. The number of scholarships available is limited and the consideration process is highly competitive. Scholarships are renewable for up to four years, and are based on maintaining a minimum grade point average of 3.0 at Mason. For additional information contact The Office of Admissions.
Mason (Internal) Scholarships
Endowed scholarships at George Mason University are provided through the generous donations of Mason alumni, friends, faculty, staff, and students. Private philanthropy both enables the university to recognize the exceptional academic achievement of Mason students and helps to ensure access for all who pursue a degree here.
Outside (External) Scholarships
Outside scholarships are offered through private agencies and organizations such as high schools, community organizations, scholarship foundations, employers, and government agencies. Criteria for Outside Scholarships generally include academic performance, financial need, minority status, heritage, community affiliations, or other unique factors important to the sponsoring individual or organization. Students are encouraged to pursue as many Outside Scholarships as possible.
Mason Academic Program Scholarships
The academic department for your major may have information about scholarships related to your field of study. Students should contact the college/school and department in which they plan to major for scholarship opportunities.
Mason Athletic Department Scholarships
Questions about athletic scholarships should be directed to the appropriate Intercollegiate Athletics Coaches.
How to Apply
If you are applying for Mason (Internal) Scholarships, the Mason Scholarship Application will be available online in early spring. This application is used to award some of the scholarships offered by Mason. When applying for scholarships on the Outside Scholarship List please read the application process carefully and complete all requirements. Specific questions about scholarships should be directed to the Scholarship Office located in the Office of Student Financial Aid.
Guidelines for Outside Scholarships
Notification to the Office of Student Financial Aid about Outside Scholarships
Student’s MUST supply the Office of Student Financial Aid official copy/copies of all scholarship notification letter(s). These letter(s) should include the following:
- Name of Scholarship
- Mason Student ID Number/G#
- Amount of Scholarship
- Donors Contact Information (i.e. address, phone number,email)
- If information is available how the scholarship will be disbursed- by paper check or electronic transmission of funds (EFT), payable to student or school and if the entire amount will be sent at the beginning of the year or semester.
- Information may be sent to the Office of Student Financial Aid via mail or fax to 703-993-2350.
Outside scholarship awards are considered resources and may reduce the amount of need-based financial aid you are awarded. If the outside scholarship exceeds a student’s financial need and/or cost of attendance, adjustments may be made to the student’s financial aid package to ensure compliance with federal and state regulations. The Mason OSFA policy is to reduce loans or federal work-study first.
Scholarships Requiring Documentation
Enrollment and Academic Verification
Some scholarships may require an invoice or billing statement from the university before sending payment to the school. This information is normally noted on the notification letter. Below are some commonly requested documents:
- Billing statement or invoice – Requests for an invoice must be noted in the notification letter along with the agencies contact and billing address information.
- Verification forms - Verification forms can be mailed or faxed to 703-993-2350.
- Transcripts or certification of enrollment: Please be advised that OSFA cannot issue official transcripts or enrollment certifications. Students may contact the Office of the University Registrar for official transcripts. Mason students can access information pertaining to their academic standing, financial aid awards, cost of attendance and more on Patriot Web.
Instructions for Submitting Checks to OSFA
Scholarship checks should be made payable to George Mason University with the following information: student’s full name, Mason ID#, and semester(s) to which the funds should be applied. Scholarship checks should be mailed to the address below.
George Mason University
Office of Student Financial Aid
Fairfax, Virginia 22030
- Scholarship checks made co-payable to the student and George Mason University must be endorsed by the student before the funds can be applied to his/her account. You will be contacted by the Mason Cash Office when your endorsement is needed. Information may be sent to the Office of Student Financial Aid via mail or fax.
- Scholarship checks made payable to the student ONLY cannot be accepted by the Cash Office.
Frequently Asked Questions:
How do I apply for Mason Merit and Foundation Scholarships?
The deadline for merit-based scholarship consideration is November 1. The Office of Admissions selects and will notify Freshman Scholarship and Honors College Consideration notifications in mid-February to students who qualify.
The Mason Scholarship Application is open to all returning students enrolled in a degree program. Students are encourage to submit the Mason Scholarship Application available online in early spring. This application is used to award some campus wide scholarships offered by Mason and posted on the Mason Scholarship website.
When should I apply for an Outside Scholarships?
The Outside Scholarship List posts scholarship opportunities with unique criteria important to the sponsoring donor or organization. Scholarships are updated on the website throughout the academic year. Students should check the website on a weekly basis during peak times from October through April. Missing a deadline can mean missing out until the next cycle for many scholarships!
Are there scholarships for transfer students?
Transfer students are eligible for all scholarships available to returning students. Students can submit the Mason Scholarship Application online. Some scholarships require a Mason GPA, which may limit some scholarships for transfers. Students should also check with their college or department.
Are scholarships available for international students?
Scholarships are a great way for international students to obtain financial aid. For more information visit financial aid for international students.
When will I hear if I am awarded a Mason Scholarship?
Scholarship award notifications will be sent to Mason Scholarship recipients no later than mid-August. ONLY those students selected to receive a Mason scholarship will be notified. As funding becomes available additional scholarships may be awarded.
Why should I notify the scholarship office of an award?
Financial Aid recipients are required to report all educational resources to the Office of Student Financial Aid. Once our office has received notification of an award from an outside agency, the student’s award will be updated on his financial aid package as a resource. The combination of resources and other financial aid cannot exceed cost of attendance, as a result a student’s financial aid may be reduced (most often loans) to offset the value of their educational resource(s).
Why was my scholarship check used to pay my balance due instead of paying for my books and supplies, as specified?
Scholarship checks made payable to Mason MUST be applied to the student’s account. Any funds remaining will be provided to the student in the form of a refund, either a paper check or electronic refund (E-Refund), which can be used for books & supplies.
What information does a donor or outside agency need to provide to the school?
Please review “Instructions for Submitting Checks to OSFA.”
Undergraduate Apprenticeship Program at George Mason University - The Undergraduate Apprenticeship Program pairs high achieving undergraduate students with faculty mentors to undertake original research or creative projects.
Mason’s Honor College - All students who apply to Mason by November 1st will be considered for the program.
Postgraduate Fellowships and Scholarships - The Director for Postgraduate Fellowships and Scholarships advises promising Mason students and recent alumni regarding the application process for nationally competitive fellowships.
Center for Global Education – CGE is George Mason University’s hub for study-abroad programs. Global Perspectives Scholarships are open to George Mason University students who participate in CGE Winter Break and Summer Programs, scholarship amounts range from $250 to $1,000 depending on merit and financial need.
Study Abroad Funding – The Institute of International Education directory features hundreds of study abroad scholarships, fellowships, grants, and paid internships for U.S. undergraduate, graduate and post-graduate students, and professionals.
All State Financial Aid Information – A state’s higher education agency may have special programs for college financial aid for residents of the state.
Military Scholarships and Education Benefits - Beyond GI Bill assistance, there are additional education benefits and scholarships available for active military, veterans and their dependents.
Top Ten Myths About Scholarships – Mark Kantrowitz Publisher of Fastweb and FinAid September 23, 2011
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