Twenty renewable scholarships of $16,000 each are awarded annually to students admitted to Wake Forest who possess exceptional talents in art, dance, debate, music, and theatre. Though Presidential Scholars need not plan to pursue a major in the area of their talent, they are expected to participate actively in that activity on campus. Interested students must be prepared to present evidence of outstanding talent and are asked by the Presidential Scholarship Committee for documentation of that talent (such as art portfolios, debate records, taped performances, etc.) and recommendations. The program, begun in 1987, further diversifies the interests and abilities of a campus and student body already rich in both. Presidential Scholars with interest in dance, music, and/or theatre are given preference for an internship with the Secrest Artists Series. Preference will be given to applicants who apply by December 1. Applications received past December 1 will be considered as talent areas allow. Finalists will be contacted by the beginning of March. Winners are notified in late March.
Please note:In order to be considered for merit-based scholarships in addition to the Presidential Scholarship, we encourage students applying for the Presidential Scholarship to complete an interview with our admissions office as part of their regular application to Wake Forest. Over 87% of our strictly merit-based scholarships go to students that have completed this interview process. For more information, please see the Merit-Based Scholarships page.
Wake Forest will continue to award scholarships outside the Presidential Scholarship program to students with special talents in community service, entrepreneurship, leadership, and writing for publication, though no form beyond the Admission application is required for consideration in these areas. Some of these scholarships include the following awards:
- The Hunter Family Scholarship for Community Service and the Louis Patton Hearn Scholarship for Human Service may be awarded to students with strong commitments to community service.
- The Russell Brantley Scholarship for Writing will be awarded to a student with exceptional talent in writing.
Wake Forest University offers merit based scholarships that students from all socio-economic backgrounds may be eligible to apply for.