Applications are now being taken for the 16th Annual Herbert Hoover Uncommon Student Award, a scholarship program for Iowa high school juniors. The postmark deadline is March 31, 2013. The 15 students chosen for the program receive a $1,000 stipend. In addition, three $5,000 scholarships are awarded for study at an accredited two or four year college or university anywhere in the country.
Herbert Hoover, West Branch native and the nation's 31st president, is the inspiration for the award. He noted, "We believe in equal opportunity for all, but we know that this includes the opportunity to rise to leadership . . . to be uncommon."
The award program seeks to identify uncommon students during their junior year in high school. Students are NOT evaluated on the basis of grades, test scores, essays, or financial need. Applicants submit a proposal for a project they want to accomplish. The students are selected on the basis of their stated project goal and detailed plans to reach that goal. Two letters of recommendation are also required.
Finalists spend a required expense-paid weekend in West Branch (just east of Iowa City) during the summer between their junior and senior year.
In October of their senior year, finalists make presentations about their projects at the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library-Museum. Each student receives $1,000 at that time. Three of those students are chosen to receive the $5,000 scholarship award.
The award is sponsored by the Hoover Presidential Library Association, a nonprofit support group for the Hoover Presidential Library-Museum and National Historic Site in West Branch.