The Gates Millennium Scholars (GMS) Program, funded by a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, was established in 1999 to provide outstanding African American, American Indian/Alaska Native, Asian Pacific Islander American, and Hispanic American students with an opportunity to complete an undergraduate college education in any discipline area of interest. Continuing Gates Millennium Scholars may request funding for a graduate degree program in one of the following discipline areas: computer science, education, engineering, library science, mathematics, public health or science. There are about 1,000 new Gates Millenium Scholars selected each year. The Gates Millennium Scholars (GMS) program, established in 1999, is a 1.6 billion dollar initiative funded by grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
The GMS Program is more than just a scholarship. GMS offers Gates Millennium Scholars with Academic Empowerment (ACE) services to encourage academic excellence; mentoring services for academic and personal development; and an online resource center that provides internship, fellowship and scholarship information.
The goal of the GMS program is to promote academic excellence and to provide an opportunity for outstanding minority students with significant financial need to reach their highest potential by providing seamless support from undergraduate through doctoral programs for students selected as Gates Millennium Scholars entering target disciplines, with the hope that this can increase the representation of these target groups in the disciplines of computer science, education, engineering, library science, mathematics, public health and the sciences, where these groups are severely underrepresented.
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What GMS does
- Support for the cost of education by covering unmet need and self-help aid.
- Renewable awards for Gates Millennium Scholars maintaining satisfactory academic progress.
- Graduate school funding for continuing Gates Millennium Scholars in the areas of computer science, education, engineering, library science, mathematics, public health or science.
- Leadership development programs with distinctive personal, academic and professional growth opportunities.
How this works
- GMS selected 1,000 new Scholars each year and we are now funding over 20,000 Gates Scholars since 2000.
- GMS has awarded $934,092,630 in scholarships between the 2000-2014 academic years.
- The average award was $12,785 between the 2001-2014 academic years.
- The average first-year undergraduate student retention rate is 96.2% (Active or deferment) among Gates Scholars; the average second-year rate is 93.2% (Active/Deferment).
- The GMS five-year graduation rate is 82.2% and the six-year graduation rate is over 86.9%.
- Nearly 50% percent (n=6281, 48.5%) of Gates Millennium Scholars transition into graduate school after earning a Bachelor’s degree; 60.6% into a GMS-funded field and 39.4% into GMS-unfunded fields.
- Gates Millennium Scholars have enrolled in 1,751 different colleges and universities.
- 12,959 Gates Millennium Scholars have completed a degree since the Program’s inception. 10,654 Scholars that started the program as freshmen have earned an undergraduate degree.
- Of the active entering Freshmen in the 2015 cohort, 40.9% (n=399) are attending highly selective colleges which admit one-third or fewer of their applicants. 51.1% (n=499) are attending colleges which admit 40% or fewer of their applicants. 58.7% (n=574) are attending colleges which admit less than half of their applicants
UNCF- the United Negro College Fund is the administrator of the Gates Millennium Scholar Program. The partnership with UNCF the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation was established in 1999, as a 1.6 billion dollar initiative funded grant.
For more than seven decades, A mind is a terrible thing to waste.”® has remained at the heart of UNCF, enabling them to help more than 430,000 students and counting not just attend college, but thrive, graduate and become leaders.
The approach to do this work is done in three ways: By awarding more than 10,000 students scholarships, worth more than $100 million, each year. By providing financial support to 37 historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs). And by serving as the nation’s leading advocate for the importance of minority education and community engagement.
This three-pronged approach is powerful: Since our founding in 1944, we’ve helped to more than double the number of minorities attending college. The six-year graduation rate for UNCF African American scholarship recipients is 70 percent. This is 11 percentage points higher than the national average and 31 percentage points higher than the national average for all African Americans.
Some important FAQs
Does your program provide Graduate Funding?
Continuing Gates Scholars may request a fellowship for a graduate degree program in one of the following discipline whereas: Computer Science, Education, Engineering, Library Science, Mathematics, Public Health or Science. The Gates Millennium Scholars scholarship can be used at any U.S. accredited college or university of your choice. Graduate funding is only provided to students that are current Gates Scholars pursuing their graduate studies.
How much is the scholarship?
Students selected as Gates Millennium Scholars will receive funds in an amount to be determined by GMS based on financial need. The award is based on the cost of tuition, fees, books and living expenses for the academic year, as well as the availability of grants, and other scholarships reported on the student’s financial aid award letter. The scholarship for the undergraduate award may be renewed annually based on satisfactory progress, full-time enrollment and the timely submission of required documents. Support for graduate degrees for continuing Gates Millennium Scholars may be received for the following fields: computer science, education, engineering, library science, mathematics, public health or science.
Does GMS fund study abroad?
Our Scholars have the opportunity to study abroad in accordance with GMS guidelines.
What kind of factors does GMS consider for the selection process?
Each application was evaluated in terms of first having a complete package, which consists of the following: a student application, a Nominator Form and a Recommender Form. Students were also evaluated on academic achievement, community service and leadership potential; however, no one factor determines the outcome of an application.
How do I get to my Gates Millenium Scholars Program application?
In order to access your GMS application please go to scholarships.gmsp.org.
Does your program offer other scholarships?
The Gates Millennium Scholars program does not offer other scholarship however we encourage you to UNCF-United Negro College Fund- www.uncf.org, American Indian Graduate Center Scholars- www.aigcs.org, Asian Pacific Islander American Scholarship Fund – www.apiasf.org, Hispanic Scholarship Fund – www.hsf.net.
When can I apply for your scholarship?
At that time the Program will accomplish the objective of selecting 20,000 students as Gates Millennium Scholars. The Scholars selected will benefit from the Program’s resources through 2028. We encourage you to continue to explore scholarship resources by visiting the following websites: UNCF-United Negro College Fund- www.uncf.org, American Indian Graduate Center Scholars- www.aigcs.org, Asian Pacific Islander American Scholarship Fund – www.apiasf.org, Hispanic Scholarship Fund – www.hsf.net, Fast Web- www.fastweb.com, Scholarships.com- www.scholarships.com, The information at these sites may give you (additional or alternate) scholarship options and resources to support your academic goals.
When will notifications be sent regarding the status of the application?
Applicants are informed if they are selected as a finalist or not selected. Students who submitted their application by the deadline can check the status of their application by logging onto the GMS application site using the following steps:
- Click on GMS Application
- Click Log On located at the top right side of the page
- Enter the e-mail address and password used to register for the Gates Millennium Scholars Program application
- The package status will indicate whether the applicant was a finalist or a non-select.
You can use the webmail on their website, http://www.gmsp.org/contact-us/
The GMS met the goal of selecting 20,000 students for the Gates Millennium Scholars Program; therefore, the Gates Millennium Scholars application will no longer be available. Just visit the site and see if they open new slots again.
Read more http://www.gmsp.org/gates-millennium-scholars-program/