Merit Scholarships for FreshmenWe’re dedicated to enrolling the most talented students, and we offer generous merit scholarships to back that up. These competitive awards are based on past academic performance and potential to excel at the university, not financial need.
To be considered for most merit scholarships, you must submit your completed undergraduate admission application for the fall semester by the priority deadline of Nov. 1. The eligibility requirements for each scholarship vary, but no separate application is necessary. Some scholarships require an on-campus interview. Admission decision letters are mailed by late January and merit scholarship award notifications begin in mid-March and continue through early April.
The Banneker/Key Scholarship is the most prestigious merit scholarship we offer to freshmen. It can cover up to the full cost of tuition, mandatory fees, room and board and a book allowance, and includes admission to the Honors College. Several other partial scholarships are offered, ranging from one- to four-year awards.
In addition, several academic departments offer merit scholarships to their most promising students. You should contact the department, college or school directly for information about availability, eligibility, applications and deadlines. The Office of Student Financial Aid can also provide lots of information about outside sources for merit scholarships.
UMD students regularly win the most prestigious national scholarships: In 2012, Maryland led the nation with eight undergraduates receiving Boren Scholarships, two won Goldwater Scholarships, one was selected for a Truman Scholarship and 14 students and recent graduates were awarded Fulbrights.