Goldwater STEM

 Intent to Apply (Pre-application): December 1, 2023

Campus Deadline: January 5, 2024

National Deadline: January 26, 2024

Goldwater Events


The Barry Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation was established by Congress in 1986 to serve as a living memorial to honor the lifetime work of Senator Barry Goldwater, who served his country for 56 years as a soldier and statesman, including 30 years in the U.S. Senate. 

The Goldwater Scholarship Program, one of the oldest and most prestigious national scholarships in the natural sciences, engineering and mathematics in the United States, seeks to identify and support college sophomores and juniors who show exceptional promise of becoming this Nation’s next generation of research leaders in these fields. Scholarships of up to $7,500 a year are provided to help cover costs associated with tuition, mandatory fees, books, room and board. A sophomore who receives a Goldwater Scholarship will receive up to $7,500 in each of his/her junior and senior years. A junior who receives a Goldwater Scholarship will receive up to $7,500 in his/her senior year.

The characteristics the Foundation seeks in a Goldwater Scholar include:

  • strong commitment to a research career in the natural sciences, mathematics and engineering,
  • effective display of intellectual intensity in the sciences, mathematics and engineering, and
  • potential for a significant future contribution to research in his/her chosen field.

Eligibility Criteria

Full-time sophomore or junior during the academic year of application (defined as two years or one year of undergraduate study remaining after application year); planning to pursue a PhD and research career in mathematics, natural sciences or engineering research (MD alone does not qualify, but MD/PhD does); outstanding undergraduate academic record (3.70+ GPA); engaged in undergraduate research; U.S. citizen, national or permanent resident.

Candidates must be nominated by LMU. Students interested in applying should contact Dr. Cassidy Alvarado, ONIF Director, at 310.338.3792,

Selection Criteria

Academic achievement (grades, level of courses, awards, scholarships); progress toward research goals (research activities, career goals, course work); research essay (technical content, bibliography, organization/grammar); letters of recommendation (commitment to research, intellectual curiosity, potential for research contributions). Equal weight is given to the four evaluation criteria.

Application Process

To be considered for nomination, students must submit a completed application by the campus deadline. In early January, the LMU campus nominating committee reviews applications and endorses up to four nominees. LMU may nominate a 5th applicant if the student transferred to LMU from another institution, including community colleges. Nominees will have the opportunity to revise their applications based on feedback from the campus committee. The Foundation deadline is the last Friday in January. In March, the Goldwater Scholars and alternates are selected; in April, nominees are notified of their final status in the competition.

LMU Recipients

  • 2021: Elena Martinez '22, Applied Mathematics and Computer Science
  • 2020: Kevin Chang '21, Biochemistry
  • 2018: Dillon Rinauro '19, Biochemistry (Honorable Mention)
  • 2013: Zily Burstein
  • 2007: Vivian Vallin

Campus Nomination Process

  • Complete your Student Profile and Goldwater Scholarship Pre-Application by December 1, 2023
    • ONIF will either approve your pre-application or reach out to you for more information. 
    • You will also receive access to additional application resources through the Fellowship Support Hub in Brightspace. 
  • You must submit the following application components by LMU's campus deadline of January 5, 2024:
    • Online questionnaire- the online questionnaire, in addition to gathering background academic information, seeks to help the Goldwater Foundation understand a student’s commitment to pursuing a research career, intellectual intensity and potential for making a significant future contribution to research in one of the Goldwater eligible fields.
    • Research essay- typed, two pages (one side only), in 2 column format, font size no smaller than 11 point. Include your name at the top of each page.
    • 3 letters of recommendation- from professors who have supervised your undergraduate research and/or your undergraduate coursework in the sciences, engineering or mathematics. It is the applicant’s responsibility to ensure that all letters of recommendation have been posted online by the campus deadline. Recommenders do not need to send a paper copy of their letter to the campus Goldwater Nominating Committee. We cannot guarantee that the committee will review late letters.
    • Transcripts- from all colleges attended.  For campus purposes, an unofficial transcript or a copy of your LMU student record is fine, as are photocopies of transcripts from other institutions. 
  • LMU's Goldwater Committee will review all submitted applications during the second week of January to determine our campus nominations.
    • Every applicant who submits by our campus deadline will receive feedback and notification of our nomination decision.
  • Nominated Lions will have until the national deadline to make any final edits to their application materials.

For official information on the Goldwater Scholarship, which supersedes any information provided here, please see the Goldwater Scholarship Website.


Goldwater Ambassadors Mentorship ProgramGoldwater Letter of Recommendation Request Form2023 Goldwater Scholarship PowerPoint, Research Essay AdviceAdditional Essay TipsLetters of Recommendation Tips