Mensa Education And Research Foundation Essay Contest

U.S. scholarship application/essay form

Mensa Foundation scholarships are awarded on the basis of an essay that describes the applicant’s career, vocational, and/or academic goals along with information that shows how the applicant intends to achieve the stated goal. The general scholarships are unrestricted as to age, race, gender, level of education, grade point average, or financial need.

An applicant does not need to be a member of Mensa, but must be a U.S. citizen or a legal resident. Some scholarships may have specific restrictions, e.g., major or area of study. To be eligible for a Mensa Member scholarship, the applicant must be a current dues-paid American Mensa member or a dependent of a member; the application must include the Mensa member’s name.

Eligible students are those who will be pursuing a degree program in an accredited U.S. college or university during the academic year following their application.

To apply for a Mensa Foundation scholarship, complete the application form below. The required fields are indicated with an asterisk; incomplete applications will not be considered. You must include an email address to receive an email confirmation after you have submitted your application.

Essay length is limited to 550 words (or less). If you exceed that length, your essay will be truncated. We recommend that you write, edit, and proofread your essay before you copy/paste it into the application form.

Review the Scholarship Rules and Guidelines for more information. Only applications and essays that conform to these rules and guidelines will be considered. Submit your application once. Multiple entries may be disqualified.

Scholarship winners will be notified by mail before the end of June. A list of winners and their city, state, and/or country will be posted at by the end of June.

The U.S. scholarship application process opens Sept. 15 and closes Jan. 15. No application forms are available at any other time. Applications will next be available from 09/15/2018 to 01/15/2019.


Since your scholarship application will be judged solely on the basis of this essay, it's important that your essay accurately and fully describe your life, academic, career and/or vocational goals and how you plan to achieve them.

The scholarship information states that the essays are judged on grammar, organization and craftsmanship; further, the word limit is 550. We're not recommending you use every last syllable available, but keep in mind that the word length was set after determining how many words should be necessary to describe your plan for the rest of your life. Brevity is good, but not at the expense of providing complete information.

Your essay and those of all your competitors will be carefully read by at least two teams of volunteer judges before winners are selected. In other words, the competition is strong, and the judges are human beings who are volunteering their time to support the quest for a good education. Keep in mind that the process is about encouraging substance, not style. Turn in a clean and concise essay, but for best results, let your personal passions and goals shine through.

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