Application Process

Step 1: Submit application for round one

For the first round, the following materials must be submitted as part of the applicant’s proposal:

  • Online application form
  • Resume
  • Respond to the following prompts in no more than 3 pages, 10-point font, with 1-inch margins, with minimum single-spacing: 
    • Problem statement – describe the issue you want to explore. Include why you are passionate about this topic and your motivation to address the issue. 
    • What do you want to accomplish through your project? Please include specifics about the resources and relationships (human and otherwise) you will need to be successful, and any obstacles you anticipate.   
    • How does your proposal align with and further President Drake's 2020 Vision for Ohio State
    • How would you describe your project on Twitter in 140 characters or less?

Round one applications are due online by July 14, 2017 at 11:59 p.m. (EDT).

Step 2: Round one application review

A review committee of faculty and staff will read round one applications. Each application will be read by at least three committee members.

Applications will be judged based on: 

  • Completion of application.  
  • Original nature of project.
  • Bold nature of project.  
  • Alignment of project with President Drake's 2020 Vision
  • Applicant preparedness, including strength of academic performance, experience and qualifications as they relate to the proposed project.

Semi-finalists will be invited to submit a more detailed application for round two.

Step 3: Submit application for round two

Candidates selected as semi-finalists will be notified by August 28 and required to provide: 

  • A preliminary project budget of up to $50,000. Budgets for winning proposals will continue to be refined during the planning period after selection of the prize recipients. Use this project budget template as a guide.
  • A clear statement of how the funds will be used. Use this project statement template as a guide.
  • Signed preliminary interest form (online submission) from a faculty member who can demonstrate support for the project proposal, and who may work with the student over the course of the project. Provide the name and email address for this faculty person in the application. They will be sent a link to complete the form online.
  • One letter of professional recommendation (online submission) from an individual, not related to the student, who is able to assess the student’s preparedness to undertake the proposed project. Provide the name and email address for this recommender in the application. They will be sent a link to submit the letter online.
  • A copy of the student’s advising report. 

Applications for round two will be due online by October 6, 2017 at 11:59 p.m. (EDT).

Step 4: Round two application review

The review committee of faculty, staff, alumni/ parents will read the round two applications submitted by the semi-finalists.

Applications will be judged based on: 

  • Boldness of the applicant's idea, capacity to champion change and commitment to the community.  
  • Project feasibility.  
  • Budget feasibility. 
  • Applicant preparedness, including strength of academic performance, experience and qualifications as they relate to the proposed project.  
  • Strength of the applicant’s prior record of local, national and/or global engagement.  
  • Strength of the mentor’s recommendation and engagement with the proposed project.  
  • Strength of other recommendation. 

Selected semi-finalists also will make a professional presentation about their project to the review committee. Finalists will be selected based on the strength of both their application and presentation.

Step 5: Finalist interviews and presentations

Finalists will be invited to interview with the President’s Prize Selection Committee. This committee includes the provost or designee, vice president for Student Life or designee, senior vice president for Advancement or designee, a representative of the University Senate and a representative of the Board of Trustees.

The President's Prize Selection Committee will select up to two recipients by mid-December 2017. 

Selections will be based on:

  • Project’s exemplification of President Drake's 2020’s Vision.  
  • Commitment to local, national or global engagement.  
  • Project’s potential impact.  
  • Strength of the applicant’s commitment to the project.  
  • Other factors that the selection committee may deem appropriate to assess the contributions of the student and the project to the overall goals of the prize. 

Key Dates


The application deadline has passed for the 2018 President's Prize.