Our Selection Process


Each year, two graduating seniors will be selected as President’s Prize scholars – the highest recognition Ohio State bestows on exceptional students committed to social change. Recipients are selected for the boldness of their ideas, their capacity to champion change and their commitment to the global community.


The recipients receive a $50,000 living stipend and up to $50,000 in funding to implement an innovative project to positively impact a local, national or global community. They will also be able to access an exclusive network of agents for change, expert mentors and the opportunity to share their ideas with Buckeyes around the world.

Read this Ohio State News story about our 2020 recipients.


This Year's Recipients

UnC.A.G.ED. - Changing the Achievement Gap in Education

Simone Bacon / Class of 2019

Far too often, low-income and minority children across America do not have access to a prosperous education. As early as one year of age, children from low-income families have already fallen behind their wealthier counterparts, in part due to the word gap - the observed gap between the number of words spoken to children. This word gap disparity has the ability to grow into differential outcomes in education, negatively impacting the lifecourse of low-income children in job access, health, financial stability, and life expectancy. Through UnC.A.G.ED. it is my hope that low-income and minority children cease to experience barriers in attaining a quality education.





Jen Schlegel / Class of 2020

Over 40 million Americans have limited dexterity and 1 in 5 have a disability, including 11% of undergraduate students. In settings where intense physical labor is not a requirement, society's heavy emphasis on physical capacity over mental capability is misplaced. Handicom is a software platform designed to address the technical barriers to success for persons who are physically disabled. This includes a mobile application that facilitates connections between ideas and written work, finger tap instead of a stylus, limited scrolling, and development of professional level outputs.






Information about past recipients is available here.

Key Dates

  • June 12, 2020

    Applicant information session at Noon via Zoom
    This session is open to all and no pre-registration is required

  • July 7, 2020

    Applicant information session at Noon via Zoom
    This session is open to all and no pre-registration is required

  • July 17, 2020

    Round One applications due by 11:59 p.m.

  • September 25, 2020

    Round Two applications due by 11:59 p.m.


Applications are now open for the 2021 President's Prize. Round One applications are due online by July 17, 2020.