What makes a strong applicant Pullman Scholars succeed academically and professionally, they’re active in their communities, they overcome challenges to achieve their goals, and are responsible individuals.

The Benefits
  • You’ll receive up to $10,000 per year for four years
  • You’ll have the support of the Pullman Foundation Staff and the Pullman Scholar Community for your four years of college and beyond

To be eligible for a George M. Pullman Educational Foundation Scholarship, applicants must:

  • Be a graduating high school senior
  • Be a Cook County, Illinois resident
  • Be enrolling as a full-time student in the fall, for the first time, to receive a bachelor’s degree
  • Be attending an accredited bachelor’s degree-granting institution in the fall that is eligible to receive Title IV federal aid and is located within the U.S.
  • Demonstrate strong financial need
  • Have a cumulative 3.0 unweighted GPA or higher
  • Be eligible to receive state and federal aid and will file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)
  • Be a U.S. Citizen or U.S. Permanent Resident
  • Not currently attending a college or community college, or hold any degree (This does not include dual enrollment as a high school senior)

11 · 2023

Application Opens

November 1st

02 · 2024

Application Closes

February 1st, 5:00pm

02 · 2024

Semi-Finalists Notified

End of February

04 · 2024

Finalists Notified


05 · 2024

New Scholar Class Notified

Beginning of May

07 · 2024

New Scholar Class Publicly Announced


Application Timeline

As applicants proceed through the stages, they will receive other deadlines for submitting transcripts, the interview process, submitting the FAFSA Submission Summary, and submitting college acceptance letters and financial aid award forms.

How to Apply

In order to apply, applicants must:

  • Complete and submit an online application which includes three essays and questions related to your cumulative unweighted GPA, family income, high school activities, classes taken in high school, etc.
  • Have two recommendation forms submitted by individuals who can speak to your strengths, achievements, growth, etc. (e.g. a teacher, mentor, guidance counselor, employer, boss, etc.)
  • The 2024 application is now closed. Applications were due by 5:00 p.m. CST on Thursday, February 1, 2024.


  • When can I apply?
  • The application process is open from the beginning of November to the end of January.
  • Can I apply if I haven’t been accepted to a college yet?
  • Yes, you may apply for our scholarship if you have not been accepted to a college yet. However, finalists must verify their college acceptance and financial aid package.
  • Where do I submit my application?
  • Your application and recommendation forms can only be submitted electronically through our online application software.
  • Who should complete the recommendation forms?
  • Consider people who can speak to your strengths, growth, achievements, and/or involvements. One recommendation must come from a teacher and another must be filled out by an adult who can speak to who you are and your accomplishments (a counselor, advisor, mentor, coach, teacher, manager, boss, etc.). No recommendation forms from family members or personal friends will be accepted.
  • How much financial assistance may I receive if I am selected as a Pullman Scholar?
  • Incoming first-year scholars are awarded scholarships up to $10,000, depending on financial need.
  • How long can I receive the Pullman Foundation Scholarship and how do I renew it each year?
  • As long as you are in good standing with the Foundation, you can renew your scholarship for up to four years (eight semesters) of full-time undergraduate study.
  • Why does the Foundation request my FAFSA and financial aid information?
  • The Foundation awards scholarships based on financial need and merit. To understand your financial situation, the Foundation needs to know how much federal and/or state aid you are receiving, as well as additional grants and scholarships you may be receiving from your college or university and other sources.
  • When will I find out if I received the scholarship award?
  • New scholars will be notified in mid-May.
  • How many new scholarships are awarded each year?
  • The number of scholarships awarded each year varies, but typically we award 25-30 new scholarships. The Foundations hopes to award as many scholarships as our budget allows.
  • If I’m having issues applying, is there anyone I can contact for assistance?
  • Please contact Anne Stretz, Scholarship Program Director, at astretz@pullmanfoundation.org with specific questions.
  • How do I know if everything for my application was submitted correctly or on time?
  • Once you submit your application form and three essays, you will receive an immediate confirmation from the software and a confirmation email. You will not receive confirmation when your recommenders submit their forms, but they will receive an immediate confirmation from the software and a confirmation email. To know if everything was submitted, the Foundation recommends asking your recommenders if they submitted their forms correctly and on time.
  • If selected as a Pullman Scholar, what else is expected of me?
  • You will need to read the Pullman Scholar Handbook and sign the Pullman Scholar Agreement which details all expectations. You’ll also need to attend mandatory events such as the Annual Pullman Scholar Symposium.