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Scholarships and Awards

There are several different awards available through the Department of Politics and Government at Illinois State University. These are annual awards with the exception of the Alice Ebel Scholarship.

View our past winners


  • Alice Ebel New Student Scholarship

    The Alice Ebel New Student scholarship was established in honor of the first chair of the Department of Political Science, Dr. Alice Ebel. The purpose of this scholarship is to provide a $1,000 award to 25 incoming students who are declared political science or legal studies majors. Student must be newly admitted to ISU starting Fall 2023 semester.

  • Alice Ebel Outstanding Graduating Senior Award

    This award is given to students with outstanding scholarly achievement in and out of the classroom. Faculty recommendations are the major criteria.

  • Hibbert R. Roberts Outstanding Senior Award

    Political Science majors with a minimum GPA of 3.5 (both overall and within the department), who can reasonably expect to graduate in May, August, or December of the year of the award are eligible to apply. Outstanding scholarly achievement in and out of the classroom and faculty recommendations are the major criteria governing who will receive the award.

  • Thomas Wilson Internship Award

    This award will be given to students that have shown outstanding ability in their current or completed internship. Preference is given to those students whose internships take them out of the local community.

  • Dr. Frederick & Carlene Roberts Memorial Internship Award

    The Dr. Frederick and Carlene Roberts Memorial Internship was established in 2020 by Charlotte M. Roberts in memory of her brother Dr. Frederick Roberts and his wife, Carlene Roberts. The scholarship supports students participating in an internship or civic engagement activity. Student must be a pursuing a major or minor in Politics and Government.

  • Thomas More Scholarship in Political Philosophy

    This scholarship will be awarded to a sophomore or junior Political Science major who has demonstrated special interest and ability in the study of political philosophy through courses taken in the field. To be considered, a student should anticipate a career in teaching law, or some other form of public service. Course grades, extracurricular activities, and financial need will be considered in awarding this scholarship.

  • Frank M. and Hermina R. Giordano Scholarship

    This scholarship was established in their honor by their son Gerald to help and encourage those who might not otherwise have the opportunity to attend Illinois State University. Must be a student in good standing, majoring in Political Science with a 3.0 GPA or higher and be a junior, senior, or graduate student.

  • Jamal R. Nassar Scholarship

    This scholarship was established by colleagues and friends of emeritus faculty Jamal R. Nassar in his honor. Dr. Nassar was a faculty member at Illinois State University from 1978-2007, and served as Chair of the Department from 1998 to 2007. In July, 2007, Dr. Nassar retired and became Dean, College of Social and Behavioral Sciences at California State University at San Bernardino. The purpose of the Jamal R. Nassar Scholarship is to provide student support for scholarship, overseas travel, independent research, teaching or research assistantships, travel to professional conferences or academic meetings. Each candidate for a Jamal R. Nassar Scholarship must: (a) Be enrolled in good standing at Illinois State University, having completed at least one semester as a full-time undergraduate student at ISU immediately prior to application for the Jamal R. Nassar Scholarship in Politics and Government; (b) Demonstrate strong academic achievement, as evidenced by a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.0 on a 4.0 scale; and (c). Be a full-time undergraduate student with a minimum of 60 earned credit hours with a declared major or minor within the Department of Politics and Government.

  • John P. Freese Scholarship

    This scholarship was established by the family and friends of distinguished alum, Judge John P. Freese. The purpose of this scholarship is to support an undergraduate student with a declared major in Politics and Government. Preference will be given to a student interested in pursuing a career in law. Requirements include showing demonstrated academic achievement, as evidenced by accumulative GPA of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale in academic coursework at this or their previous institution of higher education. Students must also demonstrate involvement in campus and/or community volunteer organizations. The scholarship will apply to the academic semester following selection. Graduating seniors in their final semester at Illinois State University are not eligible.

  • George J. Gordon Scholarship in U.S. Public Affairs

    This award was established by Dr. George and Myra Gordon to recognize outstanding undergraduate students in the area of United States Public Affairs in the Department of Politics and Government.

  • Dr. Robert Bradley Scholarship

    This scholarship was created to recognize the 25 years of distinguished service provided by Dr. Robert Bradley. Each candidate for the Dr. Robert Bradley Scholarship must be or have: achieved a minimum GPA of 3.8 or an ACT score of 28 in their high school or college experience, participated in civic engagement and/or public service while in high school and/or at a prior higher education institution.

  • Subfield Awards

    Political Science majors or minors nominated by department faculty who intend to graduate in the year of the award with at least a 3.3 GPA in the major/minor and at least three courses in the Subfield are eligible for these awards. The Hibbert R. Roberts Outstanding Senior Award winner will not be eligible for consideration for this award unless she/he is the only student eligible within the Subfield. In addition to GPA, the number and level of courses taken within the Subfield and other academic activities undertaken (especially those related to the Subfield) will also be considered. The Subfields are American Government, Comparative Politics/International Relations, Public Administration and Public Law.

  • Outstanding Legal Studies Student Award

    Established by Dr. Thomas Eimermann, this scholarship is awarded to students who demonstrate strong academic achievement and a commitment and successful record in mock trial competition.

  • Carl Kasten Pre-Law Leadership Award

    This award is given to a graduating pre-law student who has exhibited strong leadership skills and made significant contributions to extra-curricular law related activities at Illinois State University (e.g., student judicial board, law club, legal internships).

  • Tom Eimermann Outstanding Pre-Law Student Award

    This award is given to the graduating pre-law student who combined the highest level of academic performance with the most significant participation in extra-curricular university activities and community service.

  • Thomas Eimermann Mock Trial Scholarships

    The Eimermann scholarship fund gives out $1,000.00 awards in the form of credits toward tuition and fee charges and/or for reimbursement of text books. Recipients of these awards may continue to receive them for up to four years as long as they meet the awards eligibility requirements and continue to participate in mock trial competition for ISU. To be eligible to receive an Eimermann Scholarship, the applicant must: (1) Be a currently enrolled student in good standing at Illinois State University, or have been admitted to ISU as a freshman or transfer student; (2) Have demonstrated strong academic achievement, as evidenced by a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale at ISU or, in the case of freshmen and transfer students, at the last high school or college attended; and (3) Have demonstrated commitment to and a record of success in mock trial, speech, or debate competition at either the collegiate or high school level.

  • Equity and Inclusion Advocacy Award

    This award recognizes a student who furthers the goals of equity and inclusion in the department, the discipline and the University. Criteria for selection include demonstrated leadership on behalf of minority students, GPA, participation in relevant public service activities, and recommendations from members of the department.


  • Outstanding Graduate Student Service Award

    The Department of Politics and Government will grant this annual award to one graduate student who has distinguished herself/himself in service contributions to the Department beyond the regular duties of a graduate assistant.

  • Outstanding Graduate Student Award

    This award recognizes the academic excellence of a graduate student who has distinguished theirself in the classroom and in relevant professional activities (such as presenting a paper at a conference) within the graduate college.

  • Graduate Student Civic Engagement Award

    This award recognizes the civic contributions of a graduate student who has participated in an internship, professional practice or substantial community service experience while maintaining a strong academic record.

  • Ali Riaz Graduate Student Award

    The award was established by Dr. Ali Riaz in 2021 to recognize a graduate student in the Department of Politics and Government studying either Comparative Politics and/or International Relations. The recipient of this award should not be excluded from being considered for the Outstanding Graduate Award, the Outstanding Graduate Student Service Award or the Graduate Student Civic Engagement Award.

All Students

  • Alice Ebel Scholarship for Current Students

    This scholarship was established by the first chair of the Department who was interested in promoting the advancement of women in public service careers. Initially, the scholarship was intended for women interested in public service. It has now expanded to promote public service careers for all students. The scholarship is available at any time during the academic year and will be determined by the Department Executive Committee. Scholarship amounts vary.

  • Alice Ebel Award

    Political Science majors/minors must demonstrate a high level of accomplishment in the discipline and the promise of an exceptional professional contribution after graduation. These factors shall be measured by GPA (overall and in the major), faculty recommendations, professional activities, achievements, and career aspirations.

  • Walter S. G. Kohn Award

    Political Science undergraduate or graduate students with at least 3.0 GPA who have demonstrated interests in European politics, attended at least one course on European politics, and would continue to pursue issues relevant to the understanding of contemporary politics of European countries will be eligible for the award.