Mary McLeod Bethune Award

Mary McLeod Bethune Award

Mary McLeod Bethune

Mary McLeod Bethune, was American educator and civil rights leader who also served as an advisor to President Franklin D. Roosevelt.

The aim of the award program is to acknowledge those students who demonstrate a commitment to:

  • individual pursuits promoting expression of Black culture, history, and values.
  • academic excellence and advancement of scholarship.
  • cultivating community through service to improve quality of life for Black people at WashU, in St Louis, and globally.

Category of Award

Graduate – Leadership


Award Criteria

Nominee must be a current graduate student at Washington University in St. Louis who through leadership, service, scholastic achievement, and perseverance has served as an inspiration to the university community.


Nomination Process

Students can self-nominate or be nominated by Washington University administrators, academic advisors, faculty, staff and students.


Requirements for Nominee

Once a student has been nominated, they must submit the following documents:

  • Personal Statement, 750-1000 word statement describing your leadership activities and experience. Such leadership could have been conducted or occurred in St. Louis or beyond the region, as long as communities of color and/or individuals with socio-economic challenges have been positively impacted. Include in your statement your expertise on leadership and perseverance as follows:
    • Describe the leadership you have provided to the community or communities in which you have been involved; this could be in the St. Louis region and beyond.
    • What are/ were the goals or objectives of the organization or persons with whom you worked? How are you helping/have you helped them achieve these goals or objectives?
    • How and why did you become involved with the organization and/or this community?
    • Describe any extraordinary efforts which you have made in order to maintain your academic status as a graduate student.
  • Unofficial transcript
  • Current Resume
  • Letter of recommendation that speaks to your suitability for this award (can be sent via email)
  • Interview will be scheduled after personal statement, transcript, resume and letter of recommendation is submitted.

Awards Program is cancelled due to the CORVID-19 Virus as of 3/13/2020.