The Mitchell Scholarship
The Mitchell Institute unlocks the potential of Maine college students so they can contribute to the vitality of their communities. We award scholarships each year to graduating students from Maine’s public high schools as they pursue higher education.
Recipients of the Mitchell Scholarship represent more than 130 high schools from every community in Maine, and each Mitchell Scholar receives a scholarship award for $10,000 that is paid in four equal installments of $2,500. In an effort to help more Maine students attain higher education, the Mitchell Institute provides scholarships for Maine students planning to attend two- and four-year degree programs at colleges both in- and out-of-state.
Once Scholars are selected, the Mitchell Institute helps them navigate college and the world beyond through personal and professional supports. In addition to offering the financial support of the scholarship, the Mitchell Institute offers a wide array of personal, academic and professional support programs, as well as a network of more than 3,000 Mitchell Scholars, Alumni, and partners—all of which amounts to much more than a check.
Resources and programs for Mitchell Scholars include:
- Leadership and career development events
- Access to a wide array of professional networks and social events
- Customized career advising and personal support through individual meetings with Mitchell Institute staff and community members
- Fellowship Awards of up to $1,500 to support internships and personal/professional growth opportunities
- Emergency financial assistance for unexpected financial challenges.
Additional information about the offerings listed above can be found by clicking on the orange icons.
Click on the arrow to learn more about applying for the Mitchell Scholarship.
Mitchell Scholarship Application
Eligibility and Criteria for Selection
To be eligible for consideration, an applicant must be a full-time resident of Maine on track to graduate in spring 2022 from a public high school in Maine. Students who attend a public school in Maine but come from households with residency outside of Maine are not eligible to apply for the Mitchell Scholarship. Applicants should plan to attend a two-year or four-year degree program at an accredited college or university in the fall semester immediately following their high school graduation. Students pursuing a two-year degree are eligible for up to four years of scholarship support if they continue their education beyond the initial two years. Candidates are evaluated based on the following criteria: academic potential, community impact, and financial need.
Deadlines and Required Materials
The online application for the Mitchell Scholarship is now open! To apply for the Mitchell Scholarship, eligible high school students must apply in the spring before they graduate.
We welcome eligible students to submit applications before midnight on April 1 by clicking on this link:
Please note our two deadlines:
Due by midnight on April 1, 2022:
- Online Mitchell Scholarship application
- High school transcript with mid-year grades
- Recommendation letter from a high school teacher, counselor, or principal
- Student Aid Report (SAR), a 5-9 page document generated by completing the FAFSA (click this link for guidance on saving your SAR as a PDF)
Due by midnight on May 1, 2022:
- The acceptance letter for your top college choice
- The itemized financial aid offer (or estimate) for your top college choice; a screenshot of your online account is acceptable
NOTE: If the required college documents are available before the deadline, we strongly encourage you to submit them early. You can send new letters to us at any time if you decide to enroll at a different college.
Applicants may submit the supplemental documents (transcript, recommendation letter, Student Aid Report, college acceptance letter, and itemized financial aid offer) in any of the following ways:
Option 1 (preferred and most secure method): Upload all supplemental documents along with the online application before midnight on April 1; only one document may be uploaded for each section of the application, so multiple pages should be combined into one document in PDF format before uploading
Applicants may upload their own transcripts and recommendation letters if they have access to them, or they can invite others (e.g., counselors, guidance staff, teachers) to upload documents directly to their applications. Applicants will not be able to view or access any documents that are uploaded by others on their behalf, nor will third parties be able to access any information within the application.
People invited by an applicant to upload a transcript and/or recommendation letter will receive an automated email message that includes a link for an easy, secure way to upload the document(s) directly to the student’s application. No password or special information is required.
Documents may be uploaded to the application platform any time before the April 1 deadline, even if the application is already in “submitted” status. Application edits and uploads will not be possible after this date.
Tips for applicants who invite others to upload documents to their applications:
- Applicants and those they invite should add this email address to trusted sender lists/address books to avoid spam filters: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Document requests should be submitted through the application platform well in advance of the April 1 deadline as a courtesy to the person who will upload the document (follow directions while logged in to the application, and be sure to confirm the correct email address before submitting the request)
- Applicants should contact each person directly as soon as the invitation is sent through the system with a suggestion to check junk/spam folders if the invitation is not in their inbox
Option 2: Send all supplemental documents directly to the Mitchell Institute before the appropriate deadlines by email, mail, or fax
Option 3: Upload some documents online before midnight on April 1, and send the rest directly to the Mitchell Institute before the appropriate deadlines by email, mail, or fax
Supplemental documents can be sent to the Mitchell Institute via:
- Email: email@example.com
- Mail (postmark by deadline): 75 Washington Avenue, Suite 2E, Portland, ME 04101
- Fax: 207-773-1133
Note: Documents may be emailed, faxed, or mailed by the applicant and/or school representative; please include the applicant’s name and high school name on all documents whenever possible.
Thank you for your interest in the Mitchell Scholarship. We wish you all the best, and we look forward to hearing from you!
We would like to share several links below that may be helpful in the college and scholarship application process:
BigFuture™ is a trademark owned by the College Board. Used with permission.
All the Wisdom and None of the Junk: Secrets of Applying for College Admission and Scholarships from the Boettcher Foundation
Welcome to the Family
Each summer after the selection of that year’s Mitchell Scholars, the Mitchell Institute hosts a Welcome Brunch for the newly-named scholarship recipients and their guests. It is an exciting opportunity for these Scholars to meet our staff, Board members, and other Scholars. In addition to hearing Senator Mitchell speak to them all directly, each Scholar has a photograph taken with Senator Mitchell. The Brunch also provides the Scholars and their guests with a glimpse of the various programs and resources available to them through the Mitchell Institute. The celebration occurs in August, not long before the students embark on their first semester of college.
MILE I & MILE II
Experiences of a Lifetime
The Mitchell Institute offers annual signature leadership and professional development events, known as Mitchell Institute Leadership Experiences (MILE):
The MILE I weekend is an experiential learning program, including guided outdoor exploration activities and a group community service project, held at Baxter State Park in Millinocket. Throughout the weekend, Scholars develop leadership and relationship-building skills — all while rafting down a river, reaching the summit of Katahdin, or discussing professional ethics at a dinner table. These interactions build an enduring community, establish connections, and equip Scholars with resources that foster success during and after college. As many as sixty Mitchell Scholars participate each October.
MILE II is a day-long career and personal development event hosted by Unum in Portland each March. Approximately eighty Mitchell Scholars and Alumni come together with professionals from a wide range of career fields for an experience brimming with keynote speeches, interactive workshops, and networking opportunities. The planning for this engaging and informative day is led by Mitchell Institute Alumni Council members.
A signature program of the Institute, our Fellowship Awards offer support to qualified Scholars and Alumni in their pursuit of internships, service learning, and study abroad experiences that offer ongoing personal and professional development. These funds empower Scholars to pursue enriching opportunities regardless of financial factors. Annually, we award approximately 50 Fellowship Awards ranging from $500 to $1,500 to Scholars and Alumni. To see what opportunities our Scholars have pursued, see the Fellowship Awards Database. The Fellowship Award application periods are October 1 to November 1, as well as March 1 to April 1 annually.
Mitchell Scholar receptions are held at as many of the Maine campuses as possible and are hosted by the college or university presidents. All of the Mitchell Scholars on a particular campus are invited to attend, as well as Mitchell Scholar Alumni in the area. These gatherings provide an opportunity for Scholars across the years to meet each other, as well as key program and academic leaders on their respective campuses. Topics covered at these receptions range from upcoming Mitchell Institute events and study abroad opportunities, to staying connected with other Mitchell Scholars on their campuses, among others.
Bridging the Gap
From past experience and research, we know that hidden costs and even modest unexpected financial hurdles can derail a promising Scholar without a financial safety net, potentially jeopardizing college completion. To that end, the Mitchell Institute has two supplemental funds available for currently enrolled Scholars:
The SOS Fund (Support Our Scholars) was established in 2012 to provide one-time supplemental grants to Scholars who face unforeseen one-time financial crises. Examples include car repairs or travel for unexpected emergencies; unexpected changes in living circumstances; the repair or replacement of course-mandated technology; or unanticipated one-time health-related issues.
The SPARC Fund (Subsidy Providing Assistance with Recurring Costs) was established in 2020 to provide grants to Scholars who face a recurring financial hardship while still enrolled in college. Examples include transportation costs such as car maintenance or fuel; living expenses that are not billed by your college or university, such as food insecurity or rent; course-mandated technology, books, or equipment beyond what is included within your college or university’s estimated cost of attendance; or ongoing health-related costs.
Both the SOS Fund and the SPARC Fund are considered and granted through one-on-one consultation between Mitchell Institute staff and Scholars. Please reach out to Andrea Mitchell for additional information.