Knight-Hennessy Scholars Program

Deadline: TBA

The Knight-Hennessy Scholars Program is designed to build a multidisciplinary community of Stanford graduate students. The program will annually identify a group of 100 high-achieving students from around the world with demonstrated leadership and civic commitment. As a Knight-Hennessy Scholar, you will develop both the depth and range of subject expertise to confront the numerous grand challenges and opportunities of the future. You will be part of a unique community of change agents from a diverse range of backgrounds. This is a community that will support you, motivate you, and holds you accountable for achieving your goals, even when the odds of success seem likely against you.

Knight-Hennessy Scholars will have the opportunity to spend time with established leaders in both informal and formal settings. These encounters will be available both as intimate conversations exclusively within your community as well as one-on-one meetings with experts in your areas of interest. The presence of a Fellow in Residence, a distinguished global leader residing on campus, will allow for the chance to build meaningful relationships and go in-depth in the Fellow’s area of expertise.

U.C. Berkeley applicants are encouraged to meet with Keila Diehl, the Knight-Hennessy Program advisor for the campus designated to discuss the application process with students.

Eligibility Requirements

  • Open to citizens from ALL countries
  • Applying to enroll in a full-time graduate degree program at Stanford (e.g., JD, MA, MBA, MD, MS, or Ph.D.), or if you plan on pursuing one of Stanford’s many joint- and dual- graduate degree options (e.g., MD+PhD, JD+MA, MBA+MS).
  • Applying during your final year of study for your first/bachelor's degree or within four years of earning your first/bachelor’s degree. For the cohort that applies in 2020, that means you must have graduated between January 2017 and September 2021 to enroll at Stanford in September 2021. We do not make exceptions to this policy.
  • You must complete the entire application process for your department - including any standardized test that your discipline requires (GMAT, GRE, LSAT, MCAT, etc.) and, if needed, an English proficiency test.

        Please note: The Knight-Hennessy Scholars Program DOES NOT defer Scholar offers.

Selection Criteria

The Knight Hennessy Scholars Program is looking for the following criteria in prospective scholars:

  • Independence of thought (first-step mental sharpness; seeks out knowledge and new experiences; full of original ideas; makes sense of ambiguous situations; can hold a contrarian or dissenting point of view)
  • Purposeful leadership (ambitious, in the best sense of the word; driven to improve self; willing to take risks; self-aware, persists, and bounces back from adversity)
  • Civic mindset (personally humble and kind; inclusive; respects differences; concerned for and helpful to others; low ego)

Application Requirements

  • Online application for admission (including personal and academic information, etc.). You must complete the application and submit it online. We will ask for basic biographic and demographic information, as well as information about your activities and interests.
  • Unofficial or self-reported transcript
  • Scores on standardized tests
  • Resume / C.V.
  • Two personal essays
  • Video submission
  • Two recommendation letters
  • In-person assessment (finalists for the Knight-Hennessy Scholars Program will be invited to visit Stanford for Immersion Weekend)

All U.C. Berkeley Knight-Hennessy Scholars Program applicants, including recent graduates and alumni, should make an advising appointment with Keila Diehl, the Knight-Hennessy Scholars Program campus representative. 

More information about this opportunity is available here: the Knight-Hennessy Scholars Program website.