The Office of Nationally Competitive Awards

What's Your Award?

The Office of Nationally Competitive Awards (NCA) helps students identify and apply for scholarships and fellowships for undergraduate and graduate study, independent research projects, and a variety of study abroad opportunities. Working closely with students, NCA guides them through complex application processes, whether that involves matching prospective applicants with specific awards and offering valuable feedback on personal statements, or staging mock interviews and organizing internal selection committees. NCA is committed to raising CofC’s national and international profile as our students pursue prestigious opportunities at home and abroad.

What can NCA do for you?

Applying for a national award can be an intense and time-consuming process; even the strongest applicants are often turned down for the most prestigious awards. So why apply? Whether you win an award or not, the application process alone will allow you to:

  • Improve your writing by producing a clear, concise, and persuasive personal statement that you can adapt for future competitive opportunities
  • Practice your networking skills by cultivating relationships with professors, community mentors, and professionals in your field
  • Reflect upon and develop graduate school and career plans
  • Learn how to communicate your research activities and career goals to a broad audience in a compelling way
  • Strategically align your experiences with the values that support them
  • Clarify how you can make useful and meaningful contributions to the world
  • Realize the importance of diversifying your college experience
  • Discover how to fulfill your potential

If you make yourself competitive for a national award, you'll be competitive for a lot of things, from internships and jobs, to research and leadership opportunities. In this sense, it's not the product that matters (winning some prestigious award) but the process itself that signals success. And, of course, given proper planning and preparation, you might just win your award!

NCA News

Office of Nationally Competitive Awards is Online for Fall 2020
Posted on 25 August 2020 | 10:17 am
All activities of the Office of Nationally Competitive Awards will be online this fall. You can schedule a virtual appointment to find the right award for you, learn more about the application process, make an awards plan, and receive feedback on an application. We are accepting appointments from 11-2 on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays […]
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CofC Student Named Goldwater Scholar
Posted on 2 April 2020 | 12:20 pm
A College of Charleston student has been named a Goldwater Scholar, one of the nation’s highest honors for undergraduates studying science, technology, engineering or mathematics. Molecular biology major Vernon Kennedy was among the 396 undergraduates awarded scholarships by the Barry Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation for their studies. The Goldwater reviewers faced the difficult task of selecting […]
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