Margaret Chase Smith Public Affairs Scholarship

Each academic year the Public Affairs Scholarship is awarded to one or two UMaine undergraduates who propose an independent research project relevant to public policy in Maine. Scholarship students apply in April and work with a faculty advisor throughout the following year to conduct their research. The students present their research in the spring at the UMaine Student Research Symposium.

The amount of the scholarship will be $3,500 ($1,750 Fall/$1,750 Spring) per year.

The Margaret Chase Smith Public Affairs Scholarship was established in 1991 in the University of Maine Foundation with gifts from Harold Alfond to the Margaret Chase Smith Foundation in Skowhegan, Maine. The scholarship was established on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of Senator Smith’s election to the U.S. House of Representatives and in recognition of her many years of dedicated public service to the citizens of Maine and to the nation from 1940 to 1973. Senator Smith’s abiding belief was that real progress will be attained only through the education of Maine’s young voters. The scholarship program is administered by the Margaret Chase Smith Policy Center with the assistance of a university selection committee.

Scholarship Recipients and Projects

Scholarship Application

Application Process

Application submission must include:

  • Completed brief application form.
  • Essay must not exceed 500 words
  • Identification of an academic advisor(s) for your proposed research (does not have to be current academic advisor)
  • Two letters of recommendation (one must be from the academic advisor for your proposed research)
  • Application Deadline: April 10, 2020

Selection is limited to students who show promise for future leadership in and contribution to public affairs.
Applications will be evaluated according to:

  • The relevance and significance of the proposed research topic to U.S. public policy
  • The quality of written work expressed through the application essay

The selection committee will review all proposals and invite the most promising for interviews.  All applicants will be notified of the committee’s decision by May 2nd.

Eligibility Requirements: to be eligible, students must meet the following criteria:

  • Be a Maine resident enrolled at UMaine
  • Be an undergraduate student with a GPA of 3.0 or higher
  • Be registered at the University of Maine for 12 credits or more
  • Have completed 40 degree hours prior to the semester in which student is applying

Scholarship Renewal

The scholarship may be renewed for up to three years, provided the recipient meets the following requirements:

  • Submits completed project by April 1
  • Continues to make satisfactory progress in his/her academic program
  • Continues to meet the criteria for the award
  • Applies to renew the scholarship by submitting a satisfactory proposal for next year’s project

For more information please contact:

Peggy McKee
Phone: 207.581.1644