The National Ocean Scholarship Program is offered by the National Ocean Sciences Bowl (NOSB), as part of their ongoing efforts to recognize individual excellence. These easy scholarships are for those students that participate in the Ocean Sciences Bowl, and are interested in pursuing ocean sciences in their studies beyond high school. The NOSB is administered by the Consortium for Ocean Leadership, who created the Bowl in 1998, in honor of the international Year of the Ocean, as a forum for talented high school students to test their knowledge of the marine sciences in an academic bowl format. In 2008, the first scholarships from this organization were given out to 4 graduating seniors, to help finance their post-secondary educations.
To qualify for this scholarship, worth $3,000 per year for the first two years of undergraduate study, students must have competed, at least once during their high school career, in a National Ocean Sciences Bowl. Additionally, students must have a career goal in the ocean sciences or a marine-related field and have demonstrated academic excellence and integrity. The application materials for this program can be found at their website as well as information about past recipients of this scholarship. Applicants must complete an application, submit an official high school transcript and official SAT or ACT scores as well as a proof of admission to an institution of higher learning. Two letters of recommendation are also needed, as are two essays. The essays include one describing how the student became interested in the ocean and why this interest led them to pursue a career in this area, and the other is the student’s choice of two essays of a topic to be determined by the NOSB. There are no set GPA or standardized test score benchmarks, but based on past recipients, applicants should have exceptional high school transcripts and test scores. Also, given that this scholarship is distributed by the National Ocean Sciences Bowl, the student should have a demonstrated interest in this activity, such as a long track-record of participation, or even, a leadership role, such as captain, on the team.
Each application is reviewed by an outside team of reviewers from various fields, including educators, university scientists and marine agency professionals. Due to the expertise of the professionals making the evaluations, students applying for this scholarship should truly be dedicated to pursuing studies in the marine sciences. The passion that they have for it will be more likely to come out, and make them that much more likely to be selected for this prestigious award. Each year, a very small number of students are selected, ranging from 2-5 students. Applicants should expect a high degree of selectivity when applying for this scholarship.