MacDonald Scholars Program

MacDonald Scholars Program at IU

The MacDonald Scholars Program supports incoming IU Bloomington undergraduate students with a passion for civic engagement and a drive to create positive change in their communities and around the world. On campus, MacDonald Scholars connect with supportive staff members, community leaders, and one another through unique engagement opportunities. Scholars make a difference by completing a minimum of 280 hours of meaningful service every year, serving in the Bloomington community and in their home communities.

As a MacDonald Scholar, I served the community by volunteering at non-profits like WonderLab and the Boys and Girls Club of Bloomington. Graduating from IU as a MacDonald Scholar represented not only the culmination of my education, but also how I maximized my role as an engaged citizen.

Dana Nissan, MacDonald Scholar Alumna

A legacy of giving back

The MacDonald Scholars Program at IU Bloomington was established in 2016 through the generosity of IU alumnus Scott MacDonald. Mr. MacDonald worked his way through college, including every semester and summer break. Despite his hard work, he graduated with student loan debt. Mr. MacDonald eventually paid his debt and embarked on a successful career. He felt the desire to “pay it forward” by helping students who, without his help, would incur significant debt from university studies.

The MacDonald Scholarship at IU Bloomington provides undergraduate, full-time scholars with a scholarship of $20,000 ($5,000 annually for 4 years) or $36,000 ($9,000 annually for 4 years), based on residency. In addition, they receive the benefit of a structured program that encourages leadership development and civic engagement. Scholars are selected based on a variety of factors including demonstrated financial need and experience with community service.

Eligibility requirements

To be eligible for the MacDonald Scholars Program, an incoming freshman must:

  • Have demonstrated financial need, verified through a completed FAFSA on file.
  • Complete the General Scholarships Application in the IU Scholarships tab in One.IU.
  • After completing the General Scholarship Application, search for “MacDonald” in Recommended Opportunities, select “IUB-Scott MacDonald Scholars Program,” and complete the application questions.

Immigrants and children of immigrants are encouraged to apply for this scholarship.

Members of the Scholarship Selection Committee will review all applications, and the MacDonald Scholars Program Coordinator will notify all recipients and non-recipients of their status.

The deadline to submit the MacDonald Scholars Program application is February 1.