Scholarship Spotlight: The Knight-Hennessy Fellowship

Hello and welcome back to our Schools and Scholarships Spotlight series  exploring top-tier graduate schools and fellowship opportunities!

Last week, we introduced you to Stanford Graduate School of Business. We told you all about what Stanford GSB has to offer in terms of defining your own path, gaining a truly global perspective, and let’s be honest, the stunning California weather.

Along with spotlighting some of the best graduate schools around the country, we also want to let you know about scholarship and fellowship opportunities that can help you pay for your education.  

Over the next several weeks we will be giving you insight into incredible financial aid opportunities at top graduate schools and compiling them all in one convenient place!

We heard from many of you that Stanford GSB is your top choice for business school, so we’d like to introduce you to Stanford’s: 

Knight-Hennessy Scholars Program!

Knight-Hennessy Scholars develops a community of future global leaders to address complex challenges through collaboration and innovation. Every year, up to 100 high-achieving students from around the world  receive full funding to pursue any graduate degree at Stanford, including the JD, MA, MBA, MD, MFA, MS, and PhD Programs, as well as all joint- and dual- degrees.

In short, no matter which degree you want to achieve , you will be eligible for this scholarship program.

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 hold you accountable for achieving your goals.

The program focuses on three main areas :

  • Leadership Development
  • Mentorship
  • Experiential Learning

The application for enrollment in the fall of 2019 opened  May, 1st 2018.

So what does eligibility look like for the Knight-Hennessy Scholarship program?


Citizens of any nationality are welcome to apply

-Any graduate program at Stanford qualifies for consideration

-Received first bachelor’s degree in 2014 or later; Enrolling at Stanford in 2019 or later

If you aren’t sure if you qualify please click the link below for more information.


We know we’ve piqued your interest in this incredible opportunity, so what exactly is Stanford looking for in terms of applicants?


  • Independence of Thought
    • 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

If this sounds like you, here’s what you need to know to apply.

Application Requirements and Deadlines:

  • Online Application
  • Transcript
  • Standardized Test Scores
  • One Page Resume
  • Two Recommendation Letters Addressing the Following:
    • Please explain how you know and interact with the candidate.
    • Tell us about a time the candidate did something that benefited others.
    • Tell us about a time the candidate did something that surprised you.
    • Is there anything else (positive or constructive) that we should know about the candidate?
  • Essays (a maximum total of 1,750 words for both essays combined)
    • Connect the dots. How have the influences in your life shaped you?
    • How will you pursue your life’s calling? How will your Stanford education and your Knight-Hennessy Scholars experience shape this?
  • Two Short-Answer Responses
    • Please tell us eight improbable facts about you.
    • Please list three goals/objectives that you are working towards right now. (No, being admitted to Stanford and/or being selected as a Knight-Hennessy Scholar can’t count as one of these goals.)
  • Video Story – no longer than two minutes
    • Teach something to your cohort of fellow Knight-Hennessy Scholars.
  • In-Person Assessment
    • Up to 150 finalists will be invited to visit Stanford for an Immersion Weekend, at Stanford’s expense, from February 9-11, 2019.

Deadlines: Open May 1st, 2018 -September 12th, 2018 at 1:00 PM PST.

It is important to note that the application for the Knight-Hennessy Scholars program is separate from your application into Stanford University which also must be completed in full.

Those applications open:

To give you a little context on who founded this Scholars program, we wanted to give you a background on Knight and Hennessy!


Philip H. Knight – MBA 62’ provided the founding gift to the Knight-Hennessy Scholars program. He was excited by the opportunity to partner with Stanford to launch a transformative program and wished to honor John Hennessy’s 16-year tenure as President of Stanford University. Co-founder and Chairman emeritus of Nike, Inc.,  Knight wrote his business plan for Nike while a graduate student at Stanford (pretty cool right?). He has since been actively engaged at the university and a generous contributor to its programs.

John L. Hennessy – The 10th President of Stanford University is the academic architect and visionary behind the Knight-Hennessy Scholars Program. Building upon the major academic initiatives advanced during his presidency, Hennessy fought to create an enduring and unmatched education program that would have significant impact on global challenges in the 21st century and beyond. Upon stepping down from the presidency, he began serving as the inaugural Shriram Family Director of Knight-Hennessy Scholars. He also serves as non-executive chairman of Alphabet.  


Does the Knight-Hennessy Scholars program sound like something you’d like to apply to? We’d love to speak with you about your applications! Book your free 90-minute Breakthrough Call with us today!

Be sure to come back next week to see more school and scholarship spotlights and let us know with a comment if there’s any that you would like to see!

(Note: We are not affiliated with any of these universities, and make sure you double check the information we have posted. Sometimes things may change, so be sure not use us as your only source!)

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