P.D. Soros Fellowship for New Americans

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The Paul & Daisy Soros Fellowships for New Americans program uses three primary criteria for selection of Fellows:

  • The candidate has demonstrated creativity, originality and initiative in one or more aspects of her/his life.
  • The candidate has demonstrated a commitment to and capacity for accomplishment that has required drive and sustained effort.
  • The candidate has demonstrated a commitment to the values expressed in the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights. This would include, but not be limited to, support of human rights and the rule of law, opposition to unwarranted encroachment on personal liberty, and advancing the responsibilities of citizenship in a free society.

In addition, the program considers two further criteria:

  • The candidate gives promise of continued significant contributions. Those contributions are likely to reflect distinctive creativity, originality and initiative and will mark the candidate as a leading and influential figure within her/his fields of endeavor.
  • The candidate's graduate training is relevant to her/his long-term career goals and is of potential value in enhancing her/his future creativity and accomplishment.


The program seeks to create "a level playing field" for the consideration of applicants from different backgrounds, in different fields, at different stages in their educational development, and of different ages. Because New Americans and their families have had very different immigration experiences, we take those differences into account in assessing applicants' success in meeting the selection criteria.

We always look at applicants holistically and have never had a preferred GPA or test score range. That’s because we know, with or without a pandemic, that our applicants may be facing, or have faced, major challenges or structural inequities that prevent them from getting the grades and scores they want. We’re interested in applicants who do the most with what they have, challenge themselves, and work hard to overcome obstacles.

Given the global COVID-19 crisis, we will be particularly sensitive and holistic in our approach to reviewing applicants’ academic work, test scores, and GPAs this year. We realize that many college and graduate school students are dealing with major disruptions in their personal and academic lives, some university classes will be pass/fail, and major test dates have been changed. We want applicants to know that we are rooting for you and will be extremely flexible in our approach to reviewing your work. 

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