Incoming Student Scholarships

Scholarships for Prospective Students

The Davidson Honors College (DHC) offers merit-based scholarships to incoming students to recognize outstanding talent, academic performance, and leadership potential. These are the University of Montana's premier academic scholarships and include the Presidential Leadership Scholarship (PLS), Provost’s Honors Scholarship (PHS), and the Dean’s Leadership Scholarship (DLS).

These scholarships significantly reduce the cost of attendance at the University of Montana and students who meet progression standards may have their awards renewed for up to four years.

We are looking for well-rounded, ambitious, and curious learners. While we look at academic performance and achievements, these criteria are not absolute and all highly motivated students are encouraged to apply. Additionally, test scores are no longer required.   


All DHC application forms submitted by December 1, 2023, at 11:59 PM MT will be considered for the Davidson Honors College Incoming Student Scholarships. Applications received after that date will be considered for admission to the Davidson Honors College, but NOT for the Incoming Student Scholarships.


Once you have applied to the University of Montana you can access the Davidson Honors College application located under forms on your UM Admissions Portal page. You should receive access resources to log into the Admission Portal page with your Admission Confirmation email. Alternatively, you can use the Forgot Password option plus the email you applied with to gain access. Use the link below to access your UM Admissions Portal.

Admissions Portal-Access to DHC Application for students who have already applied to UM

If you are currently an enrolled UM student (not an incoming freshman) you can apply to the DHC using the link below.

Application for currently enrolled UM students


  • Basic biographical information

  • Information about your academic background and achievements

  • Transcript: We do not have access to your official transcript sent to UM Admissions. For this review process, please upload an unofficial transcript along with your other application materials.

  • 5 short answer questions

  • A brief essay of 500 words on one of four topics

*The following are updated essay prompts for our 2024/2025 application that will go live early August 2023*

Short Answer Questions:

    1. Introduce yourself (in the third person) to UM’s Davidson Honors College (50 words). 
    2. List up to three of your most significant academic experiences. 
    3. List up to three of your most significant leadership or service experiences.
    4. List up to three cultural or personal development experiences. 
    5. Describe one of the experiences above in greater detail and how it shapes your academic and professional goals (250 words). 
    6. The DHC is a dynamic, supportive community of scholars. How might you contribute to it? What unique talents, perspectives, identities, or experiences will you bring to the DHC? (250 words) 
    7. Improbable (definition: unexpected). Fact (definition: things that are known or proven to be true). List and briefly discuss three improbable facts about you. (100 words total). 

Essay Prompts (respond to one) (500 words): 

(Please select one and paste it at the top of your essay.)

  1. What is your most powerful learning experience to date? This could be a course, an accomplishment, a relationship, or an event that sparked significant personal growth and/or a new understanding of yourself, others, and/or the world. What did you learn? How has this prepared you for success as an honors student at UM and beyond?
  2. The DHC’s mission includes the statement “[we are] dedicated to strengthening our positive impacts on the world.” Discuss an issue or question that you are curious or passionate about and want to impact. Why is this important for you? For our world? How do you hope the DHC prepares you to make this impact?
  3. The University of Montana’s mascot is the grizzly bear. Words used to describe Grizzlies include: respectful, responsible, playful, formidable, curious, wise, creative, strategic, active, and easygoing (also hungry). Which of these traits best describes you and why? How do you imagine this or these characteristics might shape your life in college and beyond?
  4. Seuss famously wrote: “The more you read, the more things you will know, the more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” Why do you want to go to college? What do you hope to read, to know, to learn, and where would you like to go? Why is the University of Montana and Davidson Honors College the right place for you to study?

  • Letter of recommendation from an academic or professional reference addressed to the Davidson Honors College for honors scholarship consideration (that is, Presidential Leadership Scholarship, Provost’s Honors Scholarship, and Dean’s Leadership Scholarship). Your letter can be uploaded directly to your application or emailed from your reference to
  • Standardized test scores (e.g. self-reported ACT, SAT). You are welcome to include test scores in your application and if you apply before you have received your test scores, you may email your test score report to or email the same address with test details (test name, date of test, scores) and scores will be added to your record.


Applications received by 11:59 PM on the first Friday in December will be considered for the Incoming Student Scholarships: Presidential Leadership Scholarship (PLS), Provost Honors Scholarship (PHS), and Dean’s Leadership Scholarship (DLS). Applications received after that date will be considered for admission to the Davidson Honors College, but NOT for the Incoming Student Scholarships. Davidson Honors College applications will be considered only from those who have applied for admission to a four-year undergraduate program at the University of Montana.