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Osher Reentry Scholarship Program


The Foundation defines reentry students as individuals who have experienced an interruption in their education of five or more years and who want to resume their education at the undergraduate level. This scholarship is intended to benefit students who have considerable years of employability ahead of them—ideally aged 25 to 50.

NOTE TO STUDENTS: The Foundation does not make grants to students directly. Colleges and universities administer the scholarship program after receiving support from the Foundation. A list of institutions offering Reentry Scholarships is below. In all cases, students apply for the scholarship through the college or university, not the Osher Foundation.

Qualified students may include part- and full-time students, with a preference given to newly matriculating students. Applicants should have financial need, academic promise and a commitment to completing their degree. The Foundation requires that scholarship awards be applied to student tuition fees exclusively.

Reentry students often have special needs including matriculation and career counseling, familiarization with new information technology used in higher education and balancing the requirements of their families and employment. The Foundation supports select institutions that have established services that address these needs and aid in the success of reentering students.

The Foundation considers institutional grants of up to $50,000 a year with a possible renewal for a second or third year. Upon demonstrated success, the Foundation will consider establishing endowments to provide permanent support for the Osher Reentry Scholarships.


Proposals for Osher Reentry Scholarship grants are accepted by invitation only. The Foundation only supports 4-year institutions that serve reentry students for this program. Osher Reentry Scholarships may be awarded to students who
• have experienced a cumulative gap in their education of five or more years;

• are at the undergraduate level and pursuing their first baccalaureate degree;

• anticipate workforce participation for a significant period of time subsequent to graduation and ideally be aged 25-50 years;

• demonstrate financial need;

• show academic promise and a commitment to obtaining their degree.

This grant in not intended for graduate students or students seeking an additional degree. It is not intended for students who are exclusively enrolled in online courses or for international students who are visiting the United States with the intention of returning to their countries of origin after graduation.

Application Procedure

The Foundation is not currently seeking new grantees for this program. Notice of any plans to expand the program would be posted on this webpage. If your college or university would like the Foundation to be aware of your institution and its services for Reentry students, a brief letter of introduction should address these points.

• Approximately, how many students at the institution are pursuing their first baccalaureate degree and are between the ages of 25 and 50?

• Describe the special needs of reentry students and how those needs are addressed at the institution. Is there a unit within the institution dedicated to reentry and/or non-traditional students? If so, when did it begin offering services?

• What other services also help reentry students achieve success (evening/weekend courses, counseling services, childcare, etc.)?

Letters should be addressed to Andy Lynch, Program Officer, The Bernard Osher Foundation, One Ferry Building, Suite 255, San Francisco, CA 94111. Your letter will be reviewed and kept on file.


After endowing scholarships for non-traditional students at Mills College and Dominican University of California, the Foundation launched the Osher Reentry Scholarship Program in the summer of 2005. Currently, this program includes 88 institutions in 50 states and the District of Columbia.

Arizona State University
Boise State University
Boston College
Boston University
Bryn Mawr College
Brown University
California State University, Chico
California State University, East Bay
California State University, Long Beach
California State University, Sacramento
California State University, San Bernardino
Claflin University
Colorado State University
Creighton University
Delaware State University
Eckerd College
George Mason University
Georgetown University
Granite State College
Hampton University
Indiana University
Iowa State University
Kennesaw State University
Loyola University
Middle Tennessee State University
Menlo College
Morgan State University
New York University
North Dakota State University
Northwestern University
The Pennsylvania State University
Pitzer College
Reed College
Rochester Institute of Technology
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
San Francisco State University
Southern Oregon University
Spelman College
Texas State University at San Marcos
The New School
Towson University
Tufts University
Tulane University
University Center, The University of South Dakota
The University of Akron
University of Arkansas at Little Rock
The University of Alabama
University of Alaska Fairbanks
University of California, Berkeley
University of California, Davis
University of California, Los Angeles
University of California, Riverside
University of California, Santa Cruz
University of Hawaii, Hilo
University of Hawaii, Manoa
University of Hawaii, West Oahu
University of Louisville
University of Massachusetts, Boston
University of Miami
University of Michigan, Flint
University of Minnesota
The University of Mississippi
University of Missouri, Columbia
University of Missouri, Kansas City
The University of Montana
University of Nevada, Las Vegas
University of New Mexico
University of North Carolina, Charlotte
University of North Carolina, Wilmington
The University of Oklahoma
University of Oregon
University of Richmond
University of San Francisco
University of South Florida
University of Southern Maine
University of the Pacific
University of Utah
University of Vermont
University of Virginia
University of Washington
University of Wisconsin, Madison
University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee
University of Wyoming
Wellesley College
West Virginia University
Wichita State University
Widener University
Yale University