Eligible students must be from one of the 18 counties listed below. A student’s permanent address must be within the designated county region. Current high school seniors or current undergraduate students may apply for the scholarship. Students must plan to attend a 4 year, accredited, non-profit college.The Foundation recognizes colleges and universities accredited by one of the six regional accreditation agencies, such as SACS.
Although standardized test scores do not solely reflect academic merit, the scholarship committee does note SAT and/or ACT scores when evaluating applications. Please keep in mind that the scholarship committee considers all aspects of the student’s application.
The Foundation will combine a student’s highest subscores from each test.
Please make sure that all of your test scores are included in your application materials. The Foundation accepts copies of your student score report or scores that appear on your high school transcript.
Copies of ACT or SAT are not required for current college students.
Please know that Watson-Brown recipients must maintain a 3.0 cumulative GPA to renew the scholarship. This GPA is necessary for eligibility.
All applicants who have never received a Watson-Brown scholarship must complete the online scholarship application. Please make sure your application is submitted online by February 15. A confirmation email will be sent immediately after successful application submission. If you do not receive a confirmation email, your application was not submitted and will not be considered.
What do I need to include in addition to my online application?
1) High School and/or College Transcript: For high school students, please submit a copy of your official high school transcript. If available, make sure that SAT and/or ACT scores are listed on the transcript. If you are currently enrolled in college, please submit an official current college transcript. Current college students are not required to submit high school transcripts; however, the Foundation may request them under certain circumstances.
2) SAT and /or ACT Scores: If they are not listed on your high school transcript please include a copy of your student score report. You may upload an image of your scores directly into the online appliation OR print a copy of the online score report. Make sure that we receive ALL scores since the Foundation considers the highest subscores from each test taken.
3) Letters of Recommendation: The Foundation wants to know what others have to say about you. Please submit two letters of recommendation from teachers/professors, religious leaders, coaches, employers, or others who have important roles in your life. Keep in mind that one recommendation must be from your school. It is wise to choose someone who knows you best and who can take the time to write a descriptive letter.
**ALL Letters of Recommendation will be requested and submitted through the online application system.
1. Log in and begin your scholarship application (Important: You must at least include your name before making letter of recommendation requests).
2. Return to the application main menu and choose “Add or Edit Recommendation Requests”.
3. Read the directions, complete the recommendation request form. Be sure to complete the “Personal Message from Student” that includes your full name, your request and contact information for the person who is writing your recommendation. For a complete scholarship application, you must submit TWO letters of recommendation. After requesting one, click on “Save and Add Another” to request your second. Remember that one letter of recommendation must be from someone at your school.
4. To check the status or resend requests, you may log into your application and choose “Add or Edit Recommendation Requests” from the main menu. A status of “Responded” means that your letter has been uploaded by that person, and a status of “Contacted” means that your request email has been sent but the recommender has not submitted a letter (it does not mean that your recommender has received your email – some go to spam or are blocked by email servers). Please note that recommenders are able to upload letters to the system both before and after you submit your Scholarship Application.
5. Letters of Recommendation must be received by the Foundation no later than February 15. It is YOUR responsibility to ensure that letters of recommendation have been successfully submitted. Contact your recommenders in person or via phone to make sure that they received the request. Even if your recommender says they submitted your letter, error can be made. Check the online system to check the true status of your request.
4) IRS Form 1040 or 1040 EZ:
Students must submit a copy of their parent(s)’ most recent IRS Form 1040. The form can be scanned/uploaded directly into the online application OR printed and sent via mail. If there is a reason you cannot provide these forms, please explain in the Financial Need Statement section of the application or include a written statement with your other mailed supporting documents. You may also contact the Foundation directly with any questions.
You may submit 2018 tax forms if 2019 forms are not available. If submitting 2018 forms, please explain any significant income change and include an estimate of the current income.
Financial information is confidential and used by the office to estimate financial need; however, feel free to black out or remove the social security numbers. The documents will be destroyed 60 days after scholarships are awarded.
Please send all documents in ONE envelope to:
Director of Scholarships
310 Tom Watson Way
Thomson, GA 30824
To be completed within the online scholarship application:
1) Essay: The essay not only demonstrates your writing ability but also conveys your personality and other qualities previously not listed on the application. The essay portrays the student beyond test scores and GPA. Many college applications require essays. You may choose one of the following essay topics listed on the online application:
- Describe a difficult time in your life. Did your perspective on life change as a result of the difficulty? How did you handle the challenge?
- Discuss a significant activity, experience, or achievement in your life that you believe prepared you for college. Explain how and why.
- Describe your hobby or something you are very passionate about. How do you think it has contributed to your personal development or personality?
- Topic of your choice.
If applicable, you may submit an essay that you have written for college admission. However, make sure that it falls within our scholarship application parameters (i.e. approximately 500 words).
If uploading your essay to the online application, please include your full name and the essay prompt number at the top of the document.
2) Financial Need Statement: The cost of college is a financial burden to most families. Although the Foundation asks for specific income information on the application, please include any family circumstance that may affect your family’s ability to pay for college. Losses of job, death of parent, medical expenses, or having other siblings in college are all examples. This information is important during the application evaluation process. Please be as specific as possible.
Scholarship recipients may attend any four year non-profit accredited institution in the United States. The only 2-year college exception is Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College in Tifton, Georgia. Please keep in mind that the Foundation only recognizes the main regional accrediting agencies as viable (example: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools). Currently, Watson-Brown Scholars attend over 140 institutions across the country!
Decision letters will be mail from the Watson-Brown Foundation’s Thomson, Georgia office on April 15 of each year.
The Watson-Brown Foundation Scholarship is renewable up to your first four years (eight semesters) of undergraduate studies. The Foundation does not fund additional semesters or fifth year seniors. If you were attending college when the scholarship was initially awarded, you may not be eligible for the full eight semesters of scholarship funding. For example, a college sophomore who has attended college for two years will only be eligible for two years of funding. All scholarships are renewed on a semester basis. Please contact the Foundation if you have questions about your eligibility.
Maintain a 3.0 cumulative GPA. If a 3.0 is not met, please continue to send the Foundation your grades at the end of each semester. Your scholarship may be reinstated if your grades improve.
Take a full course load (12 credit hours). The Watson-Brown Foundation will only award funding if you maintain at least 12 credit hours. Notify the Foundation immediately if you plan to drop below 12 credit hours.
At the completion of the Fall semester, complete the Online Renewal Form and upload your transcript/grade report. Scholarship checks will be sent to colleges in early January.
Complete the Watson-Brown Foundation Scholarship Renewal Form at the end of the Spring semester and upload your transcript/grade report. Notify the Foundation office of a change of address and email address (email is our main form of communication).
Fall renewal deadline is June 1 and Spring renewal deadline is January 1 (but preferably before the Holiday Break).
Please notify the Foundation office if you transfer colleges or plan to study abroad. The Watson-Brown scholarship may help fund study abroad and/or other special educational programs (depending on your college’s policy). However, the scholarship amount will not increase for these purposes.