Indiana University’s Wells Scholar Program for Talented Students

By Bright Silas

Scholarship Snapshot
Amount: Full Cost of attendance
Scope (Full or Partial): Full
Number of Awards: 18-22
Target Country: United States
Target Audience: Undergraduate students
Deadline: November 1, 2023

The Wells Scholarship is a prestigious academic award that allows exceptional students to pursue higher education at Indiana University (IU), USA.

This article will expound on essential details about the Wells Scholars Program. We will shed light on what this scholarship opportunity is all about, its benefits, its requirements, and how to send in a successful application. 

What is the Wells Scholarship?

The Wells Scholarship was established in 1990 in honor of Herman B Wells, the legendary former Chancellor of Indiana University, Bloomington (IUB).

The scholarship aims to recognize and support students who encompass the ideals of Herman B Wells, and a passion for making a difference in their community, the nation, and the world.

The Wells Scholarship is a merit-based full-ride scholarship meant to support talented students at Indiana University to fulfill their dreams of becoming innovators, problem solvers, humanitarians, and pioneers in their different fields of study.

The program inspires scholars to become the best thinkers, leaders, and citizens they can be, embodying UI’s long-standing tradition of discovering and developing students’ potential.

Each year, around 18 incoming freshmen receive the Wells Scholarship. Additionally, the program selects one to two current IUB students to join the junior or senior class of Scholars.

Benefits of the Wells Scholars Program

The Wells Scholars Program has several interesting benefits. They include:

  • Full Tuition: Wells Scholars receive full tuition coverage for four years of undergraduate study at Indiana University, allowing them to focus on their education without the financial burden of tuition costs.
  • Living Stipend: Scholars receive a generous living stipend, which assists with housing, meals, and other expenses, ensuring a comfortable and enriching college experience.
  • Global Engagement: The scholarship encourages international experiences and offers support for study abroad programs, research opportunities, and internships. This fosters a global perspective and enriches scholars’ educational journeys.
  • Academic Support: Wells Scholars benefit from small class sizes, close faculty mentoring, and academic support services, enabling them to excel academically and pursue their intellectual passions.
  • Leadership Development: The program provides numerous leadership development opportunities, including seminars, workshops, and engagement with prominent leaders in various fields. Scholars are encouraged to take on leadership roles on campus and in their communities, nurturing their potential as future change-makers.

Wells Scholarship Requirements

Wells Applicants must:

  • Display exceptional qualities of character, possess leadership potential, and perform community service
  • Involve significantly in extracurricular activities
  • Show exceptional academic records. Must be in the top 5% by class rank, have a GPA of at least 3.9 on a 4.0 scale, and (optionally) a 1430+ SAT score and/or 32+ ACT score.
  • Express interest in joining a community of scholarly individuals with diverse interests beyond a pre-professional track

Wells Scholars must:

  • Complete a minimum of 12 credit hours of coursework each semester
  • Maintain a minimum cumulative and semester GPA of at least 3.4
  • Always adhere to the highest ethical standards of personal and academic conduct

How to Apply for the Wells Scholarship?

The Wells Scholarship gives awards to students based on nomination. It has a diverse nomination process for three groups of applicants, namely: Domestic High School Seniors, International High School Seniors, and Current students at Indiana University. We will address the nomination process for each of these groups so that you can apply according to the category you belong.

Domestic High School Seniors

This category includes:

  • US residents and US passport holders, whether they attend a US high school or an international high school
  • Non-US residents and non-US passport holders attending a US high school

Nomination Process

In early August, the Wells Scholars Program will circulate nomination materials and instructions to counselors and administrators at all Indiana high schools and out-of-state high schools already on their email list. Each school has slots for 2 nominees per year. 


  1. Counselors at other US high schools should contact for information on how to nominate. 
  2. Students not selected by their school or who otherwise wish to participate (i.e. homeschool, etc.) may self-nominate. A counselor or administrator will need to attach a transcript and letters of recommendation.


All nomination materials from both student and counselor are due through our online portal by 11:59 pm EST on November 1. The student must also complete their application for admission to IU by November 1.

International High School Seniors

This category involves non-US residents and non-US passport holders who attend non-US high schools.

Nomination Process

In early August, the program will circulate nomination materials and instructions to counselors and administrators at international schools already in their email list.


All nomination materials from both student and counselor are due through our online portal by 11:59 pm EST on November 1. Applicants must also complete their application for regular admission to IU through OIS by November 1.

Current IUB students

The Wells Scholars Program gives awards to one or two sophomores or juniors attending Indiana University full-time.

Nomination Process

Invitations are sent to IU Bloomington faculty in late February via email. An IU Bloomington faculty member has an opportunity to nominate a student. Faculty nominators are required to send in the name of the nominated student, along with the student’s IU email address, to The principal nominator ideally also solicits supporting letters from one or more colleagues. Qualified students must:

  1. Complete at least three semesters of coursework as a full-time student on the Bloomington campus.
  2. Be among the top 1% of students at the university in terms of intellectual ability and scholarly performance.  
  3. Display evidence of exceptional additional accomplishments or qualities through extracurricular activities, community service, research, or outstanding talent in some specific field.

In exceptional circumstances, the program considers exceptional freshmen (first-year students) with at least sophomore academic standing. If this is the case, the faculty member presenting the nomination should provide a letter of support outlining their reasoning.


All nominations and letters of support must be received by March 24, 2023.

Scholarship Timeline

  • Nominees must submit all required materials through our online portal to complete their files by April 8, 2022. 
  • All nominees receive notification about their status. A few finalists are invited to interview in early May
  • Each finalist will receive a notification of the result status in late May
  • Wells Scholars get invites to a welcome reception during Welcome Week in late August.

At Scholarship Monitor, we are committed to providing you with up-to-date information on scholarship opportunities. Make sure to always check back for more updates and take advantage of the resources we have provided to help you achieve your academic and career goals.

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