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Annual Timeline

Spring Community Change Project Late June Aspen Ideas Festival April Scholars Selected Late January Applications Due Fall Application Opens Impact Take Action Apply
Impact Take Action Apply Spring Community Change Project Late June Aspen Ideas Festival April Scholars Selected Late January Applications Due Fall Application Opens

Mid to late October — Application Opens

Before starting an application please double check school and student eligibility and review the program commitments to confirm you and your Educator Nominee have the capacity and availability to meet the requirements. Additionally, prospective applicants can:

  • Watch informational Q & A video on YouTube hosted by Bezos Scholar Alumni to learn more about the Bezos Scholars Program and the application process.

When ready, click the “Apply Now” at the top of the page to set up a profile, verify email, and get started! Email us at with questions and for support.

If applications are not currently open or you are not eligible to apply but want to be alerted when next year’s applications open, please add your name to the News & Alerts List.

Fall and Winter: Work on your application

We are interested in who you are and what is most important to you. Tell us about your passions, accomplishments, and community contributions. Learn more about the application components.

Late January — Applications due

  • The submission deadline is midnight on Friday, January 31, 2020 – in the time zone the student resides. Don’t wait until the last minute!
  • Remember to submit your application by the deadline and ensure your principal, educator nominee, and recommender have completed their forms.
  • Late applications will not be accepted.

February - March: Completed Applications are Reviewed

  • A selection committee comprised of a diverse group of leaders in education, youth leadership and development, science, the arts, and Bezos Scholars alumni review all completed applications. Find more about how the selection committee evaluates applicants.

March - April: Finalists are Selected

  • Student finalists are notified and invited for a phone interview with the Bezos Scholars Program team.
  • The Selection Committee then reviews all finalist applications a second time and presents their selection recommendations.
  • All finalists are notified as to whether they were selected as a Bezos Scholar. Their acceptance is contingent on the interview and acceptance of their Educator Nominee.
  • Nominated educators are invited for telephone interview with the Bezos Scholars Program team.
  • Bezos Scholars are confirmed after the Educator Nominee interview is completed.
  • Alternates and all other applicants are notified of their status.

May and June: New Scholars are welcomed

  • The new Bezos Scholar cohort is announced publicly.
  • Scholars receive and complete welcome paperwork and orientation webinars to meet the cohort.
  • Scholars explore issues in their communities and identify needs.
  • Scholars prepare for the upcoming trip to Aspen, CO.

Late June – Aspen Ideas Festival

The program kicks off with an all-expenses paid trip to the Aspen Ideas Festival. In Aspen, selected students and accompanying educators will:

  • Build connection with fellow Scholars from across the U.S. and Africa.
  • Experience the beauty and awe of Aspen.
  • Meet with and get inspired by innovative global leaders.
  • Develop and hone their leadership skills.
  • Begin the groundwork of developing a sustainable community change project that meets a relevant community need and makes a positive difference.

I am grateful for the Bezos Scholars Program because it forced me to be an active and productive participant in my personal leadership journey. – Regina O'Neal, 2017 Educator

July 2020 – June 2021: Leadership In Practice

  • Scholars participate in monthly webinars with inspiring presenters and leaders and attend workshops related to developing their community change project.
  • Scholar teams contact peers and community member to support them in developing and launching their project.
  • Scholars participate in monthly, or as needed, check-in calls with staff and other Scholar teams for encouragement, support, and coaching.
  • Scholars work on and submit a grant proposal, progress report, and final report at key times during the year to share the details, planning, progress, launch, and outcomes of their project.
  • Scholars work with their school (or a nonprofit they identify that has agreed to be their fiscal sponsor) to receive $1,000 in seed funding to launch their project.
  • Scholar teams launch their community change project and document their outcomes, findings, and learning to fuel future student-leaders who will sustain it for years to come.
  • Teams celebrate with their community and the Bezos Scholars Program.

BSP Alumni

  • After participating in the year-long program, Scholars officially become alumni and are offered continued support and connection through internship and leadership development opportunities, sponsored gatherings in different regions around the U.S., and support in pursuit of passions that positively impact the greater good.

I can honestly say I am a changed person because of this experience. I feel stronger and more confident in what I want to do. – Kaetlyn Rodriguez, 2017 Bezos Scholar