Melanie  Stanley  Stuart  Michelle Melanie  Stanley  Stuart  Michelle Melanie  Stanley  Stuart  Michelle Melanie  Stanley  Stuart  Michelle Melanie  Stanley  Stuart  Michelle Melanie  Stanley  Stuart  Michelle Melanie  Stanley  Stuart  Michelle Melanie  Stanley  Stuart  Michelle Melanie  Stanley


Friendship Scholarship Foundation



"The MSSM Friendship Scholarship that I received.....allowed me to attend my first choice school, San Diego State University. Without the scholarship, I would have been forced to stay at home due to lack of finances."

Ryan, San Diego State University


"The Friendship Scholarships allow other students to have a chance to affect the world around them in a positive way just like the kids would have. I know this scholarship has helped me to continue my education to make a difference in the lives of people everywhere."

 Emily, Santa Clara University


"Dear Dr. McFadden, I really want to emphasize that the Friendship Scholarship has really helped me. Thank you! . . . I am so honored to be one of the recipients that received a great scholarship because it has helped me financially and made me work harder in college to maintain a good GPA to keep the scholarship for the next three years. . . . My family was impacted . . . because my parents are less worried . . . I will never forget the scholarship because it has helped me so much."

Yer, University of California, San Diego (first generation USA college student)



Friendship Scholarship will be awarded to a high school graduating senior.

 Scholarship Applications will be accepted January 1st  through April 15 of the graduating year - all applications must be post-marked on or before April 15 of the graduating year in order to be eligible.


The Friendship Scholarships are unique in today’s world. A four year scholarship per recipient, awarding $4,000 annually to high school graduates accepted into an accredited four year program at the college or university of their choice – and based solely upon the qualities that embody “friendship:” compassion, trust, love, loyalty, a devotion to serve others and better their community, to give to the world and each other. These scholarships were inspired by the lives of my children, Melanie, Stanley, Stuart, and Michelle and the incredible young people, from very diverse backgrounds and interests, who were their friends. These people represent the best of the future for all of us. Imagine a scholarship based upon character and integrity! It is not limited to the highest academic achievers (grade transcripts are not required for initial application, though students must show proof of admittance to an accredited four-year college in the USA). The scholarships do not depend upon parental income, prowess in sports or any single potentially exclusive accomplishment. The main criteria are friendship and compassion qualities. Any and all graduating high school senior students may apply.


The HEART of the Friendship Scholarship application is based on the personal essay from the candidate describing what “friendship” has meant to them in their life, and on two or three personal letters of reference, one of which must be written by a friend, a peer, describing what this applicant’s friendship has meant to them and what they foresee their friend doing for the world in the future. This letter does not need to be especially literate, but might include an anecdotal story so that we can “see” their friend.


Though the Friendship Scholarships were inspired by my children’s lives, they are given to encourage and support the education of young people who have demonstrated an incredible quality which, regardless of their chosen career path, stands to substantially benefit others and the community around them.


What makes an application good, one the scholarship committee will like?  Two things are looked at:


1. You, the applicant's, personal essay on friendship and what it means to you, how it has shaped your life, both in giving and receiving friendship from others. Adults, peers, distant family, a kind stranger (not as in wandering the streets - more like an unknown parent at a school festivity) - friendship in general, and perhaps something that has touched your life. Lengthy essays quoting the definition of "friendship" from a dictionary and using multiple-syllable words may indeed read as very "grown up" and be quite imposing in it's erudition, but will leave the reader feeling as if it is a re-write of English lit paper #307 in your Junior year. They won't remember a thing about it - or you, most importantly - five minutes into the next application. Friendship Scholarship recipients are assumed to be able to read and write, to have a reasonable background of education, or they wouldn't have been accepted into a four year college or university. This is not a test. Let your letter come from the heart.


2. The letter from your own friend, a peer of your age. Their letter can have significant importance, particularly if they can share an overall picture of you, and possibly a personal anecdote of the part your friendship has played in their life, perhaps changed it. They are also asked to "look ahead", to what they see you doing in the future as you reach out to those around you. Up to two or three letters are allowed and only one must come from a personal friend. That is, however, the most important letter that will be looked at. One previous recipient received the Friendship Scholarship based in part on a very vivid letter written by her friend. It was obvious that English was a second language for this friend, that the person had not attended Honors English classes and possibly was not college-bound themselves - but oh, did that friend paint the very image of a loving, giving friend in their letter for the applicant.


Friendship, as you must know, is not based on correct spelling, SAT scores or terrific sports ability. It is blind to popularity, religion, and ethnic origin. "Friendship" is all about you. Finally, something that is all about you......yet includes everything else, every other person in your world.


The Friendship Scholarships are meant to be "non-exclusive" - a scholarship attainable to every four-year college bound graduating high school senior. Your application alone puts you into a special category, as just in applying you have recognized a unique quality within yourself.



Download the Application

MSSM Friendship Scholarship Foundation • PMB 121  3144 North 'G' Street #125 • Merced, CA 95340

Copyright ©  MSSM Friendship Scholarship Foundation, a 501(c)3 tax exempt charitable foundation.  All rights reserved.