Voyager Scholarship

How to apply



Administered by the Obama foundation and funded by Airbnb founder and CEO, Brian Chesky, the Voyager Scholarship helps students pursuing careers in public service by providing access to travel and education. This scholarship aims to inspire young leaders by exposing them to new places and experiences, equipping a new generation to make meaningful change in an increasingly globalized world. Students of all disciplines are encouraged to apply and the scholarship is awarded to about 100 juniors each year.


  • Up to $50,000 in financial aid to cover remaining tuition and living costs during a Voyager’s junior and senior years of college. A maximum of $25,000 can be awarded each year.
  • A budget of $10,000 to design a summer voyage between junior and senior years of college. Voyagers are encouraged to pursue internship or mentorship opportunities that will prepare them for a career in public service.
  • A ten-year travel stipend of $2,000 per year.
  • A yearly fall summit to help define and inspire students’ public service journey.
  • Access to the resources and programming of the Obama Foundation and connections with a network of leaders.


Applicants must meet all of the following eligibility requirements:

  • Enrolled as a sophomore at the time of application and must plan to enroll full-time in the fall of their junior year
  • Have a minimum grade point average of a 3.0 on a 4.0 scale
  • Have demonstrated commitment to public service and plan to pursue a career in public service upon graduation
  • Be a US citizen, US permanent resident, or have been granted deferred action status under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program (DACA)
  • Demonstrate financial need

Preference may be given to students with limited or no prior engagement with other leadership programs during their undergraduate experience.

Application components

  • Several short writing responses
  • A 2-minute video in which applicants speak about their dreams for the future and how they align with the mission and vision of the scholarship
  • Transcript
  • Copy of pages one and two of the most recent 1040 form

How to Apply

The Voyager Scholarship does not require campus endorsement or nomination, however, the Office of Fellowships is happy to talk with you about your plans to apply and provide feedback on your written responses, provided you begin your application with sufficient lead time. 

  1. In your first year or the fall semester of your sophomore year at Wesleyan, read up on the basics about the Voyager Scholarship on the program webpage.
  2. As early as spring of your first year and, at the latest by early February of your sophomore year, book an appointment with Office of Fellowships staff to talk about your intentions for a public service career and your plans for a Voyager Scholarship application
  3. Review your drafts of the written responses with Office of Fellowships staff. (The earlier you can produce these drafts, the better the opportunity to discuss them. It may not be possible to review drafts submitted after the campus deadline.
  4. Book a followup appointment (if needed) to discuss your plans for the video component of the application.
  5. Submit your application by the national deadline in mid March.