The Donald A. Strauss Scholarship Foundation makes annual awards of $15,000 to no fewer than 10 and no more than 15 California college sophomores or juniors from 14 pre-selected institutions. 

The Foundation promotes the value of public service in the education and preparation of our future leaders by financing innovative student-generated projects.  A central part of the application package is a proposal for a project to be carried out between the end of the sophomore or junior year, and the spring of the following year; these proposals shall become a major focus of the selection process. Please see Projects We Have Funded

In response to the rising costs in education, up to $7000 of this award is now designated as a Scholarship to be applied to the student’s educational support. $8000 is designated as a project grant to fund the student’s service project expenses. Students may choose to add to their service project funds from the Scholarship funds. For example, a student may request $1000 less in Scholarship funds and have that $1000 added to their project.


This year, the foundation increased the award to $15,000--it previously had been $10,000, which is why some interviewees in video clips, and budgets in Sample Proposals on this website refer to the $10,000 figure.

Students do not apply directly to the Strauss Foundation. Campus Representatives at each of the 14 preselected four-year California colleges or universities may submit up to three applications.  


Find your campus representative and deadlines below:

THE $15,000 AWARD