Advice & Guidance

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These links provide guidance for completing the candidate application materials.

2022 Notes to Candidates

General guidance from the Foundation on the application and policy proposal.

Tips for preparing an effective personal statement

An effective Truman personal statement reveals clearly and memorably your story emphasizing your achievements, your passions, your motivation for public service, and your potential as a "change agent."

Getting creative with the Truman personal statement

Written by Dr. Jane Curlin, former Truman Faculty Representative and Director of Nationally Competitive Scholarships at the University of Tulsa, 1994-1998. Dr. Curlin is a writer and consultant and has a Ph.D. in English. She is a currently a Senior Program Manager with the Morris K. Udall Foundation.

Suggestions to candidates from a past participant

1998 Truman Scholarship Participant, Eugene Huang, gives a few general suggestions.

Policy Proposal tips

Foundation advice about how to choose a topic and write the all important Policy Proposal.

Frequent reasons for not advancing in the Truman competition

Read about some of the common errors candidates make in preparing their Truman application.

Candidate self-check list

This list is provided for candidates as a way to self-check their work prior to submitting the materials. Do NOT submit this form to the Foundation.

Samples of effective and ineffective responses

View samples of satisfactory and unsatisfactory responses to Items 7, 8, 9, 11 and 14.