Wolff Fellowship Award

The Wolff Fellowship program provides an award of approximately $45,000 to an outstanding graduating senior for a year-long travel, service or study-abroad experience. Letters & Science graduates will be empowered to take on a year of travel and service as part of a new fellowship opportunity, made possible by a generous gift from Paul Martin Wolff and Rhea S. Schwartz. Eligible May 2023 graduating seniors must demonstrate not only a proven record of service to the University and community, but also outstanding academic performance.

Eligibility for this award includes: Letters & Science undergraduate degree candidates (for Spring 2023) who have attended UW-Madison for the entirety of their undergraduate careers with a minimum 3.75 cumulative GPA (at the time of application) who have distinguished themselves by demonstrated academic achievement, service to the University and service to the greater world community. Transfer students are ineligible to apply for this opportunity.

Nominations from faculty and staff are solicited each cycle and students may nominate themselves and apply directly for this award.

Upon receipt of required documents, payments will be made on a quarterly basis.

Paul Martin Wolff earned his B.A. in History from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1963. He went on to build a successful legal career in civil and criminal litigation. He is also a gifted sculptor. Rhea S. Schwartz is an accomplished attorney who remains active in philanthropy during retirement. Together Paul and Rhea established this fellowship to elevate the opportunities available to Letters & Science students. This is the first fellowship of its kind at UW-Madison, and is modeled after similar programs at Harvard University.

An information session is scheduled for Wednesday, November 16, 2022 from 6-7pm. Wolff Fellowship Information Session Registration

Paul Wolff and Rhea Schwartz
Up to $45,000
College of Letters and Science
Supplemental Questions
  1. (Wolff) This generous fellowship awarded by the College of Letters & Science is made possible by the generosity of the Wolff family for a post-graduation experience. I understand upon acceptance of this award I assume full legal and financial responsibility and agree to hold harmless the University, Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System and their respective officers, employees, and agents from any and all related liability, loss, damages, costs, or expenses which do not arise out of the negligent acts or omission of an officer, employee, and agent of the University and/or Board of Regents.
  2. (Wolff) The UW and its employees cannot provide personal tax reporting and preparation advice for legal reasons. Payment recipients should consult the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and their personal tax preparer for applicable taxes and tax reporting of any payments they receive. I understand that if I am selected as a recipient fellow, I will be responsible for determining individual United States income tax liability resulting from the award.
  3. (Wolff) I understand that at the time of application I must have a minimum 3.75 grade point average to be eligible for review.
  4. What is your expected graduation date? (Month/Year)
  5. (Wolff) What email address will you use after graduation:
  6. (Wolff) What phone number can be used to contact you after you graduate?
  7. (Wolff) Please provide an auxiliary contact during your fellowship in the event contact is necessary.
    • Please provide the phone number with area code for the contact above.
    • What is your relationship to the contact above?
  8. (Wolff) Please provide a summary abstract/statement of purpose for this fellowship including your destination(s), activities and engagements, and a timeline.
  9. (Wolff) I understand that it is important for all materials to be carefully reviewed before submission. Essay sections must answer the prompts, be well-edited, and illustrate a clear and sustained commitment to service.
  10. (Wolff) Please upload a personal statement reflecting on your time as an undergraduate at UW-Madison. What intellectual and academic ideas impact you most, and how? Describe the experiences and opportunities that are leading you in this direction to pursue your goals.(500 word limit)
  11. (Wolff) Please describe your commitment and experience serving the University and/or community. Include not only how you have impacted others but reflect on how these experiences shaped and influenced you. How have your service experiences contributed to your development and advanced your view of your community and the world? Provide concrete examples.
  12. (Wolff) Upload a current résumé or C.V. When revising your materials keep in mind that this award recognizes both academic achievement and service to UW-Madison and/or service to the greater community.(It is recommended that the résumé or C.V. be reviewed by SuccessWorks.There is no stated limit on the length of the doucment.)
  13. (Wolff) Please upload your travel budget proposal using the following spreadsheet template.

    spreadsheet template

  14. (Wolff) Recommendation #1. A minimum of 2 recommendations are required. One recommendation should be from an academic source. The other should be from someone who can speak to your service, character, and leadership. Both recommenders should be familiar with your proposal.
  15. (Wolff) Recommendation #2. A minimum of 2 recommendations are required. One recommendation should be from an academic source. The other should be from someone who can speak to your service, character, and leadership. Both recommenders should be familiar with your proposal.
  16. (Wolff) Is there any other information the Wolff Panel should know about you pertaining to the review and assessment of your application? This is your opportunity to tell us about any extenuating circumstances (financial or otherwise), challenges, identity and/or family experiences and history, exceptional talents or accomplishments, or other factors that are not contained in other areas of the application that may impact its review. Please be specific when presenting the additional information while honoring your need for privacy and discretion.
  17. (Wolff) I agree if selected as a Wolff Fellow that I will be required to provide documentation of travel, quarterly reports, and other requested information prior to issuing quarterly payments. I agree to meet requirements by scheduled deadlines stated in Wolff Reporting Payment Requirements
  18. (CJS) Please upload your most up-to-date unofficial transcript (with completed most recent reported grades). For instructions on how to do this, go to: Request unofficial transcript.
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