SHAPE America Ruth Abernathy Presidential Scholarships

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SHAPE America Ruth Abernathy Presidential Scholarships

With the motive of assisting students in supporting their undergraduate and graduate-level education, SHAPE America brings every year wonderful funding schemes called “Ruth Abernathy Presidential Scholarships”. This exciting scholarship program was founded and developed by the past presidents of SHAPE America and so far, it has awarded scholarships to outstanding undergraduate and graduate student members. The organization selects and grants these scholarships to three students in January of each year. All scholarships are presented at the SHAPE America National Convention & Expo held in the spring. These funding offers were named after Ruth Abernathy who had been AAHPERD President from 1954 through 1956. High school students are not eligible to apply for this fund. Only students who are pursuing bachelor’s or master’s degrees can take advantage of this opportunity.

The award amount is varied depending on the program you will be applying for. Students who will apply for undergraduate scholarships will get $1,250 and on the other hand, applicants who are graduate students will be provided with $1,750 in scholarships if they win. Apart from monetary awards, recipients will also receive a complimentary three-year SHAPE America membership. Interested candidates can send their applications either via mail or electronically by October 15. There are two application forms available on the official website of this program and out of two forms, one is for undergraduates, and the other is for graduate students. So recipients can choose the form according to their education level.

SHAPE America is a leading group of health and physical educators committed to providing support to professionals in the following areas: health, physical education, recreation, and dance. SHAPE America is also known with other different names such as American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (AAHPERD) and Association for Health, Physical Education and recreation. This organization was established in 1885 and it is operating its headquarters from Reston, Virginia, United States.

Brief Description

Please have a look at this table to get quick information

OrganizationSHAPE America
Educational LevelUndergraduate and graduate
Access ModeOnline
Number of Awards5
Application DeadlineOctober 15, 2021
Application FeeN/A
RequirementsProvide a letter from your school, provide three letters of recommendation, provide a scanned copy of official transcripts and a biographical sketch

Who May Be Eligible?

Meeting the following requirements is mandatory for all candidates:

  • Applicant must be a current member of SHAPE America. Graduate students may join at the time of application.
  • Candidates must be majoring in the field of health, physical education, recreation or dance.
  • Aspirants must be enrolled in a matriculated full‐time masters or doctoral program. *Doctoral candidates working on their dissertation must be no more than one year beyond coursework completion.
  • Entrants must have a minimum grade point average of 3.5 overall on a 4.0 grade point scale. The following guidelines should be used when reporting the GPA: ­ First semester Master’s and Doctoral candidates: GPA based on most recent degree obtained. GPA scores from all institutions attended in pursuit of applicant’s most recent degree must be factored into the overall GPA. ­ Master’s/Doctoral candidates beyond first semester: GPA based on applicant’s current program. GPA scores from all institutions attended in pursuit of applicant’s current degree must be factored into the overall GPA.
  • Recipients must be a first time Ruth Abernathy Presidential Scholarship recipient. Previous recipients of SHAPE America’s National Presidential Scholarship are ineligible. Undergraduate recipients are ineligible for the graduate scholarship award.

How to Apply

All interested applicants need to download an online application form and fill it with accurate and complete information. The completed form needs to be sent along with the required documents given below at

Supporting Documents

  • Complete the scholarship application (vitae will not be accepted) and email the form and all required documentation noted in Items 2 through 5 below to Patti Hartle at Items 2 through 5 must be provided in a Microsoft Word or PDF format and follow the naming convention format provided.
  • 2. Provide a letter from your school’s dean or registrar indicating full‐time status.
  • 3. Provide three letters of recommendation signed and titled which address all aspects of the selection criteria. No more than three letters will be accepted per applicant. Letters are limited to two pages each. (Naming Convention Example: YourName_Recommendation1, YourName_Recommendation2, YourName_Recommendation3)
  • 4. Provide a scanned copy of official transcripts from all colleges or universities attended. (Naming Convention Example: YourName_Official Transcript_Penn State)
  • 5. Provide a biographical sketch to be used for publication and for the official convention award presentation.


Applicants who are undergraduate students will receive $1,250 in scholarships and graduate awards are $1,750 each. Recipients also get a complimentary three-year SHAPE America membership. These awards will make a positive impact on their education and career journey and allow them to study without any tension.

Application Deadline

Applications are open until October 15, 2021. Please hurry up and send your application to get better consideration.

Apply Now

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Indu has been educator since last 10 years. She can find all kind of scholarship opportunities in the USA and beyond. She also teach college courses online to help students become better. She is one of the very rare scholarship administrator and her work is amazing.