Davenport is proud of its association with Gerald R. Ford, who briefly taught and coached football here in the 1940s. President Ford exemplified the values and character we strive to instill in our students. We were greatly honored when, before his death, President Ford granted our request to name a prestigious scholarship in his honor and memory.


The Gerald R. Ford Scholarship is available to one student each year who enrolls as a freshman after high school graduation, takes at least 15 credits per semester, majors in business, technology or health, and attends the W.A. Lettinga Campus in Grand Rapids. The scholarship covers the costs of tuition, books, fees, study abroad, on-campus housing and meal plans.

Application Deadline – January 15, for the following academic year.

Criteria for Applying

  • Minimum high school CGPA of 3.75 at the end of 6th semester of high school.
  • Minimum ACT score of 31.
  • Essay on the following: “How I have demonstrated and plan to demonstrate in my life characteristics espoused by Gerald R. Ford including leadership, civic responsibility, service, ethics and courage of conviction." The essay should be approximately 1,000 words. In addition, the essay should (1) provide specific examples of activities that the student has engaged in while in high school, (2) give clear evidence that the student understands the commitment of Gerald R. Ford to leadership and public service, and (3) explain how the students career goals will exemplify the ideals established by Mr. Ford.

Review Process

  • All candidates will be reviewed and evaluated.
  • The essay content and the quality of the writing play a major role in the decision process. In addition, the review committee will consider other factors such as high school GPA, standardized test scores including the ACT, class rank, and awards and achievements received by the student including both school-related and non-school awards.
  • The interview process is a critical step in the selection of the candidate and includes:
    1. First Interview: All candidates will be interviewed by representatives of admissions, faculty and financial aid. This interview is designed more to get to know the candidate and explore questions related to the essay.
    2. Second Interview: All applicants will be interviewed by the Provost, Executive Vice President for Enrollment and Student Development, Executive Vice President for Advancement, Vice President for University Communications, Executive Director of Admissions and Executive Director for Financial Aid. After these interviews, the committee will make recommendations to the President of Davenport University.
    3. Third Interview: Semi-finalists will meet with the President of Davenport, a representative of the Davenport Board of Trustees and possibly a representative of the Ford family.
  • One recipient will be chosen.
  • Non-recipients will be considered for other Davenport scholarships.