Samuel Huntington Public Service Award

The Samuel Huntington Public Service Award provides $30,000 stipends for graduating college seniors to pursue one year of public service anywhere in the world. The award allows recipients to engage in a meaningful public service activity for one year before proceeding on to graduate school or a career.

First presented in 1989, the award has provided 85 outstanding young people the opportunity to bring their extraordinary spirit of public service to reality. Recipients of the award include McArthur "Geniuses", a former U.S. Surgeon General, Forbes 30 Under 30 Honorees, Queen of England's Young Leaders and BBC's 100 Most Influential Women of 2018.


The Samuel Huntington Public Service Award was established as a memorial to Samuel Huntington, who was President and Chief Executive Officer of the New England Electric System (now National Grid) until his untimely accidental death in July 1988.

An early architect of energy conservation and environmental programs, Samuel Huntington was devoted to praiseworthy ideals.



National Deadline: January

The Samuel Huntington Public Service Award provides $30,000 for a one-year public service project: $15,000 is awarded at the start of the project; and $15,000 awarded upon receipt of a six-month progress report.

Students are encouraged to develop their own proposals for public service in the U.S. or abroad. The proposal may encompass any activity that furthers the public good. It can be undertaken by the student alone or working through established charitable, religious, educational, governmental, or other public service organizations. Please check our FAQs for additional information.

The safety of our Award recipients and beneficiaries is paramount. The committee is therefore prepared to allow some flexibility on proposal details (timing, travel, costs, etc.) to mitigate any safety risks posed by Covid-19.

Eligibility Criteria

All graduating students from accredited U.S. colleges are invited to apply.

  • A brief abstract of the proposal (no more than 100 words)
  • Proposal in 1,000 words or less, including
    • Brief statement of need for the project (no more than a few sentences)
    • Specific measurable target objectives;
    • Schedule for project tasks;
    • Sustainability of the project.
  • Budget (your application will be viewed more favorably if a significant portion of the funds is devoted to your project; award monies not to be used for student loan repayment)
  • Three (3) letters of recommendation (each one-page only)
  • Transcript(s)
  • Resume
  • Complete two NCA forms:
  • Launch your online application 
  • Complete and submit application by National Deadline in January
  • Awards will be based on the quality of the proposal, academic record, and other personal achievements. Finalists will be personally interviewed prior to selection of the award recipient(s).