FAQs Frequently Asked Questions about the Bonner Program

Bonner Program Q&A

Q: What kind of student are you looking for in the Bonner Program?

A: We are looking for high-achieving students with a strong ethic of service and a deep commitment to community. Sometimes these are the students who have significant service experience in high school, but often they are students who demonstrate their ethic of service in other ways through service to their families and neighbors.


Q: Do I need to have demonstrated financial need to apply?

A: No. Half of the spots in each incoming class are reserved for students with demonstrated financial need, but half are not. We encourage students of all financial backgrounds to apply.


Q: How many students are admitted to the program each year?

A: We admit around 10 students per class.


Q: Can I be a part of the Bonner Program if I plan to play a varsity sport?

A: We have certainly had students in our program who have been successful as student athletes and Bonners. That said, we do ask that students put their academics first, Bonner second, and everything else third. That “everything else” is incredibly important, and in fact our Bonners are some of the most highly involved students on campus. What this means is that we ask that Bonners make their attendance to all program commitments a priority amongst their other areas of involvement.


Q: What exactly is required in terms of time?

A: Students are required to serve approximately 8-10 hours per week with a local community partner and attend our weekly one-hour Sunday evening meetings. Additionally, students go on a First Year Service-Trip over February break of the first year, and a three-day weekend exchange with another Bonner School during the second year.


Q: What are the requirements of the summers of service?

A: We ask that students serve one full summer of service, which would be 8 weeks or equivalent. We work with students to find suitable summer opportunities and to seek funding for their service.


Q: What are the benefits of the Bonner Program?

A: In addition to the Federal Work Study that students receive for their service, there are ample benefits in terms of leadership development, professional development, and intentional connections between academic and community engagement. Our students generally have some of the most robust resumes among recent graduates.


Q: What is the application process?

A: We ask that all students complete the application as listed on our website. Once all applications have been received, an initial review will move about one-third of those applicants to the interview phase. Interviews are by phone, and will take place within two-weeks of the application deadline. Selected applicants are typically notified of our decision within a week of interviews.