Scholarship Information

The Kyoto Prize Scholarships

The Kyoto Scholarships provide financial assistance to graduating high school seniors from San Diego County who are attending an accredited four-year university in the United States. A companion scholarship is available to students residing in Tijuana.

Students must have a minimum 3.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale and be actively involved in serving their community as demonstrated by their involvement in community/church service, extra-curricular activities, or work experience. Criteria for awarding the Kyoto Scholarship go beyond academic performance and GPA – through these scholarships, the Kyoto Symposium Organization seeks to recognize students who are actively pursuing the betterment of society.

Average number of scholarships: 6 (3 from San Diego; 3 from Tijuana)
Average amount of each award: Up to $10,000


Kyoto Prize Scholarship online applications will be available through The San Diego Foundation website.  All applications will be submitted through their online common application portal.  Applications are now being accepted.

Students wishing to apply for the Kyoto Prize Scholarship will be required to submit an essay – maximum 500 words, in addition to the Common Application questions included in the application.

Kyoto Prize Essay Topic –

2014 marks the 30th anniversary of the Kyoto Prize, created by Dr. Kazuo Inamori.  Describe his philosophy behind the Kyoto Prize and how it inspires you.


Select ONE of the following 2014 Kyoto Prize Laureates.

            Dr. Robert S. Langer – Advanced Technology – Field of Biotechnology & Medical Technology

            Dr. Edward Witten – Basic Sciences – Field of Mathematical Sciences

            Ms. Fukumi Shimura – Arts & Philosophy – Field of Art (Painting, Sculpture, Craft, Architecture, and Design)

Describe what inspires you most about his/her life, achievements, work and contributions to society.



Common Application Essay questions:

1.) If you have decided on your educational and career goals, describe them and explain how your interest in these goals developed.


1.) If you have not yet decided on your educational and career goals, describe some possible goals and explain how you will explore them and what might help you to decide on them.


2.) What is a unique experience, accomplishment, skill or quality that sets you apart from everyone else? Describe and explain how you achieved this experience or accomplishment or how you developed this skill or quality.


**Note:  All three essay questions are required to complete the Kyoto Prize Scholarship Application.**


Kyoto Prize Scholarship applications are now closed.   Thank you for submitting your application. 


Application Launch Date                                                     December 3, 2014

Application Deadline                                                            January 14, 2015

Finalist Notification*                                                            January 26, 2015

Finalist Interviews                                                               February 11, 2015

Scholarship Winner Notification                                         February, 2014 (week of February 16th)

Kyoto Prize Opening Ceremony**                                    March 17, 2015


*Finalists will be required to provide an unofficial school transcript and two reference contacts (teacher, counselor, advisor, or coach) prior to their interview.

**Kyoto Prize Scholarship winners are invited and expected to attend the Opening Ceremonies Gala.