How to Apply for the Burger King Scholarship: A Step-by-Step Guide

The Burger King Scholarship Program which began in 2000 by the Burger King Foundation to honour the legacy of Burger King's co-founder, James "Jim" W. McLamore has been a source of hope for students across the United States, Canada, and Puerto Rico.

Not only does the corporation have a record of channelling nearly $55 million in financial support to over 47,000 scholars in North America  14 it aims to offer at least one scholarship for every BK® restaurant, translating to a generous contribution of over $7 million annually1. This shows that Burger King is committed to providing academic opportunities and for many students, this begs the question: How can I get the Burger King scholarship?

In this personal guide, I will walk you through the necessities for the Burger King Scholarship application: touching areas such as scholarship eligibility, application period details, and how to increase your chances by meeting the Burger King scholarship requirements. 

Scholarship Awards

The Burger King Scholarship program offers various awards to support students in their educational pursuits. I did a detailed run down so you know what to expect when applying

1. General Scholarship Awards:

    • Amounts: Scholarships range from $1,000 to $60,000, designed to help offset the cost of attending college, university, or post-secondary vocational/technical school 15.
    • Recipients: In 2023, the Foundation awarded over $3.2 million in scholarships to nearly 4,000 students1.
    • Eligibility: It is open to high school seniors and Burger King employees and their families 1

2. Special Scholarship Awards:

    • James W. McLamore WHOPPER® Scholarship Award: Offers three major scholarships of $60,000 each to students demonstrating exceptional academic achievement, leadership in community service, athletics, or co-curricular activities, along with substantial work experience and financial need 19.
      • Eligibility Requirements: Applicants must be citizens of the United States or Canada, apply as full-time freshmen to a four-year accredited college or university in the U.S. or Canada, have a cumulative unweighted GPA of at least 3.3, and meet specific ACT/SAT score requirements 9.

3. Additional Scholarship Opportunities:

    • King Awards: Six awards at $10,000 each for top Burger King Team Members across different regions 712.
    • Regional Awards: Twelve awards of $5,000 each, with two awards per region, to highly qualified Burger King Team Members 712.
    • Special-Named Awards: Several awards are available for various franchisees, further expanding the scope of financial support 12.

Burger King Scholarship Application Process

To embark on the application journey for the Burger King Scholarship, aspirants should meticulously follow the outlined steps, ensuring a smooth process. The application period spans from mid-October to mid-December, specifically from October 15 to December 15 each year, I recommend that you apply early to avoid the last-minute rush 1815.

Step-by-Step Application Process:

  1. Check Eligibility: Before diving into the application, verify your eligibility. This includes being a U.S., Canada, Guam, or Puerto Rico resident and planning to enrol for the 2024-2025 school year in an accredited two-year, four-year, or vocational/technical college 37.

  2. Gather Required Documents:

    • Parents/Guardians' details 16
    • High school information including name, address, and expected graduation year 16
    • College/University choice and expected enrollment status 16
    • Academic information: GPA, SAT scores (reading and math) 16
    • List of extracurricular activities, leadership positions, and awards/honours16
  3. Online Application Submission:

    • Create a MyBK account for application submission 3.
    • Fill out the online application form, carefully entering all the required information 3.
    • Write and upload essays, if needed, showcasing your achievements and aspirations 3.
    • Obtain and submit letters of recommendation to increase your chances 3.
    • Ensure all parts of the application are completed and submitted by the deadline. Note that only the first 50,000 applicants will be considered 31113.

Post-Application Steps:

  • Notification: Successful scholarship recipients will be notified, marking a significant milestone in their academic journey 1.
  • Award Acceptance: Upon notification, submit a completed Scholarship Acceptance Form to Scholarship America by the specified deadline and prepare to notify your chosen college or university about the award 12.
  • Scholarship Disbursement: Scholarship America will issue checks, made payable to the college, in one instalment in early August, ensuring the funds are allocated towards tuition, fees, or books as required for your course load 12.

Selection Criteria for the Burger King Scholarship

The selection criteria for the Burger King Scholarship are designed to identify and reward students who not only excel academically but also demonstrate a strong commitment to their communities through work experience, extracurricular activities, and community service. Here's a detailed breakdown of the selection criteria:

  • Academic Achievement:

    • Grade Point Average (GPA) is a key factor, with recipients selected based on their academic performance. A strong GPA reflects the student's dedication and ability to maintain high standards in their studies 1267.
  • Work Experience:

    • Applicants are evaluated on their work experience, which showcases their responsibility, time management skills, and ability to balance multiple commitments. This criterion is particularly emphasized for the James W. McLamore WHOPPER Scholarship Award, where substantial work experience is required 8911.
  • Extracurricular and Community Involvement:

    • Active participation in extracurricular activities and community service is also an essential criterion for the Burger King Scholarship. Leadership roles in these areas demonstrate the applicant's initiative, impact, and ability to contribute positively to their community 8911.
    • For the James W. McLamore WHOPPER Scholarship Award, a significant leadership role in community service, athletics, or similar co-curricular activities is a must 8.
  • Financial Need:

    • Financial need is considered across all scholarships, with special emphasis on the Whopper $60,000 scholarship. This ensures that their financial support is directed towards students who need it the most, helping to remove barriers to higher education 11.
  • Selection Process:

    • The selection process is holistic, taking into account 50% academic record and 50% participation in school and community activities. This balanced approach ensures a fair evaluation of each candidate's overall profile 11.
    • Scholarship America® administers the program, ensuring an unbiased selection process without regard to race, colour, creed, religion, sexual orientation, age, gender, disability, or national origin 6.

Eligibility Criteria for the Burger King Scholarship

To ensure a seamless application process for the Burger King Scholarship, you need to understand the eligibility criteria. These criteria are designed to identify applicants who not only meet academic standards but also embody the values of community involvement, I did a breakdown to make it easier for you to grasp

1. General Eligibility Criteria

  • Residency and Location: Applicants must be high school seniors residing in the United States, Puerto Rico, Canada, or Guam, aiming to further their education in these regions 5912.
  • Academic Achievement: A minimum cumulative high school GPA of 2.0 on a 4.0 scale is required, showcasing the applicant's commitment to academic excellence 5912.
  • Community Involvement: Demonstrated involvement in community service, volunteering, and participation in sports, clubs, religious organizations, or other extracurricular activities is essential. This reflects the applicant's engagement and leadership outside the classroom 59.

2. Specific Tracks and Additional Requirements

  • General High School Senior Track:

    • You must be planning to enrol full-time for the 2024-25 academic year at an accredited two- or four-year college, university, or vocational-technical school in the U.S., Canada, Puerto Rico, or Guam 512.
    • For high school seniors or graduates, a minimum GPA of 2.5 on a 4.0 scale is required, along with at least 15 hours per week of part-time employment during senior year or postsecondary education 34.
  • BURGER KING® Employee-Based Track:

    • Eligibility extends to Burger King employees, their spouses/domestic partners, and dependent children. This track acknowledges the contribution of Burger King's workforce to the brand's success 613.
    • Applicants must have a cumulative grade point average of 2.0 or higher on a 4.0 scale, planning to enrol for the 2024-25 academic year at an accredited institution as specified 13.

3. James W. McLamore WHOPPER® Scholarship Award Requirements

  • Citizenship in the United States or Canada is mandatory for applicants of this prestigious award 8.
  • A higher academic threshold is set with a minimum unweighted GPA of 3.3 and minimum standardized test scores (ACT Composite score of 25 or SAT combined score of 1220) 811.
  • Demonstrated leadership through substantial work experience and an active role in community service, athletics, or similar co-curricular activities is required, highlighting the applicant's well-rounded capabilities 811.

How to Increase Your Chances for the Burger King Scholarship

Increasing your chances for the Burger King Scholarship involves a strategic approach; every aspect of your application has to be polished and reflect your best qualities. To demystify these strategies, here is an outline of what you may do and what you may not

  1. Start Early and Stay Organized:

    • Begin by marking your calendar with the application period, notably from mid-October to mid-December 3.
    • Create a checklist of all required documents and tasks, ensuring nothing is missed 3.
  2. Meet All Eligibility Criteria:

    • Thoroughly review the eligibility requirements to ensure you meet every criterion before applying 3.
  3. Focus on Academic Performance:

    • Aim to maintain or improve your Grade Point Average (GPA), as academic excellence is a significant selection criterion 3.
  4. Highlight Community Service Activities:

    • Document all your involvement in community service, volunteering, and extracurricular activities. Leadership roles in these areas can significantly bolster your application 3.
  5. Write a Strong Personal Essay:

    • Your essay is a chance to make your application stand out. Focus on conveying your aspirations, experiences, and how the scholarship will support your goals 3.
  6.  Letters of Recommendation Work Magic:

    • Choose recommenders who know you well and can attest to your achievements, character, and potential. Provide them with ample time to write a thoughtful recommendation 3.
  7. Submit a Complete Application:

    • Ensure every section of the application is filled out accurately and completely. Incomplete applications may not be considered 3.
  8. Proofread Your Application:

    • Review your application multiple times to catch any spelling or grammatical errors. Consider having a mentor or teacher review it as well 3.
  9. Apply for Other Scholarships:

    • While focusing on the Burger King Scholarship, don’t overlook other scholarship opportunities. Applying to multiple scholarships can increase your chances of receiving financial support 3.
  10. Be Persistent:

    • Persistence is key. If not successful, seek feedback and apply again in the next cycle or look for other scholarship opportunities 3


Throughout this guide, my aim was to take your hand and journey through the major aspects of applying for the Burger King Scholarship, hopefully, this piece will empower you to confidently navigate the Burger King Scholarship application process and increase your chances of becoming a Burger King Scholar!


How Can I Secure the Burger King Scholarship?

To secure the Burger King Scholarship, applicants must undergo a selection process that evaluates their academic performance (GPA), work experience, involvement in extracurricular activities, financial need, and contributions to community service. The window for application submissions opens in mid-October and closes in mid-December annually.

Is an Essay Required for the Burger King Scholarship Application?

No, an essay is not required for the Burger King Scholarship. 

What is the Value of the Burger King Scholarship?

The Burger King Scholarship offers financial grants ranging from $1,000 to $50,000. These grants are designed to support students residing in the United States, Puerto Rico, and Canada by covering a portion of their college or post-secondary vocational/technical education expenses.

Can the Burger King Scholarship Be Renewed?

The Burger King Scholarship is not renewable and cannot be postponed to a later time. However, individuals who receive the $1,000 Employee-Based Track scholarship have the opportunity to reapply annually, as long as they continue to meet the eligibility criteria. They can receive a maximum of four awards, totalling up to $4,000.


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