Bertha Kalm Scholarship

This scholarship is the result of an endowment made by Bertha Kalm on behalf of her parents, Amanda and Charles Kalm. She established the scholarship in 1995 expressly "to support graduate students in any field of instruction, who need financial assistance to continue their education, and who demonstrate a desire to make a difference for humanity." 

Up to six scholarships of $7,500 each will be awarded. Awards are restricted to students completing their first year in a master’s degree program at SJSU in Spring 2020. Only faculty members who mentor graduate students may put forward for consideration the name and supporting documents of an applicant. Students may not self-apply. Up to six scholarships of $7,500 each will be awarded for the 2020-2021 academic year.  

Applicants will be evaluated on the quality of scholarship that established eligibility for admission to the graduate program, a personal statement by the applicant regarding goals to be achieved by the master's degree, their mentor's assessment of the applicant's potential success, a further letter of recommendation, and the student's transcript. Additional consideration will be given to applicants with financial need. There will be a maximum of one award per program.

How to Apply

Faculty should contact those students they believe are deserving of this generous scholarship. Students must complete the application [pdf] (which requires the mentor’s signature as well) and provide all of the supporting documentation to their mentor. Supporting documents include graduate and undergraduate transcripts, a letter of support from the student’s mentor, a second letter of recommendation, and a Statement of Purpose from the student. Interested students may contact faculty members to make them aware of this scholarship, but faculty will make the determination of whom they wish to put forward.

Application deadline: May 3, 2021 at 5:00 p.m.

Submission Adjustments During Shelter-in-Place Order

  1. Letters of recommendation (from both the faculty member and the additional letter of support) should be sent via email from the submitter.

  2. The application must be signed by both the faculty member and the student, but the signature should be electronic and may be eitherthrough Adobe or DocuSign. If you need technical assistance with this, please contact

  3. The final package should be set as one pdf from the faculty mentor to The submission email should be entitled "Bertha Kalm - Student's Name.” Faculty may include their letter of recommendation in the body of the submission email. The student may request that their second letter of recommendation be sent directly to the College of Graduate Studies at referencing Bertha Kalm and the student's name in the subject line.

Previous Recipients