The William F. Lucas Scholarship is open to SDSU Astronomy Undergraduate Majors in good academic standing with a minimum Grade Point Average (GPA) of 2.70 who have completed at least 60 units of coursework, which includes Math 252 and Physics 197 (or their equivalents if a transfer student). The applicant must have completed at least one semester of courses at SDSU.
The William F. Lucas Scholarship is competitive in nature and based solely upon scholastic achievement. Applicants must write an essay of no more than 750 words about their interests in astronomy, their career plans, and the extent of their research activities within the SDSU Astronomy Department and at its Mount Laguna Observatory. Important measures of scholastic achievement are GPA, level of difficulty for completed courses, timely pace toward program completion, research activities in astronomy, presentation of scientific results at national or international meetings, and publication of scientific results in national or international scientific journals. Research efforts directed by SDSU faculty that result in scientific presentations or publications are given high weight.
William F. Lucas was a long time amateur astronomer in San Diego who taught telescope mirror making in Balboa Park to hundreds of other astronomy enthusiasts. Mr. Lucas was fascinated by astronomy, but was never able to go back to school to satisfy his dream of becoming a full-time professional astronomer. Because he was not able to attend college and study astronomy, he wanted to help others do so. Before his death, he endowed a scholarship fund to support serious student astronomers who love the skies as he did. As was his wish, the Lucas scholarship is based solely on academic performance.
For further information about William F. Lucas, his life, ambitions, and the two scholarships set up in his name at SDSU and The University of Arizona, follow this link to the San Diego Astronomy Association (SDAA) web page.