The Bonner Leaders Program is a four-year scholarship program that supports a strong team of students working to bring about positive community change through service, research, and action.

What is a Bonner Leader?

As the only university in the state with a Bonner Student Leader program, one of the largest service-based scholarship programs in the country, students at Notre Dame of Maryland University have a unique opportunity to make college more affordable through transformational learning opportunities and service. Not only will leaders immerse themselves in the Baltimore community, but they also will build connections across the Bonner Foundation’s Network with other participating colleges and universities, national non-profit organizations, and a thriving alumni network.

Each year, NDMU selects a cohort of five outstanding incoming freshmen who exhibit a passion for building and strengthening communities. There are unique benchmarks for each cohort as Bonner Student Leaders progress, including a first-year service trip, sophomore exchange, junior and senior capstone projects, and opportunities throughout to attend the Bonner Congress and Summer Leadership Institutes.

Bonner Student Leaders start by learning the strengths and needs of their service placements before gradually increasing their roles and responsibilities to tackle various social issues through a capacity-building lens. Service is designed to align with academic goals and community building, thus Bonners graduate with resume-boosting skills, unique hands-on experience, and connections to a plethora of internship and job opportunities.

Over the course of four years, the role of Bonner Leaders evolves in the following ways: 

  • Direct Service
  • Education and Reflection
  • Service Leadership
  • Capacity-Building/Social Action

Bonner Commitment

All students are required to:

  • Volunteer for 300 hours a year (150 hours per semester) 
  • Maintain a minimum 2.5 GPA each semester
  • Attend orientation and all Bonner meetings


  • Accepting applications from incoming freshman and rising sophomores
  • Must exhibit a dedication to service
  • Must be admitted into Notre Dame 
  • Must be a student who will use campus housing


Freshmen and sophomore Bonner Students Leaders receive a $2,000 stipend per semester to use toward campus housing and tuition. Junior and senior Bonner Student Leaders receive a $3,000 stipend per semester to use toward campus housing and tuition.

How to Apply

  • Deadline for Incoming Freshmen and Rising Sophomores: Applications are being accepted through May 1st for the Fall 2023.


Student finalists will be interviewed in person or via Zoom by the Bonner Leadership Team. These applicants will be updated on the status of their acceptance within one week of their interview.

Contact Us

For more information, please contact the Office of Service and Community Engagement at