Hamel Scholars Program

Building the next generation of New Hampshire's leaders

  • Photo of First-Year Hamel Scholars with Dana Hamel
    Congratulations to our new class of Hamel Scholars!
  • Photo of Hamel Scholars at Habitat for Humanity Build
    To kick off the 2018-2019 school year, Hamel Scholars participated in a 3-day build in Rochester, NH with Habitat for Humanity.
  • Photo of Hamel Scholars with Dr. Eliga Gould
    Dr. Eliga Gould, an eminent historian of the early United States, offered a Constitution Day workshop on the history of our founding document. Each student went home with his or her own pocket Constitution.
  • Photo of students sorting medical supplies
    The Hamel Scholars joined Partners for World Health in Portland, Maine, to help provide medical supplies to needy people around the world.
  • Photo of Hamel Scholars Volunteering at the Out of the Darkness Walk
    The newest class of Hamel Scholars traveled to Portsmouth to volunteer at the the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention’s Out of the Darkness Walk.

About the Program

The Hamel Scholars Program was founded in 2007. It provides merit scholarships and special recognition to exceptional students from New Hampshire who have demonstrated academic excellence, leadership, and community service.

Funded through gifts from Dana Hamel, a long-time UNH supporter, the programs seek to help students develop their full potential and become active, engaged leaders in communities throughout the state after graduating from UNH.

Click here to learn more about the student-created, student-driven Hamel Scholar Task Forces.

Hamel Highlights

Hamel Scholars TJ Evarts, Amanda Lee, Devin McMahon and Dylan Wheeler are part of the team to run Rines Angel Investment Fund

Featured Scholars

Click here to view the biographies of the newest Hamel Scholars.





Paige O'Neil


Karthik Chalumuri


Jasmine Taudvin

During high school she co-founded Down the Line Ministries, which is something she hopes to run professionally as a nonprofit organization after she graduates. The organization seeks to impact the skate, surf and snow sports communities through Christianity. She’s led church group trips in Costa Rica and volunteers as a Sunday School assistant teacher as well as a worship leader.

At UNH she hopes to study abroad in a Spanish-speaking country and become fluent. She also wants to formally register Down the Line Ministries as a 501c3, and to be part of the Civil Discourse Lab.



 At Keene High School, Karthik Chalumuri and his twin brother created Students for Hope, a student-led group that raises money and collects donated items for local cancer patients at the Norris Cotton Cancer Center. “We started Students for Hope as a way for us, alongside our amazing friends and classmates, to create a positive impact in our community. It was a project that we started in our living room and with hard work and the help of our teammates, it became a reality,” he says.

Karthik will major in statistics and minor in information technology. “I am studying statistics so that I can learn better about how mathematics plays a role in the business world.”


When she looks ahead to her future, she hopes to be working globally on social justice issues — ideally through art, perhaps as a documentary filmmaker. She says her proudest moment at UNH so far was having her self-designed artistic activism major approved, even though she ultimately decided on a different path.

“Taking control of my own education and creating a major for what I wanted to study was incredibly important for me. It also helped lead me down a path that eventually helped me realize what direction I wanted to move in, education and career-wise.”



Frequently Asked Questions

Students who apply to UNH by the Early Action deadline and who qualify for the University Honors Program are invited to apply for the Hamel Scholars Program. This invitation is usually sent in January. While most Hamel Scholars are chosen before matriculating at UNH, a small number of Juniors join the program each year. Members of the University Honors Program receive an invitation to apply for this and other scholarships in March.

At the beginning of the fall semester, Hamel Scholars will submit proposals for community-based issues or challenges they wish to address throughout the year. Hamel Scholars will then divide into small groups, or Community Task Forces, to further research these issues and intervene through leadership and service. Community Task Forces will meet together and with the Hamel Scholars Program Coordinator on a regular basis both in person and virtually to ensure progress toward individual and group goals.

The Hamel Program also requires its scholars to maintain their position in the Honors Program. Along with the requirements above, Hamel Scholars must be actively working to fulfill their Honors Program requirements.

Click HERE to see what the Task Forces have been up to!

Awards within the program range from $2,000-$10,000 per year. 

New Hampshire residency is required for incoming freshmen who wish to apply to the Hamel program. However, the Hamel Program typically admits rising juniors each spring (the number of available spaces varies each year), and no in-state residency is required to be admitted through this process. 

There are a number of ways that Hamel Scholar alumni can continue their involvement even post-graduation!

Know that you have an open invitation to return to campus and to visit us in Conant Hall! Whether through a meet-and-greet or a more formal event, we would love the opportunity to connect alumni with current students. 

Alumni can also connect with and mentor Community Task Forces, small groups of Hamel Scholars focusing on community-based issues. Current Task Forces are currently tackling issues pertaining to education, medical access, mental health, substance abuse, diversity, and more!

Please contact Amanda Leger, Hamel Scholars Coordinator, via amanda.leger@unh.edu to get involved with our current Hamel Scholars!