In replying to this email,

sender: I believe you were interested in applying for a Moffat Scholarship Award (etc. etc.)

my response: Thanks for your email and I appreciate the offer. But I'm afraid I'm not an eligible recipient.. (for this offer?)

not an eligible recipient ?? Well I never!

If a person makes an offer, what is the word used to describe a prospective recipient? Is it just "prospective recipient"? That is if the word "offer" is on one end then what is the word on the other end, simply put? Reception?

Because "prospectiveness" of a person is determined by the awarding committee, ie., person making the offer, I daresay that it's not my place to use "prospective" as an adjective to describe myself (in my response).

Then what is the word that best describes me? (Me being a person to whom the moffat schol does not apply to?)

So far I've come up with "not an eligible recipient".. But I figured that that's the phrase or fragment found in a reply from the awarding body (ex: "Sorry you have been determined as an 'ineligible recipient'" or whatever-'not' or 'ineligible')

So how do you think I should refer to myself in a polite response to the offer por favor?

3 Answers 3


You could say, "I am an ineligible candidate."

Specifically 1.2 from the link provided:

1.2 A person or thing regarded as suitable for or likely to receive a particular fate, treatment, or position.

  • thanks for that! Incidentally, I was just finishing that email to send anyway, and I wrote "but I'm afraid this schol does not apply to me".. It sounds perfectly ok and is exceedingly logical but not all that academically articulate yes? "ineligible candidate" is apt, gracious! Jun 9, 2014 at 15:47
  • +1 for "candidate" as better choice than "recipient" in this context. An alternative, if they want to be more helpful, would be something like, "Thank you for your offer but I am not eligible for the Moffat Scholarship because... (then spell out what criteria aren't met)".
    – Rupe
    Jun 9, 2014 at 15:50
  • Then again, "'ineligible' candidate" could mean that I can (be) or could've been "eligible" if I had scored enough points in that program yes? But in this case, this Moffat schol is for an entirely different academic pursuit and does not apply to me in the least. (It is for Travel tourism & events etc., while my area is English literature.) So how can I be "not eligible" or ineligible if it doesn't even apply to me in the first place? It's like a vegan saying that a meat dish is 'not edible' not because it is 'not tasty', but because he 'doesn't want to eat it' in the first place. Jun 9, 2014 at 16:05
  • Sure "candidate" is is more relevant than "recipient". And "doesn't apply to me" seems to have done the trick yes, but is there a better word or pair (or more) of words that describe this situation por favor? Jun 9, 2014 at 16:05
  • @ Rupe that sounds perfect but that looks like a lot of work! what if I want to just keep it short and just say (observing the premise above) that "I can't wear this jacket" so to speak? Jun 9, 2014 at 16:08

You are adding unnecessary words:

"Thanks for your email and I appreciate the offer, but on further reading I am ineligible for the scholarship/award."

The 'on further reading' replacement both explains your initial interest and message, and sets up the reason behind that interest no longer being present.


"Opportunity" is a term that can often be used to mean a particular type of offer from the perspective of both the one making the offer ("This is an opportunity you cannot afford to miss!") and from the perspective of the one receiving it. To use your example:

Thanks for your email and I appreciate the offer but I'm afraid I'm not eligible for this opportunity.

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