WU helps fund passions with scholarships

Tyler Christman, [email protected], is senior mass media major.

A Kansas resident enrolled in 15 hours of credit at Washburn pays $3,555 in tuition alone, one way Washburn can help is by providing a variety of scholarships for students.

Different departments have scholarships available to students, and within those departments each has their own set of requirements and guidelines. In the English department, there are no applications for scholarships.The scholarships are GPA based and decided on each year.

“In the English department, we have a variety of endowment funds that generate monies for English Scholarships,” said Tom Averill, writer-in-residence and professor of English. 

“A committee of us sits down each spring to take a look at our majors. Anyone with at least 12 hours is rated by English GPA, then overall GPA, and we give most to those with English 4.0, then a second tier of 3.75 and above, then a third at 3.5 and above,” said Averill.

Students in the English department who are student teaching can also receive help because they aren’t supposed to work while student teaching. Once candidates have been selected for all the scholarships within the department they receive a letter notifying them that they have been awarded and ask them to except it.

The history department has around 12 scholarships available to its students each spring. The deadline for these scholarships is in February.

“Some of the scholarships have specific guidelines, like those going into teaching,” said Tom Prasch, chair/professor of History. “We do single process, so students don’t apply to all different scholarships. they just do one form.”

This year, of the 12 scholarships available the history department received more than 30 applicants.

 Another scholarship opportunity that students may be unaware of is Learning in the Community. The center for community and civic engagement at Washburn gives away approximately 100 scholarships each year. All of the scholarships are service-based.

“We have two main scholarships that we give to students,” said Kristine Hart, associate director of Learning in the Community. “The first one is with our program called the Literacy Education Action Program, and we call it LEAP for short.”

Through this program students do academic mentoring in after school programs with kids from kindergarten to 12th grade depending on the student’s area of interest. They commit to doing 300 hours in a calendar year. When broken down, 300 hours is roughly six hours a week. This program is available in the summer allowing many students to finish within the academic year.

“Once they complete the 300 hours, they get an education award of $1,175 that they can use for any educational expense, such as tuition or books. Study abroad is also considered an education expense at Washburn and it can also be used toward student loans,” said Hart.

If a student is eligible and awarded federal work study, they can be paid $7.25 an hour for the amount of hours they are completing for the scholarship. So a student would get a biweekly paycheck in addition to the scholarship.

“The organization that gives us these scholarships for the LEAP program, gives us generally 50 to give away, anywhere from 50 to 60.” said Hart.

Going into August there will be 50-60 new scholarships to be given out and applications for these scholarships are being taken  through the summer.

The second scholarship available through LinC is the Bonner Leader Program. In this program students are required to make a 3-year commitment up front.

“That’s because it is not only a community service scholarship, but it’s also leadership development and university honor program,” said Hart.

Students are matched in the community with an organization that either meets their academic or professional goals or something that they are really passionate about.

“I almost guarantee that if someone has a passion for something, or has a real interest and wants to get hands on experience that can go on a resume then this a great opportunity,” said Hart.

This program requires students to complete 450 hours in a calendar year, which is around eight hours a week. With the Bonner Leader Program a student can receive a scholarship of $1,468 and again receive $7.25 an hour if eligible for federal work study. Applications are now being accepted for the program and anywhere from 15-20 will be available.

“If we can get the word out and find those great students on campus that could also use some extra money to pay for college, while getting some real good hands on experience, that would be great. I am more than happy to give away all our scholarships,” said Hart.