Indiana State University Newsroom

High school seniors should apply now for top scholarships

October 4, 2010

Indiana State University awarded more than $3 million in merit scholarships to talented freshmen this fall.

University officials expect to award a similar amount next year and advise prospective students to apply early to be considered for the best scholarships.

Students must apply and be admitted by December 1 to be eligible for ISU's top awards, said Sarah Wurtz, associate director of admissions and the university's scholarship coordinator.

"Fall is a busy time for everyone, especially high school seniors who may be looking forward to their final homecoming as a student. The most active students are often the most talented, but it's important to take a few minutes and apply now or they could miss out on tens of thousands of dollars in scholarships over the course of a four-year university education," Wurtz said.

Competition for top scholarships is increasing as Indiana State attracts more students from Indiana, Illinois and around the country. More than 200 candidates from as far away as Utah interviewed last year for 20 available President's Scholarships, the university's top award.

ISU welcomed welcome 224 new honors students this fall, a 72 percent increase from 2009, and awarded 1,252 laptop computers to new students with a minimum grade point average of 3.0 or higher, a 59 percent increase in ISU Laptop Award recipients.

"Indiana State is a challenging place for scholars and our community of honors students is growing," Wurtz said. "But you don't have to be at the top of your class to be a good student deserving of merit awards."

Scholarships available to incoming freshmen for fall 2011 who are admitted by December 1 include:• ISU President's Scholarship, worth $16,000 per year• University Honors Scholarship, valued at $5,000 per year• Networks Scholarship, which provides full tuition and a $3,000 professional development account for selected business majors planning a career in financial services• Gongaware Scholarship, valued at $6,500 per year for selected students majoring in financial services or insurance and risk management.

While specific qualifications vary, these scholarships are highly competitive and are awarded to students with high grade point averages and ACT or SAT scores. Most also involve an on-campus interview.

The deadline for the university's Rural Health Scholarship is Nov. 15. The Rural Health Scholarship provides full in-state tuition to qualified Indiana residents. Offered in partnership with the Indiana University School of Medicine, the scholarship is intended to prepare students from rural Indiana to serve as primary care physicians.

Freshman attending Indiana State University next year who have a high school grade point average of 3.3 or higher (on a 4.0 scale) will be guaranteed a scholarship worth at least $1,000 and may be eligible for even more lucrative awards up to the full cost of tuition.

Middle class families will find ISU an attractive option because of these scholarships, said Kim Donat, director of student financial aid. Students with average GPAs who come from middle income families often feel insecure about financing their education because they don't qualify for financial assistance, he said. This leads students to borrow money, and the result is that 70 percent of students graduate with student loans to repay.

"We think that ISU is a really good fit for students of that caliber," Donat said.

Guaranteed scholarships are available to eligible students and do not require a separate application. Admission deadlines for these scholarships vary. These include:• Academic Excellence Scholarship, worth $2,000, which requires a cumulative high school grade point average of 3.7 or above, a score of 1,100 or higher on the Scholastic Aptitude Test or a 24 on the ACT. • Academic Distinction Scholarship, worth $1,500, will be awarded to those with a high school GPA of 3.5 to 3.7, a score of at least 1,000 on the SAT or 22 on the ACT. • Academic Merit Scholarship, worth $1,000, does not require any specific test score but requires a cumulative high school GPA of 3.3. • Academic Need-based Grant, worth $1,000. Requires a cumulative high school GPA of 3.0.• ISU Laptop Award provides a Dell laptop computer to incoming freshmen and eligible transfer students with a 3.0 GPA or higher.

Illinois and Kentucky residents with a high school GPA of 2.75 or higher admitted by June 1 pay a reduced rate equal to 125 percent of in-state tuition ($9,392 per year for 2010-11. Fees for 2011-12 have not yet been set).

With certain restrictions, Illinois and Kentucky Student Scholarships may be combined with other ISU scholarships.In addition, there are external scholarships available for which students should consider applying, Wurtz said.

Prospective students and parents who want more information about scholarships at Indiana State may call 1-800-GO-TO-ISU (1-800-468-6478) or visit the scholarship Web page at

Contact: Sarah Wurtz, associate director of admissions, Indiana State University, 812-237-3935 or or John Beacon, vice president for enrollment management, marketing and communications, 812-237-3560 or

Writer: Dave Taylor, media relations director, Office of Communications and Marketing, Indiana State University, 812-237-3743 or