MSU Denver Scholarship Interview

MSU Denver Scholarship Interview


My name is Serena Padilla and I’m a
transfer peer mentor. I’m a junior and I study finance. Hi, I’m Taylor Dean and I’m
a transfer peer mentor as well. I’m a CIS major and I’m also a senior. Hi, I’m
Thomas Hernandez, Associate Director of Scholarships in the Office of Financial
Aid. Hi, I’m Lauren Koppel, Assistant Director of Scholarship Support and
Retention at Roadways. And I’m Cary Aplin-Gomez I’m a Coordinator with the Scholar Success and Retention. And we’re here today to talk to our
panelists about some scholarship opportunities and help answer some questions that you may have in the future. So our first question is, what types of
scholarships are available for students? There are four main types of
scholarships available to students. Those come in the different sources of state
Scholarships, External or Private Scholarships, our MSU Denver Foundation
Scholarships, and our Institutional based Scholarships. For our Institutional based
Scholarships, there’s one specifically that might be exciting to transfer
students and that’s our PTK Scholarship which helps funds students who are
transferring from a community college to MSU Denver. One External or Private
Scholarship that transfer students might especially be interested in, is eligible
for DACA or DACA eligible students and that’s called the Dream US Scholarship
and we’re a partner institution for that. One of the most fantastic scholarships
we have for both transfer students as well as the continuing freshman
students, is the Reisher Family Scholarship. And this is a merit and need-based
scholarship and it’s a full-ride scholarship. Are there any web pages that
I can go to to see what scholarships are available? Yes, the Office of Financial
Aid and Scholarships, on a scholarship page, has some really specific
information for scholarships including scholarship writing tips, a great
database of external scholarship opportunities that gets updated twice a
month as well as the MSU Denver general scholarship application. The priority
deadline for that is March 1st. That being said, we know a lot of transfer
students transfer midway through the year. It is always worth doing your
scholarship application at any point, and there are some scholarship opportunities
like transfer opportunities that might not be awarded specifically around that
deadline. Additionally, the Gender Institute for
Teaching and Advocacy, also had called GITA, has great
scholarship resources and information on their webpage as well as the Roadway
scholarship website. You can find that under “getting scholarships,” if you search
for that. Sometimes students want to apply to a scholarship that requires a
3.0 GPA but they have a 2.9. Should they still apply? I would say the answer is
yes. You always want to apply for scholarships because you’re usually in
the middle of a semester and that will help you kind of keep you motivated to
get better grades, and all of those grades will count in your cumulative GPA.
So if there is a chance that you can bring it up to whatever that 3.0 or
requirement is, I would say yes, make sure you apply. The one caveat to that is, that
if you are an art student, you’ll apply for art scholarships, but if you’re an
engineering student you may not want to apply for an art scholarship. So, apply
for scholarships that are applicable to you. What is your major? Is there a
minimum amount of time I need to have been an MSU Denver student to apply
for scholarships? Technically, no. However, you do want to
make sure that your admissions application is completed. We use the MSU Denver Net ID, so that’s your email address from MSU Denver, to allow you to
sign into the general scholarship application. What’s important about that
is, that’s where we pull the information about you specifically. So that’s where
we’ll check your GPA, your transfer credits, as well as any other information
about your student account that we need to know. We also encourage that you have
your FAFSA as well as a Dreamer Application completed. If you’re an
undocumented student, then you do the Dreamer Application if you are
traditional student you do the FAFSA. But what’s important about that, is that we
use that complete file and that information to award our institutional
scholarships. We do have a specific transfer institutional scholarship
that’s available. We look for students who have at least a 3.25 and at least 12 credit hours transferring in. What is the relationship of scholarship money to
the overall financial aid award? For scholarships, we do ask that students do
a FAFSA or Dreamer Application, depending on what your standing is, and then we do
assess to see what type of aid you can get that fits within your overall budget. So, students are outstanding and apply to multiple scholarships and
receive multiple scholarships. We’re just going to check that your
overall aid that you’re receiving fits within what we say it costs for you to
be a student here. So, the benefit of applying to multiple scholarships and
receiving multiple scholarships, is that in your overall cost of attendance,
typically students are offered loans but when you receive scholarships, we can
typically reduce the amount of loan that’s offered to you. So, in the long run,
it’s great because then you don’t have as much debt and you’re really kind of
paying for school while you’re attending. Where can I get help writing a
scholarship essay and in your opinion what makes a strong scholarship essay? So, you can get help writing scholarship essays from MSU Denver’s website as well as the Gender Institute for Teaching and Advocacy, and of course Immigrant
Services and our scholarship workshops that we have during the year. In response
to the question, “how do I make my essay strong?” You want to make sure that you
are answering the questions for the particular essay that you’re writing for and tell your story. We want to hear about you. But also make sure you take it and read it out loud, have someone else read it out loud, work with other people to make it a
strong essay. Make sure the editing is done, put it down in a word document so
that you’re checking your spelling and your grammar. Any amount of help you can get, is going to make it a stronger essay. What are the best times for students to
be applying for scholarships? So, the best times for students to start looking at
aid for the upcoming year is that the FAFSA becomes available in October,
annually, and so that’s really when you start applying for your federal and
state aid. Then pretty close after that, at the beginning of December, we’ll
launch the scholarship application for the upcoming year. So that gives you
kind of if you’re a continuing student that gives you winter break to be
working on your essay as well as your general application. Then the scholarship workshops, that were referenced earlier, we host those
January through March. So those are usually about once a week and it’s about
a two hour workshop where we go over what general scholarships are available
to students, as well as help with writing a strong essay, as well as telling your
story. What is the most important thing transfer students should remember from
this interview with you? Yeah, I think the most important thing is that, MSU Denver
has scholarships and has transfer specific scholarships for you. In order
to be eligible for those scholarships, you have to apply. You have to apply to that MSU Denver general scholarship application whenever you can. Look for
those additional opportunities. Put the time into editing your essay and telling
your story and look at those resources to make the most robust essay possible.
Thank you! Thank you!

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