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No one rides for free

Regents’ scholarship is no more

Full-ride scholarships have become extinct at Concordia.

This year, students applying to Concordia will not have the opportunity to compete for the Regents’ Scholarship due to Concordia’s efforts to make tuition more affordable for all students.

Interim director of enrollment Eric Addington said Concordia means to spread the scholarship money among a wider pool of students.

“We decided to stop this particular scholarship in effort to redistribute the money,” Addington said. “Instead of having a high, impactful award on four or five students, we’re hoping that we could have a high impact financial aid award for a greater number of students.”

Addington said the money will be put into the second highest level of scholarships, the Presidential Scholarship.

“We would love to see more students chose to come to compete for the Presidential award and ultimately we would like to see more students enroll overall,” Addington said, “the number of scholarships we give vary year to year depending on the applicant pool.”

Addington said students who apply for the Presidential Scholarship enroll at Concordia more often.

“Those that chose to come to compete for the Presidential scholarship tend to enroll at a greater rate than those who don’t participate,” Addington said.

Concordia will monitor the spread of the funds over the next few years to decide if the discontinuation really helped aspiring Cobbers.

Last year, students who received the Presidential Scholarship were awarded $17,000. This year, students will be competing for the scholarship around $16,000-$20,000.

The Regents’ Scholarship, which has existed for the past eight years, paid for full tuition for students during the four years they attend Concordia. On average, four or five students received this award each year. Students who received the scholarship had an average GPA of 4.13 in high school and averaged a score of 33 on their ACT.

Junior Zach Lipp, a Regents’ scholar, would not have attended Concordia if he did not receive the scholarship.

“The Regents’ scholarship was and is an exceptional scholarship,  and it made attending Concordia possible for me,” Lipp said.

After hearing about the discontinuation of the scholarship, ambivalent feelings arose in Lipp.

“I’m torn about it,” Lipp said, “I tremendously appreciate receiving the scholarship, but I can understand why the college would discontinue it.”

Sophomore Miles Otstot, also a Regents’ scholar, has utilized the financial freedom the scholarship gave him.

“The most important thing to me personally is that having this scholarship opened up opportunities to me that I would not have been able to afford without it,” Otstot said. “These opportunities enhance my experience at Concordia and help me have more opportunities to learn as well as have fun.”

Otstot will soon participate in a May seminar, an opportunity he believes he wouldn’t have had without his scholarship.

“I think that it is weird that they are no longer offering this scholarship,” Otstot said. “I always appreciated that Concordia had a scholarship that was totally based on merit in addition to their need based scholarships.”

Both Otstot and Lipp said they received no notification of whether or not they would still receive funds for their past Regents’ scholarship.

Lipp said Concordia’s website simply stopped listing the scholarship, which was the only notification he had of the discontinuation.

“I should not have found out that this scholarship is being discontinued by it not being listed on the website anymore,” Lipp said, “I have not heard from the college that I will still have my scholarship or not.”

“I found out that the scholarship had been dropped by hearing it from friends,” Otstot said, “I wish the school would have said something.”

Addington said current scholars will not lose their scholarship funds, and Concordia didn’t bother to contact them.

“It doesn’t impact continuing students; their awards won’t change,” Addington said. “It probably would have been smart to say to them: ‘it doesn’t impact you.’”

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