This school year, the Career Education and Development Office is now responsible for overseeing the operations of the former Office for Distinguished Scholarships.
According to John Rindy, director of the Career Education and Development Office, two of the reasons for the change are outreach potential and an overlap of responsibilities. The office will see around 3,500 appointments or more this year and has a social media presence, and requested appointments with the office cover similar items with requirements for distinguished scholarship applications.
“You have to do personal statements, same thing for scholarships and fellowships. You might have to write out different essays and answer certain questions, [and] we do that for professional school alongside students. You have to meet deadlines for certain things, very similar to graduate school again,” Rindy said.
Currently, there are three distinguished leadership and fellowship coaches within the Career Education and Development Office: Rindy as well as Renee Coyne, assistant director, and Jesse DeFazio, graduate assistant. These coaches, who have been attending webinars for various scholarships, are currently in the process of becoming members of the National Association of Fellowships Advisors (NAFA).
Rindy said that the Career Education and Development Office will focus on a small group of distinguished scholarships to start. These scholarships include the Goldwater Scholarship, Gilman Scholarship and Boren Awards.
“We want to get really good at understanding and encouraging students to take advantage of some very specific scholarships,” Rindy said.
The Career Education and Development Office also plans to maintain partnerships with the Honors Program, faculty members who oversee student research and other organizations on campus.
While Rindy anticipates a slow start because of fall deadlines that passed, students who are interested in scholarships with spring or fall 2018 deadlines are encouraged to stop by the Career Education and Development Office.
“If students want to talk about some of these things, they can come up to the desk and just say, ‘I would like to make an appointment to talk about distinguished scholarships and learn a bit about what scholarships are available.’ Again, these are high-level things. These are typically for high-performing students who have serious interests in learning abroad, studying abroad, languages, but there are others as well,” Rindy said.