Western takes leaps with new scholarships for incoming freshmen

Tea Wheat, Courier Staff

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This year, Western Illinois University has introduced many new scholarships for incoming freshmen for the 2020-21 school year. As many know, scholarships are often a deciding factor in where students choose to go to college. Money is often a huge deciding factor in the college education process, and Western has done an amazing job in working to help incoming freshmen eliminate the financial burden that college often causes.

The Western Commitment Scholarship will continue to be given to incoming freshmen that meet the GPA and ACT requirements for the merit portion. The need portion of the scholarship will be assessed by the university and granted as they see fit. The Western Commitment Scholarship gives up to $8,000 to incoming freshmen students. One new thing about this scholarship is that the commitment scholarship will follow the individual that it is given to, even if they were to move off campus. The President’s Scholarship is another scholarship that will continue to be given, along with many others. The President’s Scholarship grants 100 percent of tuition, fees, room and meal plan. These commitment scholarships, along with many others, are often the basis for why some students may choose Western.

The new scholarships include the Leatherneck Visitor Scholarship, Local Leatherneck Housing Scholarship, Chicago and St. Louis Leatherneck Scholarships, Leatherneck Book Award and the Alumni Legacy Scholarship. The Leatherneck Visitor Scholarship will award a one-time scholarship of $1,000 to an incoming freshman that attends an on-campus event with Undergraduate Admissions.

The Chicago and St. Louis Leatherneck Scholarships both award $1,000 to an incoming freshmen from surrounding metropolitan areas of the given cities. For example, the Chicago Leatherneck Scholarship covers students from Cook, DuPage, Kane, Kendall, Lake, McHenry or Will counties. The Chicago and St. Louis Leatherneck Scholarships are renewable for up to three years.

The Local Leatherneck Housing Scholarship awards a one-time scholarship of $3,000 to an incoming freshman who resides in a hometown near Macomb, this scholarship is for an on-campus residence hall room.

The Leatherneck Book Award awards $1,200 for textbooks to incoming students who are eligible for a Pell grant (determined through FAFSA). This scholarship is renewable for up to three years of continuous undergraduate study.

The Alumni Legacy Scholarship awards $1,500 to incoming freshmen students who are either the child or grandchild of a Western Illinois University graduate. This semester is renewable for up to three years of continuous undergraduate study.

On top of these more updated or completely new scholarships that students are automatically able to get just by applying to the university, there are still countless other scholarships for incoming students, as well as current students, to apply to! These scholarships normally require a bit more work such as an essay and an application, but they are still readily available for those who wish to apply. For more information about the new scholarships as well as other scholarships, please visit the WIU website, or contact the financial aid office with any additional questions or concerns.