WellesleyWeston Magazine

WINTER 2014/2015

Launched in 2005, WellesleyWeston Magazine is a quarterly publication tailored to Wellesley and Weston residents and edited to enrich the experience of living in two of Massachusetts' most desirable communities.

Issue link: https://wellesleywestonmagazine.epubxp.com/i/410492

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Page 173 of 227

school. Through its David S. Olton Award, Johns Hopkins University provides funding for undergraduates engaged in research in the biology of behavior. Colorado State University, which offers coursework in Equine Sciences and Veterinary Medicine, provides merit money for students to promote the sport of rodeo. (They host the oldest collegiate rodeo in the country.) Corporations, foundations, and associations invest more than $2 billion in merit scholarships. Every year The Kennedy Library Foundation awards $10,000 to the winner of their Profile in Courage Essay Contest, which invites students to discover and document con- temporary courageous U.S. elected officials. The Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation invests in students who are leaders in academics and in service to others. The American Association of Candy Technologists offers an annual scholarship to a student with a demonstrated interest in sweet-snacking technology. "There is a ton of private scholarship money out there," explains Wellesley resident Oakes Hunnewell, Founder of Hunnewell Education Group, which assists students and families in finding the right board- ing schools, colleges, and gap year programs to attend. "While it can be a labor-intensive process to research and apply for these funds, securing the money is not as hard as you think because not that many students apply." What Is The Best Way To Find Merit Scholarships? At some schools, admitted students are automatically considered for merit programs. In this case, students' grades, test scores, talent, and 172 W e l l e s l e y W e s t o n M a g a z i n e | w i n t e r 2 0 1 4 / 2 0 1 5 education "examine qualification criteria upfront" A Closer Look at Athletic Scholarships There is a lot of talk among parents on the sidelines about athletic scholarships. The truth is that, while talk is plentiful, athletic scholarships are few and far between. Indeed, only about 2 percent of high school athletes win sports scholarships every year. Why are there so few? Division 3 (D3) schools (NESCAC schools, for example) are not per- mitted to award athletic scholarships to their students, nor are the service academies (Army, Navy, Air Force). Unlike their Division 1 (D1) counterparts, Ivy League schools do not award ath- letic scholarships. However, athletic ability can certainly enhance students' chance of being admitted to these schools and of securing merit money, provided that students can meet admis- sions standards. That means that only the remaining Division 1 and Division 2 (D2) schools can technically offer athletic scholarships. Athletic scholarships at D1 and D2 schools are regulated by the NCAA, which has very strict rules about the number of scholarships that can be awarded for a given sport. Coaches can choose how they allocate these funds across their athletes, which often leads to small awards. As a result, the average athletic scholarship is less than $11,000. In keeping with NCAA rules, these scholarships have to be renewed annually at the coaches' discretion. In addition to athletic talent, D1 student athletes must meet academic eligibility guidelines, which include test scores and grade point average minimums. (At many D1 schools these stan- dards are more flexible than those expected for the general admission.) Students also have to be willing to commit the necessary time to play a sport. A recent NCAA survey found that D1 football requires (on average) a 43.3 hour commitment per week in season, baseball 42.1 hours (but it has a longer season), men's basketball 39.2 hours, and women's basketball 37.6. In some cases this commitment may preclude participation in certain majors or study abroad options. If students do choose to go this route, it is recommended that their high school or club coach send an email early to introduce them to the coach. (They act as an intermediary, as coaches can't legally approach students.) This email can describe the position played, the teams and coaches for which the student has played, and a link to YouTube for simple and short (2-5 min- utes) videos of play. Drum up interest and even verbal commitments, but know that an athletic scholarship is not official until the student has the school's official grant-in-aid form in hand.

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