University-Funded Merit Scholarships Program

Policy Memorandum No. 43

Recommended by the Commission on Undergraduate Studies
Approved by University Council: November 15, 1982
Approved by the President: November 15, 1982
Effective: Immediately

The Commission on Undergraduate Studies recently recommended, and the University Council has approved, a modification of the institution's Merit Scholarships Program, to assure distribution of certain undergraduate Merit Scholarships to the several colleges in proportion to their undergraduate enrollments. The Resolution adopted by Council follows:

WHEREAS, the Committee on Admissions & Financial Aid (CUS) was charged with the responsibility of reviewing existing merit scholarship programs at Virginia Tech and making recommendations on future programs, and

WHEREAS, merit scholarship programs are known to be effective in attracting academically superior students, and

WHEREAS, the recruitment of superior students is a major concern, not just of the University as a whole, but also of the individual colleges on behalf of their respective undergraduate programs of study, and

WHEREAS, the colleges currently have no University-funded merit scholarships which might be used in college-based student recruitment programs, nor do the colleges participate directly in the awarding of merit scholarships through the University's Superior Student Program*, and

WHEREAS, the University Development Office acknowledges potential donor support for scholarships and has the expertise and desire to strengthen the support base for University scholarships,

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the University's Superior Student Program, with its scholarship competition administered by the Office of Admissions, be maintained as is, with all of its major four-year scholarship awards given to the most highly qualified University applicants, without regard to college, and

That "Special" one-year scholarship awards (35 currently available) be distributed among the undergraduate colleges in proportion to their respective percentages of the total undergraduate enrollment, and as early as possible to enable the colleges to use the scholarships for recruitment purposes (see Table 1), and

That Admissions officers work with individual college deans, who will make the award decisions on these "Special" one-year scholarships, using as a pool of potential awardees, all applicants to the college who qualify for participation as freshmen in the University Honors Program (current requirements: 1200 combined SAT, neither below 550 and first decile in high school class rank), and

That, insofar as possible, the University-wide "Special" one-year merit scholarships be used to reflect the desire of the University and the Colleges to attract academically superior students to majors in which the number of graduates falls far short of meeting anticipated demands, and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the standing CUS Committee on Admissions and Financial Aid, working with the Provost, the Vice President for Development, the college deans, and the offices of Admissions, Financial Aid, and University Development, determine an appropriate set of programmatic and funding objectives for the expansion of the University-wide merit scholarship program.

TABLE 1: Proportional Distribution of 35 "Special" One-Year Awards With Major Awards Based On Testing Competition



* The Superior Student Program currently consists of 26 scholarships (1 Newman, 1 M.P. Lacy, 10 Distinguished University, 4 Alumni Presidential, and 10 National Merit) based on the annual scholarship competition plus 35 other scholarships.

President's Policy Memorandum