POLICY AND PROCEDURES FOR SCHOLARSHIP AWARDS
The Texas A&M College of Dentistry complies with TAMUS and TAMU rules and standard administrative procedures for awarding scholarships as outlined in the Scholarship Administrator’s Resource Guide published by Scholarships & Financial Aid. Consistent with these rules and procedures, the College of Dentistry has established a written award procedure, uses a committee to select scholarship recipients, has a formal application process, has mechanisms for reconciling scholarship accounts and balances, and complies with records retention requirements in accordance with the University Records Retention schedule.
College Scholarship Committee
The College of Dentistry Scholarship Committee (SC) is responsible for reviewing all scholarship applications and selecting recipients using the award procedure described below (see “Award Procedure”). The SC consists of two faculty members, three staff members, and the Associate Dean for Student Affairs. The Dean of the College of Dentistry approves the members of the SC each year prior to the fall semester.
The SC is committed to following the expectations of award agreements between donors and the College and uses scholarship resources to encourage, in a fair, equitable and competitive manner, academic achievement of students enrolled in the Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS) and the Dental Hygiene program (DH).
The College of Dentistry offers several scholarships in the fall and spring semesters to students enrolled in the Doctor of Dental Surgery and Dental Hygiene programs. These scholarships are supported by generous private and corporate donors, many of whom have established an endowed scholarship account with TAMU. Students may see all scholarships offered each year here on the College website.
1. Student notification
At the appropriate time in the fall and spring semester, the Office of Student Affairs (OSA) Manager of Financial Aid notifies all students of available scholarships in writing using email. Information in this email includes the name of the scholarship, number of awards, award amount, and eligibility and application requirements.
2. Scholarship accounts
The Office of Finance and Administration (OF&A) at the College of Dentistry is responsible for all accounting and reconciliation of scholarship accounts. Monthly reports are reviewed by the OSA Manager of Financial Aid and approved by the Associate Dean for Student Affairs.
3. Number of awards and award amount
The amount awarded for each scholarship is determined using the award agreement established between the College and the donor. Amounts range from $250 to $9,000.
The number of awards may vary from year to year and depends on, in many cases, the interest accrued in the scholarship account (if it is an endowed scholarship) and the award agreement between the College and the donor.
The number of awards and award amount are communicated to students as described under “1. Student notification” above.
4. Scholarship eligibility requirements
The eligibility requirements for each scholarship are established in the award agreement between the College and the donor. When each scholarship is announced, the requirements are communicated to students as described under “1. Student notification” above. In general, a scholarship may specify a minimum GPA, academic achievement, clinical proficiency, community service, financial need or other criteria as specified by the donor.
5. Application requirements
Scholarship applications are sent to the appropriate student groups as the scholarships become available. Any additional materials required are enumerated on the email communication containing the application and due date for submission. These may include an essay, documentation that the applicant is a member of a specific professional organization, one or more letters of recommendation, etc.
All applications and supporting materials are compiled by the OSA Manager of Financial Aid who ensures that the application is complete. Complete applications are forwarded to the SC, along with the eligibility and application requirements.
7. Application review
The SC reviews applications for each available scholarship using the eligibility and application requirements established in the award agreement. In general, the SC establishes an award matrix for each scholarship that lists each requirement and the name of each applicant. Applicants who meet the eligibility (e.g..., student in good academic standing) and application requirements (e.g..., two letters of recommendation) are further considered by the Committee. If considered further, SC members assign a certain number of points up to a maximum determined for each scholarship requirement listed in the rubric. Points are then added and qualified applicants are ranked accordingly. When a decision is made, the Associate Dean for Student Affairs and/or the Manager of Financial Aid communicates the results with the College community and Scholarships & Financial Aid.
- The Manager of Financial Aid facilitates the review of applications by the SC by providing information pertaining to scholarship eligibility requirements (g., GPA, time of enrollment, academic standing, etc.).
- The Manager of Financial Aid communicates all available scholarships to the Chair of the SC at an appropriate time in the fall and spring.
- The Chair of the SC keeps a record of and schedules all meetings.
- The Manager of Financial Aid provides a list of each scholarship and each scholarship recipient to Scholarships & Financial Aid at the appropriate time in the fall and spring semester. .
- The Manager of Financial Aid of the OSA posts the scholarship award to the appropriate software to feed into the university information system to facilitate award disbursement to scholarship recipients. The OSA Manager of Financial Aid along with the OF&A are responsible for scholarship account accounting and reconciliation.
- The OSA Manager of Financial Aid retains all scholarship materials, supporting data, and Scholarship Committee minutes as required by the University Records Retention schedule (AC+1) including number of applications, awards offered, amount (in dollars) for the award period, awards accepted and the list of SC members.
8. Scholarship awards
The OSA Manager of Financial Aid notifies applicants in writing via email selected to receive scholarships by the SC. This notification provides information about the award and the award amount. An award letter that indicates the name of the scholarship, the amount awarded, the duration of the scholarship, and whether it is renewable is provided to the student either attached to the email or delivered to the student in person. If the scholarship is renewable, the criteria and procedure for renewing the scholarship is included as well.
9. Scholarship disbursement
One half of fall scholarship awards are disbursed to student accounts in the fall and the remaining half is disbursed in the spring, unless otherwise noted as part of the scholarship award. Students awarded a spring scholarship receive a single disbursement for the entire amount in the spring semester.
10. Tuition Waivers
Non-resident students awarded a competitive academic scholarship of $1,000 or more for graduate/professional students and $4000 or more for undergraduates may be eligible for a tuition waiver, allowing the awardee to pay resident tuition and fees rather than non-resident tuition and fees. Non-resident students interested in learning more about this policy, and the scholarships that would qualify for this waiver, are encouraged to contact the OSA and to see https://scholarships.tamu.edu/Non-ResidentTuition-Waiver.
Note: The policy and procedures for scholarship awards/funds are reviewed periodically and are subject to change.