Ah, graduate school—that magical time in your life when you devote so much of yourself to scholarship that rather than sleeping in your bed you tend to fall asleep on your keyboard instead (if, of course, your cat doesn’t get to the keyboard first). If, like me, you are a graduate student, you are probably very tired. I can empathize! Whether you’re at the beginning of your graduate school journey, nearing the end of it, or somewhere in the middle, your to-do list for this week is probably overwhelming. Technically you don’t even have time to read this blog post (but please do so anyway!). The last thing you need right now is another task added to your plate.
Stop right there and take a deep breath. I know finding the time is difficult, but I’m going to tell you right now that carving out a couple of hours to apply for a Sigma Tau Delta Graduate Scholarship is worth it. Here’s why:
1. You Deserve It!
You work very hard as a graduate student and you deserve to be rewarded for your hard work! Scholarships like this one allow you to show off who you are and what you have accomplished in your graduate school career; winning an award means a committee saw your work and believed your future work was worth funding—and it is! If you don’t apply, you don’t have the chance to show them that.
2. It Won’t Take as Much Time as You Think
Applying for scholarships may feel daunting, but it doesn’t have to be daunting. You are a graduate student; you’ve written essays before, and because you love English as much as the rest of us you probably know how to write a really good one by now! Spend an evening crafting your essay and your personal statement. I know you don’t want to skip out on taking your evening nap (again), but you’ll survive without one nap. Skipping that one nap can be worth up to $4,000. That’s worth the trade-off.
3. If You Don’t Win a Graduate Scholarship, You Can Still Receive a Regents’ Scholarship
Did you know that even if you don’t win a Graduate Scholarship, you still have a chance at a Regents’ Scholarship? According to the scholarship guidelines, “The highest scoring full-time status scholarship applicant in each region who does not receive another scholarship is automatically considered for a Regents’ Scholarship.” These awards are smaller than the Graduate Scholarship awards, but wouldn’t you still like to have $1,000? I know I would!
4. No Sigma Tau Delta Chapter? No Problem!
It’s a blow to any active Sigma Tau Delta member to arrive at your new graduate program only to learn your university doesn’t have an active Sigma Tau Delta chapter. If your graduate institution doesn’t have a chapter but you were a member of the Society at your undergraduate school you are still eligible for an Alumni Epsilon scholarship! You must be an Alumni Epsilon member in good standing at the time of your application and if you are awarded this scholarship you could receive up to $2,500! And why haven’t you gotten the ball rolling yet on starting a charter for your new school?
5. More Scholarship Money = Less Time Spent Paying Off Loans
You’ve been in school for quite some time now. Unless you’re really lucky, you’ve more than likely taken out loans at some point in your career to help pay for your tuition. Depending on how quickly you find a job after graduation, what kind of job you get, what your living situation is, and other factors that impact your financial situation, it can take quite a long time just to pay off a few thousand dollars. If you won up to $4,000, though, that could take months or even years off of the amount of time you spend paying off loans. A few hours of your time for that much extra peace of mind? Yes, please!
6. Worst-Case Scenario, You’ve Only Lost a Few Hours of Your Time
Part of the reason you’re probably hesitant to apply for scholarships is because you don’t feel you have a great chance of winning. It’s true that not everyone will win a scholarship. The thing is, though, if you don’t apply, then you definitely won’t win a scholarship. Toss your hat in the ring! Any chance is better than no chance!
As a graduate student, you have a lot on your plate. I know you’re tired, but this is a chance you can take that can truly pay out in the end. And then, once you’re done with your application, you can still take that nap of your dreams. Why not give it a try?
Scholarship Eligibility Criteria
Alumni Epsilon Scholarship
Application Essay Prompt
Sigma Tau Delta’s Featured Graduate Programs
Department of English at Northern Illinois University
Master of Arts in English at Fort Hayes State University
Master of Arts in English at Azusa Pacific University
Hudson Strode Program in Renaissance Studies at The University of Alabama
Master of Arts in English at The University of North Carolina Wilmington
Department of English at The University of Kentucky
Master of Liberal Arts / Master of Teaching Writing at Auburn University at Montgomery
Master of Arts in English at Western Illinois University
Master of Arts in English at University of Southern Indiana
Amber M. Rose
Student Representative, Far Western Region, 2016-2017
Alpha Nu Beta Chapter
University of Washington, Seattle, WA