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Scholarship incentive for high achieving students (Released: 12/18/97)

Office of University Communications

EAST HARTFORD, CT --- The University of Connecticut today announced a new scholarship program designed to encourage more of the state’s high achieving students to stay in Connecticut for higher education.

Key Links for Incoming Students
§Scholarships for incoming freshmen

§ Scholarship Office (with online application)

§Admissions Office

The new program, the Deans Scholarship, provides four year scholarships, worth up to $6,000, to students who are in the top 15 percent of their high school class and who have a combined SAT score of at least 1200 out of a possible 1600.

The new scholarship is the first such UConn program to be announced to a state-wide audience. It supplements other merit-based scholarships and supports a number of internal changes made to fulfill President Philip E. Austin’s inaugural pledge to work to stop Connecticut’s brain drain.

"This program will help Connecticut retain its quality students," said Austin. "That is critically important to the state’s long run economic health."

Almost 53 percent --- a percentage second only to Alaska ---- of Connecticut’s high school graduates leave the state for college, according to the Department of Higher Education. In 1994, 10,218 students left Connecticut, while only 5,601 freshmen from other states came to the state.

"Those students rarely return, creating a huge brain drain for a state that depends on brain power for its success," said Chancellor Mark E. Emmert. "Our new program will provide a generous incentive for Connecticut students to stay in Connecticut, where we rely on their intellectual capital for our economic future."

The Deans Award Scholarship program buttresses the University’s newly refined student incentive awards: the Presidential Award, which offers students full tuition for four years if they are admitted to UConn and have SAT scores of 1400 or better and are in the top 10 percent of their high school class; and the Chancellor Award, worth $2,500 a year for admitted students with at least 1300 on their SAT scores and a class rank in the top 10 percent, or SAT scores of 1400 or better and a class rank in the top 15 percent.

All of the scholarships are for four years provided the student maintains a grade point average of 3.0 (equivalent to a B).

"The University is fulfilling its pledge to help stop the flow of talent to out-of-state colleges and universities," Emmert said. "Now we will be more competitive with other institutions which have been offering scholarships to those students to whom we have hertofore been unable to offer scholarships."

Emmert noted that the dean’s scholarship program, which could cost as much as $3 million over four years, is so important to the University that he has reallocated funds internally to fund it.

The scholarship program is designed to help UConn improve its market share and is part of an overall push the University is making to retain quality students. Other efforts include expanded marketing efforts, additional honors courses, and an early registration pilot program this spring, said M. Dolan Evanovich, associate provost for enrollment management. "The Deans Award gives us a chance to more than double the number of scholarship offers to high achieving high school seniors," he said.

Students who are admitted to the University and meet the SAT and class rank requirements will be automatically offered the scholarships, he said.

"UConn provides an excellent education and this program will provide a tremendous incentive for students to take advantage of that," said Steven Edwards, principal of East Hartford High School. "I know principals all over the state agree: Connecticut’s top students need scholarships like these, especially since so many other states offer similar programs to keep their high achieving students in state."