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Annual and Endowed Scholarships

There are two types of donor-funded scholarships at Dakota Wesleyan University, annual scholarships and endowed scholarships.

Annual scholarships are established and named with gifts of $1,000 or more annually for at least 5 years. Annual scholarship gifts are due by August 31 of each year.

Endowed scholarships are established and named through an outright gift of $25,000 or more over a maximum five-year period. The original gift is permanently invested, and 5 percent interest is awarded as a scholarship annually. While approaching the $25,000 level, interest earnings are added to the fund. Endowed scholarships can also be established or added to through an estate gift. The scholarship is awarded one year after the scholarship is fully funded.

Reasons to establish a scholarship
    How to establish a scholarship
    Why donor-funded scholarships are necessary
    Where scholarships are needed

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Reasons to establish a scholarship

  • Memorialize a loved one
    Preserve your loved one’s name and memory through a scholarship.
  • Leave a legacy where you have a passion
    You can designate the scholarship for a specific major or cocurricular activity based on your interests.
  • Honor someone who invested in someone else
    Perhaps you had a favorite faculty member you’d like to honor or another person who had an impact on your life.
  • Connect with a student
    See first hand how your dollars affect other lives.

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How to establish a scholarship

  1. Start by calling Institutional Advancement at 605-995-2603 or e-mail scholarships@dwu.edu for more information.
  2. The staff will discuss the various options with you and how your goals and objectives best fit within the scholarship program.
  3. We will send you a form to complete and sign indicating the name and criteria of the scholarship.
  4. You make the scholarship gift.
  5. The scholarship is awarded.
  6. For endowed scholarships, an annual report is sent to you indicating the earnings and award amount of the scholarship.

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Why donor-funded scholarships are necessary

  • DWU student population: Approximately 40 percent are first generation
  • The highest percentage of Pell-eligible students (those least able to afford college)
    among South Dakota colleges
  • 20 percent have zero family contribution
  • 16 percent are underrepresented groups (minorities)
  • Average debt upon graduation: $30,000-$40,000
Awarded in scholarships annually
Donor-funded scholarships  
- $573,443

Needed to fill the gap  

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Where scholarships are needed

17 funded scholarships for 318 student-athletes
28 funded scholarships for 149 students
Business Administration
31 funded scholarships for 118 students
Criminal Justice/Human Services
3 funded scholarships for 62 students
7 funded scholarships for 40 students

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Laura Guericke

YEAR: Class of 2009
MAJOR: Pre-physical Therapy
HOMETOWN: White Lake, S.D.

“I considered two other schools, but DWU felt like home. I’m so grateful for my scholarships. With that support I don’t have to worry about working all the time to pay the bills, and it allows me time to get involved on campus. I can’t think of a better investment that will give long-term returns than someone’s education.”

Ralph Roth Merit Scholarship for Business
Annual scholarship established by Marc ’90 and Lisa Pekas ’90 Rentschler

“With Ralph’s sense of humor and ‘I care about you’ attitude, he has taught and encouraged students to believe in themselves and their abilities. Ralph is not only an educator; he is a friend, mentor, giver and an inspiration. I will never forget the man who took me under his wing and changed my life forever. It is only right to honor him in this way.”

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Last updated: 6/20/12