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Top students to vie for $50,000 Medallion Scholarships

Jan. 14, 2011

KALAMAZOO--Nearly 800 of the brightest high school seniors from Michigan and around the country will gather at Western Michigan University on Saturday, Jan. 22, for the 28th annual Medallion Scholarship Competition.

The competition is one of the biggest events of its kind in Michigan. Since it began in 1984, about $87 million in four-year scholarships has been offered to some 15,000 students. Full Medallion Scholarships have been given to 440 students, including 20 last year, amounting to nearly $8 million.

This year's competitors will vie for 20 Medallion Scholarships worth $50,000 each over four years. Medallions are the most prestigious merit-based scholarship WMU awards to incoming freshmen. The 2011 recipients will be attending school beginning in fall.

They will be selected from the competition's top 40 finalists, who will be invited to return to campus in February to interview with the Medallion Selection Committee. The 20 chosen to receive Medallion Scholarships will become members of WMU's Lee Honors College, which enhances the undergraduate learning experience by providing such benefits as smaller class sizes, individualized academic advising and a freshman-mentoring program.

The finalists not awarded Medallion Scholarships will receive a top-tier Deans' Scholarship worth $6,000 over two years. Each of the remaining competitors will receive a one-time Dean's Scholarship worth $3,000. In addition, Dean's Scholarship recipients who live in a WMU residence hall during the 2011-12 and 2012-13 academic years will receive a $4,000 Residence Hall Award to offset their 2012-13 housing costs.

Only the preeminent members of high school graduating classes are invited to the Medallion Scholarship Competition. To be invited, students needed to have a 3.70 grade point average by the end of their junior year as well as an ACT composite score of 26 or an SAT combined math and critical reading score of at least 1170. They also had to apply to WMU by Dec. 3.

On competition day, the students' performance will be measured through essay writing and a group problem-solving activity.

Student and parent registration for the event will take place from 8 to 8:45 a.m. in Miller Auditorium and be followed by a welcome program from 9 to 9:30 a.m. Students will take part in competition activities from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., while their parents attend informational sessions on financial aid and campus housing and dining services. Also, Dr. Nicholas Andreadis, dean of the Lee Honors College, will facilitate a question-and-answer session with current Medallion Scholars.

From 12:30 to 2 p.m., students and parents will have lunch and attend the Academic Showcase featuring faculty from all of WMU's academic colleges as well as various academic departments. The day will conclude with optional tours from 1 to 3 p.m.

For more information about the 2011 Medallion Scholarship Competition, visit wmich.edu/medallion or contact Christopher Voss at christopher.voss@wmich.edu or (269) 762-2417.

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Media contact: Jeanne Baron, (269) 387-8400, jeanne.baron@wmich.edu

WMU News
Office of University Relations
Western Michigan University
Kalamazoo MI 49008-5433 USA
(269) 387-8400