Scholarship FAQs

FAQs for Freshman

Q: How do I apply for scholarships? 

A: By submitting your application to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign you will be considered for all scholarships and awards for which you are eligible. Eligibility is based upon ACT scores, GPA and outside activities/experience related to media.           

Q: Do I need to include any other supporting materials? 
A: No. Your admission application is sufficient. Additional materials such as portfolios, writing samples, or resumes are not used during the review process.

Q: When will I find out if I received a scholarship?
A: The majority of incoming freshmen are notified by mail by mid-March if a scholarship has been awarded. If funds remain, a few additional students may be contacted in early May. Scholarship recipients will be invited to the College of Media Honors Reception the following spring.        

Q: If I get a scholarship, how will I receive my money? 
A: Scholarship money will be deposited into your university account with half of the award being credited for the fall semester and the other half deposited for the spring semester. Any credit will be deposited directly into the bank account you have set up with the Financial Aid Office.

Q: Who decides what scholarship I will receive? 
A: The scholarship committee consists of a group of College of Media faculty and staff.

Q: What if my scholarship/award dollars added to my aid/grants exceeds the cost of attendance?
A: The combination of federal, state, institutional and private financial aid/loans cannot exceed the cost of a student’s attendance. If the total amount of financial aid exceeds the cost, awards (including scholarships and/or loans) may be reduced so that the total financial aid package no longer exceeds the cost of attendance. Please speak with the Financial Aid Office for more information.

For more information on College of Media scholarships, please contact Megan Tucker-Zwilling at 217-244-4329 or megtuck@illinois.edu.

FAQs for Continuing Students

Q: How do I apply for scholarships?
A: Scholarships are awarded on a yearly basis and all continuing students must submit a Scholarship Application each spring semester to be considered to receive a College of Media scholarship/award for the following academic year. By submitting your scholarship application, you will be considered for all scholarships and awards for which you are eligible. You do not need to apply for a specific scholarship. Scholarship applications are available each April. The deadline to apply for a scholarship for the 2019-2020 academic year has passed. The application for the 2020-2021 academic year will be available on April 1, 2020.

Q: Do I need to include any other supporting materials? 
A: No, your application will be sufficient. Additional materials such as portfolios, writing samples, or resumes will not be included with your application for review.

Q: How do I find my major/college GPA? 
A: Your College GPA is on your degree audit in the upper right-hand corner under the section heading "Advertising, News-Editorial Journalism, Broadcast Journalism, Journalism, or Media and Cinema Studies Requirements" (depending on your major). This GPA includes all of the courses you have taken that are offered by or cross-listed with the College of Media.

Q: How do I find my overall university GPA?
A: The very last section on your degree audit is titled “Summary of Courses Taken”. At the top of this section in the upper right-hand corner you will find your overall GPA. This number represents the GPA for all courses you have taken both at Illinois and at other universities.           

Q: If I am an off-campus transfer applying for a scholarship, how should I list my major and university GPAs?
A: Please do your best to represent the courework you have completed at your previous university. You should be able to find an overall GPA on your transcript. For the major GPA, average the media-related classes you have taken to give the best possible estimate for what your major GPA would be. You may also be able to run a degree audit if you have accepted your admission offer to the University.       

Q: When will I find out if I received a scholarship? 
A: Students who have been chosen for a scholarship are notified by mail by late July. Scholarship recipients will be invited to the College of Media Honors Reception the following spring. Please include a viable summer mailing address when completing your scholarship application. Notifications will be sent directly to this address. If you move prior to the notification period, you should notify Student Services so the change to your application can be made.

Q: If I get a scholarship, how will I receive my money? 
A:Scholarship money will be deposited into your university account with half of the award being credited for the fall semester and the other half deposited for the spring semester. Any credit will be deposited directly into the bank account you have set up with the Financial Aid Office.           

Q: If I am notified that I have received an award, how is that different from a scholarship?
A: If you are the recipient of an Award from the College of Media, such as the Iris Chang Award or the Lulu Kelly Nardine Award, your awarded dollars will be processed differently than a Sholarship. Scholarships are deposited directly in to a student’s University account to go directly toward the cost of attendance; these funds are strictly for education expenses. Awards are primarily given as recognition for a specific achievement, most often in the College of Media for strength in writing. Award dollars are generally deposited into the student’s bank account that is set up with Financial Aid and can be used as a student wishes. If s/he wishes to use the Award money toward an upcoming tuition bill, it would be the student’s responsibility to move the funds into his/her University account for bill payment. Award amounts are reported to Financial Aid in order to be included in the student’s financial aid package and may reduce other financial aid the student may receive. It should also be noted that Awards are generally taxable income to the recipient which means that the University may need to report the award to the IRS and the student on IRS Form 1099-MISC.      

Q: Who decides what scholarship I will receive? 
A: The scholarship committee consists of a group of College of Media faculty and staff.           

Q: What if my scholarship/award dollars added to my aid/grants exceeds the cost of attendance? 
A: The combination of federal, state, institutional and private financial aid/loans cannot exceed the cost of a student’s attendance. If the total amount of financial aid exceeds the cost, awards (including scholarships and/or loans) may be reduced so that the total financial aid package no longer exceeds the cost of attendance. Please speak with the Financial Aid Office for more information.

Q: I received a renewable scholarship from the College of Media. Why is it not showing on my Financial Aid Award Packet for the next academic year?
A: All renewable scholarship awards come with specific criteria that must be maintained in order to continue to receive funding. Most often, this criteria is a 3.0 GPA as well as remaining in the major a student was admitted into. This information must be verified after each spring semester has been completed in order for funding to be included on a student’s award package. Verification is completed over the summer and notifications of the continuance or termination of each renewable scholarship are sent out at the same time in July as notifications for students receiving additional funding for the next academic year. Award packages will be updated with Financial Aid at that time.

Q: Must I be a full-time student to receive my scholarship from the College of Media?
A: Yes. All students who receive a scholarship from the College of Media must be enrolled as a full-time student in both the fall and spring terms on the Illinois campus to receive their scholarship funding. Full-time standing is considered to be 12+ credit hours on the Illinois campus. Coursework taken at other universities or colleges during a fall or spring term will not count toward this total. The only exception given is for a senior in his/her semester of graduation who will be completing all degree requirements at Illinois with part-time standing.

Q: Can my College of Media scholarship be used for a semester-long study abroad program?
A: Yes, if the program is offered through the University of Illinois. Students are charged for their Illinois study abroad program through their student accounts. Media scholarships are credited toward any fees or tuition on a student’s account. While a Media scholarship award amount may not be enough to cover the entire amount of a study abroad program’s fees, it will absolutely go toward the cost on a student’s account.

For more information on College of Media scholarships, please contact Megan Tucker-Zwilling at 217-244-4329 or megtuck@illinois.edu