Legacy scholarship eligibility expanded

Sophomores Macy Steber and Erin Fitzgerald walk across the campus. The expanded Bulldog Legacy Scholarship will now apply to siblings of current students and grandchildren of alumni. Photo by Emily Collins

Truman State University is expanding eligibility for one of its most popular scholarships. 

The Bulldog Legacy Scholarship focuses on awarding money to students who have family members that attended Truman. Previously, the scholarship applied only to students whose parents or step parents attended Truman, however, it has been expanded to include grandparents and siblings of current and graduated students. However, it is not retroactive, and only incoming students of fall 2023 will be eligible. 

Hayden Wilsey, associate director admissions, said the legacy scholarship amount awarded for in-state students is $1000, while the amount awarded for out-of-state students is $2000. He said that the number of students qualifying for the scholarship had been fairly steady over the years. As a result, the University wanted to increase eligibility, providing more scholarship incentives for students to attend Truman. 

“When students come and visit campus, some of the best visits we have are the ones where they say, ‘People that matter to me attended Truman,’” Wilsey said. “Being able to provide additional scholarship information is nice on a visit, but prospective students hearing about Truman before getting here from a coach, teacher, sibling, parent, and then having a really great on-campus visit is the cherry on top.”

Tyana Lange, vice president for student engagement, enrollment and marketing, said that conversations between Truman recruiters and students led to the expansion of the scholarship. Prospective students would often ask if they would receive the scholarship if their older siblings or grandparents would make them eligible for the scholarship, Lange said. 

“What we’re looking for is opportunities to share how amazing [Truman] is,” Lange said. “This was the hope with this scholarship, to get a broader market to consider your story.”

Regional Admission Counselor Mark Clynes, who works primarily with St. Louis-area students, came up with the idea of scholarship expansion. He said the idea came out of an ongoing dialogue with parents and students, and he realized that the expansion could possibly bring more students to Truman that otherwise would not attend. He views the expansion as rewarding families for choosing Truman for not just one, but multiple children.

“If we do things right — which we do at Truman State, we give them a great experience, we give them a great education — let’s try and keep it in the family,” Clynes said. “This is an easy way to do it.” 

Clynes said that he has submitted this proposal for scholarship expansion previously, but it was approved only this year.