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STARS Scholarship

Application Deadline: Monday, January 28, 2020 by 11:59 PM  

Awards Announced: March 1, 2020

The STARS Scholarship awards up to 10 scholarships of $500.00 per award.  The 10 students selected by the STARS Committee will receive $500.00 towards their study abroad program.  Each selected winner only receives one award of $500.00.  The award is contingent upon meeting all of the STARS Scholarship requirements.

 

How to Apply

To login to the Study Abroad Application Portal, use your Clayton State SWAN username and password. 

Students will need to apply through the Study Abroad Application Portal.  This is the same portal that students register to apply for a study abroad program.

STARS Application Learn more about the STARS Application

 

Stars Scholarship Requirements

  1. Complete ALL of the required fields for the STARS Scholarship Application.
  2. This award is only for students enrolled in a degree program at Clayton State University.
  3. The applicant must be enrolled in a study abroad program to be eligible for the award.
  4. Must have a minimum GPA of a 2.5 to qualify.
    1. STARS GPA - Minimum 2.5 GPA. Both your overall and institutional GPA should not be below a 2.5.  If your GPA is not available then contact your Academic Advisor or the Undergraduate or Graduate Admissions department to obtain your GPA information.
  5. Submit a copy of your Unofficial Transcript
    1. Can be found via the DUCK.  Check under ‘Student Services’ for ‘Transcript (Unofficial)’. Submit a PDF or screenshot.
  6. Submit a copy of your Financial Aid Award Letter
    1. If applicable to Fin Aid recipients; this can be found via the DUCK in the Financial Aid portal. Submit a PDF or screenshot.
  7. Submit a copy of your HOPE Award Letter
    1. If applicable to HOPE recipients; this can be found via the DUCK in the Financial Aid portal. Submit a PDF or screenshot.
  8. Submit your STARS Essay
    1. The STARS Committee is looking to award students who can show the connection between the program of study (i.e. Teacher Education in France or Business in Germany) and how it applies to the opportunity for the applicant to study abroad.  Think of how studying abroad will benefit your long-term goals and aspirations.  Studying abroad is not just about the here and now (the short-term), but about the connections you make by networking, utilizing the opportunity as part of your career path (your study abroad program can go on your resume), by becoming a globalized citizen, and more. 
    2. Here are general statements to answer for your essay.  Include the following:

Personal Statement: How will your study abroad experience connect with your program of study? For example, how will your study abroad experience in France connect with and impact of your educational experience in the Clayton State University Teacher Education program or how will your study abroad experience in Germany connect with and impact your educational experience in Clayton State University’s MBA program?

Personal Development: How will studying abroad benefit your long-term goals and aspirations (personal, academic, professional or otherwise)?

Engagement and Preparation: The Program Director (faculty member) will provide a very structured learning experience, but what research have you done to prepare for study abroad and what might you do to get the most out of your experience in your host country?

Cultural Perspectives: An effective study abroad experience requires knowledge of the host country’s culture. Discuss one or more significant issues (social, political, economic, environmental, etc.) currently facing your intended host country. How might these intersect with your intended studies or your personal development or personal goals? How might you plan to learn, engage (if appropriate).

Identity & Diversity: Consider your background and experiences, how these shape your perceptions and interactions with the world, and how others in turn perceive and interact with you. What research have you done on the culture, belief and social norms, of your host country? What did you find and how might this impact your visit? You may also discuss how this information may inform how you prepare for your stay or how you may interact or behave while traveling?

  1. Did the essay follow the Essay Guidelines?
  2. All questions must be answered on the STARS Scholarship Application.  Incomplete applications will NOT be considered.

 

Essay Guidelines

Write a 400-500 word essay describing how study abroad relates to you and why you should be a STARS recipient. 

  • Here are general statements to answer for your essay.  Include the following:
    1. Personal Statement: How will your study abroad experience connect with your program of study? For example, how will your study abroad experience in France connect with and impact of your educational experience in the Clayton State University Teacher Education program or how will your study abroad experience in Germany connect with and impact your educational experience in Clayton State University’s MBA program?
    2. Personal Development: How will studying abroad benefit your long-term goals and aspirations (personal, academic, professional or otherwise)?
    3. Engagement and Preparation: The Program Director (faculty member) will provide a very structured learning experience, but what research have you done to prepare for study abroad and what might you do to get the most out of your experience in your host country?
    4. Cultural Perspectives: An effective study abroad experience requires knowledge of the host country’s culture. Discuss one or more significant issues (social, political, economic, environmental, etc.) currently facing your intended host country. How might these intersect with your intended studies or your personal development or personal goals? How might you plan to learn, engage (if appropriate).
    5. Identity & Diversity: Consider your background and experiences, how these shape your perceptions and interactions with the world, and how others in turn perceive and interact with you. What research have you done on the culture, belief and social norms, of your host country? What did you find and how might this impact your visit? You may also discuss how this information may inform how you prepare for your stay or how you may interact or behave while traveling?

Use the following formats for your essay:

  1. 12-font for text.
  2. Double spacing in the format of the essay.
  3. Good grammar and sentence structure.
  4. Essay format for the outline of your paper.
  5. It is recommended that you visit the Writer’s Studio for assistance on editing and improving your essay.

 

Award Information

Students awarded the scholarship will receive $500.00 upon winning.  Students must perform directed work with the Study Abroad Office promoting study abroad programs by the following:

  • Assisting on campus, on-site overseas assisting a professor or other directed work with the Study Abroad Office, either before or after the program with a minimum of 10 hours of service.

As part of the acceptance of the STARS award, students must perform as least ten (10) hours of OIP directed work promoting study abroad. Here are a few examples on how students can obtain the mandatory service hours:

  • Work in the Study Abroad Office.
  • Volunteer at the Study Abroad Fair(s).
  • Speak/Present to a Class about Your Study Abroad Experience.
  • Design a Video on Your Study Abroad Experience.
  • Create a Scrapbook on Your Study Abroad Experience.
  • Propose a project to the office to collaborate on. 

Additionally, students who are awarded the STARS Scholarship are required to write thank you notes to the STARS Committee and to the CSU Foundations office.  These are two separate letters thanking the STARS Committee for selecting the student as a recipient of the award and to the CSU Foundations office who provides the annual award to the Study Abroad Office to distribute the award.  Students are required to write these letters individually with their own material and each letter enclosed in an envelope.     

 

Financial Aid Disclaimer

Each student’s financial aid situation is unique and it is impossible to include all aspects of financial aid information.  In addition, students should be aware that the STARS Scholarship is disbursed in the same manner as any other scholarship/financial aid delivered to Clayton State student accounts.  Generally, it will be applied toward any outstanding balance on your account, which would include your study abroad program fees or to any other tuition and fees on your account.  To the manner in which awards are disbursed, it may not actually deduct the program fees you owe (it might be applied toward your tuition, for example).  It is your responsibility to ensure that your program fees are paid in full by the deadline indicated by your program.

Receipt of this award may impact your financial aid eligibility.  It is recommended that you speak with representatives in the Financial Aid office BEFORE applying for this scholarship to see how it might affect your individual situation.  Your Program Director and the Study Abroad Office DO NOT have access to your financial aid information and are not qualified to discuss this with you. 

 

Stars Committee

The STARS Committee is composed of faculty and/or staff that are not associated with the current study abroad programs in progress.  These faculty and/or staff are provided ALL of the applicant’s submission material for review.  The committee reviews that the students have met all of the STARS requirements, while also reviewing the content of each essay.  The committee reads and reviews each essay to determine that the criteria have been met by the applicant.  If the applicant fails to meet all of the requirements, the committee will disqualify the applicant.

Once the committee has determined the 10 finalists, they will notify the Study Abroad Office.  The Study Abroad Office then works in conjunction with the Financial Aid Office to distribute the award.  The Study Abroad Office will notify the finalists once the award has been distributed and will update the finalists about their service obligations.  The Study Abroad Office will also update the remaining applicants about the status of the award distribution.       

 

Important Note

There are multiple study abroad programs with multiple students, so please note that only a few students will receive this award.  The STARS Committee can only award 10 awards to eligible recipients of $500.00 per finalist. 

This scholarship may not be applicable every year due to funding and as it is based on annual giving.  As of 2019-2020, this award is awaiting funding approval.