Scholarship Opportunities Plentiful for EPPS Students

Scholarships are one of the best ways to finance a college education, and there are many available to EPPS students. The key is to know where to look.

At a recent forum hosted by Pi Sigma Alpha, Dr. Douglas Dow, Clinical Associate Professor of Political Science and head of UT Dallas’s Office of Distinguished Scholarships, discussed some of the best opportunities for EPPS students and also offered advice to those who might want to apply:

  • "British Isle" Scholarships: This group of scholarships, which include the Rhodes, Marshall, Mitchell, and Gates Scholarships, involve a period of study at a university in the United Kingdom. Students apply to these scholarships, all of which are very competitive, in their senior years. When deciding which scholarship to pursue, Dr. Dow reminds students to "find a program at the relevant universities that fits with your academic and career aspirations." He also says that "all of these scholarships involve a dimension of public leadership in some capacity."
  • Critical Language Scholarship: With this scholarship, students spend a summer immersing themselves in one of thirteen critical languages. The program, which includes training in Arabic, Azerbaijani, Bangla/Bengali, Chinese, Hindi, Indonesian, Japanese, Korean, Persian, Punjabi, Russian, Turkish and Urdu, involves intensive exposure to foreign language and culture. Dr. Dow says that the Critical Language Scholarship is "especially helpful for students as they apply for their post-UT Dallas careers." Students may apply for a CLS as early as their freshman year.
  • Boren Scholarship: For those who want an even more immersive and intensive experience than with the Critical Language Scholarship, Dr. Dow recommends the Boren Scholarship. Students awarded this scholarship are sponsored for a full year of studying abroad with the intent of helping them matriculate at a foreign university. "Language acquisition is the dominant theme, but it doesn't have to be the only theme of your experience." The Boren Scholarship also entertains a broader classification of critical languages, with a special emphasis in African languages.
  • Archer Fellowship: This scholarship is unique among the many programs that Dr. Dow recommends in that it is one of the only internship programs he is actively involved in. "I typically deal with internships on a case-by-case basis," he says. "For EPPS students especially, the Archer Program is the only one I actively promote." Archer Fellows spend a semester in Washington, D.C., and complete a full-time internship during their stay. "Students often consider the program the most important part of their college experience."

Students are free to apply to as many scholarships as they want, but Dr. Dow encourages students not to "fish for scholarships." Instead, he emphasizes fit between the student and the scholarship. "Scholarships are a means to another end. You have to have goals and experiences that are yours independent of the scholarship if it's going to be worthwhile in the end."

Anyone interested in other scholarships available to students at UT Dallas can visit honors.utdallas.edu/distinguished-scholarships/featured-scholarships for more information.