Problem: Manual Scholarship Application Process
Because State University of New York at Oswego (SUNY Oswego) required students to complete individual, time-consuming paper applications for each scholarship opportunity, many scholarships did not generate a large enough applicant pool to comply with donor wishes.
The manual application process made verifying applicant data challenging for scholarship administrators. “Our previous process did not have an effective checks and balances system, which was a liability for the stewardship office,” said Michelle Spinner, Associate Director of Stewardship. “We needed to ensure that our award recipients were aligning with our donor agreements,” she added.
AcademicWorks Simplifies Applications
To make scholarships more accessible to students and to ensure awards were made to the most qualified applicants, SUNY Oswego chose AcademicWorks in 2012.
SUNY Oswego selected AcademicWorks not just for its robust functionality, but because it was simple for applicants, reviewers, and administrators to use. “We looked at other solutions, but they were all too busy and complicated. AcademicWorks seemed like the best product for all users,” said Spinner.
Now, applicants complete a single general scholarship application. The AcademicWorks solution imports student data from the campus Banner system nightly and automatically populates the required information. As a result, the number of questions each applicant must answer has decreased significantly.
This nightly update also means that scholarship administrators can quickly verify student data. Scholarship award decisions can be made based on the most recent data available.
Improved Student Experience and Enhanced Award Compliance
Student and administrator response to the AcademicWorks solution has been overwhelmingly positive. The school received a record number of scholarship applications during the first scholarship cycle after implementation.
“Using AcademicWorks, we can easily promote scholarships and applications have increased significantly,” said Spinner. SUNY Oswego has also been able to tighten scholarship award oversight because of AcademicWorks. “I am more confident now than ever before that our scholarship recipients are in line with donor intentions,” exclaimed Spinner.
Simplify Scholarship Management
State University of New York at Oswego gained more control and increased its scholarship application pool using AcademicWorks. Please contact us to see how we can help your campus.