SUSAN T. BUFFETT FOUNDATION SCHOLARSHIP OVERVIEW • • • • • • • • Changes this Year Deadlines Eligibility Recommendations Essay Prompts Communication with Applicants Common Questions and Errors Application Questions and Clarification CHANGES FOR 2015 APPLICATION • Essay • Word count suggestion increased to 700-900 • One Additional Essay Prompt Question • How are you involved in giving back to others and/or to the community? • Recommendations must be completed using the on-line template (no uploading of letters) • PDF copy emailed to recommender when submitted • Twitter - Follow @BuffettScholars • Text Messaging Reminders • Some additional clarification language to help students be more informed DEADLINES • The following are due February 1, 2015 at 11:59pm CST: • Application – students must click “submit” and sign consent to release by this date, or the application will be locked • 2 Recommendations (on-line template) • High School Transcript • Essay (must be responsive to prompt questions) • Student Aid Report or College Funding Estimator is due March 15, 2015 at 11:59pm CST. ELIGIBILITY • Be a resident of the state of Nebraska • Graduate from a Nebraska high school or earn a Nebraska GED • Earn at least a 2.5 cumulative unweighted GPA in high school (or 80 on a 100 point scale) • Be a first-time freshman when entering college • Students obtaining dual enrollment credits in high school are still eligible FINANCIAL ELIGIBILITY • Students with an EFC below $15,000 are encouraged to apply for the scholarship • Students do not need to be Pell Grant eligible to qualify • Use the College Funding Estimator to learn more about EFC http://www.educationquest.org/collegefunding-estimator/ RECOMMENDATIONS • Type in Recommendations using on-line tool • Form available through link sent via email • Recommenders can save and come back • A PDF copy of the recommendation will be emailed to recommenders when they submit • Email reminders and confirmations sent to both students and recommenders • 4 specific questions and a place for additional comments • Please speak to the student’s work ethic and leadership skills. • Discuss the student’s understanding of him/herself and how you have seen this play a role in his/her life. • Discuss the student’s motivation, goals, and any challenges they have overcome. • How have you seen this student be active in the community and/or giving back to others? ESSAY/PERSONAL STATEMENT Please compose an essay describing your reasons for wanting to attend college. It is important that your essay addresses all of the questions below throughout the essay. • What are your goals and how will you reach them? • Describe some of your strengths and weaknesses. How have you developed/learned from these? • Describe how you have been a leader and/or were a role model to others in your life (community, school, job, etc.). • How are you involved in giving back to others and/or your community? • Tell us about an obstacle or challenge you have faced. • Tell us about a time you worked hard to achieve something. We expect your essay to run about 700-900 words, but you are welcome to write more if need be. EMAIL COMMUNICATION • Subject: Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation - Application Creation • When students create account • Subject: Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation - Application Submitted • When the student signs the consent to release and submits the application • The email will let the student know if s/he has submitted all required documents, and recommendations have been received • The email will indicate if the student is still missing something due for the first deadline when they submit (i.e. recommendation) EMAIL COMMUNICATION • Subject: Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation - Application Complete • All application materials (including SAR/CFE) have been received. EMAIL/TEXT COMMUNICATION Deadline 1 (February 1) Reminder • Subject: Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation – DEADLINE REMINDER • To remind students who have missing requirements for the first deadline (February 1) • Sent via Email and Text 1/13, 1/20, 1/27, and 1/29 Deadline 2 (March 15) Reminder • Subject: Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation – ACTION REQUIRED • To remind students who are missing the SAR/CFE due March 15 who have already submitted the required materials due at the first deadline • Sent via Email and Text 2/17, 3/2, 3/8, 3/12, and 3/14 EMAIL COMMUNICATION (RECOMMENDATIONS) • Subject: Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation - Recommendation Request • Sent to recommender when student enters a reference in the application area • Also when student requests to “resend request” in application area • Subject: Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation Recommendation Submitted • Sent to student and recommender when a recommendation is submitted EMAIL COMMUNICATION (RECOMMENDATIONS) • Subject: Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation - Recommendation Reminder • Sent to student if they are missing one or more recommendations: 1/15 and 1/27 • Sent to Recommender if they have not yet submitted: 1/15 and 1/27 COMMUNICATION WITH COUNSELORS ABOUT APPLICANTS Deadline 1 (February 1) Communication • An email from EducationQuest during the week of January 12 asking if Guidance Counselors would like a list of students who have started the application Deadline 2 (March 15) Communication • An email from EducationQuest during the week of February 23 asking if Guidance Counselors would like a list of students who submitted by the February 1st deadline COMMUNICATION ABOUT DECISIONS Decision Emails • Email sent to all students who completed the application • Decisions always sent prior to May 1 COMMON ERRORS • Essay prompts are not addressed • Student gives general essay responses, without sharing personal experiences/stories • Incorrect documents uploaded • Eligibility requirements not met (student does not have a 2.5 cumulative GPA) • Students have all application materials complete, but do not officially “submit” after the consent to release • Students ask recommenders who cannot answer the questions • Procrastination (Students and Recommenders) • Forgetting to check the “status” page COMMON QUESTIONS • What is the purpose of the Financial questions in the application when I have to submit the SAR? • If I’m a DACA student do I put in my SS#? How do I let you know I’m DACA? • If I have a 2.49 GPA or an EFC of $15,001, can I apply if I address it in my essay? • How to complete the FAFSA - EducationQuest • Others? A LOOK AT THE APPLICATION STATUS PAGE ADDITIONAL QUESTIONS RECOMMENDATIONS Page where recommenders complete form RECOMMENDATION PDF SENT TO RECOMMENDER This student works….. This student likes to…. This student wants to be….. This student takes the time to….. This student is great! QUESTIONS?