WGU Announces New Scholarship Program

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WGU Indiana has announced a new scholarship program for bachelors or masters students who are 40 or older. The school plans to award 10 scholarships of $2,000 each. The annual tuition maximum at the state's online university is $6,000. October 22, 2013

News Release

INDIANAPOLIS (October 17, 2013) – WGU Indiana has created a scholarship in honor of alumnus Connie Bickel who turned a bad situation into a positive one by returning to college for a second bachelor’s degree. The $20,000 in Future of You Scholarships will help other WGU Indiana students over 40, like Connie, achieve their education goals.

With 45 years of nursing experience and a bachelor of science in health arts, Connie Bickel was well into her career, working as a home care manager at IU Health Goshen Home Care and Hospice. But when the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) mandated that nursing managers working at designated Magnet hospitals – including IU Health Goshen – must hold a bachelor of science in nursing, Connie found herself at a crossroads. Not ready to slow down or change career paths, she decided to go back to school. Connie enrolled in WGU Indiana, hit the books, and completed her BSN in only 13 months.

“When Connie greeted me after commencement last weekend, she said, ‘Thanks for giving me a chance.’ This new scholarship opportunity is a direct result of Connie’s enthusiasm and determination to achieve her education goals. We are thrilled to honor her in this way,” WGU Indiana Chancellor Allison Barber said.

WGU Indiana will award 10 scholarships in the amount of $2,000 each ($500 per term for four terms) to bachelors or masters students 40 years or older. The scholarship amount is especially significant relative to the university’s $6,000-per-year tuition maximum. WGU Indiana has not raised its tuition rate during its four years of existence as a state university.

“I am humbled that WGU Indiana heard my story and has developed a scholarship program in my honor,” said Bickel. “I never thought I would be going back to school at that point in my life. But I love my job at IU Health Goshen and wasn’t ready to give that up. WGU Indiana was the perfect solution, providing the flexibility I needed as a full-time employee, along with mentors and professors that were extremely responsive and knowledgeable.”

“It is important for working adults to have encouragement and support to go further in life through education. These scholarships help provide this support, and we look forward to more success stories like Connie’s in the future,” Barber said.

To be eligible, applicants must be over the age of 40, have some college credit, apply as new students to WGU Indiana, and pursue a bachelor’s or master’s degree in Business, IT, Education or Nursing. The deadline to apply is December 31, 2013.

To learn more about all of WGU Indiana’s degree programs, visit indiana.wgu.edu. For more on the Future of You Scholarships, visit indiana.wgu.edu/tuition_financial_aid/scholarships/future_of_you_overview.

About WGU Indiana

WGU Indiana is the state’s nonprofit, online university established by the State of Indiana to expand access to higher education for Indiana residents. Using a competency-based model that allows students to proceed at their own pace and curriculum developed with input from leading employers, WGU Indiana offers more than 50 undergraduate and graduate degree programs in Business, Education, Information Technology and Healthcare Professions, including Nursing. In 2012, the Indiana Commission for Higher Education recognized WGU Indiana in its Reaching Higher, Achieving More agenda for its excellence in academic quality. The university was also recognized as one of Fast Company’s 50 Most Innovative Companies of 2013.Source: WGU Indiana