Named scholarships

When it comes to earning a college degree, the greatest obstacle can be funding.

For this reason, The University of Akron is pleased for the opportunity each year to assist talented, deserving students achieve their dreams, thanks to more than 1,300 named scholarships established through the kindness and generosity of thousands of UA alumni and friends, corporations, and foundations.

Scholarships truly are the best way to ensure that today’s students persist to graduation. Scholarships allow students to enroll full time and remain focused on their studies; they also reduce drop-out rates, decrease the stress of student loans, and shorten the road to graduation.

The need for scholarships grows each year, however, as students continue to face an increased financial burden in pursuit of a college degree. In fact, 94 percent of today’s baccalaureate students borrow to pay for college – versus just 45 percent in 1993. Across the country, the average college-related debt for borrowers in the class of 2016 was $37,172; for Ohio students, that figure was $30,239.

If you are interested in making a significant contribution to student success, please consider a gift to the MAKING A DIFFERENCE AND MOVING FORWARD scholarship campaign, which is the University's most important initiative. You may also establish a named scholarship at The University of Akron, which can be created to honor a living person, in memory of a loved one, or to contribute to the growth of an area of study.

To learn more, please contact the Department of Development at 330-972-7238

How do I apply for a scholarship?

This is not the page to apply for scholarships.

Students who want to apply for scholarships should visit the scholarship page on the Financial Aid site.

The Department of Development does not accept applications for or distribute scholarships. Scholarships are distributed through the University’s Office of Student Financial Aid.

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Qiao, Pizhong Outstanding Graduate Student Award Endowment

The Pizhong Qiao Outstanding Graduate Student Award Endowment was established in 2016 by Dr. Pizhong Qiao to recognize University of Akron civil engineering graduate students.

Qiao was assistant/associate professor of civil engineering at UA from 1999 to 2006.  He received both the Outstanding Researcher of the Year Award (2005) and Outstanding Teacher of the Year Award (2006) in the College of Engineering. Qiao also advised 11 M.S. students, six Ph.D. students, and four postdoctoral fellows; among them, five went on to became faculty members in U.S. universities. With the assistance of The University of Akron Research Foundation, he founded Integrated Smart Structures, Inc.

Qiao served as associate professor at Washington State University (WSU) from 2006 until 2008 in the Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering. In 2008, he became a professor in the Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering at WSU.

The Pizhong Qiao Outstanding Graduate Student Award Endowment will be given annually to a graduate student who (1) is currently enrolled in the Department of Civil Engineering and stands out as truly exceptional in academic achievement, teaching, and research, or (2) has completed the graduate study with outstanding thesis/dissertation in the previous calendar year (January to December). The Civil Engineering Department chair and the associate chair for Graduate Programs will select the recipient based on the recommendation of the adviser. Each graduate faculty member may nominate one student whom they consider outstanding. Nomination should be in the form of a faculty member memorandum and should outline the achievements and strengths of the nominee based on the following criteria:

For currently enrolled students:

  • An outstanding academic record (GPA > 3.7)
  • Outstanding efforts and productivity in research
  • Innovations in research (such as development of new methodologies)
  • Teaching effectiveness (if applicable, such as an effective teaching assistant who lectures in the classroom)
  • Excellent communication skills

For graduated students with thesis/dissertation:

  • Outstanding contribution to the corresponding field
  • Innovations in research (such as development of new methodologies)
  • Papers in refereed journals (submitted, accepted or published) or/and presented papers at scientific conferences
  • High-quality thesis/dissertation in terms of writing and presentation

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