30 Pres scholars chosen

While many Saint Louis University students are filling out their financial aid forms and still searching for additional scholarships and grants, 30 incoming freshmen have been selected to receive the Presidential Scholarship, which covers the entire cost of tuition.

These 30 students, as well as those on a waiting list, were selected out of the 100 qualifiers who attended the Presidential Scholars weekend, Feb. 22 and 23. The 100 students were chosen out of a pool of about 500 who met the minimum requirements, such as a score of 30 on the ACT and a 3.85 GPA, said Kristen Frazier, financial aid specialist.

During that weekend, students met with current Presidential Scholars for lunch at Rossino’s, (sat in on classes on Friday and went through interviews on Saturday and ate a lunch in the St. Francis Xavier College Church Ballroom.

The interview process included an interview team made up of member of the alumni, a faculty member and a current Presidential Scholar, said Todd Burrell, associate director of Undergraduate Admissions. After the interviews, the team worked with the admissions staff and the Presidential Scholars committee to determine which students would be selected, Burrell said.

The winners were notified two weeks after the weekend. Many have already confirmed they are attending SLU, Frazier said. However, they have until May 1 to make a decision.

“It would be unusual if we didn’t have some turn it down,” Frazier said.

Often the winners also get accepted to their first choice schools such as Harvard or Yale, Burrell said, which is why a waiting list is created. However, there are many students who choose SLU over other top schools.

“We’ve had students turn down schools such as Northwestern and Vanderbilt to come here,” Burrell said. “The reputation of SLU and the caliber of the students have definitely grown since I started here in 1996.”

The weekend was mostly paid for by the University, including travel stipends for those who had to travel more than 150 miles to get here.

The potential Presidential Scholars stayed at the Chase Park Plaza Hotel at their own expense, although the University got a good rate because the hotel wanted to help out with the weekend, Frazier said.