Scholarships, financial aid more important than everWritten by Duane Ramsey | | firstname.lastname@example.org
Hillsdale College senior Kyle Murnen isn’t too proud to admit he needed financial assistance to pay for his undergraduate education.
“It’s important to seek financial aid for college when you know you need help paying for it,” he said.
The New York Times recently reported, “The rising cost of college — even before the recession — threatens to put higher education out of reach for most Americans, according to the biennial report from the National Center for Public Policy and Higher Education.”
The report found college tuition and fees increased 439 percent from 1982 to 2007, while median family income rose 147 percent.
Murnen first visited Hillsdale College during spring of his junior year at Central Catholic High School. He liked the college, its campus, curriculum and proximity to this hometown.
Murnen said he was looking for a small liberal arts college close to his home in Toledo. A family friend and local businessman, Cleves Delp of The Delp Company in Maumee, suggested Hillsdale College, where he and his brother Brad had graduated.
After applying, Murnen was invited to attend the Distinct Scholars Weekend. He was awarded a scholarship for half of his tuition at Hillsdale, which doesn’t accept government funding
Murnen worked with Fred Schebor, associate director of admissions at Hillsdale, to obtain the scholarship. Subsequently, Murnen was featured in a scholarship brochure produced for the college.
The Delps helped Murnen again by awarding him a Delp Endowed Heritage Leadership Scholarship, which nearly covered the other half of his tuition. The scholarship was designed to honor their father, who provided his sons with an education at Hillsdale College, according to Cleves.
“It’s a merit scholarship based on leadership skills, and Kyle is as fine an example of the kind of student selected for this scholarship. Brad and I personally know every recipient and their families,” Cleves said.
Murnen said he was grateful for all the financial assistance so he could focus on paying for his room and board. He worked during the summers at a family business, CourtSmiths, owned by his uncles, Mike and Pete Murnen, to pay for the balance of his college costs.
Murnen is scheduled to graduate in May with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English. He plans to work for a few years while deciding whether to attend graduate or law school.
Murnen interviewed for a full-time position at Hillsdale College and applied for teaching jobs at some private schools.
“I want to be sure I’m entering the right program and school, so I plan to work for two years and save to pay for grad or law school,” he said.