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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Newkome, Dr. George R. and Dr. Mary Jane Saunders Endowed Scholarship

The Dr. George R. Newkome and Dr. Mary Jane Saunders Endowed Scholarship was established in 2004 by George R. Newkome and Mary Jane Saunders. These two individuals are celebrating a lifelong commitment to the field of education and the students' lives they helped change over the past 40 years.

Dr. George R. Newkome is an educational entrepreneur, willing to take a chance on the potential of people. He graduated from St. Vincent-St. Mary High School in Akron, Ohio. Following high school, Dr. Newkome went on to pursue a very ambitious career in higher education, including degrees and appointments at the following institutions:

  • B.S. 1961, Ph.D. 1966 - Kent State University
  • Postdoctoral fellow 1966-68 - Princeton University,
  • Assistant professor of chemistry 1968-72, associate professor of chemistry 1972-78, professor of chemistry 1978-86 - Louisiana State University
  • Professor of chemistry 1986-2001, distinguished research professor 1992-2001 - University of South Florida.

Dr. Newkome's served in several roles at The University of Akron, including:

  • interim dean, College of Polymer Science and Polymer Engineering,
  • vice president for research, and 
  • dean of the Graduate School.

He was also a professor of chemistry and polymer science, an Intellectual Property Center Fellow and was the James and Vanita Oelschlager Professor of Science and Technology.

Dr. Mary Jane Saunders served as president at Florida Atlantic University and as provost at Cleveland State University. She also has a long and distinguished career in education, including degrees and appointments at:

  • B.A. 1972 - Boston University
  • M.S. 1980, Ph.D. 1982 - University of Massachusetts
  • Postdoctoral fellow 1982-83 - University of Georgia
  • Assistant professor 1983-86 - Louisiana State University
  • Assistant, associate professor 1986-2003 - University of South Florida

As interim dean and director of the Biomedical and Health Institute, Dr. Saunders enhanced and integrated the areas of biomedical and health sciences at Cleveland State University, with the aims of promoting research and education, addressing critical biomedical and health issues, and fostering regional economic development.

The purpose of the scholarship is to make an award to a deserving student. First preference will be given to a graduate from St. Vincent-St. Mary High School in Akron, Ohio. The award will be based on merit and financial need.

Both Dr. Newkome and Dr. Saunders have strong convictions to the field of education. For such devotion, The University of Akron is grateful and proud they have established this scholarship.

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