As of 2022, Taylor has raised $3.2 million of annual and endowed scholarships, but they have strong hopes to reach $3.55 million by the end of the fiscal year.
“Because ultimately, God owns everything,” said Michael Mortensen, director of scholarships. “We’re just stewards of the resources that he has given us.”
Taylor University offers between 600-650 different scholarships, with three main types of scholarships.
Annual scholarships normally contain a set amount of money, but a minimum of $1,000 is put into a scholarship per year.
There are requirements a student must fulfill to receive a said scholarship, and after the student gets approved by the financial aid office and the faculty then the student will receive the money.
Then there are endowed scholarships. Endowed scholarships come from a pool of money that is gifted to the university through a variety of generous donors. Taylor generally awards 5% of what is in each endowment.
“Some of those scholarships go to a specific academic area,” Mortensen said. “Some go to the admissions for recruitment, some go to Student Development for leadership and some go to athletics.”
Endowed scholarships help so many students and without them, a lot of students would be unable to attend Taylor.
“An endowed scholarship is often the difference between a student being able to say yes to Taylor or not,” said Holly Whitby, vice president of enrollment and marketing.
Oftentimes, donor-gifted scholarships are the last bit that a student will need to be able to afford tuition.
“Scholarships awarded through donor gifts fill the gap for many students who have exhausted other funding options,” said Provost Jewrell Maxwell. “This includes times when students have family members who have lost income due to sickness or job elimination.”
Thirdly, there are merit scholarships that students receive when they earn and maintain a certain academic requirement.
Merit scholarships come from the Taylor budget and the Taylor Fund.
“If it weren't for the Taylor Fund the average student would pay $1,750 just this year more than if we didn't have the Taylor Fund,” Mortensen said.
Taylor University has averaged $2,588,859 per year in annual and endowed scholarship giving over the last five years, according to Mortensen.
This is a significant increase from the five years prior when they averaged $1,628,120 per year. It was just a five-year gap between 2015, when they received the lowest total amount of $1,403,591, to 2020, when they received the most of $3,539,787. In 2021, $2,026,233 were raised in total between annual and endowed scholarships.
This year, Taylor has more money than they did the last fiscal year, so things are looking up.
“Based on the gifts we expect between now and May 31, I hope and pray we can hit or surpass $3.55 million by the end of our fiscal year,” Mortensen said.
Taylor offers many scholarships; some departments have more scholarships than others.
With that being said, the top five academic departments on campus with the greatest number of scholarships to award are education, music, theatre and dance, biblical studies, communication and business.
“We are grateful for how God is providing for multiple areas,” Mortensen said. “We have much to give thanks.”