Students voluntarily yield scholarships to classmates in need through honorary scholarship program
Students voluntarily yield scholarships to classmates in need through honorary scholarship program
  • Moon, Bo-ra
  • 승인 2013.03.14 20:17
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Before the honorary scholarship program was provided, students receiving double scholarships had to give up one scholarship. With the program, students can now donate their scholarships for other students in need. Illustration  by Jeong Hyun-joo.

As an increasing number of students wishes to donate their scholarships to other students who need more financial assistance, universities have introduced a policy known as honorary scholarship program. 
Honorary scholarship program allows students who receive additional scholarships, such as one for outstanding academic performance, to give the financial assistance to other students in need. Most of the students who apply for the program donate the scholarship because they have the means to pay for their tuition such as grants from outside institutions.
Before the honorary scholarship program had been introduced, the scholarships students gave up were turned in back to the school, losing its original purpose. Instead, with the honorary scholarship program, the scholarships students give up go to other students who have hardships in paying their tuition.
Students welcome such program, in that the scholarship donated is transferred directly to the students who are in need of additional funding, reducing their financial burden to pay tuition.
For example, Konkuk University established Honorary Scholarship in 2011 in order to transfer Step-Up Scholarship, which is given to students with great improvement in GPA (Grade Point Average) to other students. Step-Up Scholarship recipients, who wish to donate the scholarship to other students with difficulty in affording tuition, were to apply for Honorary Scholarship, however no student applied until the fall semester of 2012.
After a year since the program was introduced, the first applicant of Honorary Scholarship, Yang Sook-hee (Konkuk University, 3), donated her 500,000 won Step-Up Scholarship to a fellow student.
“I have always thought of helping other students who feel a greater burden to pay tuition than I do,” Yang said. “Because I have been able to afford the tuition, I decided not to receive the scholarship, but instead, give the opportunity to someone who really needs it.”
Korea University also have established an honorary scholarship program in 2011.
In Korea University, nine students in 2011 and 24 students in 2012 applied for donating their scholarships to other students.
While some universities have officially introduced the honorary scholarship program to promote students to donate their scholarships, most of the other universities do not have such program yet. However, there are students who voluntarily give up their scholarships to give other students the support.
For example, at Sungkyunkwan University, a few students have contacted the school to donate their scholarships to other students.
Also, similar case was seen at Ewha this semester. One Ewha student personally contacted the school if she could give her scholarship to another student, as she was already receiving a grant from outside.
About such system and cases where students voluntarily give up their scholarships and leave them for others, professor Park Tong-hee (Public Administration) comments that it is a start for a new donation trend.
“It is more desirable to assist students who cannot pay for the education than to reward those who can for their high GPAs, as seen in western countries already,” professor Park said. “Thus, such trend seems to be a positive change.”

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