$15M scholarship plan at Delta State

By The Associated Press

CLEVELAND — Delta State University has launched a $15 million scholarship initiative.

The Bolivar Commercial reports that the scholarship initiative will take place between now and 2015.

As of Monday, the university had already raised $7.8 million for scholarships.

Delta State President Dr. John said years ago when a student wanted an education, “they only borrowed when they had a little bit at the end and generally they didn’t have a huge loan debt.

“Over the last 35 years, we’ve seen a gradual or not so gradual change in how they fund their college experiences,” he said, adding that government funding for education is becoming more difficult.

“Just in this last two year cycle we’ve seen the end of Pell Grants for summer study and the amount reduced so not many families qualify for the maximum of Pell Grants.”

Hilpert also said students are choosing careers on the amount of debt they may be incurring which oftentimes leaves out the helping professions, like teaching and social work, because the pay is low.

“These are just the kind of professions that are so important in the Mississippi Delta.

“So for the sake of our students and for the sake of our communities and our school districts and the people of the Mississippi Delta that we serve. We are going to focus our attention over the next couple of months raising scholarship dollars,” he said.

Hilpert will be retiring in December and the state College Board is currently interviewing for the position.