Date of this Version
Published in Journal of the National Collegiate Honors Council, Spring/Summer 2017, Volume 18. Number 1.
The past two decades have seen a rapid professionalization of national scholarship advising at colleges and universities. Concurrently, the number of national scholarships has increased from the few that everybody recognized— the Rhodes, Marshall, Truman, Goldwater, and Fulbright—to hundreds that target different kinds of potential applicants. While scholarship advising used to be a volunteer activity performed by a few faculty members working with a small number of students, it is now usually a distinct administrative and structural unit with its own staff, often positioned within an honors college or program and in any case working in close collaboration with honors administrators and faculty. Identifying, recruiting, coaching, and coddling scholarship applicants is now a career track eyed closely by presidents and provosts eager for “wins”—perhaps not as coveted as wins in football or basketball but providing significant status and visibility that enhance the institution’s reputation.