New remote learning scholarship offered for graduate students

­­Distance education students, who are seeking a master’s degree from the Dwight Look College of Engineering at Texas A&M University, have the opportunity to save up to $4,500 a year on tuition with a new scholarship opportunity. The competitive scholarship is awarded by the university and can help offset the cost of distance education.

Amber Muenzenberger, director of remote learning and outreach education, said the scholarship rewards students who are excelling in their online graduate studies.  This fall, 49 students in distance education programs were offered the scholarship.

“The majority of distance education students have already begun their careers and are working toward career and educational advancement,” Muenzenberger said. “While many students are sponsored by their employers, some are not.”

Trey Steinmann, who is pursuing a master’s degree in industrial distribution, works as a territory manager for a baring manufacturer.

“I started my masters fall of this year,” he said. “I hope to achieve an upper management role with my degree.”

Steinmann lives in Houston and travels for his job, making remote learning the best option for him.

“With industrial distribution, Texas A&M is the best in the nation,” he said, adding that he was pleasantly surprised to learn that the college offers a scholarship for remote learning. “It helped me out. That’s less loans I have to take to get my graduate degree for industrial distribution.”

Steinmann’s employer reimburses him for a portion of his tuition, he said, but the scholarship will assist him by lowering the amount of student loans he has to pay back once he graduates.

Bharani Nagarathnam, associate director of engineering technology and industrial distribution graduate programs, said a significant number of remote learning students pay their own way.

“Any scholarships greatly help them pay for the cost of higher education,” he said.

To qualify, students must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by July 15, 2016 for the fall, 2016 semester. Those who completed the FAFSA by Oct. 15 this year, may qualify for the spring 2016 semester. There are no essays or separate applications aside from the FAFSA. The scholarships are awarded by the Office of Student Financial Aid and Scholarships and are based on unmet need. The maximum one student can receive in a year is $4,500 — $1,500 per semester.  Students must maintain a 3.0 GPA, and take six credit hours each semester. 

The Look College currently has nine master’s degrees offered via remote learning, which are approved by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. For more information on these scholarships and distance education programs, visit /distance or contact Amber Muenzenberger at atmberger@tamu.edu.