For students pursuing careers in business events, undergraduate courses can by costly. According to The College Board, the cost to attend institutions of higher education in the U.S. has steeply risen: a 10-year, $7,220 increase per year at private colleges and a 10-year, $2,690 increase per year at public institutions. As the cost to continue learning continues to rise, the PCMA Education Foundation is revamping its scholarship program to offer more assistance to the next generation of event leaders.
“We wanted to acknowledge the realities of today’s academic environment by increasing our financial commitment and providing year-round support for students,” said Stacey Shafer, senior director of operations at the PCMA Education Foundation. “Our past program included either scholarships that were solely tuition or solely event-based in a more transactional approach. This program was developed in an effort to provide more financial assistance and to create additional learning opportunities.”
After the Foundation Board of Trustees evaluated the full slate of scholarship offerings, they made a bold change. In 2018, the average value of a scholarship will be $6,000 — a $4,000- increase from past averages. “It’s a more well-rounded program,” Shafer said. “We are really excited to engage with a new class of creative, forward-thinking students who will shape the future of the industry.”
The engagement factor played an important role in shaping the new opportunities. Shafer said that the new program aims to provide a “complete experience” instead of registration to a PCMA program. The experience includes 12 months of access to PCMA’s Premium Content Subscription, a subscription to PCMA’s Business Events Bootcamp, along with registration and travel expenses for PCMA’s Convening Leaders and Education Conference.
“We wanted to keep in touch with these students throughout the entire school year and become an integral part of their academic experience,” Shafer said. “We wanted to commit more to them.”