Jan McBarron Shares How Scholarships Can Help Students Beyond Financial Means
Student debt has become a growing national concern, ballooning to over $1.5 trillion, which puts it ahead of credit card debt ($870 billion, 2018) and auto loan debt ($1.22 trillion, 2017) as the second-largest form of household debt after mortgage debt ($8.94 trillion, 2018). The culprit behind the increasing student debt is soaring tuition fees, which have outpaced wage growth at a rate of 8-to-1 over the past three decades.
Scholarships, such as the one for students in the health field that was recently launched by Dr. Jan McBarron, help lessen the intense financial burden that is making medical degrees in particular less attractive to students, who are now forced to weigh their future debt load against their desire to become a highly prized member of society.
Benefits of Scholarships
Jan McBarron, who for twenty years co-hosted the Duke and The Doctor health talk radio show, says that scholarships go beyond the financial salvation that they offer. One of their greatest benefits is not the direct financial aid, but that a scholarship removes financial concerns from the decision-making process so that students are not only getting a more affordable education, but one in the field or specialty they really desire.
Dr. McBarron — who worked her way through pre-med and medical school on her path to eventually becoming a doctor — says another huge benefit of scholarships is that they allow students to forgo having to work, allowing them to focus completely on their schooling.
Without side jobs taking their energy and potentially cutting short their sleep, students will be far more capable in the classroom and able to retain more of the important knowledge that is imparted on them daily; knowledge which could eventually be used to save lives.
By virtue of having a less demanding schedule and achieving better grades, scholarships also greatly improve the odds that students won’t drop out at some point, instead continuing to graduate school and taking the final steps towards their looming dream career.
Even smaller scholarships, which may not seem to be life-changing in and of themselves, can serve as a prized steppingstone to achieving bigger and more prestigious ones, being powerful additions to future applications.
Scholarships Provide Benefits Long After Graduation
Scholarships continue to reward their deserving recipients long after graduation day. Jan McBarron of Duke and The Doctor says that given how hotly contested and merit-based such scholarships are, having one on your resume is a huge positive in the eyes of employers, who can be sure you displayed tremendous knowledge and aptitude to have received it.
Some scholarships, especially those awarded by corporations, may come with additional benefits that go beyond financial aid as well. Some may help students with internship opportunities or other educational opportunities such as skill training courses. Some may also help students in their job search efforts while they’re still in school or after their degree has been obtained, either by inviting them to job fairs or talks, or even by employing them directly themselves.
Jan McBarron’s Final Thoughts
With college and university tuitions skyrocketing, scholarships are more vital than ever to help push brilliant students into important fields like medicine and improve their odds of success once there. Beyond the financial security for students, a scholarship can lead to greater focus on academics, a potential for secondary benefits such as internships, and an excellent addition to a resume.