Clemson University’s Office of College Preparation and Outreach in the  Division of Inclusion and Equity announced up to $10,000 scholarships for in-state students and up to $21,000 in out-of-state tuition waivers for students who complete the Snelsire, Sawyer, & Robinson Clemson Career Workshop (CCW). This is the first time these scholarships have been offered. Students who go through the CCW program and enroll at Clemson are eligible. These scholarships will be awarded in addition to state merit scholarships, need-based grants and other private scholarship funds that can be used to offset other fees associated with the total cost of attendance.

A large group of African American students pose on the steps of Sikes Hall“The CCW’s ability to attract talented underrepresented students to Clemson is further strengthened through the addition of scholarships,” said chair of the CCW advisory board Aubrey Harrell, a 1989 Clemson graduate who participated in the CCW from 1983-84. “This further solidifies the workshop as the premier recruiting program Clemson offers. The addition of the scholarships is clear evidence of the University’s continued commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion as outlined in the Clemson Forward Plan.”

The CCW is one of the longest-running diversity-related programs at Clemson University. From its early inception as the Engineering Workshop in 1977 to its expansion in 1983 as the Clemson Career Workshop, the mission was to identify talented underrepresented students and introduce them to the Clemson experience through a summer residential program. The program’s goals are to increase the number of underrepresented students at Clemson and increase the number interested and majoring in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). It targets high-achieving students primarily from South Carolina and neighboring states and brings them to visit the campus each summer.

A group of people hold a large prop check for $250,000Established in 2018, the CCW advisory board consists of Clemson alumni and graduates of the program. The board promotes the advancement of CCW by providing committed financial, intellectual and professional resources to maximize the impact of CCW and the student experience. The board consists of three standing committees: Fundraising and Development, Recruiting and Marketing and Programming and Strategy. In 2019, the board committed to raising $250,000 to establish an endowment to support the program in perpetuity and has collected $190,000 toward this goal.

CCW board member and Clemson alumna Myra Foster, who earned bachelor and Master of Science in microbiology degrees in 1988 and 1990, respectively, said students have many choices when it comes to higher education and she hopes the new CCW scholarships will help entice more underrepresented students to make the life-changing decision to become Tigers.

“With the pipeline of students participating in the CCW and the new CCW scholarships, Clemson has the opportunity to directly influence their decision-making process,” said Foster. “With the Clemson Forward plan and a strategy for increasing the number of underrepresented students at our University, the CCW scholarships can help lower the threshold of financial accountability and position the University as an institution genuinely committed to taking action to deliver on that strategic vision. It is my hope such scholarships will grow and remain an integral part of the CCW and the University’s commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion.”

Two female students sit at a table, laughingThe CCW experience consists of students learning about Clemson University through academics, experiential learning and student life. It also focuses on college preparation tools that equip students to navigate their senior years as they prepare and transition to college.

The CCW program is similar to other diversity recruitment programs at Clemson, such as Emerging Scholars, Call Me Mister and Tiger Alliance, in providing underrepresented students with tools to help them apply and prepare for any college. What sets CCW apart is it aims for its participants to apply specifically to Clemson.

Amber Lange, executive director of the Office of College Preparation and Outreach, said the scholarships will be instrumental in making one of Clemson’s most vital programs even more impactful.

“The Clemson Career Workshop has a long history of exposing underrepresented students to higher education,” she said. “I am excited to help lead the growth and continued impact of the program so we can reach even more students.”