New Southeast Scholarship Program to Benefit 70 Percent of Incoming Freshmen


Student success is valued at Southeast Missouri State University and begins long before the first day of classes. That’s why Southeast has launched a new comprehensive scholarship program effective with the fall 2019 semester offering stackable awards with progressive values and straightforward renewal criteria for incoming students.

The new Copper Dome Scholarship Program is designed with what students, parents, faculty and others said are important, including test optional criteria, superscoring and stackable awards providing the opportunity for Copper Dome and President’s scholarship values to increase every year. It also allows students to keep the need-based aid they receive, including the Federal Pell Grant.

“Preparing students to graduate is our number one goal at Southeast,” said Dr. Debbie Below, vice president for enrollment management and student success. “We want students to begin with the end in mind, knowing they’ve made the right decision to attend Southeast, to learn here, to grow here and to graduate from here. The Copper Dome Scholarship Program sets them on that path.”

Under the new program, an estimated 70 percent of Southeast’s freshman class will be scholarship eligible, Below said. In addition, awards will increase each year, keeping pace with the cost of attendance, she said. Southeast tuition and fees for Missouri undergraduates have increased just 7.8 percent over the past five years. She also emphasized the scholarship program will allow students to combine the Copper Dome and President’s scholarships with endowed scholarships and need-based financial aid.

“We recognize that nearly 50 percent of all new students qualify for the Federal Pell Grant and/or the Access Missouri need-based grant,” Below said. “Our new program was designed to add Southeast scholarships to the grants they receive to reduce their financial burden and cumulative student debt.”

We want to invest in our students, she said. The new scholarship program, and the associated renewal requirements, are intended to support the goal of retaining at least 80 percent of first-time, full-time students and of graduating at least 60 percent of the Southeast student population.

The Copper Dome Scholarship Program replaces the current academic scholarship program, however all awards made to students enrolling for the fall 2018 semester will be honored.

Southeast will continue to offer a scholarship to qualified non-Missouri residents valued at the difference between in-state and out-of-state fees. This scholarship, previously known as the Midwest Achievement Award, has been renamed the Redhawks Achievement Award. Qualified international students receive a scholarship of the same value known as the International Student Achievement Award.

The Copper Dome Scholarship Program is available to new students enrolling in fall 2019 and beyond. For more information on this program, visit

Future college students are encouraged to schedule a personal campus visit at

Southeast is now accepting applications for the fall 2019 semester. Prospective students are encouraged to take advantage of The Common Application and benefits of the University’s new Copper Dome Scholarship Program. Students should apply at to meet the Dec. 1 scholarship guarantee deadline.

For more information on becoming a Redhawk at Southeast Missouri State University, contact the Office of Admissions at (573) 651-2590 or