This post was updated on April 5 at 4:40 p.m.
Transfer students can now apply to six new scholarships.
Several transfer groups and students in the undergraduate student government collaborated to create two $1,000 and four $500 scholarships that will be awarded week six.
Interested students can pick up applications at the Bruin Resource Center in the Student Activities Center until April 12, according to the UCLA Transfer Student Center, and a copy is available on the BRC Facebook page.
Eligible students must hold a 3.0 minimum GPA, receive financial aid and write an essay about their involvement in the transfer community.
Divya Sharma, the Undergraduate Student Association Council transfer student representative, said his office raised about $1,500 through restaurant fundraisers and worked with the Bruin Resource Center to raise the rest through alumni donations.
“Many within the transfer communities don’t have scholarships (specifically) for them,” Sharma said.
Sharma added the new scholarships are different from existing transfer scholarships because they are student-created and all transfer students can apply.
Jehan Kazi, scholarship director in Sharma’s office, said she thinks senior transfer students have limited options when searching for scholarships since most applications are only open to juniors.
“Transfer students are so limited on time at their undergraduate institution that often they are not afforded the time to take advantage of the scholarship resource center and the various scholarships that may be underclassmen specific,” Kazi said.
Kazi also said she thinks the application prompt asking about students’ involvement within the transfer community will incentivize students to get more involved before applying.
“We wanted to make sure students were giving back to the community in some way,” Sharma said.
Chelsea Gatmaitan, a third-year sociology student, said she thinks having a scholarship specific to transfers is beneficial, but the requirements could still be limiting.
“Many new transfer students suffer “transfer shock,” an initial drop in GPA, that might set them below the minimum GPA requirement and bar them from the scholarship help they might be looking for,” she said.
She added she thinks the involvement requirement sounds too broad.
“If that is defined as being part of some sort of student organization, that could be limiting … because not everyone is able to attend those events if they have work or commute,” Gatmaitan said.
Melody Ames, a third-year Asian American studies student, said she would apply for a scholarship, but she thinks having only six scholarships available might dissuade more people from applying.
Jenny Tran, a third-year economics student, also said she is interested in applying, but is worried she is not heavily involved within the transfer community.
“Personally, I think it’s great to help out transfer students,” Tran said. “Most scholarships are open to anyone and it’s hard to compete with traditional students who’ve been here longer and know the resources.”
Tran added she thinks the new scholarships are helpful especially because many transfer students went to community college and cannot afford a four-year university.
Sharma said his office is trying to create a scholarship committee to sustain these scholarships after he leaves office.