Help and Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
The Discus Awards nomination process is designed to be user-friendly and fun for students nominating themselves and parents, teachers, and counselors nominating someone they know. If you are having technical difficulties creating a nomination, you might find handy facts and information below in the Frequently Asked Questions below.
Most importantly, the Discus Awards would love to hear your comments, questions, critiques, and praise for the site and the program. Don't hesitate to contact us today for quick answers to questions large and small.
About the Awards
- What are the Discus Awards?
- Why is it called the "Discus Awards"?
- Are any attributes more important than others?
- Do I need to have good grades to win Discus Awards recognition?
- If someone in my school earns recognition, will it be harder for me to be recognized?
- How old do I have to be to be nominated for the Discus Awards program?
- Do I have to be in high school to earn Discus Awards recognition?
- Can my parent or guardian or sister/brother nominate me?
- Can I keep my nomination and Finalist profile private?
- Will keeping my profile private hurt my chances of earning recognition?
- How do I decide what attributes to focus on?
- How do I write a good Discus Awards blurb?
- Can you give a few more specific tips on how to write a great Discus blurb?
- Do photos and videos help my nomination?
- I'm having trouble uploading an image? What should I do?
- How will my reference(s) be used?
- Why am I asked to provide information about a parent or legal guardian?
- Why am I asked to provide information about my guidance counselor?
- Can I save my progress on my nomination and submit at a later date?
- Is there anything I need to do after submitting my nomination?
- Can I edit my nomination after it has been submitted?
- Do I need to be a US Citizen to apply?
About Judging the Awards
- How long does judging take?
- Who judges the Discus Awards nominations?
- How are they judged?
- How many nominees earn recognition?
What Does it Mean to Earn Discus Awards Recognition?
- How will I know if I win?
- What do I get for being named a Discus Awards Finalist?
- What do I get for being named an Honorable Mention Candidate?
- Can I notify college admissions offices about my Discus Awards recognition?
- Some Discus Awards Finalists are mentioned in the press, will I be?
- What is the difference between a Discus Award Finalist and an Honorable Mention Candidate?
- What is the difference between a recognition recipient and a scholarship winner?
What if I didn't earn Discus Awards recognition
About the Scholarships
- How many scholarships will be awarded through the Discus Awards?
- What scholarships are awarded through the Discus Awards?
- Who funds the scholarships awarded through the Discus Awards?
- When are scholarship winners announced?
- Who judges the scholarships?
- What are the deadlines to enter?
- What is the National All-Around Student Scholarship?
- Who is eligible to win a National All-Around Student Scholarship?
- Where are the National All-Around Student Scholarship winners announced?
- How is the National All-Around Student Scholarship awarded and paid?
- When am I considered for a scholarship?
- Am I eligible for additional financial aid?
- What information do I need to provide to receive my scholarship?
About Network Scholarships
- How do I redeem my network scholarships?
- What deadlines do I need to be aware of?
- The SAGE Scholars website has different deadlines than the Discus Awards website. Which deadlines are correct?
- What if I receive a network scholarship, but do not attend a school within the Discus Network?
- Does receiving a network scholarship guarantee my admission into a Discus Network college?
- Can I still apply for financial aid?
- What if I receive a merit scholarship? How will this affect my network scholarship?
- Are network scholarships applicable to fees, room, board, books, etc?
- Can I ever "cash out" my network scholarships?
- Where can I find additional information about Network Scholarships?
About your Finalist Profile
- Can I edit my Finalist profile?
- Can I alter the privacy settings for my Finalist profile?
- Can I share my Finalist profile on Facebook?
- What if I can't see my profile in the Finalist Gallery?
About the Transition to the 2012-2013 Discus Awards Program
- If I won 2011-2012 Discus Awards recognition, do I have to apply again?
- Do I have to use the same email address I used to apply for the Discus Awards previously?
- If I was a senior in high school last year, can I apply for Discus Awards recognition again?
- If I applied for the 2011-2012 Discus Awards program and did not earn recognition, can I apply again?
- When is the deadline to apply for the 2012-2013 Discus Awards program?
About the Awards
What are the Discus Awards?
The Discus Awards (www.DiscusAwards.com) is the only national recognition program honoring active and engaged high school students who excel in and out of school. Looking beyond just grades, test scores, and win-loss records, the Discus Awards recognizes students for achievement in at least three areas, from community service and work to faith and the arts. Discus Awards recognition recipients are selected by a panel of teachers, counselors, and other education professionals, and each recognition recipient is considered for college scholarships offered through the program by our generous partners, including ten $2,000 National All-Around Student Scholarships.
The Discus Awards is owned and operated by Scholarship Strategies, a Delaware LLC that provides college-bound students and their families access to a unique portfolio of scholarships to help reduce the financial burden of college education.
Why is it called the "Discus Awards"?
When we were searching for a name for the awards, we kept returning to the idea of the Decathlon, the athletic event that recognizes the all-around athlete. We thought that made for a wonderful metaphor in general for the all-around student. We considered the "javelin" and "shot-put" as options, but arrived at the "Discus Awards" because even the shape of the Discus (all-around as it is) exemplified the essence of the awards.
Are any attributes more important than others?
All ten attributes have equal weight to the Discus Awards judges. When you're making choices about which attributes to focus on, consider the areas in which you've excelled the most, combined with an effort to show real diversity in focus, skills and talent.
For example, if you're an excellent soccer player, it's best not to refer to soccer in all three categories. Show us your breadth and your depth!
Do I need to have good grades to win Discus Awards recognition?
While other scholarships may focus entirely on grades and test scores, Academics is only one area of focus for the Discus Awards. If academics is not your focus, but you've shown excellence in three other areas, you will be a good candidate for Discus Awards recognition.
If someone in my school earns recognition, will it be harder for me to be recognized?
The Discus Awards is a "standard of excellence" recognition program. That means that there is no cap on the number of students who can earn recognition in any one school, town, city or state. Each nomination is scored on its own merits through a rigorous set of criteria, and you will be judged on your own merits.
How old do I have to be to be nominated for the Discus Awards program?
You must be at least 13 years old to use the Discus Awards website. In order to be considered for a Discus Award, you must be in 9th, 10th, 11th, or 12th grade in a U.S. high school or comparable home school program.
Do I have to be in high school to earn Discus Awards recognition?
Yes, you must be in 9th, 10th, 11th, or 12th grade in high school or a comparable home school program to be eligible for Discus Awards recognition.
Can my parent or guardian or sister/brother nominate me?
Yes. A parent, guardian, teacher, counselor, boss, friend, sibling, or other personal connection can nominate you for Discus Awards recognition, and you can nominate someone else. However, the nominated student will be asked by email to complete his or her nomination and confirm his or her wish to be included in the judging process. The nominee must complete the application process to be considered for Discus Awards recognition.
Can I keep my nomination and Finalist profile private?
Yes. Nominations are private to the Discus Awards judging panel, and most personally identifiable information is not shared with judges. During the nomination process, you will be asked whether you would like your profile to be public in the event you are named a Discus Awards Finalist. You can elect to keep it private at this time or you can change it in the future. You may change this privacy setting anytime you wish by logging into your Discus Awards account using your email address and password.
Will keeping my profile private hurt my chances of earning recognition?
Not at all. Judges do not consider your privacy settings in awarding Discus Awards recognition or college scholarships.
How do I decide what attributes to focus on?
All Discus attributes are weighted the same way by the judges. You should pick the three attributes that you feel you have made the most important contributions in both inside and outside of school. Show diversity in your interests and breadth of passion. After all, this is an award for the all-around high school student.
How do I write a good Discus Awards blurb?
Every Discus Awards nomination is reviewed by a panel of educators, and only all-around students who demonstrate significant achievements in three key attributes are honored. To make your accomplishments stand out, consider the following tips.
Be specific about your accomplishments in a particular category. Think “As the president of my school’s banjo enthusiasts club, I organized a hoedown for chartiy” rather than “I play the banjo.”
Show our judges your accomplishments in action with photos and videos. Here is an example of an all-around student who makes great use of images and videos: http://www.discusawards.com/winner.php?id=74834
Highlight your unique contributions, qualities, abilities and accomplishments. Focus on achievements that separate you from the pack. Take a look at this standout student: http://www.discusawards.com/winner.php?id=59971
Take some time to write blurbs that use complete sentences, and review your blurbs for correct grammar and spelling. Our judges are educators, and you only have a few sentences to make a great impression. Take a look at some Finalists who wrote great descriptions of their achievements: http://www.discusawards.com/winner.php?id=53983 and http://www.discusawards.com/winner.php?id=61399
Can you give a few more specific tips on how to write a great Discus blurb?
Here are some tips for writing an outstanding blurb:
- Be specific. We want to know exactly what you have accomplished in each of your attributes.
Do: Academics: I have been an honor roll student every year since eighth grade. I am currently taking 3 AP classes and 2 honors classes. I scored a 2240 on my SAT, and I received a National Merit Award for my outstanding score on the PSAT.
Don't: Academics: I work really hard in school. I am always the first one to participate in class, and I always do all of my homework.
- Remember, we're looking for all-around students. The more examples you have, the better your application.
Do: Athletics: For the past two years I have run in the Boston Marathon with a couple of my teammates on my high school's cross-country team. Last year I rode in the "Harbor to the Bay" charity bike ride from Boston to Provincetown. Later this year I will participate in a biathlon.
Do: Community Service: I have been helping out at my local soup kitchen The Helping Hand since I was eight years old. For the past three years I have volunteered at the Hampstead Boys & Girls Club, coaching a basketball team of eight to ten year olds.
Don't: Athletics: I have been playing basketball since I was seven years old. For the past three years I have coached a basketball team at the local Boys & Girls Club.
Don't: Community Service: For the last three years I have volunteered at the Boys & Girls Club, coaching a basketball team of eight through ten year olds.
- Spelling and grammar count. You will be judged not only on the content of your nomination, but also the presentation. That includes adding pictures and videos!
Do: Arts: I am passionate about musical composition and performance. I have been playing the piano since I was four years old, and I have played in my school's jazz band for the past four years. I was a guest soloist for the Boston Classical Orchestra, and the last piece we played was an original that I co-composed.
Don't: Arts: I am pasionate about musical compositin and performing. I play piano since I was four, and I played in jazz band for my high school last year, the year before, in 2007 and in 2006. I soloed for the BCO. the last PiEcE I pplayed was one I rote wit sumone else.
Do photos and videos help my nomination?
We all know the old saying about photos being worth 1,000 words. Videos are even more instructive. Judges do consider the inclusion of photos and the embedding of video links in applications. Tying photos or videos to your specific attributes or blurbs is even better.
Here is an example of a winner's profile that makes great use of images and videos: http://www.discusawards.com/winner.php?id=41581
I'm having trouble uploading an image. What should I do?
To upload images to your nomination or winner's profile, please be sure that the picture is saved as a .jpg, .png, or .gif.
If you are still having trouble, try reducing the picture size. We cannot accept files greater than 8 MB or 2800 pixels wide.
To reduce the size of your images, you may use a free software program such as Google Picasa. This page has simple instructions on how to resize your photos using Google Picasa. Sometimes, the actual size of a photo may not be accurately represented in the Properties of the image file. Resizing the photo in Google Picasa may fix this problem and ensure that the file size is not the issue.
If you're still having problems, please email us at info<at>
How will my reference(s) be used?
Your nomination must include at least one reference (other than yourself). Discus Awards reviews the information provided by your reference(s) if you are selected by our judges for Discus Awards recognition, so you are encouraged to carefully consider the individual(s) you list on your nomination. As a personal courtesy, you should advise these individuals they have been listed as a reference and may be contacted via email by Discus Awards. For this reason, providing us with an accurate email address for these contacts is very important.
Please note that Discus Awards Finalists without at least one confirmed reference from a third party are ineligible for scholarship consideration.
Why am I asked to provide information about a parent or legal guardian?
Earning Discus Awards recognition is a noteworthy achievement and if you are selected as a recognition recipient, we want to make sure you’re recognized not only by the Discus Awards judges, but also by your loved ones!
In addition, SAGE Scholars, the administrator for network scholarships offered through the Discus Awards program, requires that parents claim your scholarship by setting up a SAGE scholarship account on their site. For more information on this process, please visit our Network Scholarship FAQs.
Why am I asked to provide information about my guidance counselor?
Guidance counselors are an extremely important resource throughout your high school career. They help you choose courses aligned with your further educational and professional goals. Guidance Counselors also provide a wealth of other information and support during this phase of your personal and academic journey. Notifying them of your Discus Awards recognition and college scholarship eligibility provides one more important piece of information they will have to better counsel you with regards to your academic pursuits.
Can I save my progress on my nomination and submit at a later date?
Yes. There are two ways to submit your nomination. Clicking the “Submit Nomination Now” button will immediately release your submission to our judges for review. Clicking the “Submit Nomination in 7 Days” button will hold your nomination in queue for a period of seven (7) days. During this time you may edit your profile as many times as you like. At the end of seven (7) days, your profile AS IT EXISTS ON OUR SYSTEM AT THAT TIME will be automatically submitted to our judges. We will send you an email reminder two days prior to sending your nomination for judging.
Is there anything I need to do after submitting my nomination?
Yes! You will receive a confirmation email asking that you confirm your email address and your nomination. Your nomination will not be judged until you've confirmed your email address. If you have not done so and do not see the confirmation email, please check your junk mail folder or contact us. To ensure that you are advised of all Discus Awards notifications, press inquiries, and scholarship inquiries, please be sure to place "@discusawards.com" on your email safe list.
Can I edit my nomination after it has been submitted?
After you submit your nomination, it is sent to a judging panel of education professionals for Discus Awards review. You will not be able to make any changes to your nomination once the judging panel begins the review process. You may submit only one Discus Awards nomination per program year.
Do I need to be a US citizen to apply?
Discus Awards nominees must be citizens or permanent residents of the United States. If ANY false or misleading information is submitted on the Discus Awards nomination, the student will be disqualified without notification to the student and no longer eligible for recognition.
About Judging the Awards
How long does judging take?
Your nomination will be judged in the order it was received and you will be notified of a decision, regardless of what it may be, as soon as the panel has rendered a decision. We aim to notify all nominees of the panel's decision within 45 days of submitting and confirming their Discus Awards nomination. Please note that during the summer, the judging process will be slightly delayed due to the schedules of our judges, many of whom are education professionals whose work schedule corresponds with the academic schedule. We appreciate your patience as you wait to hear from us regarding the status of your nomination.
Who judges the Discus Awards nominations?
The Discus Awards are judged by a panel of experienced teachers and other education professionals. Judges are hand-picked by the Discus Awards and trained by the Discus Awards staff to adhere to clear and consistent judging criteria.
How are they judged?
Discus Awards judges are trained by the Discus Awards staff to adhere to clear and consistent judging criteria. Discus judges score each nomination individually on a defined set of criteria; scores are then normalized within a judging set, and a subset of highly scored nominees are named as winners.
How many nominees earn recognition?
We do not share statistics regarding winning percentages for the Discus Awards. Recognition recipients are declared on a rolling, ongoing basis.
What Does it Mean to Earn Discus Awards Recognition?
How will I know if I win?
You will learn whether you received Discus Awards recognition by email after the judging panel has reviewed your nomination. Please note that during the summer, the judging process will be slightly delayed due to the schedules of our judges, many of whom are education professionals whose work schedule corresponds with the academic schedule. We appreciate your patience as you wait to hear from us regarding the status of your nomination.
What do I get for being named a Discus Awards Finalist?
Discus Awards Finalists are all-around students who have demonstrated extraordinary achievement in the pursuit of their passions, whether those passions exist in or outside the classroom. Finalists are considered for a variety of college scholarships offered by generous Discus Awards partners. For example, all Finalists are considered for National All-Around Student Scholarships for the remainder of the school year. Finalists may also increase their chance of college acceptance by including the honor on their college applications.
Discus Awards Finalists are nationally recognized as all-around students. If you have opted to display your profile, you will be featured in the Finalist Gallery with your outstanding peers.
The Discus Awards also provides helpful resources for your transition to college, including a comprehensive list of college scholarships.
What do I get for being named an Honorable Mention Candidate?
Discus Awards Honorable Mention Candidates are well-rounded students who have demonstrated achievements in the pursuit of their passions. Honorable Mention candidates are considered for special college scholarships provided by generous Discus Awards partners.
Can I notify college admissions offices about my Discus Awards recognition?
You may let college admissions boards know that you've earned Discus Awards recognition. You can do this by email, by sharing a link to your profile in the Finalist Gallery, or by listing the accomplishment on your college application.
Some Discus Awards Finalists are mentioned in the press, will I be?
For public Finalist profiles, we may share details of our most interesting winners (with the most interesting and best-written nomination blurbs) with their local school as well as their city newspapers. If your profile is set to "private", we will not share your information with the media. We cannot control which Finalists will be covered by the media. To see examples of coverage of Discus Awards Finalists, visit our Press Page.
What is the difference between a Discus Award Finalist and an Honorable Mention Candidate?
Students must demonstrate significant achievements in the pursuit of their passions both in and outside the classroom in order to earn Discus Awards recognition. Once our judging panel has determined a nominee has met the threshold to earn recognition, the panel will honor that student with one of two possible levels of recognition:
Discus Awards Finalists are students who demonstrate through their application that they are all-around students. Finalists are leaders in their respective activities that embody the Discus Awards’ holistic approach to recognizing student achievement. Finalists are automatically considered for college scholarships offered through the Discus Awards program by our generous partners. The National All-Around Student Scholarships are exclusive to Discus Awards Finalists and represent the pinnacle of well-rounded student achievement across the country.
Discus Awards Honorable Mention Candidates are students who demonstrate a well-rounded collection of achievements that show significant progress on the way to becoming an all-around student. Honorable Mention Candidates contribute in meaningful ways to their classrooms, communities, and beyond. Honorable Mention Candidates are considered for special college scholarships provided by generous Discus Awards partners.
What is the difference between a recognition recipient and a scholarship winner?
The Discus Awards is a national recognition program. Earning Discus Awards recognition does not mean that you have won a college scholarship. However, the Discus Awards works with a number of organizations that want to support the education of our country’s future leaders. Through their sponsorship or other program support, these organizations make scholarships available to students who earn Discus Awards recognition.
What if I didn't earn Discus Awards recognition
Why didn't I earn recognition?
All Discus Awards nominations are carefully reviewed by a judging panel comprised of education professionals. The criteria on which the judges base their scores include an evaluation of both the form and substance of each nomination.
Our judges are humbled by the extremely high quality of the nominations; unfortunately, not all nominees can earn Discus Awards recognition. Some nominees will not be selected.
The panel's decisions are final, and nominees who are not selected as recognition recipients may not submit another application for the remainder of the program year.
We sincerely appreciate the time and effort put into Discus nominations, and we wish all Discus nominees the best of luck in pursuing their passions in college and beyond.
Can I apply again?
Yes. Please do. Be sure to take extra pains next year to write engaging blurbs that are well-written and spell-checked. Include photos and videos to support your nomination and the attributes you mention therein.
We have also compiled a list of college scholarships for which you may be eligible this year.
About the Scholarships
How many scholarships will be awarded through the Discus Awards?
The Discus Awards provides millions of dollars of college scholarships to all-around high school students each year. These scholarships are comprised of both open scholarships and network scholarships. Scholarships are provided by our generous partners, including the ten $2,000 National All-Around Student Scholarships awarded each academic year. Once awarded recognition by the Awards judging panel, all Discus Awards Finalists will automatically be considered for each remaining National All-Around Student Scholarship.
What scholarships are awarded through the Discus Awards?
There are two types of scholarships that are awarded through the Discus Awards program:
Open scholarships are one-time scholarship awards redeemable at any U.S. accredited, public or private four-year or two-year college or university, technical college, community college or vocational school. Open scholarships are administered by the Center for Scholarship Administration.
Network scholarships represent the guaranteed minimum scholarship the recipient will receive divided equally over four years of attendance at any school within the Discus Network. Network scholarships are administered by SAGE Scholars. For more information about network scholarships, visit the network scholarships page or read through the network scholarship FAQs.
Who funds the scholarships awarded through the Discus Awards?
Scholarships provided through the Discus Awards program to recognition recipients are funded by generous partner organizations that aim to support all-around students in the pursuit of their passions.
When are scholarship winners announced?
Scholarship winners are announced on a quarterly basis. The National All-Around Student Scholarships are awarded twice per year: 5 are awarded on January 31st, and 5 are awarded on June 30th.. NAAS Scholarship winners will be announced at DiscusAwards.com and on the Discus Facebook Page.
Who judges the scholarships?
The National All-Around Student Scholarship is judged by a panel of luminaries who excel in one or more of the Discus Awards attributes. Current judges include an education policy leader, a senior reporter with ESPN, and a longtime educator and recipient of the prestigious Disney Teacher of the Year Award. Recipients of additional scholarships awarded through the Discus Awards program are selected in accordance with guidelines provided by each sponsoring organization from the pool of eligible Discus Awards recognition recipients.
What are the deadlines to enter?
To be eligible for the $2,000 National All-Around Student Scholarships, you must first be named a Discus Awards Finalist. If you are selected as a Discus Awards Finalist, you will immediately be considered for the remaining NAAS Scholarships to be awarded during the current Discus Awards program year. This is why we encourage students to apply early in the year, as they will have more opportunities to win the NAAS Scholarship if they are named a Discus Awards Finalist.
The final deadline to submit an application for Discus Awards recognition each program year is May 31st at 11:59 p.m. ET.
Note: The deadline to submit an application for the 2012-2013 program year is March 31st at 11:59 p.m. ET.
What is the National All-Around Student Scholarship?
The National All-Around Student Scholarship is an open scholarship awarded through the Discus Awards program by Scholarship Strategies. Formerly known as the Discus Scholarship, the National All-Around Student Scholarship was the first scholarship ever awarded through the Discus Awards program. Scholarship Strategies currently funds ten $2,000 NAAS Scholarships each year, totaling $20,000 in NAAS Scholarships annually.
Who is eligible to win a National All-Around Student Scholarship?
Any Discus Awards Finalist during a given academic year will be considered. You must be declared a Discus Awards Finalist in order to be considered for the National All-Around Student Scholarship. If you do not win the scholarship when the first five of the program year are awarded on January 31st, you will still be considered for the scholarship when the final five are awarded on June 30th.
Where are the National All-Around Student Scholarship winners announced?
How is the National All-Around Student Scholarship awarded and paid?
Each year, ten Discus Awards Finalists will be selected to win a National All-Around Student Scholarship. The NAAS Scholarships will be awarded in two waves. The first five NAAS Scholarships of the program year will be awarded on January 31st, and the last five of the program year will be awarded on June 30th. Recipients may use their National All-Around Student Scholarship -- which is administered and managed by a nationally recognized scholarship administration firm -- for tuition and fees required to enroll at or attend an eligible institution. Winners will be advised of all details regarding scholarship administration.
When am I considered for a scholarship?
When you apply for the Discus Awards program, you are applying for national recognition. If you earn national recognition – either you are named a Discus Awards Finalist or Honorable Mention Candidate – then you are immediately considered for college scholarships throughout the remainder of the program year. Our generous Discus Awards partners provide scholarships to recognition recipients throughout the program year. If you are selected as a scholarship winner, you will be notified directly and the scholarship will be posted on your ‘My Scholarships’ page in your Discus Awards account.
Am I eligible for additional financial aid?
The Discus Awards does not exclude students from applying for additional financial aid. In fact, we encourage you to seek out all funding options for college! To help you find other scholarships, we have compiled a list of college scholarships for which you may be eligible this year.
What information do I need to provide to receive my scholarship?
Students selected as open scholarship winners are required to submit the name and contact information of their chosen college/university/certified trade school for verification of registration and payment of the scholarship to the school. For 2012 graduating high school seniors, information must be submitted no later than October 15, 2012 or the scholarship will be considered unclaimed and another winner will be selected.
For network scholarship winners, parents must claim their scholarship on SAGE Scholars’ website. For more information on the redemption process for network scholarships, please visit the network scholarships page or the network scholarships FAQs.
About Network Scholarships
How do I redeem my network scholarships?
After a student has been awarded a network scholarship, the Discus Awards will notify both the student and his or her parent. In addition, the student's parent will receive an e-mail directly from SAGE Scholars, our scholarship administration partner for network scholarships. This e-mail will include a link in it that the parent must click on to visit the SAGE Scholars website to activate a scholarship account. Once this account has been activated, the student will be enrolled in the parent's scholarship account and the network scholarship earned by the student will be deposited into the parent's account.
However, in order to redeem the scholarship, the parent must assign the scholarship to the student enrolled in their SAGE Scholars account. All network scholarships must be assigned to the student by August 31st prior to the student's senior year of high school in order to be valid for redemption. Through the parent's scholarship account, an account statement must be submitted electronically to a school within the Discus Network at the time of the student's application to a school in the Discus Network. If the student is accepted and decides to attend a school within the Discus Network, the network scholarship amount assigned to the student at the time of his or her application represents a guaranteed minimum scholarship that student will receive from a school in the Discus Network.
What deadlines do I need to be aware of?
There are four important deadlines that all SAGE Scholars account holders must be aware of:
- SAGE Scholars account must be activated by August 31st prior to student's senior year in high school
- Network scholarships (a.k.a. Tuition Rewards) must be assigned to student through SAGE Scholars account by August 31st prior to student's senior year in high school
- SAGE Scholars account statement must be submitted to any school within the Discus Network that the student applies to at the time of application to that school
- If parent assigns network scholarships to student, but student does not attend school within the Discus Network, parent has up to three years after the time of student's high school graduation to reclaim the network scholarships for another family member
The SAGE Scholars website has different deadlines than the Discus Awards website. Which deadlines are correct?
SAGE Scholars administers scholarships for programs outside of the Discus Awards, some of which have different rules. For example, one benefit of the Discus Awards program is that students may be enrolled in your account up to August 31st before their senior year, whereas the standard deadline for other programs is August 31st prior to students' junior year. The Discus Awards website will have all the correct deadlines you need to know in order to claim and redeem earned network scholarships.
What if I receive a network scholarship, but do not attend a school within the Discus Network?
Parents should always activate their SAGE Scholars account to claim a student's network scholarship. If the student who received the scholarship does not ultimately attend a school in the Discus Network, parents may reclaim the scholarship and apply it later to a younger student they enroll in their SAGE Scholars account. Unused network scholarships may be reassigned to younger children, grandchildren, nieces, or nephews.
Does receiving a network scholarship guarantee my admission into a Discus Network college?
No, each school's normal admissions standards still apply.
Can I still apply for financial aid?
Yes, we strongly encourage students and families to apply for financial aid to even further lower the cost of tuition. Network scholarships represent the guaranteed minimum scholarship amount at a school within the Discus Network, and any additional financial aid will only lower the amount your family will have to pay.
What if I receive a merit scholarship? How will this affect my network scholarship?
Network scholarships represent the minimum scholarship, spread evenly over four years, a participating student will receive if and when he/she attends a participating school within the Discus Network. If your student receives another scholarship from a school in the Discus Network, then the school can choose to "blend" (include) or "stack" (add on top) the network scholarships with the other scholarship funds, grants or other discounts.
Additionally, we encourage students to continue to seek out private scholarships. Students may use our Best List of College Scholarships as a reference to find additional scholarship opportunities.
Are network scholarships applicable to fees, room, board, books, etc?
No, network scholarships may only be applied to the cost of tuition. In addition, it is important to note that network scholarships do not hold any cash value. In other words, while network scholarships represent a guaranteed minimum scholarship at a school within the Discus Network, network scholarships may not be exchanged for cash.
Can I ever "cash out" my network scholarships?
No, network scholarship will never be awarded in cash, and may not be exchanged for cash.
Where can I find additional information about network scholarships?
You can find more information about network scholarships on our network scholarships page, and on the SAGE Scholars website, where they are referred to as Tuition Rewards. 1 Tuition Reward is equal to $1 in network scholarships. We recommend you start on the SAGE Scholars How It Works page or browse their FAQs.
About your Finalist Profile
Can I edit my Finalist profile?
No, once your nomination is sent to the Discus Awards judging panel you will no longer be able to make changes. If you are named a Discus Awards Finalist and have opted to keep your profile public, you will be able to view your profile in the Finalists Gallery and through a link on your account page.
Can I alter the privacy settings for my Finalist profile?
Yes. Simply log into the site using your email address and the password you created when you confirmed your nomination. You can edit the privacy settings in your profile once you are logged in.
Can I share my Finalist profile on Facebook?
Of course! Be sure to let your friends know that you've earned Discus Awards recognition by linking to your profile on your Timeline. You may use the buttons located on your profile to select how you would like to share your accomplishment. Additionally, in the email sent to you notifying you have been chosen as a Finalist, you will find a link you can click on to post your profile on Facebook.
To stay up to date with the latest Discus Awards News, be sure to 'Like' our Discus Awards Facebook Page.
What if I can't see my profile in the Finalist Gallery?
If you are a Finalist and you can't see your profile without logging in, you likely have set your profile to "private". When logged in to your Discus account, you can alter your privacy settings easily.
About the Transition to the 2012-2013 Discus Awards Program
If I won 2011-2012 Discus Awards recognition, do I have to apply again?
Yes, you must apply for Discus Awards recognition on June 1st or later to be eligible for 2012-2013 Discus Awards recognition.
Do I have to use the same email address I used to apply for a the Discus Awards previously?
No, you are not required to use the same email address you used to apply for the Discus Awards program in a prior year. However, we strongly encourage you to use the same email address so that your prior Finalist profile(s) can be linked to your new nomination.
If I was a senior in high school last year, can I apply for Discus Awards recognition again?
No, you must be enrolled in high school or a comparable home school program for the 2012-2013 academic year to be eligible for Discus Awards recognition. See our eligibility requirements FAQ for more information.
If I applied for the 2011-2012 Discus Awards program and did not earn recognition, can I apply again?
Yes, if you applied for 2011-2012 Discus Awards recognition and you will be attending high school in the fall, you may apply again.
When is the deadline to apply for the 2012-2013 Discus Awards program?
The final deadline to apply for the 2012-2013 Discus Awards program will be 11:59PM EST on Friday, March 31, 2013. However, the earlier you apply for Discus Awards recognition, the more scholarships you will be eligible for.
Please note this is the deadline to complete the Discus Awards nomination form. You will then have up to 7 days to confirm your e-mail address after submitting your completed nomination form. After those 7 days, your nomination will no longer be considered for '12-'13 Discus Awards recognition.