Scholarships - Department of Theatre and Dance

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Learn more about the application and audition process!

The Department of Theatre and Dance currently offers the following three scholarships for deserving theatre and dance majors:

The Daniel Vollmer Scholarship*

The Daniel Vollmer Scholarship is awarded to two outstanding first-year theatre majors and two outstanding first-year dance majors. The scholarship recognizes students who have shown talent and promise in the theatrical arts or dance during their high school years. These $5,000 scholarships are combined with any Provost's Scholarship and are renewable every year for up to four years. The scholarships are awarded on the basis of achievement in theatre or dance and a student's written statement. One-half of the annual scholarship amount is applied during each semester of the year awarded. Applicants should send appropriate materials to illustrate their strengths in theatre and dance. Vollmer scholarships are renewable for up to three years after the initial year of award, as long as the recipient exhibits satisfactory progress in their area of study.

The Shaffer/Goodling Scholarship for the Arts*

The Shaffer-Goodling Scholarship for the Arts is awarded on the basis of talent in the visual arts, dance, theatre, or music based on the portfolio or audition used for acceptance to the department.  Please contact these respective departments for information about audition dates, submission dates, and any other requirements for application. The awards are renewable each year provided students exhibit satisfactory academic progress in their area of study and meet any other requirements for the continuation of the award as defined by the respective department. Recipients are selected from the same pool of applicants for the Vollmer Scholarships. Each student selected for this award receives a $3,500 scholarship that is combined with the Provost’s Scholarship which is awarded upon acceptance. One-half of the award is applied to each semester of an academic year.

The Dean's Scholarship in the Arts*

The Dean's Scholarship in the Arts is part of a larger institutional program of Dean's scholarships. Some are specifically reserved for first-year applicants to the Theatre and Dance Department. Applicants must exhibit good stewardship of their talents in theatre or dance, as well as some leadership in academic, co-curricular, church, and/or community endeavors. To be eligible for consideration the applicant must exceed the academic requirements for admission to Messiah University as demonstrated by meeting at least one of the following criteria: ACT score of 25 or higher, SAT score of 1140 or higher, high school GPA of 3.5 or higher (on a 4-point scale), or rank in the top 20% of their high school graduating class. Information about leadership and activities/involvement during high school is also considered. The application for admission to Messiah University supplies all of the information required for the Dean's Scholarship, but, for applicants in the arts, auditions and supporting documents are also considered.
The Dean's Scholarship in the Arts is a $1,000 award and is combined with any Provost's Scholarship that may be awarded. One-half of the annual scholarship amount is applied in each semester for each year awarded. A Dean's Scholarship in the Arts is renewable for each of the three years after the initial year of award as long as the recipient exhibits continuing leadership and the stewardship of talents at Messiah University, and maintains a 2.8 grade point average. Each student who receives a Dean's Scholarship in the Arts is required to submit a statement to the Messiah University Admissions and Financial Aid Committee at the conclusion of each academic year outlining their activities and leadership roles of the year.
Prospective students wishing to be considered for the Daniel Vollmer and Dean's scholarships should plan to audition on or before the scheduled audition dates. To be considered for scholarships, you must have your Messiah University application completed by March 1st. For those unable to attend either of the spring scholarship auditions, auditions are available by appointment and students may still be considered for scholarships. For more information, please visit the "application process" page of this website.
*Please note: all scholarships are made on the basis of meritorious achievement in the arts. These scholarship awards are used by the school to help meet the documented need of a student's financial aid package. Therefore, students receiving a President's Scholarship, a Dean's Scholarship for academic merit, or other institutional full or partial tuition scholarships may be ineligible to receive additional awards for artistic merit. Please contact the Financial Aid Office directly if you have questions regarding your eligibility for these scholarships.

Please contact Daniel Inouye regarding the Department of Theatre and Dance scholarships. You can reach him at:

Daniel Inouye
Messiah University
One University Ave
Mechanicsburg PA 17055 
717-766-2511, x2409
717-796-5248 (Fax)