Scholarships can be earned in a variety of ways, especially in the School of Art. Learn about how you can take the next steps in your scholarship search.
The purpose of this grant program is to nurture the highest possible quality of excellence in graduate students in the fine arts. The main focus of the grant is to help develop top-notch individual performers and to enhance Illinois State University’s prestige as a place where the very finest musicians and artists study and perform.
These scholarships are made available through the efforts of the Friends of the Arts organization. They are generally granted to continuing majors in art, arts technology, music, theatre and dance, who are evaluated on their academic achievement, artistry and service to the School.
The Friends of the Arts offer grant support to College of Fine Arts students for their student-led creative projects, research, events and visiting artists. Grants are available for individuals and groups. Learn more and find out how you can apply.
This scholarship covers partial costs of tuition or fees. Generally, they are awarded based upon academic achievement, outstanding achievement in your major and service to the School.
Awarded to any deserving [graduate] student in art, music or theatre.
School of Art tuition waiver Scholarships are offered to incoming students. Students are considered for these scholarships when their portfolios are reviewed for admission to the School of Art.Tuition waivers are granted on the basis of artistic ability and performance based on a portfolio review.
Wonsook Kim came to Illinois State University from Korea in 1972 to study art. She earned a BFA in ceramics in 1975 and continued her studies in printmaking with Professor Harold Boyd who she acknowledges as an influence in the development of the personal and diaristic core components in her art work. Wonsook earned an MA in 1976. While in the Master’s program she received the Elizabeth Stein Scholarship Award which provided both affirmation of her pursuit of art as a profession and much needed financial assistance. Wonsook earned her MFA in 1978. Her thesis exhibition “Normal Experience” installed at University Galleries, was acquired by the Museum of Contemporary Art, Seoul, Korea. Wonsook’s works have been exhibited widely nationally and internationally, including the Museum of Modern Art, NY; Smithsonian Institution; National Museum of Women in the Arts; Indianapolis Museum of Art; University Art Museum, UC Santa Barbara; Hamburg Masse, Hamburg, Germany; National Museum of Contemporary Art, Seoul; and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Mexico City. Wonsook Kim was the 2004 Alumni Commencement Speaker for the College of Fine Arts and was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2010. She established the Wonsook Kim Art Scholarship in 2015 to provide encouragement and financial support to art majors with individual creative visions and dedicated studio practices. It is Wonsook’s hope that these young artists will make significant contributions to the world through their art practice. (233)
The School of Art created the Terry Adkins Memorial Scholarship for Diversity in 2016 to honor and celebrate the memory of internationally acclaimed alumnus Terry Adkins. Adkins received his MS in printmaking from Illinois State University in 1977. He was the College of Fine Arts commencement speaker in 2013 when he was also inducted into the College of Fine Arts Hall of Fame. Adkins’ innovative, multi-disciplinary artwork has been exhibited in both the Whitney Biennial (2014) and Venice Biennale (2015), and is held in many notable collections, including the Hirshhorn Museum; Smithsonian Institution; Studio Museum in Harlem; Metropolitan Museum of Art; Museum of Modern Art, NY; and the Tate Modern, London. He earned a BS in printmaking from Fisk University and an MFA in sculpture from the University of Kentucky. Terry Adkins was a beloved and esteemed Professor of Fine Art at the University of Pennsylvania, and founder and performer of the Lone Wolf Recital Corps, a musical group often featured as a component of his multimedia homages to significant figures in African American history. The Terry Adkins Memorial Scholarship for Diversity supports talented, School of Art studio majors from diverse populations who have been accepted for enrollment or are currently enrolled in good standing. (205)
The Alcorn Family Ceramics Scholarship was established in 2013 by Trish and Gary Alcorn to provide undergraduate or graduate ceramics students the opportunity to advance their studies by attending a nationally recognized studio workshop. The recipient must demonstrate academic talent and dedicated studio practice. Gary Alcorn’s passion for the arts began early in life and was encouraged by his mother, Madelyn Alcorn. They shared a particular interest in ceramics and one of Gary’s fondest memories of his mother was her love of slip casting. Many years later, as a building service worker in the clay studios, Gary observed the enthusiasm displayed by the students and was impressed by their high level of dedication. With the encouragement and guidance of the ceramics students, Gary soon learned to work with clay and throw on the potter’s wheel. Gary’s interest in giving back to support these committed students led to the establishment of The Alcorn Family Ceramics Scholarship. (159)
The Josefina Gutierrez Ferran Scholarship for Latino Art Students was established in 2001 by Dr. Ana Maria Ferran Parent, former faculty member at Illinois State University, to honor the life of her mother Josefina Gutierrez Ferran. Josefina migrated to the United States from Cuba in 1966, to escape communism and join her children in the United States. Josefina, who had taught primary school in her homeland, began studying painting at Illinois State University in 1984 and remained an active student of art until her death in 2000. Josefina's paintings reflected upon her Cuban heritage and celebrated life. In 2015, to honor their mother Dr. Ana Parent and their grandmother Josefina Ferran, Robert, Michael, and David Parent fully endowed this scholarship. The Josefina Gutierrez Ferran Scholarship for Latino Art Students recognizes talented Latino students in the School of Art who have been accepted for enrollment or are currently enrolled in good standing. (151)
The Dr. C. Louis Steinburg Art Scholarship was established in 2015 by a School of Art alum to honor the memory of his painting professor “Lou” Steinburg. Steinburg earned both BS and MS degrees in art education from Southern Illinois University after serving three years in the Navy. He also completed a year-long advanced study of painting at the University of Illinois with Nathan Oliveira, a founding member in the Bay Area Figurative movement. In 1959 Lou joined the faculty at Illinois State University where he taught painting for 34 years. Following his retirement in 1993, Steinburg continued to enjoy teaching painting. His work has been exhibited widely and is held in various collections including Northern Trust Co., the Solomon B. Smith Collection, McLean County Arts Center, and University Galleries of Illinois State University. The Dr. C. Louis Steinburg Art Scholarship supports talented painting majors in the School of Art. (150)
Since 1970, the Marshall Dulaney Pitcher Award has recognized artistic excellence and offered inspiration for School of Art students. This highly prestigious award was established by the Pitcher family in memory of Marshall Pitcher. Marshall was a talented painting student, who was passionately interested in and influenced by the art, music and poetry culture of his time. Before transferring to Illinois State University in 1969 as a sophomore, Marshall studied at Antioch College. The MDP Award, as it has come to be known, honors outstanding undergraduate and graduate students in the visual arts who demonstrate exceptional artistic talent, dedicated studio practice and academic excellence. In addition to a monetary award, this distinguished recognition includes an individual exhibition prominently displayed within the Student Annual.
“It is the beauty of Marshall Pitcher’s work which will survive. The extension of that beauty is the goal to which we should all aspire.” (148)
Mary McMullan Packwood established the Mary M. Packwood Art Education Graduate Student Scholarship in 1982 to encourage superior academic performance at the graduate level in art education at Illinois State University. Mrs. Packwood held both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in education from the University of Missouri and was recognized nationally in her field. She taught in the Department of Art for 11 years and made significant contributions to the recruitment of outstanding students. Packwood was the author of “Art Education in the Elementary School” which was published in 1967. She served on the National Art Education Association Board of Directors, and as President of both the Western Arts Association and the Illinois Art Education Association. The Mary M. Packwood Art Education Graduate Student Scholarship is a testament to Packwood’s commitment to fostering excellence in the field of art teacher education. (140)
The Robert Small Scholarship was established in 1975 and recognizes outstanding art historical writing by a student in the School of Art. This memorial scholarship was started with gifts from Dr. Small’s colleagues, family, and friends. Small earned a PhD from the University of Iowa, an MA from St. Lawrence University, and a BA from Tufts University. Dr. Small was an assistant professor of art history at Illinois State University from 1969 to 1974. He was a leader in developing the Department of Art’s original art history curriculum and established the first collection of slides to aid students and faculty in their research. Professor Small’s original slide collection, which was contained with a single shoebox, grew to include more than 100,000 slides. The Robert Small Slide Library in the Center for the Visual Arts was named in his honor. (139)
Established in 1977, the Mary R. Walker Scholarship is awarded to art majors specializing in a 3D studio program who have an outstanding academic record and show exceptional artistic ability. Mary Walker studied at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Columbia University, and the State School Swabisch-Gmund in Germany, earning a BSA from MacMurray College and an MA from the University of Iowa. She was selected as one of twelve US jewelers to study at the Rochester Institute of Technology with Baron Erik Fleming, Court Silversmith to His Majesty the King of Sweden. In 1974, she was a recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts grant. Mary was a member of the art faculty at Illinois State University for 22 years inspiring jewelry, fibers and sculpture students through her teaching. (136)
Artist and teacher, Elizabeth Stein spent her life giving to others. Ms. Stein was a graduate of Vassar and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Her distinguished career in art education, which included 26 years as a high school art teacher, produced numerous notable artists and teachers. Through her life as an educator, her passionate interests in art and nature, and her career as an artist who exhibited into her nineties, Stein inspired generations of students. The Elizabeth Stein Art Scholarship, established in 1971 through a major gift from Ms. Stein, is awarded to undergraduate or graduate students majoring in Art, as a means to encourage students to achieve high levels of academic excellence. (120)
The Stephanie H. Amster Design Scholarship was established in 1982 through a gift from Stephanie Amster and is awarded to School of Art majors who are exemplary leaders, scholars, artists, and committed learners in the areas of studio art, art education or graphic design. In 1970, after receiving an MFA from the University of Texas at Austin, Amster began her teaching career at Illinois State University. While here, she founded the Ewing Arts Festival, an event which unified students from various academic departments to work toward the advancement of the arts in Central Illinois. Professor Amster retired in 2000, however her many contributions will continue to inspire and enrich the student experience at Illinois State University. (116)
Friends of the Arts offers grants to support College of Fine Arts student artistic projects, exhibitions, events, and visiting artists. Grants are available up to $500 for an individual and up to $1,000 for a group. Learn more and find out how you can apply.
Those enrolled in an Illinois State University School of Art degree program are eligible to receive a monetary award on behalf of the Friends of the Arts. Those students who can demonstrate their scholarly performance through artistic ability in either studio practice, art history, or art education studies may submit an application and portfolio to the School of Art scholarship review every spring semester to be considered for this award.
The Laura Kowalski Art Scholarship is open to all undergraduate students enrolled in the School of Art. The BFA committee will select the recipient based on the overall artistic quality of the artwork.
In academic years beginning with an even number (e.g. AY2014-15) students pursuing the BA, BS, BFA, MS, MA, or MFA degree in art (any studio discipline, art history, art education) may apply for a Mills Grant. The grant may be used for projects in the fall term, spring term or those that span the entire academic year. For more information, download the Mills Grant Guidelines.
Any undergraduate or graduate full- time art student with a concentration in printmaking is eligible to apply for the Normal Editions Workshop Scholarship. The award grants students $300 ($150 each semester dependent upon recipient's continued eligibility) to be used during the academic year to defray costs associated with academic and artistic needs. Those students who can demonstrate an outstanding artistic ability and performance in printmaking through a portfolio of their work may apply in the School of Art Office.
The Tick Awards are given to students who participate in the Student Annual exhibition and whose work is exceptional in their discipline area. Ten students receive $100 awards and three students receive $500 awards. The awards encompass all mediums and are determined by the juror for the exhibition and also by the Scholarship Committee.
As technology continues to connect the world, designers’ tools and skills are increasingly important to deconstruct, present and communicate complex systems of information. Eligible candidates for the DeGeal Interactive Design Scholarship are incoming or current art majors with interest in design in the digital realm. Candidates chosen can receive up to $825 in scholarship based on their work with websites, mobile/desktop apps, devices or products, operating systems, and interface screens.