Raven van den Bosch of Critz, Virginia, was selected as a 2020–2021 Dean’s Graduate Scholar by New York University School of Professional Studies (NYUSPS).
The NYUSPS Dean’s Graduate Scholars Program recognizes outstanding students within the School of Professional Studies community by awarding a $10,000 scholarship. Identifying the need among NYUSPS students, the School established this annual merit-based scholarship to reward exemplary academic achievement, outstanding service, and committed involvement in the SPS community. Dean’s Graduate Scholars are required to serve as SPS Ambassadors, attend regular meetings with the Dean, and participate as mentors to high school students in the NYUSPS High School Academy Aspire Program, a college preparatory program for students in the New York/Tri-State area who will be first-generation college students.
To apply to be a Dean’s Graduate Scholar, a graduate student must have completed a minimum of nine NYUSPS semester hours and be enrolled in New York University at least part time for the 2020–2021 school year. The applicant must also have a 3.7 GPA, receive a recommendation by their department, submit two additional letters of recommendation, as well as a current resumé. In addition, applicants must complete a 500-word essay about who inspired them as a mentor and complete a 500-word essay about an experience they had mentoring others. Only 25 Dean’s Graduate Scholars are accepted each year out of several hundred applications.
Ms. van den Bosch applied for the scholarship after completing 12 semester hours with a 4.0 GPA and fulfilling all of the additional requirements for application. She was selected as a finalist on April 1 and went through an online Zoom interview process with the Dean’s Graduate Scholar Committee and another candidate on April 17. On May 1, Ms. van den Bosch received a letter from the Office of the Dean stating, “It is with great pleasure that we convey our congratulations to you for being selected as a member of the NYUSPS Dean’s Graduate Scholars Program. Given the very intense competition, you are to be commended for your excellent record of accomplishment.”
Ms. van den Bosch is both humbled and grateful, “I stepped-out on faith last year when I made the decision to apply to NYU as a 50-year-old graduate student. Getting into grad school was always a dream of mine. Being an NYU grad student and learning from some of the most influential professors in the world is the experience of a lifetime. Becoming a Dean’s Graduate Scholar and having the opportunity to help make a positive difference in the lives of first-generation college students is another remarkable experience I am excited about.”
As a first-generation college student, Ms. van den Bosch understands the pressures and challenges first-generation college students face. “Back in the late 80s, everyone in the Raleigh area where I grew up was expected to go to college, but our family did not have money to pay for it. I had to figure out how to apply for financial aid, and how to support myself through college. It was tough, and it took me six years to get a four-year degree. But I would not trade a moment of those six years for anything. Everything I learned I now use to help others.”
Ms. van den Bosch graduated from Meredith College in Raleigh, North Carolina in 1994, prior to attending Appalachian State University and North Carolina State University. With a B.A. in Graphic Design and Illustration, she made a 29-year career in advertising and marketing in the Raleigh area, served as an industry leader in graphic design, advertising, and marketing, and won dozens of professional awards for her craft. Ms. van den Bosch moved to Critz in 2013, where she works remotely for clients all over the country.
Ms. van den Bosch is a first-year graduate student at New York University, working towards a M.S. in Professional Writing in Graphic Communications and Management Technology.