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Application Tips 

Submission Tips

The key to winning a Dr. Willard Thompson Scholarship is a clear, concise communications plan.

The following are some things to consider while completing your entry:

  • Follow the objective, approach and deliverables format for your plan. 
  • Before writing your press release, try to ask yourself what the key messages are.
  • Ask someone to read through your plan and deliverables (preferably someone outside your major) to look for spelling and grammatical errors.
  • Format your plan and deliverables so they are easy to read—consider adding section headlines and bullet points.
  • Think about your target audience and how to reach them.
  • Ask for help. If you don’t really understand something on the application, ask a professor or call a Minnesota PRSA Student Relations committee member.

Suggested Timing 


Managing and completing your scholarship application doesn’t need to be overwhelming. In fact, it can be a breeze if managed in sections.


Try following the suggested timing below to make it easier on yourself and those who might offer help. Remember, there’s $2,000 on the line!

Date Activity
By Mid-November -
  • Fill out the background information and how you would use scholarship funds.
  • Start thinking about who your faculty/supervisor recommendation will be.
Before you leave for 
Winter Break -
  • Have your faculty/supervisor recommendation obtained.
  • Update your resume and check for errors.
  • Consider using your PRSA Student Relations Committee liaison for a resume review.
By January 1 -  
  • Develop your case study objective. 
  • Hint: objectives should be S.M.A.R.T 
    (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, time-oriented)
  • Identify your audience and some key behavioral considerations.
By Mid-January -
  • Identify your strategy and four supporting tactics to deliver a successful campaign.

  • List three key messages you’d like to convey during the campaign.

  • Draft a press release using Associated Press style.
By End of January -
  • Develop your case study media list.
  • Draft a pitch letter to send to potential media members.
  • Review all materials for accuracy.
  • Give everything a close spell/grammar check. 
  • Have someone else review.

By the deadline 
(usually beginning 
of February) -
  • Submit scholarship application.