I’m a Loser, Says Daytona State College

This lovely letter turned up in my mailbox:

Scholarship loser 2008-08-01

Here’s the text, for those of you who can’t read JPEGs:

August 1, 2008

Richard Thripp

Dear     Richard:

Thank you for your on-line application and interest in the DSC Foundation Donor Scholarship opportunity for the fall 2008 semester. Regretfully, you were not chosen to receive an award at this time.

However, the next scholarship cycle for the spring 2009 semester will begin on August 25, 2008. You are encouraged to apply again. Please refer to the scholarship website: dsc.scholarships.nelnet.net for additional information.

If you have any questions concerning this matter or need further directions for applying for scholarships on-line, please contact me at (386) 506-4422 or Bernadette Ramsey (386) 506-3013.

I wish you much success as you continue your academic and career endeavors!


Charlene Solomon

Charlene Solomon
Financial Aid Services/Scholarships

Darn it. I was really expecting to win another $1500 scholarship. I won $3000 in scholarships from the foundation in fall 2007 and spring 2008, but the last was revoked because I couldn’t receive two at once. I only found at way after receiving my award letter, of course.

You know why I didn’t win? It’s because of that B+ in photography. My GPA slipped from 4.0 to 3.95. That killed my chances.

It’s amazing what Daytona State College spends on postage. What could easily be communicated by phone or email gets a 42 cent letter, not to mention the printing and labeling costs. If 1000 students entered (the Daytona Beach campus alone has 8500 students), they wasted $700 easily. And they do stuff like this all the time. We still get mail for my mother from DSC, and she hasn’t gone there for 13 years. Heck, she hasn’t even lived in the state of Florida for 10 years.

I love the format of the letter. It reads like a Dear John letter. “You were not chosen at this time.” As if that’s going to change later. The encouragement. The wish of success. The letter that informs you of your lack of success wishes you success.

The hyphenation of “on-line” is just too cool. It’s so 1994. How come Charlene’s name is typed twice? I’d expect one of those to be a facsimile signature. Why does “Dear Richard” have a big space between the wods? Why is my zip code 0? Really, it’s on the envelope like that.

Okay, I’ve done enough complaining. I had to pay $143 out-of-pocket because, despite having BrightFuture’s Academic Scholars award, only $157 was allotted for books. It used to be $300, but recently became $225, and was even less for me because of lab fees and tuition hikes. My books were $301. 5800 pages. Here’s what they’re looking like:

My fall 2008 textbooks

See the measly paperback, Between One and Many? That’s for my speech class (SPC2600). It’s among the most expensive at $50. Even the University Physics one was cheaper ($48). I got the international versions for biology and physics. They say “not for sale or use in the U.S.A. or Canada,” but they’re cheaper and exactly the same. Buying these from the DSC bookstore would be $600+.