University of Minnesota
University of Minnesota

Carol E. Macpherson Memorial Scholarship


The Carol E. Macpherson Memorial Scholarship was established in Carol’s memory to assist women-identified students (28 years or older and with a cumulative gap in post-secondary education of five years or more) in completing their education at the University.

The Carol E. Macpherson Memorial Scholarship was established to assist women who, like Carol, are seekers. It memorializes Carol’s undying concern for fairness, for providing opportunities for women  to find new paths, for the value of a thinking mind to ask difficult questions, and for respecting the nurturing roles women continue to play even as they take on various new responsibilities in their  families and communities. Carol would be pleased to learn of the extraordinary accomplishments of Macpherson scholarship seekers and would applaud the adversities they overcome to pursue education and a better life.


The Carol E. Macpherson Memorial Scholarship was created in the late 1970s and continues to be sustained through the generosity of Carol’s family.


Scholarships range from $1,000 - 6,000. [Note: These are one-time awards.] Scholarship winners are recognized at the annual Celebrating University Women Awards Program.


4:30 p.m. 1st Friday in June (June 3, 2016 for funds distributed in 2016-2017)

2011 Carol Macpherson Scholarship RecipientsEligibility

The applicant MUST fulfill each of the following requirements to be considered eligible:

  • Women-identified students (28 years or older)
  • Five-year or longer gap in college/university education (does not need to be consecutive)
  • Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at least three weeks before the scholarship deadline
  • Demonstrated financial need 
  • Admission or pending admission to an undergraduate or graduate/professional degree or credit certificate program at any U of M campus
  • Good academic standing at the University of Minnesota or prior institution  
  • Meet half-time enrollment status minimum

Selection Criteria

In addition to the above, applicant selection is “weighted” by the following characteristics:

  • Strong, well-written personal statement 
  • Two strong reference letters indicating educational goals and academic promise
  • First generation in family to attend college (parents/guardians do not hold a degree from a four-year college)
  • Pursuing first undergraduate degree
  • Status as a student parent 
  • Evidence of academic achievement
  • Other special circumstances that affect academic performance or financial situation 

(Please note: if you meet the criteria for the Carol E. Macpherson Scholarship, please only apply for the Carol E. Macpherson Scholarship. We do not award students with both the Dr. Nancy "Rusty" Barceló and Macpherson Scholarship awards in the same academic year.) 

Selection Committee

Appointed by Women's Center, the selection committee includes University staff and faculty with particular interest and expertise in assisting non-traditional women students.

Application Process

Macpherson Scholarship Application Materials (PDF)

Your application must include the following items to be considered. You are responsible for ensuring that all items below are submitted to the Selection Committee c/o the Women's Center at the address below by the deadline.

  • Completed Macpherson Scholarship Application, including your personal statement (see sample personal statements).
  • Academic transcripts of all related college/post-secondary enrollment.
  • Completed Free Application for Federal Stud ent Aid (FAFSA) for the academic year you are applying for. Please file at least three weeks before the scholarship deadline.
  • Two reference letters (to be sent directly from references or attached to application in a sealed envelope signed by the writer across the seal). These should be requested from two references that have known student and her educational goals.

Applications can be submitted to, in person to 64 Appleby Hall (weekdays between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.), or by mail to: 

Women's Center
64 Appleby Hall, 128 Pleasant St. SE
Delivery Code 3503
Minneapolis, MN 55455

Scholarship Awards

All applicants will be notified of their award status in mid-August. The Office of Student Finance sends award checks to scholarship winners on the first day of the fall and spring semesters, generally in two equal disbursements.

Questions: Women's Center, 612-625-9837, or


Give to the Carol E. Macpherson Memorial Scholarship via the University of Minnesota Foundation