Writing Scholarship


Writers, poets, journalists, novelists, columnists, essayists, reviewers & bloggers!

Earn scholarship dollars while building your writing skills, résumé, and portfolio with Mount Mercy’s Writing Scholarship.

Info & Qualifications

  • Annual scholarships of up to $3,000 for incoming freshmen and up to $2,000 for transfer students are available—no matter the student’s major.
  • To be eligible, you must be admitted to Mount Mercy as a full-time, degree-seeking student.
  • Priority date for freshmen interviews is February 3.
  • Can't make it to campus? Other venues can be used to accommodate busy schedules and travel challenges.

Note: Students may only receive one music, creative talent, or athletic scholarship in addition to their MMU academic award.  

Apply Here!

Scholarship Criteria & Renewal Requirements

» Please submit up to 10 pages of sample work with your application. An ideal portfolio includes a wide variety of writings. We're especially eager to see your creative writing (poetry, short stories, personal essays, novel excerpts), your journalism (editorials, features, movie, or book reviews), or any essays about literature.

» Serve on, and contribute to, at least one student publication each year (Paha Review or Mount Mercy Times); take at least one writing or literature class per year beyond composition; participate in at least two Visiting Writer Series events per year.

Note: Participation is reviewed annually, and renewal is determined by each program coordinator. Recipients must meet standard requirements for University financial aid awards and successfully meet participation requirements. 


Mary Vermillion
Professor of English
319-363-1323 x1253

“Through the Mount Mercy University Writing Scholarship, I have been able to grow as a writer and as a student. Over the past three years, I took classes that I would not have taken had I not received the scholarship. Because of that, I have stepped out of my comfort zone. I have a new-found passion for writing non-fiction, all because I took the memoirs and writing class my freshman year. I am so grateful not only for these opportunities, but also for the money that assists with my tuition each year.”

—Jessica Hiney ’18
Major(s): Biology | Outdoor Conservation
Minor(s): Philosophy | Psychology

“MMU’s Writing Scholarship has really complemented my major and minors, and being a writing minor has exposed me to different writing styles that will be beneficial in any profession that I choose—especially if I decide to go to law school. I enjoy the Visiting Writers Series and being able to read and work with the literature before the author comes to campus. It's always so fun to be able to ask the author questions.”

—Bailey Rickels ’18
Major(s): Criminal Justice
Minor(s): Legal Studies | Psychology | Writing