The State Works Scholarship helps students earn money to pay for college and get professional experience — all while helping the university run efficiently.
When Kendall Garno-Foote of Greensburg, Ind., began her hunt for a campus job her freshman year at Indiana State last fall, she already had two years of fast-food service under her belt.
But the elementary education major was looking for a new experience. She was thrilled when she learned that the State Works Program had placed her as a student office State Works Program got you a campus job, but as I went through my first month at ISU, I realized how much the program helps the university. A lot of work goes on in the Office of the President, and I see how much an extra set of hands can really help them get things done.”
The State Works Scholarship was initiated by recently retired President Dan Bradley in 2016 to help alleviate the cost of a higher education for students and parents while the students gain valuable professional work experience. The State Works Scholarship is awarded to first-time freshmen who are an Indiana resident and unconditionally admitted to Indiana State. They must complete their FAFSA by the state of Indiana deadline and demonstrate financial need to participate in State Works.
As of December, 255 students were placed with 68 on-campus employers through the State Works Program.
“The university has greatly benefited from the work of our State Works employees,” said Tradara McLaurine, executive director for Indiana State’s Career Center. “Our sophomore employees are now Recreation Center and came to campus a week before he started his freshman year in August to participate in training for his position as a fitness work specialist on the second floor of the Rec Center.
Rogers-Peterson was one of 14 State Works students who started work with the Rec Center last fall. Through State Works, Rogers-Peterson works five days a week and picked up a second job in October in the Rec Center’s member services, handling daily transactions and assisting patrons with gaining access to the facility.
“These are daily tasks that need to be done and State Works students have gone through the necessary training that allows the university to know that these job duties will get done every day,” Rogers-Peterson said. “In turn, my position helps me learn valuable customer service skills that will come in handy at any job and teaches me about how to work as a team, get things done on time and other basic office skills that are necessary for operating a business at a lower level.”
State Works completed its first year with 98 active participants and 150 new State Works employees were welcomed to campus in August. The second year cohort will work on Career Development Plans and learn how to highlight their accomplishments and a University College course is being incorporated into the program to help students balance college and work so they make a suc- cessful transition to the university.
“The State Works Program allowed me opportunities to do things I might not have done otherwise, like attend a cultural event first semester,” Rogers-Peterson said. “The program has really helped me get out of my comfort zone in my first year on campus in a way I might not have otherwise. And it’s good to know that I am helping the university as much as it is helping me.”
When Kimberly Monte, associate director of fitness and programs, needs assurance that Indiana State’s Rec Center policies are enforced, the facility is kept clean or safety issues are quickly addressed, she knows she can turn to one of the students employed at the Rec Center through the State Works Scholarship Program.
“Having State Works students who work for campus recreation provide the necessary coverage to oversee a variety of areas within the Student Recreation Center,” said Monte. “These jobs which students fulfill help them to develop skills they will take with them for future jobs. Skills such as communication, customer service, conflict resolution, time management, responsibility and problem solving are just a few of the many skills acquired they acquire.”