Recognizing and Inspiring Success and Excellence (RISE). The RISE Scholars program develops and supports students with leadership potential who are invested in creating a culture of equity and inclusion where all students belong and thrive at Sewanee.

What is the Sewanee RISE Scholars Program?

The RISE Program is a scholars program that focuses on student success in college and beyond. RISE scholars will embark on a path to success through working together and engaging in mentored leadership and career development programming. Scholars will have the opportunity to work closely with faculty and explore a broad array of scholarship endeavors. There is a strong focus on both curricular and co-curricular programming with the ultimate goal of RISE scholars matriculating to graduate school.

Who are Sewanee RISE Scholars?

RISE scholars have diverse interests and strengths, are goal-oriented, and want to make an impact through taking on leadership roles both in the classroom and on campus. RISE scholars come from all academic disciplines and are committed to the learning process to reach their goals. We are looking for students interested in engaging with equity and inclusion topics who are willing to learn and help create an atmosphere of positive social change that will impact our campus community.  

Why be a RISE Scholar?
  1. You have an instant support network. Through our network of faculty, staff, and peer student mentors you have a family of enthusiastic supporters who want to help you succeed.
  2. You will make an impact on campus. Socially conscious engaged learning is a cornerstone of how RISE scholars will interact with coursework.
  3. You will work closely with advisors that will help you reach your career goals.  Advisors will work one on one with RISE scholars to help them navigate the opportunities on campus and work toward developing each RISE scholar’s unique strengths.  Each RISE scholar will develop an Individual Success Plan (ISP) that will help them achieve their goals. 
How to be a RISE Scholar?

RISE Application 
We are looking for a diverse group of students who want to make a positive change on their college campus.  RISE Scholars are students who are looking for a strong connection to their peers as well as a network of support from faculty, staff, and alumni. Together RISE scholars and their mentors will lead by example to create a better learning and living environment for all.  

Highly qualified applicants will demonstrate: 

  • A strong sense of character and resilience 
  •  A desire to engage with issues of equity 
  • A desire to create an inclusive community 
  • A desire to seek a strong sense of belonging on campus
  • An interest in problem solving
  • Leadership potential


Application Questions
Q1.  What does resilience mean to you?  Describe a time when you were disappointed by the outcome of a situation but responded in a way that demonstrates resilience. 

Q2. Identify a moment when your viewpoint was different from those of the majority.  How did you approach the situation? What was the outcome? What did you learn?

Q3. What does it mean to be part of a community?  Tell us about an experience or observation where an individual or group facilitated positive change in the community.  

How many RISE Scholars are there? 
There are two main application cycles for each cohort that occur in May prior to arriving on campus for the fall semester and in March during the spring semester.  We will select 8-10 scholars in the May application cycle and 5-7 in the March cycle for a total of 15 RISE scholars per cohort.

How long is the RISE Scholar program?  
RISE scholars in the May application cycle will begin the program in the summer before arriving on campus for their first year of study and will continue through their second year.  March applicants will do a short orientation in the late spring of their first year with the majority of their RISE experience occurring during their second year on campus. 

When do I have to come to campus? 
RISE scholars in the May application cycle will be invited to campus this summer, date TBA, for an orientation that will entail leadership development training, cohort building activities, and an opportunity to meet with the summer academic guides who can help with first-year course registration questions.

Is there a scholarship involved with being a RISE scholar? 
RISE scholars do not receive direct tuition support.  The RISE Scholar Program funds travel to the summer orientation as well as off-campus career learning opportunities during the academic year for the duration of the program.