Austin decided where he needed to go to college when he saw University of Mobile Center for Performing Arts graduates perform at his church during a 40th anniversary tour featuring the music of TRUTH, one of the first contemporary Christian music recording groups.
As the vocalists and musicians poured out their hearts in songs of praise, Austin leaned over to tell his mother, “I want to do what they do.”
Austin posted a blog about his journey to UMobile, which started with that concert in October 2011. He wrote:
My parents were excited about a special music group that would be at our church that night. They kept saying, “Austin, you’ll love this!” Little did I know, this would be a defining moment for me…
For all of you 40 and 50 somethings out there, remember the Gospel group TRUTH? Yeah? The man who created and ran the group for their 30-year legacy, Roger Breland, is currently the Executive Dean of the Center for Performing Arts at the University of Mobile. In 2011, he took a lot of music students who had just graduated from Mobile to perform in the TRUTH 40th Anniversary Tour. That’s what I saw that night.
I was amazed that people not much older than me could do so much for the Lord by singing His song. I believe that those who sing for Him sound the best! After a night of great music, I decided I wanted to do that. I wanted to go to Mobile.
Looking for colleges, Austin’s parents made it clear that he would need to find much of his own resources to go to school. He knew he was called to ministry, and he knew in his heart that UMobile was the place that could best prepare him. That meant forgoing a free education at a local college, and seeking the right financial aid package to make his dream a reality.
Financial Aid counselor Shelisskia Douggans worked with Austin’s family and encouraged them throughout the process of completing the FAFSA and other forms. Some families don’t complete financial aid forms, thinking they won’t qualify for various financial aid, she said, but going through the financial aid process is worth the paperwork. The result can be a financial aid package that is unique to a family’s situation and makes college much more affordable than they thought possible.
When Dr. Roger Breland heard that Austin was doing everything he could to get to UMobile, but was still short, he even spoke about the student’s desire and need at a Voices of Mobile concert at Pleasant Hill Baptist Church in Mississippi. After the concert, the pastor told Breland the church wanted to help.
“If that’s not God, I don’t know what is!” Austin wrote.
Austin’s Financial Aid Package*
Center for Performing Arts Scholarship
Other UM-funded Aid
Direct Parent Plus Loan
Direct Student Loan
Total Aid for 2013-14 Year $25,000
*Financial Aid Packages vary.
When Mario visited the University of Mobile campus, it felt like the real Christian college experience he was looking for – but could he afford it? With the help of their Enrollment Services financial aid counselor, Mario and his mother realized first-hand why UMobile is one of “America’s 100 Best College Buys.” After a down payment of $500, their out-of-pocket cost of $2,225 is spread out over 10 months through the University of Mobile Payment Plan, making college fit more easily into the family’s monthly budget.
Mario’s Financial Aid Package*
Dean’s Scholarship $6,000
Alabama State Grant $360
Pell Grant $5,645
Student Loans $9,500
Other UM-funded Aid $2,580
Total Aid for 2013-14 Year $24,585
· *Financial Aid Packages vary.
“The University of Mobile Financial Aid Office is superb! Simply put, it’s more than just a job to them – they’re committed!”- Mario Butler, Freshman, History Major
Emily knew she wanted to enroll at the University of Mobile – she just wasn’t sure how to make it happen. That was before she met UMobile’s admissions and financial aid counselors. “They went over and beyond the call of duty to insure that I received every type of grant and scholarship that was available to me and for which I was eligible. Their passion and desire to help students comes from within,” she said.
Her financial aid package includes various university scholarships, scholarships from community and state organizations, and grants.
“I know that I am in the place that has been prepared for me where I will thrive and grow in order for me to spread the blessings that have been bestowed upon me,” she said. Emily Odom, Freshman, Vocal Performance Major
Hurry! Scholarships are still available for Fall Semester 2013 classes. Call Enrollment Services at 251.442-2222 or 800.WIN.RAMS for details on your own individualized Financial Aid Package or visit www.umobile.edu/financialaid for more on how affordable a private Christian education can be at the University of Mobile.