To state the obvious, college is expensive. In December 2020, Northwest Admissions gave away free tuition to an incoming student for the 2021-22 school year. More recently, another giveaway for a free dorm room concluded Feb. 1.
Northwest gave away a dorm room equivalent to the cost of living in Hudson-Perrin to an incoming freshman for both the fall and spring semesters for the 2021-22 academic year. Any first-time student who filled out a housing application before Feb. 1 was entered in the drawing. The winner of the room was selected at random using computer programming and was contacted via phone call.
Winner of the giveaway, Gavin Ray from Gower, Missouri, will be a freshman in the fall. He remembers feeling excited when he received the announcement that he won.
“It helps a lot of college kids,” Ray said. “I mean, it's really good because some kids, like me, have to pay for a lot of their college by themselves and need as much money.”
Ray said he felt relieved knowing that his first year of housing would be free.
“I just want to thank Northwest because they’re awesome for doing that,” Ray said.
For the 2020-21 school year, the cost of a student living in a double occupancy room in Hudson-Perrin is $6,534. Funding for these giveaways comes from Northwest’s external relations division.
Senior Marketing Specialist Katie Machovsky said that Northwest has been doing these giveaways for two to three years. Machovsky assists with the communication side of the giveaways, such as sending out emails and creating content on the Northwest site for prospective students.
“I think it’s a great opportunity for students to have a chance to win that, but it also helps them stay on track for enrollment in the fall,” Machovsky said.
Machovsky said that the giveaway is somewhat of a checkpoint for incoming students to look at what all they have to apply for.
Executive Director of Student Recruitment Jeremy Waldeier helps with the promotion of giveaways and communication with the winners.
“The award was created to encourage students to apply for housing in a timely fashion,” Waldeier said. “Completing steps in the admission process helps reduce the risk of students missing key deadline dates.”
The next two giveaways include a free commuter parking permit to a randomly selected student who fills out a commuter card by April 1. The winner of the parking permit giveaway will receive a commuter sticker usually worth $90 if purchased during the fall semester.
The other giveaway is an Eat Free for a Year and will be offered to an incoming student who registers for SOAR by May 1. The winner of the Eat Free for a Year giveaway wins a Silver Meal Plan for the fall and spring semesters of 2021-22. For the current academic year, this meal plan would cost a student $3,850.
Machovsky encourages students to register for SOAR before the giveaway deadline so that they can have a chance to win.