Is It Just Me: Is Hellcats' Scholarship For Real?
Is there such a thing as a "cheerleading scholarship"?
On the CW's new series Hellcats, Marti Perkins (Aly Michalka) — a pre-law student at the fictional Lancer University in Memphis — loses her academic scholarship, so she does what any gal with a hidden passion for handsprings might: lands a cheerleading scholarship on the school's squad. But does that actually exist?
"Oh, yes, ma'am," says Frankie Conklin, cheer coordinator for the University of Memphis' top-ranked program. "Twelve of the 20 kids on our coed team are on full in-state scholarships." (That amounts to about $4,000 per semester.) While it's true that most of those scholarships are awarded to incoming freshmen, it would be possible for an enrolled student to apply if a slot were to suddenly open up, as it did on the show.
And according to Conklin, there are more free rides for the rah-rah set on the way: "We're seeing a trend of more and more schools putting money into their spirit programs." Go, team!