lowcost401k020215- WCAs mentioned in this year's State of the Blog post, we'll be having a White Coat Investor Scholarship competition this year. This post will serve as the formal announcement, but it is being announced this week on other forums and blogs and hopefully via email to medical and other professional students by their peers. In fact, we recently finished mailing a note about the scholarship and a free copy of The White Coat Investor: A Doctor's Guide to Personal Finance and Investing to the deans and financial aid officers of some of the country's largest medical and dental schools. We'll probably do it again a few times in coming months.

The point of the scholarship is two fold. Most importantly, I hope to use it to raise awareness of the importance of financial knowledge among physicians and other high-income professionals. However, for one lucky winner, this scholarship will help reduce their indebtedness very dramatically and very personally. They'll get a big fat check in the mail.

What I would really like to ask WCI readers to do at this point is four things:

1) Spread the word

Many readers are students or faculty at medical and other professional schools throughout the country and have the ability to quickly and easily alert hundreds of students to this opportunity. This is an easy way to “evangelize” the WCI message of making sound financial decisions without feeling like a spammer. All your email has to say is, “Hey? Want some free money? Apply for The White Coat Investor Scholarship!”

I hope we're absolutely inundated with applications and that no medical or dental student ever graduates again without hearing of The White Coat Investor and getting some free, high-yield financial information.

Come get my money or I'm just going to buy some more canyoneering gear with it.

Come get my money or I'm just going to buy some more canyoneering gear with it.

2) Apply for the scholarship

Many WCI readers are students. Here's your chance to get some of my money. The first $2K in this scholarship fund is coming straight out of my pocket.  Follow the directions on the scholarship page when sending in your application.

3) Help fund the scholarship

There is no endowment fund here at The White Coat Investor Scholarship. It is funded from website profits (i.e. my pocket), from blog sponsors, and by readers. I asked all of my blog sponsors to step up this week and be “gold level” ($500) sponsors of this scholarship. We were overwhelmed by the response as sponsors rapidly contributed over $5000. Please thank our “gold level” sponsors with your business.

Larry Keller (Physician Financial Services) – Disability and Life Insurance
Jon Appino (Contract Diagnostics) – Contract Review/Negotiation
Michael George (FPL Capital Management) – Investment Management
Darien Rowayton Bank (DRB) – Student Loan Refinancing
Sandi Frith (Huntington Bank) – Doctor Mortgages
Jamie Fleischner (Set for Life Insurance) – Disability and Life Insurance
Jay Meadors (Fifth Third Mortgage) – Doctor Mortgages
Michael Relvas (MR Insurance) – Disability and Life Insurance
Realty Mogul – Syndicated/Crowdsourced Real Estate Investments
Michael Wagner (BBVA/Compass Bank) – Doctor Mortgages
Chris Roberts (Regions Bank) – Doctor Mortgages

I've stepped up. The blog sponsors have stepped up. Now it's time for you to step up. If this blog has ever saved or made you some money, here is your chance to pay it forward (not back, you know I don't need it.)

You can pay using paypal or any credit card using the paypal donate button below. You can give anonymously or include your name in the box and be recognized for it. $10 puts you at the “bronze level”, $100 gets you to the “silver level” and $500 gets you a “gold level” scholarship sponsorship.

These days the site is visited by 80-100K people every month, 2500+ people read every post I write via an RSS or email feed and 3800+ people receive the newsletter. If even half of those folks chipped in $10 each, think about the difference we could make in the life of a poor indebted professional student.

100% of the money raised for this effort is going to the winning student. I'm not keeping any of it. Will my site get some good publicity out of this and thus make more money? Hopefully. But it's still a win-win-win proposition anyway you look at it. Frankly, the additional publicity is probably going to do more good financially for doctors than any amount of money given away.

4) Volunteer to be a judge

My business manager, family, and I are going to pick the five scholarship finalists from the first 100 essays submitted. Those five essays are going to be posted as guest posts on the site all in one week in September. But we're not choosing the winner. That will be up to a select group of WCI readers. If you would like to volunteer for this position, email me with the words “WCI Scholarship Judge” in the subject line and include a paragraph about why you think you'd be a great judge. If selected, all you have to do is send me an email in September ranking the finalist essays. It's not a paid position, but neither do you have to pay to do it. Actually, I think you'd probably best contribute at least $10 to the scholarship if you want to be a judge. Come on, it's $10. Don't bother applying to be a judge if you're still in school or training by the way, but you can throw $10 into the pool if you like. Also, if you actually know any of the finalists, you will have to recuse yourself.

Thank you readers for all you do for this site and for your colleagues. Please help with this effort in any way you can. We've built a wonderful community here and I hope you consider this “our scholarship” not “my scholarship.”

Comment below to encourage your colleagues to donate (and apply!) Or, just provide some suggestions on how we can make this scholarship better and better every year!