Department of Physics

Scholarship opportunities

Physics Freshmen Scholarship

The Physics Freshmen Scholarship is designed to attract highly qualified students in the fields of Physics, Physics Teacher Education, and Engineering Physics who will be studying at the Macomb Campus. Priority will be given to students who submit their scholarship application by the September 12th deadline, but applications are accepted even through the summer months if funds are still available.
To be considered for this scholarship, please complete the Scholarship Application for Entering Freshmen found here:

Memorial Scholarships:

All of the named Physics Scholarships that follow below remember and honor a former student alumnus or a former professor that believed in and supported the quality education that the WIU Physics Department provides for its students. These scholarships are all awarded during the fall semester (usually in September) to current students. To apply, please fill out the Physics Scholarship Application (fillable pdf format) during the first three weeks of the fall semester, and attach it to an email directed to Dr. Boley at

Gladwyn L. Barrett Scholarship:

Dr. Gladwyn Barrett was a professor of Physics at Western Illinois University for many years. This scholarship is meant to assist outstanding undergraduate students at any level majoring in Physics.

Donald R. Bride Scholarship:

The Donald R. Bride Scholarship is awarded to an undergraduate Physics major at any level with an outstanding academic record.

Walter E. Eller Scholarship:

The Walter E. Eller Award was endowed in honor of his long career at this teaching physics at this university. It is awarded to an undergraduate physics major with junior standing in physics and at least an overall 3.5 GPA. Extra-curricular activities are also taken into account when awarding this scholarship.

Roger and Jean Morrow Scholarship:

Drs. Roger and Jean Morrow were dedicated science professors at Western Illinois University and Dr. Roger Morrow served for many years as the Physics Department Chair. This scholarship is awarded to a student demonstrating the potential to make a contribution to the overall advancement of Physics, and preference is given to a student wishing to teach physics.

Frank E. Rodeffer Scholarship:

Frank Rodeffer earned his Physics degree from Western Illinois University in 1961 and has remained committed to the quality education of Physics students ever since that time. He has been a long-term supporter of this department and its programs. This scholarship is awarded to an undergraduate Physics major with a junior standing in physics and with an overall and major GPA of 3.0. Preference is given to an underrepresented minority with financial need and an expressed desire to pursue a career in Physics.

Peggy J. Rodeffer Scholarship:

The Peggy Rodeffer Scholarship was endowed by Frank Rodeffer in memory of his wife, Peggy, who passed away in November 2011. Peggy Rodeffer was a resident of Macomb and a supporter of Western Illinois University. This scholarship recognizes the qualities of hard work and perseverance in Physics majors. Preference will be given to a female student with a junior standing in the physics major and an expressed desire to pursue a career in physics. All female students of physics, both graduate and undergraduate, are strongly encouraged to apply for this scholarship.

Charles R. and Nancy L. Shoemate Scholarship:

Charles and Nancy Shoemate were both Western Illinois University alumni and believed in the importance of logical and critical thinking and its impact on the future of our country through helping deserving physics teachers. This scholarship is awarded to an undergraduate Physics major with a junior standing in physics and a minimum 3.0 GPA, preferably pursuing a teaching career in Physics.

Physics General Scholarship:

The Physics General Scholarship comes from alumni contributions to our scholarship funds on an annual basis and may be awarded to undergraduate or graduate students that show both academic promise in the field of physics and demonstrate a financial need.


Logo of the Research Inspiring Student Excellence (RISE) program of the Physics Department, College of Arts and Sciences, WIU.

Research Inspiring Student Excellence (RISE) program of the Physics Department, College of Arts and Sciences, WIU. The goal of the RISE program is to provide students with unique research and academic opportunities to enhance their professional development.

Women in Science:

Women in Science

The mission of the WIU Women in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (WIU-WIS) is to foster research and scholarly activities, to provide opportunities and to encourage the advancement of women in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) disciplines. A successful and productive academic and research career for young women is cultivated by a strong network of mentors/advisors and collaborators. WIU-WIS connects female students in the College of Arts and Sciences majoring in Biology, Clinical Laboratory Science, Chemistry, Forensic Chemistry, Geology, Mathematics, Meteorology and Physics with research advisors and WIS faculty mentors. Our goal is for these connections to foster personal and professional developments that will attract young women to the STEM disciplines and keep them in STEM fields for life.