NSU 2018 alum Miranda Ristau to receive NCAA Graduate Scholarship

ABERDEEN, S.D. – Northern State University alum Miranda Ristau recently received a $10,000 scholarship from the NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship Committee for her postgraduate studies.

Ristau, of Warner, graduated from Northern in 2018 in Honoribus with a B.A. of Science in Biology with a psychology minor and participated as a student athlete on Northern’s Women’s Basketball team.

To receive this scholarship, Ristau had to submit her honors and awards received, list of volunteer activities, athletic and academic accomplishments, undergraduate transcript and write a personal essay.

“I wrote about how Northern and their athletics department has helped me succeed academically and give me a greater desire to pursue my postgraduate degree in physical therapy,” said Ristau.  

The NCAA awards up to 126 postgraduate scholarships annually to student-athletes within NCAA schools who excel academically. Ristau was one of 21 other female student-athletes chosen to receive this one-time scholarship across the nation.

“I feel like I put a lot of work into receiving this scholarship throughout my undergraduate career,” she said. “Every class, grade, practice, and game led up to me receiving this award, and I felt like I worked so hard during my undergrad to have opportunities like this available to me, and to pursue my dream of becoming a physical therapist. My parents, as well as every teacher and coach of mine has given me the opportunity and challenged me to succeed. I worked hard to graduate summa cum Laude in Honoribus with a 4.0.”

NSU Professor of Art Sara Christensen Blair also lent a major hand in Ristau’s application process.

“I simply started the process online and knew that Miranda has an impeccable academic and athletic record,” said Christensen Blair. “I was elated as we haven’t had a winner since I became a faculty athletics representative in 2013! It was such exciting news! I’m so happy for her and it says a lot about NSU’s academic rigor and athletic achievements.”

Ristau’s scholarship will apply to her graduate studies at the University of South Dakota, where she is set to graduate in 2021 with her doctorate of physical therapy. 

“I’m so grateful for Northern State University and the Aberdeen community, as I wouldn’t be where I am today without them,” Ristau said. “The faculty, staff, and coaches at Northern State University are the best around, and I would like to thank them all once again, along with my family, friends and teammates for everything they have done for me.”

About Northern State University

Northern State University is a regional university that offers outstanding academics and exceptional extracurricular activities at an affordable price on a safe, welcoming campus. Northern State recently announced its Educational Impact Campaign, with a goal of raising $55 million for a new South Dakota School for the Blind and Visually Impaired, new athletic and recreation fields, and an on-campus regional sports complex. Once the campaign is complete, NSU will be the recipient of more than $100 million in privately funded building projects and scholarships within a decade. To learn more, visit NSU Admissions.