Official rules

These Official Rules are specific to the Young & Free Michigan Scholarship Program (The Competition). By participating in The Competition, each entrant agrees to be bound by The Competition Official Rules, which will be posted and available at

Entrants further agree to be bound by the decisions of The Competition Sponsors (Sponsors), which shall be final and binding in all respects. The Sponsors reserve the right to disqualify entrants and/or entries that do not comply with these Competition Official Rules. The Competition is void in whole or in part where prohibited by law.

Competition sponsors

The Competition Sponsors are Michigan First Credit Union and Currency Marketing who own and operate Young & Free Michigan. The scholarship awards are funded by Michigan First Foundation.

Competition dates

  • Entry period begins at 12:00 pm Eastern Time (ET) on January 15, 2014 and ends at 12:00 pm ET on February 10, 2014. 
  • Voting period begins at 12:00 pm ET on February 13, 2014 and ends at 12:00 pm ET on February 19, 2014. 
  • Judging period begins February 19, 2014. 

Announcement of the Winners will take place on or around the week of March 3, 2014.

Entrant eligibility

Each entrant must:

  • Be a member of Michigan First Credit Union.
  • Be a legal resident of the United States.
  • Have a minimum Grade Point Average of 2.8.
  • Be intending to study full-time (minimum of twelve (12) credit hours) in a college or university for the fall 2014 semester.

Each entrant in a high school student category must: 

  • Be currently attending a high school as a senior in Wayne, Oakland, or Macomb County, Michigan. 
  • Or be currently attending high school as a senior anywhere in the United States provided you were a member of Michigan First Credit Union prior to January 15, 2014.

Each entrant in the college student category must:

  • Be between seventeen (17) and twenty-five (25) years-of-age at time of entry.


  • Be currently attending a university, college or community college as a freshman, sophomore, junior, or senior, or in a graduate program.


  • Be a previous high school graduate who did not immediately enter university, college or community college upon high school graduation; if entrant entered the armed forces, he/she must have been honorably discharged. Previous high school graduates must provide an official copy of senior transcripts. Veterans must provide a copy of honorable discharge papers. 

Previous Young & Free Michigan Scholarship Competition winners are not eligible to apply. One exception to this rule is when a high school category winner enters college; he/she becomes eligible for the college category. 

Current paid employees, retirees and representatives of The Sponsors and their respective affiliates, subsidiaries, related companies, agents, associates, dealers, representatives, advertising and promotional agencies – and their immediate family members (including spouse, children, step-children, parents, step-parents, in-law parents, brothers and sisters) – are not eligible to enter to win a scholarship, however they are eligible to vote during the public vote period. Student employees and interns are eligible to apply.

Entry categories

There are three (3) entry categories:

Eligible entrants may enter only once, in one category.

Scholarships to be awarded

Top three (3) scholarships will be awarded in EACH category:

  • Top scholarship $10,000
  • Second scholarship $5,000
  • Third scholarship $3,000

In addition, up to 31 - $1,000 scholarships may be awarded to entrants attending high schools in the Wayne, Oakland, and Macomb counties. The number of additional awards will be dependent on the number of entrants and at the discretion of The Sponsors. At least one $1,000 scholarship will be awarded to one student at each high school with a Michigan First Credit Union branch, if an application is submitted.

How to enter

Application: Complete the detailed online scholarship application form, including attaching a recent photo and the requested supporting documents.

Supporting Documents: Documents required for high school senior categories includes one letter of recommendation on school letterhead signed by a current teacher, counselor or high school administrator, and a copy of your most recent official report card including cumulative GPA, student name and high school name. Document required for the college student category is a copy of your most recent official marks transcript including cumulative GPA, student name and college/high name.

Your Entry:

A VIDEO (we suggest it be sixty (60) seconds or less), or your ESSAY (we suggest it be 300 words or less) answering the question:

What event or person (other than parents) has made the most significant impact in your life? How has that changed you and how will you use this going forward in life?”

To be entered, the application form, in the appropriate category, must be fully completed, and submitted by the entry deadline, including video, or essay and all required supporting documents.

If your entry is not posted within 48 hours, it likely means that your application was incomplete, inaccurate or ineligible. For details and reasons, please contact us at

How to vote

The public may vote for their favorite entry in each category during the vote period by visiting and following the instructions on The Competition website. Voting will be open to the general public.

Vote eligibility

There is a limit of one vote, per person, per legitimate email address, for each category. Votes that do not meet the eligibility criteria will be disqualified.

Votes made with multiple addresses, under multiple identities, or through the use of any device or artifice to enter multiple times or entries that are in excess of the permitted number of entries during The Competition period are automatically void.

Determining winners

  • Scholarship winners will be determined by a combination of public vote and Judging Committee.
  • The Top Ten scholarship candidates in each category will be determined by public vote on the Scholarship Competition page. 
  • The Top Ten finalists’ submissions, in each category, will move forward for review by the Judging Committee to determine the three scholarship winners. 
  • The final judging for the scholarships will be based upon merit of the submissions. 

Judging and evaluation criteria

The Top Ten submissions, including application forms, video or essay submissions,  and all other documentation will be evaluated by the Judging Committee, based the following criteria.

  • Effort, quality, and creativity apparent in the applicant’s video or essay submission. 
  • How well the applicant addressed the question, What event or person (other than parents) has made the most significant impact in your life? How has that changed you and how will you use this going forward in life?” 
  • Work experience, community involvement, volunteer activities and passions. 

The Scholarship Judging Committee members will be appointed by The Sponsors and be comprised of Michigan First Credit Union employees. The decisions of the committee will be final.

Announcing the winners

The scholarship winners will be announced on The recipients will also be contacted by telephone and/or email. Potential recipients who cannot be contacted within seven business days of the public announcement, despite customary diligent efforts, may be disqualified and the next in line winner will be awarded.

Submission eligibility

Your video or essay submission must meet all of the following criteria to be eligible for The Competition:

  • Be intended for a family audience and therefore not contain, depict or refer to any crude, vulgar, obscene, sexually explicit, disparaging, discriminatory, offensive, illegal or otherwise unsuitable language, activity or other content (all as determined by The Sponsors in their sole discretion). 
  • Not contain, depict or refer to any content that disparages or refers negatively to The Sponsors, The Competition, or any other person or entity (all as determined by The Sponsors in their sole discretion). 
  • Not conflict with any of The Sponsor’s core values, or otherwise be objectionable to The Sponsors (as determined by The Sponsors in their sole discretion). 
  • Not contain any content that violates any law or any third party’s rights (including privacy, personality and intellectual property rights, or copyrights). 
  • Not promote, depict or refer to any commercial enterprises other than Michigan First Credit Union or Young & Free Michigan. 
  • Video, meet all guidelines and criteria imposed by YouTube with respect to videos submitted to YouTube. 
  • In the event of a dispute, submissions shall be deemed to be submitted by the authorized account holder of the e-mail address associated with the entry (the “Applicant”). 
  • If a video shows any individual in such a way that the individual can be recognized, you must obtain written consent from that individual to permit The Sponsors to copy, display, transmit and otherwise use the video, and you must provide The Sponsors the original copy of that consent upon The Sponsor’s request.

The Sponsors will not be responsible for any lost, delayed, misdirected, illegible, incomplete, damaged or undeliverable entries, or any delay or failure to transmit, process, receive or consider entries.

In order to be eligible to be awarded the scholarship each recipient must:

Sign a Declaration of Compliance with Rules and Regulations and an Assignment, Release and Indemnity Form, assigning all rights to the video submission to The Sponsors, including all copyrights and releasing The Sponsors, their affiliates and respective advertising and promotions agencies from any liability in connection with The Competition or the scholarships awarded.

Produce valid identification and, if requested by The Sponsors, proof of age and photo identification.

Provide valid identification of Michigan First Credit Union membership.

Confirm that they are the sole producer of the video or writer of the essay and that they own all rights to it and are able to fully assign all rights to The Sponsors as contemplated above.

Disbursement of scholarship awards

  • The scholarship recipients will receive proceeds for the Fall Semester 2014. 
  • A check will be issued directly to the appropriate department/office at the educational institution once the credit union has been notified that registration has been completed (made payable to the institution and recipient).
  • Students must show proof that they are registered for at least twelve (12) credits during the Fall 2014 semester (verification of schedules will be done at the time of disbursement).
  • The funds may be used for any educational related expenses provided these expenses can be paid directly through the financial aid office. 
  • The scholarship funds are to be applied after all other scholarship funds that the recipient receives are exhausted. 
  • If the total amount of the scholarship received exceeds the total expenses incurred by the recipient in completing his/her university/college education, the remaining funds will be applied to the following semester, or forfeited. 


By entering The Competition, you irrevocably and exclusively assign all copyright, without limitation of time, place, medium, support or language, to The Competition Sponsors and waive all legal and moral rights to the video or essay in favor of The Sponsors. Accordingly, you acknowledge that The Sponsors will have the unrestricted and exclusive right to use the video or essay for any purpose, including but not limited to, publishing it in an electronic form on the Young & Free Michigan website for promotional purposes without further compensation.


The Sponsors reserve the right, in their sole discretion, to disqualify any entrant or voter found to be: (a) violating The Competition Rules & Regulations; (b) tampering or attempting to tamper with the entry or voting process or the operation of The Competition; (c) violating the terms of service, conditions of use and/or general rules or guidelines of Young & Free Michigan and/or Michigan First Credit Union; and/or (d) acting in an unsportsmanlike or disruptive manner, or with intent to annoy, abuse, threaten or harass any other person.

Disclaimers, liability, and indemnification

By participating in The Competition, you release and agree to indemnify and hold harmless The Sponsors and their employees, directors, officers, affiliates, agents, judges and advertising and promotional agencies from any and all damages, injuries, claims, causes of actions, or losses of any kind resulting from your participation in The Competition or receipt or use of any award or prize.

The Sponsors shall have no liability for any loss or damage of any videos or essays entered in The Competition or for any other loss or damage resulting directly or indirectly from your participation in The Competition.

Privacy / use of personal information

By participating in The Competition, each applicant entrant (a) grants to The Sponsors the right to use his/her name, mailing address, telephone number, and e-mail address (“Personal Information”) for the purpose of administering The Competition, including but not limited to contacting and announcing the recipients; (b) grants to The Sponsors the right to use his/her Personal Information for publicity and promotional purposes relating to The Competition, in any and all media now known or hereafter devised, without further compensation unless prohibited by law; and (c) acknowledges that The Sponsors may disclose his/her Personal Information to third-party agents and service providers of any of The Sponsor in connection with any of the activities listed in (a) and (b) above. The Sponsors will use the entrant’s Personal Information only for identified purposes, and protect the entrant’s Personal Information in a manner that is consistent with The Sponsor’s Privacy Policy.


If for any reason The Sponsors cannot run The Competition as planned, (including as a result of bugs, tampering, unauthorized intervention, fraud, technical failures, infection by computer virus or any other cause that corrupts, impairs or affects the administration, security, fairness, integrity, or proper conduct of The Competition) The Sponsors reserve the right to cancel, modify, extend or suspend The Competition. In that event, The Sponsors may determine the winner from among the eligible entries received up to the time of the impairment, or cancel The Competition.

Language discrepancy

In the event of any discrepancy or inconsistency between the terms and conditions of The Competition rules and regulations and disclosures or other statements contained in any Competition-related materials, including but not limited to The Competition application form, or point of sale, print or online advertising, the terms and conditions of these rules and regulations shall prevail, govern and control.

Scholarship details

Key dates

  • Entry deadline: 
    Monday, February 10 at Noon
  • Public voting:
    February 13 to 19 at Noon
  • Judging:
    February 19 to March 3 at Noon
  • Winners announced: Week of March 3