Our Vision:
A student’s social and economic background will NOT inhibit their access to and success in higher education.

2020-2021 NTSAF Governing Board

About The Governing Board

The Norman Topping Student Aid Fund (NTSAF) is the only student initiated, student funded, primarily student administered scholarship in the nation. The Topping Fund is administered by a Governing Board composed of ten general student representatives, one each from USG and GSG, one current Topping Scholar, one current Topping Fellow, two USC alumni, one faculty member, and representatives from the offices of Admission and Financial Aid. The Governing Board selects the scholars every year and oversee the long-term policies and procedures of the NTSAF.

Governing Board selection takes place in the fall of each academic year. The number of appointments is dependent upon the number of open representative seats. Terms of appointments range based on representative status. Board members attend the annual Fall Governing Board Retreat, usually held in late September or early October, and monthly Governing Board meetings throughout the year. Board members should ideally also be available during the summer months for scholarship application reading, interviewing and scholar selection.

Students interested in serving on the Governing Board in should contact the NTSAF office. Benefits of being a student representative include:

  • Service to the university and local community
  • Interaction with incredible applicants and current Topping Scholars.
  • Recruitment and outreach experience
  • Networking with student leaders, faculty and staff

Message From the Chair

Dear Topping Family,

Welcome to a wholly unique school year. A huge part of the Topping experience is closeness – the feeling of having a family on campus, a support system, and a place to belong. Right now, that need for that feeling of family, belonging and support is more important than ever. Although we won’t be able to join one another in the Topping lounge for some time, I want to reassure you that the Board and the Fund Staff remained as committed as ever to supporting you in all of your academic and personal endeavors this year. We will adapt and remain flexible in our outreach and communication practices to ensure that you still are set up to succeed and thrive in every way you can.

Topping was created by students, for students, and is still governed by students. Students are, quite literally, at the center of everything we do. Our mission is to empower our Topping Scholars and Fellows to realize their full potential at USC, in their communities, and in life beyond the University. We must always be guided by this mission, and we commit to always placing our Scholars, Fellows, and the USC Student Body at the center of our decision making. You are the reason we’re here.

This year, the Governing Board has an exciting opportunity to imagine what the future of Topping should be, and work to make that future a reality. The past two years have been filled with rebuilding the foundations of Topping – a new Charter, new Guidelines, and a new Director. Now that all three of these pieces of critical operational infrastructure are in place, the Board can begin building on the foundations. We will work with our communities to envision the long-term future of the Fund, and examine our practices to ensure racial equity, better outreach to communities we serve, and improved resources for our expanding Fellow community, among many other changes. We want to work with you and hear from you throughout this process.

I am so optimistic about the future of the Topping Family and the Fund. The strength of this community has always inspired me, and I am so grateful to be a part of it. Thank you all for your hard work and service to your communities, and please don’t hesitate to reach out if there’s anything the Fund can do for you. It’s time to Fight On, together.


Christopher McMorran

2020-2021 Governing Board Chair