Scholarships may be offered by colleges, businesses, foundations and other private organizations. Some scholarships are renewable each year. Most require that the student maintain a certain GPA or meet other criteria in order to keep the scholarship.

Scholarships may vary in amount from just a few hundred dollars to a “full-ride” – meaning almost all college expenses such as tuition, books, housing, etc. Students should apply for all scholarships for which they may be eligible. Several small scholarships can be just as helpful as one large one. Scholarships do not have to be re-paid.

There are two basic types of scholarships:

Merit Scholarships are available to students who excel in one or more areas. For example, students who have very high GPA’s and ACT or SAT scores, or who have demonstrated strong leadership potential, or who have excelled in sports, music, or an academic area are good candidates for a merit scholarship.

Need-based Scholarships are available to students who face or have overcome particular challenges. For example, there are scholarships for students with disabilities, scholarships for students from low-income families, scholarships for first generation college students, scholarships for students from specific ethnic or racial backgrounds, etc. Even though the primary purpose is to assist students with financial need, merit (academic achievement and other factors) is usually considered.

Search the institutions web page for leadership, endowment, departmental scholarships and so on. Once you are attending college, continue to look for new and old scholarship opportunities.

Scholarship Resources

  • Get organized! Some of the work you do such as essay's, letters of recommendation and resume's can be applied to multiple scholarships.
  • Meet the scholarship donor's goals. Ask yourself, what are the formal and informal requirements?
  • Read the directions, qualifications and fine print carefully.
  • Understand the question and make sure your answers are accurate, concrete and thoughtful.
  • Get involved in your family, school, community and church. Most scholarships are looking for more than just GPA and ACT/SAT scores.
  • Complete the application in it's entirety.
  • Have others edit your application.
  • Submit a clean and neat application.
  • Submit the application ON TIME!
  • Don't be afraid to ask questions.