Financial Aid and Scholarships for Minorities

According to research, the average cost of tuition for an in-state student at a public university in the United States has increased by 296% over the past 20 years. At the same time, wages in the U.S. have barely grown in that same time. College students are graduating with more debt than ever.

Statistics indicate that minority students often graduate with more debt than their peers.

Fortunately, federal grants and scholarships for minorities can significantly lighten the financial load for these students.

The U.S. Department of Education recently invested $96 million in grants to provide additional financial aid specifically for minority students. This grant funding will go directly to colleges and universities to help them provide better financial support to their minority populations.

Minority students who receive federal grants and loans to help finance their college educations often could use some additional funding to help them bridge financial gaps. Scholarships for minorities are of tremendous help to these students, but finding the right scholarships to apply to is not always an easy task. To help you in your search for additional funding, we have compiled a list of some of the top minority scholarships. Read on to find a detailed list of these scholarships, including eligibility requirements, deadlines, and information on how to apply.


Scholarships for Black Students

Scholarships

Davis Scholarship for Women in STEM 2017 Up to $5,000

Deadline
June 9, 2017

Requirements

  • Female
  • Majoring in STEM field
  • Full-time enrollment at UNCF member-school
  • 3.0 GPA or higher

Additional Info
Preference given to students from Massachusetts, but all U.S. residents welcome to apply.

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Thurgood Marshall College Fund Scholarships for African Americans Up to $3,000

Deadline
Varies

Requirements

  • Be enrolled as a full-time student
  • Be a junior or senior in college the fall following the scholarship application cycle
  • Maintain a GPA of 2.5 or higher

Additional Info
Students with demonstrated unmet financial need are given preference.

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Thurgood Marshall College Fund African American Scholarships $500-$10,000

Deadline
TBA

Requirements

  • Be enrolled as a full-time college student
  • Attend one of 47 TMCF member-schools
  • Have a minimum 3.0 GPA
  • Be a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident

Additional Info
Students should demonstrate leadership qualities, service experience, and must be recommended by faculty at their current school.

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Jackie Robinson Foundation Scholarship Program Up to $28,000

Deadline
February 15, 2018

Requirements

  • Must be a graduating high school senior
  • Have plans to attend an accredited 4-year college or university
  • Meet SAT/ACT score requirements
  • Be a U.S. citizen with evidence of financial need

Additional Info
Scholarship application opens November 1, 2017

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The Hubertus W.V. Willems Scholarship for Male Students $3,000

Deadline
TBA

Requirements

  • Be majoring in engineering, chemistry, physics, or mathematical sciences
  • Be a U.S. citizen
  • Be enrolled or accepted at accredited U.S. college/university
  • Demonstrate financial need

Additional Info
Graduating high school students must have minimum 2.5 GPA. Graduate students must have a 3.0 GPA. NAACP membership and participation is desirable.

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Blacks at Microsoft Scholarships $4,000

Deadline
March 1, 2018

Requirements

  • Must be a high school senior of African descent
  • Plan to pursue bachelor’s degree in engineering, computer science, computer information systems, or select business programs at four-year institution
  • Have minimum 3.3 cumulative GPA
  • Demonstrate financial need

Additional Info
Applicants send in two letters of recommendation, a resume, a picture of themselves, a transcript, and two essays.

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The Agnes Jones Jackson Scholarship $2,000

Deadline
TBA

Requirements

  • Be a current NAACP member
  • Be a U.S. citizen
  • Be younger than 25 by application deadline
  • Be enrolled or accepted at accredited institution in U.S.
  • Demonstrate financial need

Additional Info
High school seniors and undergrad students must have at least a 2.5 GPA. Graduate students must have a 3.0 GPA.

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George Washington Carver Scholarship Fund Varies

Deadline
May 30, 2018

Requirements

  • Must attend HBCU
  • Demonstrate financial need
  • Demonstrate leadership ability and at least 40 hours of volunteer work
  • Official enrollment in an approved field

Additional Info
Applicants must participate in both RADIOTHONS (dates TBD)

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Professional Organizations for African American Students

  • UNCF: In addition to offering African American scholarships, UNCF provides a number of support programs for African American students to help them apply to college, stay in college, reach their educational goals, and network professionally. UNCF also works with 37 partner colleges to help ensure the retention and success of students.
  • NAACP: The NAACP is an advocacy organization that promotes equality and civil rights for African Americans. The NAACP also hosts conventions, award ceremonies, professional networking events, and policy forums for members. Additionally, the association works with the Poise Foundation to provide African American scholarships and other resources for college students.
  • NBMBAA: The NBMBAA is one of the country’s largest professional organizations for minorities. It provides internship opportunities, African American scholarships, and business education resources to college students. Additionally, it offers an annual conference, access to a network of over 9,000 professional members, job coaching, a job search board, GMAT test prep, and more.
  • NSBE: The NSBE is an invaluable resource for African American engineering students and professionals. The organization provides internship opportunities for students, job search tools, conferences, camps, conventions, and more. It also provides information about scholarship opportunities for members and helps members connect with corporate partners to learn more about professional opportunities.

Scholarships for Latinos/Latina Students and Hispanic Students

Scholarships

Hispanic Scholarship Fund $500-$5,000

Deadline
2018 deadline TBA

Requirements

  • Be of Hispanic heritage
  • Have minimum 3.0 GPA for high school students; minimum 2.5 GPA for college and graduate students
  • Enrolled full-time in accredited, not-for-profit, four-year institution during fall of scholarship cycle
  • Be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident, DACA or eligible non-citizen

Additional Info
There is an emphasis on STEM majors, but students of all majors and graduate fields are welcome to apply.

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Gates Millennium Scholars Program Varies

Deadline
2018 deadline TBA

Requirements

  • Hispanic American, African American, American Indian/Alaska Native, Asian & Pacific Islander American Students
  • U.S. citizens or legal permanent residents
  • A minimum 3.3 GPA
  • Meet Federal Pell Grant eligibility requirements
  • Plans to enroll at accredited four-year institution in U.S.

Additional Info
Students should be able to demonstrate leadership abilities through community service hours or other activities

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Adelante Scholarships for Hispanics $1,000-$3,000

Deadline
June 4, 2017

Requirements

  • Be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident
  • Be of Hispanic descent
  • Have full-time or part-time enrollment status at a college or university

Additional Info
Each scholarship offered by the foundation has slightly different requirements, all of which are specified on the foundation website.

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ALPFA Collegiate Scholarships $1,000-$10,000

Deadline
June 1, 2017

Requirements

  • Be of Hispanic heritage
  • Paid ALPFA

Additional Info
Each scholarship offered by the foundation has slightly different requirements, all of which are specified on the foundation website.

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AICPA Scholarship for Minority Accounting Students $1,000-$5,000

Deadline
May 15, 2017

Requirements

  • Must be an ethnic minority pursuing an undergraduate or graduate degree in accounting (or a related major) as a full-time student
  • Attend a not-for-profit university in the U.S.
  • Plan to pursue the CPA license
  • Hold at least a 3.0 GPA
  • A U.S. resident
  • An AICPA Student Affiliate member with plans to participate in AICPA Legacy Scholars program

Additional Info
More details on scholarship eligibility requirements are listed on the scholarship website.

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AfterCollege STEM Inclusion Scholarship $500

Deadline
June 30, 2017

Requirements

  • Currently enrolled students pursuing degrees in science, technology, engineering, or mathematics
  • Student must be from a group underrepresented* in their field
  • Minimum 3.0 GPA

Additional Info
*Underrepresented groups defined by gender, race, ethnic background, disability, sexual orientation, etc.

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Professional Organizations for Hispanic Students

  • Latino College Dollars: Latino College Dollars is an online search tool for finding Latino scholarships and other college funding opportunities for Latino students. The site is run by the Hispanic Scholarship Fund and provides access to over $2.4 million worth of scholarship possibilities. For students applying to colleges, the site also offers a college search tool.
  • NCLR: NCLR is a research, advocacy, and policy organization for Latino Americans. NCLR works with high schools and colleges across the country to help promote equality for Latino students. Additionally, NCLR works with over 300 affiliate organizations to help provide Latino Americans with better access to jobs, education, and more.
  • HACU: HACU works with over 470 post-secondary institutions to provide services and resources to Latino college students. The association also offers internships, scholarships, and college retention programs to Latino students around the world. HACU’s job readiness programs help recent college graduates find fulfilling careers and apply what they learned in college to their careers.
  • ALPFA: ALPFA is a professional association for Latino Americans that provides them with networking opportunities, career development programs, and career search tools. Over 72,000 professional and student members belong to ALPFA. Its regional student symposiums, which take place around the United States, provide college students with professional workshops and opportunities to network with key business leaders in their areas.

Scholarships for Native Americans

Scholarships

ACS Scholars Program Up to $5,000

Deadline
March 1, 2018

Requirements

  • Be American Indian, African-American, or Hispanic/Latino
  • Be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident
  • Be full-time student at high school or accredited institution
  • Intending to or already majoring in chemistry, biochemistry, chemical engineering, or other chemically-related science
  • Demonstrate 3.0 GPA or better in chemistry or science
  • Demonstrate financial need

Additional Info
Students intending to enter pre-med programs or those pursuing a pharmacy degree are not eligible for this scholarship.

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American Indian College Fund Scholarship Programs Varies

Deadline
May 31, 2018

Requirements

  • U.S. citizen or Canadian citizen eligible to attend college in U.S.
  • Enrolled full-time in certificate, undergraduate, or graduate program at an accredited nonprofit institution
  • Registered member of federal- or state-recognized tribe/descendant of at least one grandparent or parent who is an enrolled member
  • Minimum 2.0 GPA

Additional Info
GPA requirements may vary depending on the scholarship.

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AIGC Native American Scholarships Varies

Deadline
2018 deadline TBA

Requirements

  • Proof of tribal membership or eligibility
  • Full-time enrollment status at a college or university

Additional Info
Requirements of specific awards may vary slightly. Details are specified on the organization website.

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American Indian Education Fund Scholarships $1,000-$2,000

Deadline
2018 deadline TBA

Requirements

  • Documentation of tribal enrollment for student or student’s parent
  • Minimum 2.0 GPA for undergraduate students and 2.5 GPA for graduate students
  • Enrolled full-time in accredited institution

Additional Info
Requirements of awards for undergraduate and graduate students vary. Details are specified on the organization website.

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CSDIW Native American Scholarship $5,000

Deadline
June 15, 2017

Requirements

  • An enrolled tribal member with plans to work with Native Americans in the fields of education or social service
  • Accepted or planning to attend accredited institution as an undergraduate student
  • Minimum 3.0 GPA

Additional Info
Students entering their junior year of undergraduate studies preferred.

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Cobell Scholarships Varies

Deadline
June 15, 2017

Requirements

  • An enrolled tribal member of federally-recognized tribe
  • Enrolled as full-time student
  • Attending or planning to attend nationally, regionally, and industry accredited nonprofit institution
  • Pursuing certificate/diploma, associate, bachelor’s master’s, doctoral, or professional degree

Additional Info
2018/2019 scholarship applications will be available December 2017.

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NTUA Scholarship $2,000

Deadline
2018 deadline TBA

Requirements

  • Enrolled full-time in field of study related to multi-service utility industry
  • Minimum GPA of 2.0 for undergraduate work or 3.0 for graduate work

Additional Info
Details of eligibility criteria outlined on scholarship website.

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AISES National Conference Travel Scholarships $2,000

Deadline
July 15, 2017

Requirements

  • Pursuing a degree in a STEM field
  • Enrolled as full-time student during fall 2017 at two-year or four-year institution
  • A minimum 3.0 GPA
  • Enrolled member/citizen or descendent of one; Native Hawaiians also eligible
  • Member of AISES

Additional Info
AISES membership can be obtained here.

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Professional Organizations for Native American Students

  • AIBL: AIBL strives to increase representation among Native Americans and Alaska natives in the business world through professional development and leadership education. AIBL specifically works with business students in American colleges to provide them with the resources they need to run businesses and take on business leadership positions when they graduate from college.
  • NNABA: NNABA is a professional association for Native American lawyers and law students. The association is also involved in initiatives that seek to advance justice for Native Americans. NNABA provides law students with valuable resources to advance their careers and offers scholarships for Native Americans who are studying law.
  • National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development: The National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development is a non-profit organization that provides resources and assistance to tribal businesses and promotes tribal economic development. The organization also offers scholarships to Native Americans who are studying business in college. Additionally, the organization holds conferences and other networking events for those interested in becoming business leaders.

Scholarships for Asians and Scholarships for Pacific Islanders

Scholarships

Asian Pacific Fund Scholarship Programs $1,000-$5,000

Deadline
Varies

Requirements

  • Enrollment as a full-time college student or acceptance to college/university
  • Demonstrate financial need
  • Proof of academic excellence

Additional Info
Eligibility criteria for each scholarship program varies and is outlined on the scholarship website. Scholarships only open to students at California institutions.

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KASF Scholarships $500-$5,000

Deadline
2018 deadline TBA

Requirements

  • Student of Korean heritage studying in the U.S.
  • Enrolled full-time as undergraduate, graduate, or high school student
  • Minimum 3.0 GPA

Additional Info
If funds are available, non-Korean students may qualify for some scholarships (specifically, descendents of American veterans who served during the Korean War).

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APIASF Scholarships for Asians $2,500-$20,000

Deadline
2018 deadline TBA

Requirements

  • Be of Asian and/or Pacific Islander ethnicity
  • Be a U.S. citizen/legal permanent resident, or citizen of the Republic of the Marshall Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, or Republic of Palau
  • Enrolled as undergraduate student at U.S. accredited institution
  • Minimum 2.7 GPA

Additional Info
Preference is given to students who live at/below the poverty level, are the first in their family to attend college, are representative of the AAPI community, and have demonstrated leadership and community service.

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The Asian Women in Business Scholarship Fund $2,500

Amount
2018 deadline TBA

Deadline
January 8, 2017

Requirements

  • Female of Asian or Pacific Islander ancestry
  • U.S. citizen or permanent resident

Additional Info
Students must also meet one or more of the additional eligibility requirements listed on the scholarship website.

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USPAACC College Scholarships $3,000-$5,000

Deadline
Varies

Requirements

  • High school senior of Asian Pacific Island heritage (except for Bruce Lee Scholarship)
  • A citizen or permanent resident of the U.S.
  • Planning full-time study at U.S. accredited institution
  • Demonstrate financial need
  • Minimum 3.3 GPA

Additional Info
Specific eligibility requirements for scholarships may vary. Award recipients are expected to attend a CelebrAsian Procurement Conference, among other requirements.

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Filipino American Psychology Scholarship $500

Deadline
2018 deadline TBA

Requirements

  • A graduating senior planning to pursue a PhD or MA in psychology studies or graduate student in first two years of psychology studies
  • Filipino American

Additional Info
Applicants must meet objective guidelines and selection criteria as specified on scholarship website.

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AAJA Scholarships $500-$2,000

Deadline
Varies

Requirements

  • Be pursuing or planning to pursue career in Journalism
  • Be committed to AAJA’s mission

Additional Info
Eligibility criteria for each scholarship varies and is outlined on the scholarship website.

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Professional Organizations for Asian and Pacific Islander Students

  • NAAAP: NAAAP is a professional association for Asian and Pacific Islander business leaders and business students. The association facilitates professional development workshops, an Asian Pacific Islander scholarship, conferences, community service, and networking events. NAAAP’s career center is a great resource for college students looking for internships and recent college graduates looking to jumpstart their careers.
  • Ascend: Ascend is a professional association and network of Pan-Asian business executives and business students. Ascend’s many conventions, networking galas, and professional development workshops provide student members with opportunities to practice their elevator pitches and hone their entrepreneurial skills. Additionally, Ascend’s career center provides students with a number of relevant job and internship listings.
  • AABDC: The Asian American Business Development Center (AABDC) facilitates learning programs for Asian and Pacific Islander business executives and students. With a focus on helping members develop global business skills, the organization’s professional development offerings introduce members to international business practices and information about the shifting global market.

Scholarships for Undocumented Students

Scholarships

We The Living Essay Submission Contest $300-$3,000

Deadline
Varies

Requirements

  • Be pursuing or planning to pursue career in Journalism
  • Be committed to AAJA’s mission

Additional Info
Eligibility criteria for each scholarship varies and is outlined on the scholarship website.

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Golden Door Scholars Scholarships for Undocumented Students Varies

Deadline
2018 deadline TBA

Requirements

  • Proof of undocumented status with DACA or TPS approval
  • Be a high school senior or recent high school graduate
  • Demonstrate academic excellence

Additional Info
Preference goes to students from states that require them to pay out-of-state tuition.

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Ascend Educational Fund $2,500-$20,000

Deadline
2018 deadline TBA

Requirements

  • Student or both student’s parents must have been born outside the U.S.
  • Graduating senior at NYC high school
  • Plan to enroll full-time at accredited institution

Additional Info
Recipients will be chosen based on demonstrated values such as hard work, academic achievement, leadership, and commitment to the community.

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CORE’s Que Llueva Café Scholarship Varies

Deadline
2018 deadline TBA

Requirements

  • Be a graduating high school senior
  • Be a college-bound, undocumented student

Additional Info
Recipients are chosen based on personal stories, extracurricular involvement, and academic promise.

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COFEM Mexican-American Dream Scholarship $500-$1,000

Deadline
2018 deadline TBA

Requirements

  • Be considered undocumented, benefiting from AB-540 or DACA, or a member/related to a member of a COFEM-affiliated club
  • Full-time student at four-year institution or two-year community college
  • Minimum 2.5 GPA
  • Demonstrate financial need
  • Attending school in counties of LA, Orange, Riverside, Inland Empire, or Ventura

Additional Info
Recipients are expected to attend an annual scholarship reception. Details of eligibility requirements outlined on website.

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Professional Organizations for Undocumented Students

  • E4FC: E4FC provides legal services, outreach programs, and financial assistance to undocumented college students. E4FC also works with undocumented students pursuing careers in health to provide them with additional training, professional opportunities, and advocacy services. Additionally, E4FC provides mini grants to recent college graduates in the San Francisco area to help them achieve their career goals.
  • MALDEF: MALDEF is a Latino civil rights organization with a focus on advocating for undocumented students and professionals in the U.S. MALDEF offers a number of community education programs throughout the country, and professional and legal assistance for undocumented students. MALDEF’s online library of resources contains in-depth information about policies that affect undocumented college students.
  • Dream Resource Center: The Dream Resource Center’s mission is to increase access to higher education for every student, including undocumented students. The center provides tips for picking the right college, applying to college, applying to scholarships, and financing educational costs. Additionally, the Dream Resource Center provides information to help students align their college degree plans with their future career goals.


Types of Funding

Scholarships

A scholarship is a payment made from a post-secondary institution or third-party organization to help fund a student’s education. Scholarships are typically awarded to students based on academic merit, leadership in the community, extra-curricular involvement, or financial need. Scholarships are often awarded on a yearly basis, and many can be renewed for up to four years if a student maintains a certain GPA. Scholarships can be used to cover expenses for tuition, room and board, and books. Unlike loans, they do not need to be repaid after graduation.

Grants

Grants help college students pay for academic expenses and often come from the federal government. Pell Grants, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants, Academic Competitiveness Grants, and SMART Grants are some of the most common types of federal grants students receive. Students are given these grants based on need, academic merit, and other factors. The federal government does not typically consider cultural heritage or ethnicity when selecting grant recipients, but many minority students benefit from federal grants. Some corporations, private organizations, and post-secondary institutions do offer grants to minority students specifically. Minority grants for college are awarded based on cultural heritage and need. Non-minority grants that target specific populations such as students with disabilities are also available. Grants do not need to be repaid.

Work Study

The Federal Work Study Program works with approximately 3,400 post-secondary institutions to provide part-time work for students to help them pay for educational expenses. Work study opportunities are awarded to students based on financial need, and participating students work directly for their colleges or universities, often in community service capacities or in roles related to their majors. Students receive no less than federal minimum wage for their work. The mission of the Federal Work Study Program is to guarantee that the college students demonstrating the most financial need are able to find part-time jobs while they are in school.

Federal Student Loans

The federal government offers Stafford Loans, Perkins Loans, and PLUS loans to help students fund undergraduate expenses. Stafford and Perkins Loans are awarded to students based on financial need and boast relatively low interest rates and flexible repayment options. PLUS loans are given to the parents of college students to help them pay for the college tuitions and expenses of their sons and daughters. Federal student loans can either be subsidized or unsubsidized. If a loan is subsidized, the federal government pays for the interest it accrues while a student is in school. If a loan is unsubsidized, it accrues interest while a student is in school, which the student must pay after graduating. Students typically do not have to start paying off either type of loan until six months after college graduation.

Private Loans

If scholarships, grants, and federal loans do not cover all of a student’s educational costs, private loans are an option. Private loans are issued by private financial institutions, and they require credit history checks. Because many college students do not have much credit history, private loans often require co-signers. The interest rates on private loans tend to be higher than the interest rates on federal loans. Additionally, most private loans are unsubsidized, which means they accrue interest while students are in school. Private loans are also not eligible for federal loan consolidation and repayment programs. They must be paid off separately from federal loans, on timelines decided by the involved private lenders.

Filing the FAFSA

Filing a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is a critical step for college students who wish to determine whether they are eligible for financial aid in the form of federal grants, federal loans, and work study opportunities. Once a FAFSA is processed, a student’s college or university receives a specific amount of funding to distribute to the student in the form of federal grants or loans. Some scholarship programs also require that students file a FAFSA before applying.

Students complete the FAFSA by filling out a paper copy and sending it to the U.S. Department of Education or by filling out an online FAFSA form. Both paper and online versions of the FAFSA are offered in English and Spanish. A student must have a social security number to file a FAFSA. Undocumented students with DACA approval may be able to obtain a social security number and apply for federal financial aid. The annual deadline to submit a FAFSA is June 30. Financial assistance is often awarded on a first-come-first-serve basis. Students who submit their FAFSAs early may receive more robust funding packages, and students who miss the deadline may be ineligible for financial aid from the federal government.


Scholarship Application Tips

  • Make an impression with admissions offices as you apply to colleges. Colleges and universities award a large number of scholarships to their students. Oftentimes, you are automatically considered for these scholarships when you send in your application. Individual institutions also often award scholarships and grants specifically to minority students. Scholarships are not guaranteed with acceptance to a college or university, though. They are often awarded to students who wow admissions committees with impressive applications, stellar essays, and extensive community involvement.
  • Estimate how much money you will need in terms of loans and scholarships. If you demonstrate a significant amount of financial need, there is a good chance that you will receive a significant amount of funding from your college and/or the federal government. This may not cover all of your costs, however. Use financial aid calculators to figure out how much money you’ll need from third-party scholarships and loans to cover the rest of your expenses. This will help you figure out which scholarships to apply to and how aggressively you should try to win scholarships.
  • Create a spreadsheet of scholarships with deadlines. As you research scholarship opportunities, keep a list of the ones you want to apply to in a spreadsheet. This will help you keep track of deadlines and any other applicable information you will need later when you start applying. Staying organized will help you ensure that you don’t forget to apply to any scholarships or miss any deadlines.
  • Ask for letters of recommendation early. The majority of scholarship applications ask for letters of recommendation. When you ask teachers and mentors to write letters of recommendation for your college applications, you may also want to ask if they would feel comfortable giving you copies. You may be able to use these in scholarship applications, which means they won’t have to take the time to upload or send additional letters when you apply.
  • Make sure you let your personality shine in scholarship essays. If you’re applying to minority scholarships or any type of scholarships, you want to stand out. Being a good student isn’t always enough to win you a scholarship. Write about any challenges you’ve faced, and write about what it has been like to be a minority student in high school. If you can insert some humor into your essays, go for it. The more memorable and unique your essay, the better.
  • Treat applying to scholarships as a numbers game. There will be several other qualified students applying to the scholarships on your radar. Keep this in mind, and try not to take it personally if you don’t get chosen for certain scholarships. Keep applying. The more scholarships you apply to, the more likely you are to be chosen as a recipient.
  • Watch out for scams. Unfortunately, some people make up fake scholarships to get personal information from students and exploit them. Make sure you do enough research to guarantee that a scholarship is credible before you apply. Do not give any personal information to a scholarship fund that doesn’t seem legitimate. Additionally, if a scholarship’s website seems as though it hasn’t been updated in a couple of years, you might want to consider passing on it.
  • Tailor your application to your audience. Take a good look at each scholarship foundation’s mission and try to envision what type of applicant they are most likely to select. In your application, highlight aspects of your background and experience that you think are aligned with their mission. If they mention that they value community service, for instance, make sure you mention your volunteer work in your application. You should not expect to turn in the same essay to every scholarship foundation. Figure out what each one is looking for specifically.
  • Show, don’t tell. You may have heard your English teacher say, “show, don’t tell” regarding good writing. This essentially means that you provide concrete examples instead of making broad statements. You should try your best to do this in your scholarship applications. For instance, rather than writing that you “are a hard worker” in your essays, consider outlining your specific academic achievements, extra-curricular activities, and part-time jobs. This will show that you’re a hard worker.
  • Triple-check your applications. Careless mistakes and omissions can sometimes cost you a scholarship when the competition is fierce. Make sure you thoroughly review each application before you submit it to ensure that you aren’t forgetting any important points or neglecting to fill in any mandatory fields. It can also be beneficial to have a friend or family member look over your applications before you submit them. They might notice small errors you missed.


Additional Scholarship Resources

  • FAFSA This is the website where students can fill out a FAFSA form to figure out which types of financial aid they can receive. It should be the one of the first resources students use in their quest to finance their college educations. Students should keep in mind that filing a FAFSA requires a social security number and information about their families’ incomes.
  • U.S. Department of Education Funding Information This site provides students with additional information about federal loans and grants. It offers resources about loan repayment options, consolidation, and payment plans. It is also a source of helpful links to information about specific lenders students may be borrowing from and how to get in touch with those lenders.
  • U.S. News and World Report’s Paying for College This section of the U.S. News and World Report website is full of relevant information about loans, scholarships, budgeting while in college, saving for college expenses, paying for an online education, and more. College students who feel like they should brush up on financial literacy topics will find that this resource brings a lot to the table.
  • Fastweb A search tool for scholarship opportunities for college students, Fastweb is a great starting point in a student’s search for financial assistance. Fastweb also provides resources and links to help students figure out how to pay for college. Additionally, the site offers career advice and a college search tool.
  • Unigo Unigo is an online database of college, scholarship, internship, and student loan options. It also provides information about possible college majors and career paths for students based on their majors. Unigo has a particularly useful list of scholarships that minority students are eligible to apply for based on factors such as financial need, extracurricular interests, and academic achievement.
  • Forbes High Dollar Scholarship List College students and high school seniors who are looking for some of the highest paying scholarships will benefit from perusing this list. These scholarship awards provide students with up to $50,000 in annual funding, which can certainly make a dent in overall college costs. Many of these scholarships are looking for students who demonstrate both financial need and academic accomplishments.
  • FinAid Calculators FinAid’s innovative calculators help students figure out how much their post-secondary educations will cost, how much they should try to save for college, and how much they should seek in funding in terms of loans, grants, and scholarships. They also help students calculate things like interest on unsubsidized loans and the amount they will pay for loans post-graduation.