Financing College – Scholarships
What kinds of scholarships are available?
Some scholarships for college are merit-based. You earn them by meeting or exceeding certain standards set by the scholarship-giver. Merit scholarships might be awarded based on academic achievement or on a combination of academics and a special talent, trait, or interest. Other scholarships are based on financial need.
Many scholarships are geared toward particular groups of people; for instance, there are scholarships for women or high school seniors. And some are available because of where you or your parent work, or because you come from a certain background (for instance, there are scholarships for military families). Be aware of the potential application pool!
A scholarship might cover the entire cost of your tuition, or it might be a one-time award of a few hundred dollars. Either way, it’s worth applying for, because it’ll help reduce the cost of your education. Know that you may apply for 20 scholarships and only receive a couple but make sure that you follow the directions and make each application neat and focused to what the sponsor is looking for.
Work from the inside out
Students and their families can easily get overwhelmed by the number of scholarship options they find on the Internet or in the library. So before looking to what's "out there," students should first think about who they are and where they're headed.
1. Student/Family - Organizations of all types and sizes sponsor scholarships, so students should begin their search for scholarships by identifying characteristics that applies to either them or their families: religion, community service, fraternal organizations, military, union, or professional.
Many large companies offer scholarships or tuition programs for children of employees. Student employers like fast food chains, department stores, and supermarkets often give scholarships.
2. School Counseling Office - Any scholarship that comes across my desk is first listed in the Senior Checklist. Next, information for each scholarship (i.e. criteria, application process, application deadline, etc.) is placed in a comprehensive file. Check out my website for a comprehensive list. (See below.)
3. Local Scholarships – Many communities have businesses or organizations that sponsor scholarships for seniors. Dollars for Scholars is a national organizations that assists local chapters in raising money for scholarships. Solon has a local Dollars for Scholars Chapter as well as organizations that provides monies for student scholarships.
Dollars for Scholars and local scholarship information will be shared with seniors either late January 2020 or early February 2020.
4. Colleges and universities - Over 90% of scholarships awarded to graduating high school seniors are given by post-secondary institutions. Thus, students should look into what scholarships are available at the schools that interest them. Check out college websites or catalogs and financial aid offices. These awards can be offered on a university-wide basis, or within a particular college or major. Eligibility can be based on a variety of factors including merit, financial need, intended major, and ethnicity.
- Kirkwood CC http://www.kirkwood.edu/scholarships
- The University of Iowa https://uiowa.edu
- Coe College http://www.coe.edu
5. Online—Finding scholarships is lightning-fast and free on the right Web sites. The trick is to avoid sites that promise information about scholarships, but deliver anything from spam to outright fraud. Students should be cautioned to never pay for scholarship information. A partial list of reputable sites include:
- FastWeb www.fastweb.com/fastweb/
- College Board https://bigfuture.collegeboard.org/scholarship-search
- Iowa College Student Aid Commission https://www.iowacollegeaid.gov
- Iowa College Access Network (ICAN) http://www.icansucceed.org/index.cfm?nodeID=62990&audienceID=1
- Scholarships.com https://www.scholarships.com
2019 - 2020 Comprehensive Scholarship List
The scholarships on these pages are from organizations that provide information to the Counseling Office. This page will be updated when I receive information about a scholarship.
This list does NOT include either any Dollars for Scholars Scholarships or any Local Scholarships. That information will be shared with seniors in late January/early February.
Click on the links to view scholarship information with deadlines
in the designated month.
OCTOBER DEADLINES NOVEMBER DEADLINES
JUNE DEADLINES JULY DEADLINES