Scholarships for College Students
In this article we will take a look at hot scholarships for college students. When looking at scholarships there are several categories of scholarships to consider, such as academic scholarships, citizenship scholarships, need-based scholarships, and company sponsored scholarships (such as a Gate’s Foundation Millennium scholarship). Scholarships also come in different “sizes” from scholarships that completely pay for college student expenses to a minor scholarship for a smaller amount (like a $250 “citizenship” scholarship). So as we try and figure out what the hottest scholarship opportunities are for college students we have to consider what we want out of the scholarship. Are we looking for a full ride to college or maybe a smaller scholarship to just help reduce college expenses?
Full Ride Scholarships for College
If we are looking for scholarships for college students needing a “full ride” scholarship then we need to look at academic scholarships and athletic scholarships. These scholarships are some of the hardest to achieve, as they have the most requirements to qualify for, but if you have good grades, a very high SAT or ACT score, or are an exceptional athlete these may be just what you are looking for.
Generally for an academic scholarship you need a grade point average of at least 3.5 (although higher is better) and a very high ACT or SAT test score. Generally extracurricular activities, while not required, enhance the probability that you can be selected for this type of a scholarship. Some examples of this type of scholarship are – University Presidential Scholarships, National Achievement Scholarships, and National Merit Scholarships. Generally academic scholarships generally cover most if not all academic expenses (although some cover less so make sure you double check!). If you have a great grade point average and did well on your college entrance exams than these hot scholarships are for you.
College Athletic Scholarships
Athletic scholarships are generally only available to recognized high school or college athletes, but also have some lesser academic requirements. Generally they are only open to students who have graduated from high school, maintained a 2.0 grade point average, and have met all other athletic requirements to compete in their chosen sport. Generally athletic scholarships are limited by athletic rules and as a result when they are offered they are generally “full ride” scholarships. If you are an accomplished athlete these hot scholarships may be just what you are looking for.
“Other” Scholarship Opportunities
If neither of these groups of scholarships look like they will fit with your abilities, don’t despair – there are many other options. Some of the most popular scholarships are “citizenship” scholarships, “corporate” scholarships, and need-based scholarships. “Citizenship” scholarships are generally available for people who have been active in extracurricular activities or community service. Corporate scholarships are generally available to certain groups as a way for a given corporation to “give back” to the community or its employees (such as a Buick Achiever’s scholarship – which is available to children of GM employees). Finally needs-based scholarships are available to provide opportunities to poor students who might have no other means of paying for a college education.
In the case of “Citizenship” scholarships, qualification is generally relatively easy – no special grades, no test score requirement or athletic ability is required. What is required is a commitment to a specific field or community. If you love photograph and have been active in your school yearbook committee, you can probably find a scholarship based on your activities. Are you active in your church or community? If you are you should check, because odds are good there is a scholarship opportunity. Generally these scholarships are smaller (maybe $250 to $1500), but when it comes to paying for college every little bit helps.
Chances are that if you qualified for a “citizenship” scholarship then you may also qualify for a “corporate” scholarship. For example, Kodak offers scholarships for exceptional filmmaking or photography students (for the yearbook photographers out there). Additionally your parent’s, or even grandparent’s, employers may also offer scholarships that you can qualify for just by applying. Again many of these scholarships are smaller sized, although some (like the Gate’s Foundation Millennium scholarships) may be “full ride” propositions.
Need Based Scholarships
Finally need based scholarships are offered to students from low income backgrounds that need financial assistance to have the opportunity to get a college degree. These scholarships generally do have some grade point average requirements (i.e. representing that you are willing to work at your education), but generally these are not very high (frequently around 2.0 or 2.5 GPA). Many times all that is required to obtain this type of scholarship is a verifiable need and the student applying for them. All that being said, in some areas where there is a lot of need for these type of scholarship anything (such as community service, good grades, or athletic abilities) you can demonstrate in addition to basic need will help you more effectively compete with other applicants.