What is a scholarship?

A scholarship is when a school or organization awards you money to pay for school. Sometimes people use the words “scholarship” and “grant” the same way, but they are different. A scholarship is money that is given to a student because of their GPA, athletic abilities or other things. It is important to know that a scholarship can be taken back if the student does not meet the requirements of the scholarship.

Why do you need a scholarship?

Students who receive scholarships have to take out less student loans and sometimes don’t have to take out ANY. Remember, student loans have to be paid back, but you won’t have to pay back the scholarship if you continue to meet the requirements.

Who can apply for scholarships?

Anyone can apply for scholarships as long as they meet the specific requirements of that scholarship. Every scholarship is going to tell you exactly who can apply and what they are looking for in their ideal scholarship recipient. There are many scholarships available — some are for students interested in community service, others are for students who have overcome great odds (like foster youth), and still others are for students who are interested in studying something specific, like nursing.

When should you apply for scholarships?

You should start meeting with your counselor at high school or any supportive adult in your life to explore scholarships as soon as you start to think about college — hopefully by the 10th or 11th grade. Every scholarship is going to have its own deadline and requirements, so the sooner you start to look, the better.

How do you find a scholarship that is right for you?

Below are some great websites to help you find the scholarship that is right for you: