India First Country Before Self Short Essay Scholarships

Eight Steps Towards a Better Scholarship Essay


Writing a scholarship essay can be very difficult – especially if you want to do it well. Your essay will need to wow the reader, and speak directly to the goals of that organization, as well as the objectives of that award. If done properly, you will very rarely be able to submit the same application to multiple awards – it is not a one-size-fits-all; most essays will need to be tweaked or completely altered to show the reader that you are deserving of the award above and beyond any of the other participant who also applied.

Read on to find eight steps to help you write a better scholarship essay so that you can get the money you need to fund your international education.

Step 1: Read the Essay Prompt Thoroughly

Many schools and other organizations that give out scholarships will give you a "prompt" or a question which the essay is supposed to address. Read the question or prompt carefully and try to "read between the lines." For example, the prompt you are to answer might be, "Describe a book that made a lasting impression on you and your life and why?" Ask yourself, "Are they really interested in my literary preferences or is there something more to this question?" More than likely, they want to get a better idea of who you are—not only what types of books you like but also what motivates you and what sorts of stories or topics interest you. They may also be interested in getting a sense for how promising a student you are based on the type of book you choose and what you have to say about it.

Tip: Always keep in mind that any scholarship essay question, no matter the topic, should demonstrate your interests, your background, and most importantly, highlight the experiences you've had that fit with the goals and mission of the funding organization.

Instead of being given a prompt, you might be asked to write an essay on the topic of your choosing. Although challenging, this is also an opportunity to demonstrate your creativity. Finally, if anything about the directions aren't clear, don't be afraid to contact someone at the funding organization and ask for clarification.

Step 2: Make a List of Important Points and Keywords to Include

Looking for sample essays?
Check out our Sample Essay section where you can see scholarship essays, admissions essays, and more!

Regardless of the essay prompt, you will want to make sure to include the important and relevant information about your experiences and background that makes you an ideal candidate for the scholarship award. To complete this step, it can be helpful to first research the organization to which you're applying and try to find their mission statement on their website. Circle a few key words from the mission statement and make sure to include those buzzwords in your essay.

Scholarship committees are not only looking for good students, they are often looking for a person that fits their organizational goals. You should gather your other application materials such as transcripts and resumes so you can review your qualifications as well as make note of what is missing in these materials that needs to be included in the essay.

For example, if you're applying for a general academic scholarship, you might want to talk about a specific class you took that really piqued your interest or inspired your current academic and career goals. The committee will see the list of the classes that you took on your transcript but they won't know how a particular class inspired you unless you tell them. The essay is the best place to do this. Your list of important points to make might also include:

  • Any academic awards or other honors you've won.
  • Any AP or college-level courses you took in high school.
  • Any outside courses, internships, or other academic experiences that won't necessarily appear on your transcript.
  • Why your experience and the mission of the funding organization match.
  • What you plan to major in during college and how you think that major will be useful to your future career goals.
  • Any special training or knowledge you have, or a project you completed in school or as an extracurricular activity.
  • An example of how you overcame a challenge.
  • Your financial circumstances that makes it necessary for you to finance your studies through scholarship money.

The challenge now is to integrate those points that you want the committee to know with an essay that answers the prompt. You can see our example scholarship essays to get a better idea of how to do this.

Step 3: Write an Outline or a Rough Draft

Not everyone likes to make an outline before they begin writing, but in this case it can be very helpful. You can start with your list of important points to begin writing the outline. For many, telling a story is the easiest and most effective way to write a scholarship essay. You can tell the story of how you found your favorite book, and how it has changed and inspired you. Start with large headings in your outline that describes the basic storyline. For example:

  1. High school composition teacher recommended book
  2. Read it over one weekend
  3. Made me see the world around me differently
  4. Inspired me to pursue a career in social justice

Now you can start filling in the subheadings with points from your previous list:

  1. High school composition teacher recommended book
    1. Favorite class in high school
    2. Class opened my eyes to new ways of thinking
    3. Teacher noticed my enthusiasm—recommended outside reading
  2. Read it over one weekend
    1. Was the first time I was so drawn in by a book, I read it very quickly
    2. I realized my academic potential beyond getting good grades
  3. Made me see the world around me differently
    1. Started to look for jobs in social justice
    2. Interned for a summer at a law firm doing pro bono work for the poor
    3. This was a big challenge because I realized you can't help everyone and resources are limited
    4. Overcame this challenge by knowing that small change can be big, and working hard in a field you are passionate about will inspire you everyday
  4. Inspired me to pursue a career in social justice
    1. The book is a constant source of inspiration and will keep me motivated as I pursue my career
    2. The book will always remind me how people with limited financial resources can still make a huge difference in others' lives

Step 4: Write a Strong Statement that Summarizes Your Points

You will want to include one strong thesis statement that summarizes all the major points you will make in your essay. It is often easy to start writing with this simple statement. Your essay doesn't have to begin or end with the thesis statement, but it should appear somewhere in order to tie all the individual sections together.

For example, your thesis statement might be, "You will find that various experiences from both my academic career and my personal life align very well with your organization's mission: shaping community leaders who are working towards a more just and sustainable world." Starting with this sentence can help you organize your thoughts and main points, and provide you with a direction for your essay. When you've finished your essay, be sure to reflect back on your thesis statement and ask yourself, "Does this essay further explain and support my thesis statement?"

Step 5: Fill in the Missing Parts

Now that you have a thesis statement, an outline, and a list of important points to include, you can begin to fill in the missing parts of your story. The first sentence is particularly important: it should capture the attention of the reader, and motivate him or her to continue reading. We recommend starting your story by painting a vivid picture of an experience about which you will be talking in the essay.

For example: "It is 6 am on a hot day in July, I've already showered and I'm eating breakfast. My classmates are all sleeping in and the sun has yet to awaken, but I'm ready to seize the day, as I couldn't imagine spending my summer any other way but interning at a local law firm that specializes in representing the poor. I work a typical 8-5 day during my summer vacation and nothing has made me happier. But I wouldn't be here if it weren't for one particularly savvy teacher and a little book she gave me to read outside of class."

Step 6: Rewrite, Revise, Rewrite

A good writer rewrites and revises his or her work many, many times. After getting a first draft on paper, take a day or two away from the essay and then come back to it with fresh eyes. Make appropriate edits for content, and pay attention to proper spelling and grammar. If need be, you might want to write an entirely new draft and then integrate the best of both into a final draft. Writing a new draft can inspire you to think of new ideas or a better way to tell your story. Some other tips to think about as you rewrite and revise:

  • Make sure it sounds like your voice. You want the scholarship committee to feel like they are getting to know you. If you don't sound authentic, the committee will know. It is better to be yourself than to say what you think the committee wants to hear.
  • Strike a balance between modesty and arrogance. You should be proud of your accomplishments, but you don't want to sound arrogant. Don't exaggerate a story; instead be clear about what you did and the impact it had and let that speak for itself.
  • Check to make sure you are answering the prompt and fulfilling all other requirements of the essay as directed by the committee, such as font preference and word count limits.
  • Don't just list your accomplishments; describe them in detail and also tell the reader how you felt during these experiences.
  • A scholarship essay is not a dissertation. You don't need to impress the committee with big words, especially if you're not completely clear if you're using them correctly. Simplicity and clarity should be the goals.
  • Make sure your essay will be read from the beginning to the end. Committee members won't dedicate much time to reading the essay, so you need to make sure they are given motivation to read the entire thing. If you are telling a story, don't reveal the end of the story until the end.
  • Check to make sure the buzzwords from the mission statement appear. It is easy to forget the scholarship committee's goals as you write. Return to their mission statement and look for spots to place keywords from the statement. Be sure, however, that you're not copying the mission statement word-for-word.

Step 7: Have someone else read your essay

Ideally, you could give your essay to a teacher or college admissions counselor who is familiar with scholarship essays and the college admission process. If such a person is not available, virtually anyone with good reading and writing skills can help make your essay better. When your editor is done reading and you've looked over his or her notes, be sure to ask the following questions:

  • Was the story interesting and did it hold your attention?
  • Were there any parts that were confusing?
  • Did you find any spelling or grammar errors?
  • Does the essay sound like my voice?
  • Does the essay respond appropriately to the prompt?
  • Is there anything you would have done differently or something you thought was missing?

After having an editor (or two or three) look over your draft, it is time again to revise and rewrite.

Step 8: Refine the Final Draft

Once you feel satisfied with the draft, review it one more time and pay particular attention to structure, spelling, grammar, and whether you fulfilled all the required points dictated by the committee. If you are over the required word count, you will need to make edits so that you are within the limit. If you are significantly under the word count, consider adding a supporting paragraph.

Essay Writing Center

Related Content:

Misconception: No one actually reads your scholarship essay! – Wrong!

Fact: Your essay is the key to your scholarship application. It is an opportunity to demonstrate to the selection committee that you are a well-rounded individual, that you are more than your GPA, that you are a strong writer, and it gives you a chance to talk about your experiences and qualifications in greater detail than what appears on your resume or transcripts.

The following scholarships are provided by GetSchooled and are grouped by topic. Check out MONEY’s Best Colleges finder tool and overall rankings, or get more information on paying for college at GetSchooled.com.

Big Money Scholarships

These scholarships all offer $10,000 or more.

Cameron Impact Scholarship

Scholarships for students with high academic achievement who have a stated goal of public service and/or demonstrated active participation in community service.

  • Amount: Up to $50,000 per year (intended to cover tuition, fees, course related expenses, books, supplies and equipment)
  • Deadline: September 15, May 15 (two application cycles per year)

Live Mas Scholarship

Scholarships open to all students, ages 16-24, currently enrolled or enrolling in an accredited post-high school program. To apply, create and submit a video (two minutes or less in length) that tells the story of your life’s passion.

  • Amount: Up to $25,000
  • Deadline: May 2018

Davidson Fellowship

Scholarships for students with a project in the STEM or humanities fields that have the potential to make a positive contribution to society.

  • Amount: Up to $50,000
  • Deadline: February 8

James W. McLamore WHOPPER Scholarship Program

Scholarships for students who demonstrate an active leadership role in community service, athletics, etc.

  • Amount: Up to $50,000
  • Deadline: December 15

Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Scholarship Program

Scholarships for high-achieving students that require financial aid.

  • Amount: Up to $40,000 per year (renewable)
  • Deadline: December 1

Elks National Foundation Most Valuable Student Competition

Scholarships focused on leadership and need.

  • Amount: Up to $50,000
  • Deadline: November 30

The Siemens Competition in Math, Science & Technology

Individuals or teams research and develop projects in Math, Science, and Technology fields and compete for large scholarship awards.

  • Amount: $100,000 grand prize, $50,000 second place, all other finalists receive $25,000
  • Deadline: September 19

The Dream.us Scholarship Program

For highly motivated DREAMers who want to get a college education. Must have significant financial need, academic promise, as well as determination and perseverance. Must attend a partner college.

  • Amount: Can cover up to 100% of tuition fees and books at partner colleges
  • Deadline: March 8

Dr. Pepper Tuition Giveaway Contest

Submit a video that describes how you want to make an impact with your degree — also have to throw a football as a finalist.

  • Amount: $100,000 (grand prize), also $20,000 runner up prizes and $2,500 consolation prizes
  • Deadline: October 19

Atlas Shrugged Essay Contest

Write a no more than 1,200-word essay using one of the three prompts given on the website.

  • Amount: Up to $20,000
  • Deadline: May 10

Voice of America Scholarship

Applicants must write or record an essay on an annual patriotic theme.

  • Amount: Up to $30,000
  • Deadline: November 1

Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation

Scholarships based on students’ capacity to lead, succeed in school, and make an impact on their schools and communities.

  • Amount: $20,000
  • Deadline: October 31

AXA Achievement Scholarship

Demonstrate long-term achievement outside the classroom like a project at school, in their community, etc.

  • Amount: Up to $25,000
  • Deadline: December 15

CIA Undergraduate Scholarship Program

Full-time students can spend their summer breaks working with the Central Intelligence Agency in Washington, D.C., doing meaningful work related to their major. Requires 3.0 GPA, 1000 SAT/21 ACT, and sufficient financial need.

  • Amount: Salary up to $38,701 and tuition assistance up to $18,000
    Deadline: August 14

Last-Minute Scholarships

Students can apply to these even in July and August (or later!) for the coming academic year.

Once Upon a Poem Scholarship

Submit your own creative interpretation of a classic fairy tale for a chance to win a $1,000 scholarship.

  • Amount: $1,000
  • Deadline: August 30

iVein Health and Wellness Scholarship

Write an 800- to 1,000-word essay about how to approach living a healthy lifestyle as a college student, and how to sustain healthy habits over a lifetime.

  • Amount: $2,500
  • Deadline: August 31 for fall semester, December 31 for winter/spring

#MyFutureSelfie Entrepreneurial Scholarship

Envision yourself as a future business owner and snap a selfie of what you think that would look like. Post the selfie to Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn with the hashtag #MyFutureSelfie to be considered for a $10,000 scholarship.

  • Amount: $10,000
  • Deadline: September 4

Olshan Foundation Scholarship

Write a 500-word essay describing your motivation to pursue a degree in your chosen field of study, and submit a 30-second video describing your essay. Requires a minimum 3.0 GPA.

  • Amount: $1,000
  • Deadline: August 12

Redfin Scholarship

Write a 300- to 500-word essay describing how the community you grew up in influenced who you are today. Requires a minimum 3.5 GPA.

  • Amount: $2,500
  • Deadline: July 31

Avomeen Science Student Award

Scholarship for college students pursuing a career in science. Complete the application form and write a 450-word essay describing the moment when you realized you wanted to pursue a scientific degree.

  • Amount: $1,000 grand prize, $500 second place
  • Deadline: August 31

Bud Siegfried Scholarship

Scholarship for currently enrolled college students pursuing a degree. To apply, write a 500- to 700-word essay about how injury attorneys can make a difference in the case of an accident, and a 400-word essay about an act of service you have performed in the last three weeks.

  • Amount: $1,000
  • Deadline: July 31

Student Transportation Video Scholarship

Submit a two-to-four minute video that examines any aspect of transportation in the United States.

  • Amount: $500
  • Deadline: August 15

Spokeo Connections Scholarship

Scholarship for students who write a 300-500 word essay on how they use the internet to strengthen communities or human connection.

  • Amount: $1,000
  • Deadline: Fall 2017

AFSA Second Chance Scholarship

Students can take a quick quiz to be entered into a drawing for scholarships.

  • Amount: $1,000
  • Deadline: August 30

Scholarships That Don’t Require You to Demonstrate Financial Need

Richard and Elizabeth Dean Scholarship

Scholarships based on academic merit, with an initial minimum GPA of 4.0 and renewal conditional upon maintenance of a 3.25 GPA.

  • Amount: $5,000 renewable each year for a total of $20,000
  • Deadline: February 10

DAR Scholarships for Political Science, History, Government and Economics

Scholarships for students interested in studying political science, history or economics.

  • Amount: Up to $5,000
  • Deadline: February 10

Spirit of Anne Frank Scholarship

Write an essay describing contributions you have made to your community and how their goals are inspired by Anne Frank with a focus on commitment to social justice.

  • Amount: Up to $10,000
  • Deadline: March 17

Brower Youth Awards

Scholarships for outstanding leaders working to alleviate and find solutions to environmental problems.

  • Amount: $3,000, a professionally produced short film about their work from an Emmy award winning film crew, and flight and accommodations for a week-long trip to the San Francisco Bay Area.
  • Deadline: May 15

Helen Brett Scholarship

Scholarship for currently enrolled college students that are interested in exploring the study of exhibition management.

  • Amount: Up to $5,000
  • Deadline: June 1

Inverters R Us Power Scholarships

Write an essay answering the prompt: “How are DC to AC power inverters used in the world today?”

  • Amount: $1,000
  • Deadline: June 30

Delete Cyberbullying Scholarship Award

Write an essay of 500 words or less about cyberbullying.

  • Amount: $1,000
  • Deadline: June 30

Essay.ws Writing Contest

Write a 900-1,000 word essay on one of the topics provided on the site.

  • Amount: $500
  • Deadline: September 1

Scholarships That Don’t Require an Essay

US Bank Scholarship

Students enter for a chance to win a $20,000 scholarship.

  • Amount: $20,000
  • Deadline: October 27

Vectorworks Design Scholarship

Students submit an original design product to be considered for tuition awards and media recognition.

  • Amount: Up to $7,000
  • Deadline: July 15

“No Essay” Scholarship

Create an account with Niche for a chance to win a $2,000 scholarship.

  • Amount: $2,000
  • Deadline: May 31

Courageous Persuaders Scholarships

Make a 30-second TV commercial about the dangers of underage drinking or texting while driving. Grand prize winner will be seen on television.

  • Amount: $3,000
  • Deadline: February 9

Disaster Preparation Scholarship

Students create a video that shows how proper planning for a hurricane or other flood disaster can be valuable.

  • Amount: $1,500
  • Deadline: November 1

Young Arts Scholarship

Scholarships for student artists in film, design, music, dance, photography, visual arts, theater, and writing.

  • Amount: Up to $10,000 and a master class in your artistic discipline
  • Deadline: October 13

Student Transportation Video Contest

Students create an original two- to four-minute video examining any aspect of either of the two categories: general transportation or safety.

  • Amount: $500
  • Deadline: August 15

AFSA Second Chance Scholarship

Students take a quick quiz to be entered into a drawing for scholarships.

  • Amount: $1,000
  • Deadline: August 30

Stuck At Prom Scholarship Contest

Scholarship awarded to students who make the best prom-wear (suits, dresses, belts, corsages, etc.) out of duct tape.

  • Amount: Up to $10,000 to each individual entrant ($20,000 per couple)
  • Deadline: May 31

Parry and Pfau Left-Handed Scholarship

Students submit a one- to two-minute YouTube video on why it is better to left-handed than right-handed and will be judged on creativity, humor and overall quality. You do not have to be left-handed in order to apply for this award.

  • Amount: $1,500
  • Deadline: July 31

Scholarships for Women

Beyoncé Formation Scholarship

Scholarship for the 2017-18 academic year to encourage and support young women who are bold, creative, confident, and unafraid to think outside the box. For students attending Berklee College of Music, Howard University, Parsons School of Design, and Spelman College.

  • Amount: Up to cost of tuition
  • Deadline: May 12

Distinguished Young Women Scholarship

Scholarship for female students who have participated in a Distinguished Young Women program.

  • Amount: Varies
  • Deadline: Continuous

Society for Women Engineers

Scholarships for women who plan to pursue a career in engineering, engineering technology, and computer science.

  • Amount: Range from $1,000 to $20,000
  • Deadline: February 15

ESA Foundation Scholarship Program

Scholarships for women and minority students pursuing degrees leading to careers in computer and video game arts.

  • Amount: $3,000
  • Deadline: May 4

BHW Scholarship

Scholarships for women who are pursuing an undergraduate or graduate degree in STEM.

  • Amount: $3,000
  • Deadline: April 15

Advancement of Women in Sports and Entertainment Scholarship

Scholarships for women pursuing a degree in Communication Studies, Marketing, Public Relations, Media Studies or Journalism.

  • Amount: $1,000
  • Deadline: June 15

Ford Empowering America Scholarship

Scholarships for a current college student who makes a short video profiling an influential or inspirational woman in their community.

  • Amount: $2,500
  • Deadline: May 1

Women in Public Finance Scholarship

Scholarships for women who have an interest in public finance.

  • Amount: $3,000
  • Deadline: July 14

Patsy Takemoto Mink Education Foundation Support Awards

Scholarships for low-income women with children who are pursuing higher education or career training.

  • Amount: $5,000
  • Deadline: August 1

Asian Women in Business Scholarship

Scholarships for Asian female undergrads who have demonstrated scholarship, leadership, community service, or entrepreneurship.

  • Amount: $2,500
  • Deadline: 2018

Women in Aviation Scholarships

Scholarships for members of the Women in Aviation association who have a passion for aviation.

  • Amount: Up to $5,000
  • Deadline: November 16

Scholarships for Artsy Kids

Houzz Scholarship Program

Scholarships for students enrolled in architecture, interior design, and landscape architecture programs at the undergraduate or graduate level.

  • Amount: $2,500
  • Deadline: June 30

Gabriel Prize Competition

Students pursuing a career in architecture submit illustrations of personal work to the competition. Winners receive a three-month trip to France to study classical architecture and the landscape.

  • Amount: $20,000
  • Deadline: June 1

John F. and Anna Lee Stacey Scholarship Fund

Scholarships for students who practice classical/traditional art in the mediums of painting, drawing from figure, landscape, and composition.

  • Amount: $5,000
  • Deadline: February 1

Nellie Love Butcher Music Scholarship

Scholars for female music students undertaking a degree in piano or voice.

  • Amount: $20,000
  • Deadline: February 10

Young American Creative Patriotic Art Contest

Scholarship for artists who paint or draw an entry that expresses patriotism.

  • Amount: Up to $21,000
  • Deadline: March 31

Mary Doctor Performing Arts Scholarship Fund

For students pursuing a degree in a discipline related to the performing arts (e.g., music, dance, theater, etc.)

  • Amount: $10,000 (renewable)
  • Deadline: March 16

Krylon Clear Choice Art Scholarship

Scholarship for students planning to major in visual arts. To apply, submit a portfolio of three to six works of art/images on CD.

  • Amount: $1,000
  • Deadline: May 31

Kodak Student Scholarship Program

Submit a completed film that communicates a story or theme in some fashion. Submissions can be no longer than 30 minutes.

  • Amount: $5,000 scholarship tuition award + $5,000 KODAK motion picture grant
  • Deadline: May 18

Scholarships for Members of Ethnic Groups

APIASF/NASA Scholarship

Scholarship for an Asian/Pacific Islander student interested in studying engineering or computer science.

  • Amount: $2,900
  • Deadline: January 2018

Against the Grain Artistic Scholarship

Scholarships for students with at least 50% Asian/Pacific Islander ethnicity who are pursuing a major in the performing, visual arts, journalism, or mass communications.

  • Amount: $1,000
  • Deadline: May 31

Adelante! Fund Scholarships

Multiple scholarships to inspire Latino students to graduate and lead, along with internships and leadership training.

  • Amount: Up to $3,000
  • Deadline: June 5

Carole Simpson Scholarship

Scholarship to encourage and help minority students to overcome hurdles along their career path in electronic journalism.

  • Amount: $2,000
  • Deadline: May 31

Davis Scholarship for Women in STEM

Scholarship to encourage minority female college students attending a UNCF member institution to pursue a career in the STEM fields.

  • Amount: Up to $5,000
  • Deadline: June 9, 2017

American Indian College Fund Full Circle Scholarship

Scholarships for Native American students attending non-tribal colleges.

  • Amount: Varies
  • Deadline: May 31

American Indian College Fund TCU Scholarship

Scholarships for Native American students attending a tribal college.

  • Amount: Varies
  • Deadline: Deadline is decided by your college

Blacks at Microsoft Scholarships

Scholarships for students of African descent who have a passion for technology and plan to pursue a degree in engineering, computer science, or select business programs.

  • Amount: $5,000 (renewable)
  • Deadline: April 15

Fontana Transport Scholars Program

Scholarships for low-income underrepresented and first-generation college prospects who are passionate about furthering their education as a means to help their family, community and themselves.

  • Amount: $5,000
  • Deadline: March 15

HSF Scholarship

Scholarships for students of Hispanic heritage.

  • Amount: Up to $5,000
  • Deadline: April 6

CBC Spouses Education Scholarship

Scholarship for African-American students with leadership ability and a desire to participate in community service.

  • Amount: Up to $8,200
  • Deadline: May 1

Lily Pabilona Emerging Entrepreneur Scholarship

Scholarship for Asian-American students interested in pursuing a career in entrepreneurship.

  • Amount: $5,000
  • Deadline: May 15

Walmart Foundation First-Generation Scholarship Program

Scholarship for first-generation college students attending one of 47 publicly supported HBCUs.

  • Amount: Up to $6,200
  • Deadline: June 4

Hispanic Heritage Youth Awards

Scholarships for Hispanic youth who demonstrate leadership and dedication to service in their communities.

  • Amount: Up to $3,000
  • Deadline: October 2

Scholarships for LGBT Students

Out to Innovate Scholarships

Scholarships for LGBTQ students interested in pursuing a STEM career.

  • Amount: $5,000
  • Deadline: June 2

League Foundation LGBTQ Scholarships

Scholarships for graduating seniors with special consideration given to those with activities and leadership roles relating to LGBTQ communities.

  • Amount: Up to $2,500
  • Deadline: April 30

Out to Protect Scholarship

Scholarships for LGBT students who are currently enrolled in a basic law enforcement training program.

  • Amount: Up to $1,000
  • Deadline: May 26

Pedro Zamora Public Policy Fellowship

Scholarship for students and young professionals seeking experience in HIV-related public policy and government affairs.

  • Amount: $4,000 ($1,000/month stipend paid over the four-month fellowship)
  • Deadline: July 15

Gay Asian Pacific Alliance Foundation Scholarship

Financial assistance to students who express activism in the Asian and Pacific Islander LGBT communities.

  • Amount: Up to $5,000
  • Deadline: June 30

LGBT Liberation Scholarship

Scholarships honoring students who have done impactful activism work to improve or inspire the lives of LGBTQ people and the LGBTQ community.

  • Amount: Up to $1,500
  • Deadline: June 30

American Atheists Gay/Lesbian College Scholarship

Scholarships for LGBT students who combine activism for gay rights with activism for the rights of atheists

  • Amount: $500
  • Deadline: February 1

Bill Caspare Memorial Fund Diversity Scholarship

Scholarships for LGBTQ students interested in careers in new media, digital advertising, or data science. Also open to African-American, Asian-American, Hispanic, and Native American students.

  • Amount: Up to $10,000
  • Deadline: July 14

NGPA Pilot Scholarship

Scholarships for aspiring aviators that support, or are members of, the LGBT community. Scholarship to be used for advanced flight training.

  • Amount: $5,000
  • Deadline: August 1

Military Family Scholarships

ThanksUSA Scholarship Program

Scholarships for dependents and spouses of military personnel.

  • Amount: $3,000
  • Deadline: May 15

Scholarships for Military Children Program

Scholarships for children of an active duty, reserve/guard, or retired military commissary customers.

  • Amount: $2,000
  • Deadline: February 12

American Legion Legacy Scholarship

Support the children of fallen post-9/11 service members and/or children of post-9/11 veterans with a disability of 50% or higher.

  • Amount: Up to $20,000
  • Deadline: April 20

Samsung American Legion Scholarship

Available to high school juniors who attend an American Legion state program and are a direct descendent of a wartime veteran who was on active duty during one of the periods of war.

  • Amount: Up to $20,000
  • Deadline: Varies

Freedom Alliance Scholarship Fund

Must be a dependent of a military service member who has been disabled, killed in action, or is a prisoner of war.

  • Amount: Varies based on need; average award will be a “significant portion of the student’s tuition”
  • Deadline: July 31

The Military Commanders’ Scholarship Fund

Must be a dependent of activity duty, reserve/guard, or retired service members.

  • Amount: $5,000
  • Deadline: November 2017

Army Women’s Foundation Legacy Scholarship

Scholarships for women who have served in the Army or are the child of a woman who has served.

  • Amount: Up to $2,500
  • Deadline: January 15

The OpLove Scholarship

Scholarships for currently active, honorably discharged, or retired military members, and their spouses and children.

  • Amount: $300
  • Deadline: July 15

Francis P Matthews and John E Swift Educational Trust Scholarships

Scholars for children of a member of the Knights of Columbus who was killed while serving in the military, or a police officer or firefighter killed in the line of duty. Recipient must attend a Catholic college.

  • Amount: Up to $25,000
  • Deadline: March 1

70th Infantry Division Association Scholarship

Scholarship for the relatives and spouses of those who have served, or are currently serving, under the colors of the 70th Infantry Division.

  • Amount: $500
  • Deadline: August 30

Scholarships for Students with Community Service Experience

Jesse Brown Memorial Youth Scholarship

Scholarship for young volunteers who have dedicated 100+ hours to serving veterans.

  • Amount: Up to $20,000
  • Deadline: February 29

Bruce Lee Foundation Scholarship

Scholarships for students who understand, appreciate and exemplify Bruce Lee’s passion for education, and play an active role in their community.

  • Amount: Up to $10,000
  • Deadline: June 9

Youth Forward Scholarship

Scholarships for students who write an essay describing their commitment to volunteering.

  • Amount: $1,500
  • Deadline: August 1

Ajia Matthews Educational Scholarship Fund

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