By tamara Did you know…that Hispanic students are now the largest minority group on college campuses? From 2009 to 2010, the number of Hispanic students enrolled in college increased by 24% , with over 12.2 million Hispanic students now attending college in the United States. While these numbers are expected to continue to grow, more and more Hispanic students are struggling to pay for tuition and college expenses. The average family income for Hispanic families fell 66% between 2005 and 2009. It’s more important than ever for Hispanic students to explore their financial aid options for paying for college. To get Hispanic students started in the financial aid search process, we’ve put together a small list of Hispanic scholarships with application deadlines approaching in the next few months. RMHC/HACER Scholarship Program: Sponsored by the Ronald McDonald House Charities, this program is available for any U.S. student who is a high school senior with at least one parent of Hispanic heritage. The student must have a grade point average of 2.7 or higher, as well. There are usually four (4) scholarships given, each valued at $1,000 or higher. The deadline to apply is January 27, 2012. Outlaw Student Minority Scholarship: Outlaw Student offers one (1) $500 scholarship each quarter. International and U.S. students who are high school seniors or older may apply. Students must identify themselves as belonging to a minority group. The scholarship may be used for undergraduate or graduate studies. The next application deadline is December 31, 2011. Lagrant Foundation Undergraduate Scholarship: The Lagrant Foundation offers ten (10) $5,000 scholarships to U.S. students of Hispanic heritage who are currently enrolled full-time in undergraduate programs. Applicants must major in public relations, marketing, or advertising OR must minor in communications with desire to pursue a career in public relations, marketing or advertising. Each applicant must also have a grade point average of 2.75 or higher to apply. The deadline to apply for this award is February 28, 2012. Alliance/Merck ‘Ciencia’ National Scholarship Program: Sponsored by the National Alliance for Hispanic Health, a total of 25 scholarships valued at $2,000 each will be awarded. International and U.S. students of Hispanic heritage may apply. Applicants must be enrolled full-time at accredited U.S. colleges, and must be pursuing degrees in the STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) disciplines, with grade point averages of 2.75 or higher. The deadline for applications is February 15, 2012. As the price of college tuition continues to climb, it will be increasingly difficult for students everywhere to pay for college. It’s important to start the search for college financial aid early and consider other options for funding your degree. Compare in-state and out-of-state fees and apply for scholarships at least two to four times a month. With a little planning, you’ll soon find your dream of a college education within reach.