Uncover the Ultimate Guide to FFA Scholarships: What You Need to Know Posted byUnigo Staff March 10, 2023March 10, 2023 Scholarships could be a great option to help ease the burden of tuition as you enhance your education. The FFA (Future Farmers of America) is a youth organization committed to providing members with practical experience and tools to prepare for leadership, personal development, and professional success. The FFA offers scholarships to qualified FFA members that could lessen the costs associated with training programs, vocational certification, and two and four-year college degree programs. If you’d like to increase your chances of being awarded one of the many FFA Scholarships, it’s important to familiarize yourself with the intricacies of the submission process. This detailed guide walks you through the ins and outs of the different types of scholarships—such as the universal requirements—and provides tips that may increase your chances of being selected as a winner. Read on to explore topics including: Eligibility and Selection CriteriaApplication Dos and Don’tsFAA Scholarship Submission Checklist What are FFA Scholarships? The beauty of a scholarship is that—unlike a loan—you may not need to pay it back, provided you keep in good standing with the terms . The annual FFA national scholarship program offers awards of close to $2 million to eligible members including high school seniors, former FFA members, and FFA Alumni and Supporters who are pursuing their undergraduate higher education. There are more than 1,000 scholarships to choose from, ranging from $500 to $10,000, and you may apply to them all with just one application on the FAA online portal . Not only could earning an FFA Scholarship help you fund your education, it could also potentially boost the credentials on your resume, reduce the amount of time you might have to work while you’re in school, enhance your networking opportunities, and make it easier to attend an institution that fits you and your goals. Types of FFA Scholarships The good news is there are a variety of FFA scholarships available to qualified FFA members. These awards are designed to help cover the costs of tuition, books, fees, and supplies required for studies at accredited U.S. institutions, including two-year and four-year colleges, technical schools, and vocational schools. Some awards also could require that you enroll in specific degree fields or institutions. The two primary types of FAA awards offered in 2023 include National Scholarships, which are sponsored by corporations or organizations, and Endowment Scholarships, which are founded by individuals, families, or donor groups. An example of the former is the CNH Industrial Aftermarket Solutions Scholarship, which offers four $10,000 awards to eligible applicants. The Georgia M. Hellberg Memorial Scholarship, which offers nine $5,000 awards to qualified students, is an example of the latter. FFA Scholarships: Quick Facts Earning scholarship funds could make it easier for you to focus on your studies instead of your finances. Whether your career goals include a specific facet of agriculture, such as dairy farming, environmental science, horticulture, or animal husbandry, or you’re more interested in agricultural leadership or a related field, it could be worth putting in the time to apply. Curious about the impact of FFA scholarships? For the 2022-23 award season: 840 students from 43 states won over $1.6 million in scholarships4,786 students successfully applied for FFA ScholarshipsAwards vary from $500 to $10,000, and several are renewable for a maximum of 4 years49 corporate sponsors, 41 endowed sponsors, and 187 Ford dealership sponsors participated in the 2022 scholarship program2023 scholarships funds come from 918 corporate sponsorships, 310 Ford scholarships, 105 endowments, and 398 total donors Eligibility Criteria and the Application Process Regardless of your intended career path, if you plan to pursue post-secondary education after high school, it makes sense to explore whether or not you may qualify for FAA Scholarships. Overview of Requirements Although each scholarship in the FFA national program has donor-specific criteria, there are overarching age, membership, and educational requirements for FFA awards. And you may reapply yearly for as long as you continue to qualify. To be considered eligible you must: Be less than 23 years old when you applyHave an active FFA Membership statusBe a high school senior or current college freshman, sophomore, or juniorPlan to attend a specific training program, a two- or four-year college or university, or a technical/vocational school in the U.S.Have U.S. citizenship or permanent residencyBe a full-time student who is actively attending class FFA Member Selection Criteria You may be wondering how FFA Scholarship winners are chosen. An independent selection committee evaluates all application submissions to identify qualified candidates for each scholarship. In addition to meeting all of the donor requirements, the following factors typically are also taken into consideration: Academic Achievement (GPA Score)Clubs & Extracurricular ActivitiesFFA Leadership ExperiencesCommunity Service/Service-LearningSupervised Agricultural Experience (SAE) Ins and Outs of the Application One of the benefits of applying for FFA Scholarships is that you only need to fill out a single online form to automatically be considered for the awards you might be eligible for. When you’re ready to begin, just visit FFA.org/Scholarships and click the “Apply Now” button. Then sign into your National FFA account to be directed to the online application portal. If you aren’t currently a member, create an FFA account to proceed. Once you’re logged in and you reach the home page, click “Add New Application.” What to Include The supporting documents are essential components of your application. You need to upload the following documentation as part of your submission: A High School transcript if you’re currently a seniorA College or University transcript if you’re currently enrolledB.R.I.D.G.E. Endowment Fund Supplemental Form if you wish to apply for the B.R.I.D.G.E. Endowment Fund Scholarship (available to FFA members only)Farmer Endorsements if you wish to apply for the Grow Ag Leaders ScholarshipFFA Advisor Validation to indicate your active FFA membership status Application Dos and Don’ts If you want to receive an FFA Scholarship, it’s important to pay detailed attention to the official directions and requirements. The 6 Dos and Don’ts below could help keep you on track. DO: Request your supplemental documentation early. Simply click “Create Request” and enter the email address of your endorser in the application supplemental tool to receive instructions.Upload all mandatory supporting documents by the application due date. If you fail to do so, then your application may not be reviewed. Unofficial transcripts must contain both your first and last name and should be converted into a pdf, png, tif, jpeg, jpg, bmp, or xps file before upload. You may upload multiple files in a zip file as long as all the files within it are of one of the aforementioned formats.Return to the portal homepage to verify that your documents are accepted. If your documentation is not uploaded correctly, your application may be considered incomplete. So, make sure to verify that everything you’ve attached is accepted before you submit your application. DON’T: Forget to protect any sensitive personal data. For example, black out your Social Security Number if it is included in any of your documents.Include any documents that are password protected. Any such editable files, including those with a viewing expiration date, may be rejected, which means that your application remains incomplete.Assume your application has been submitted. Check your application status buttons in the portal. If the button is grey, you have started, but not submitted, your application. An orange button means that you’ve submitted your application, but you are missing one or more of the required documents. If you click on the status button you should see a detailed overview of each requirement and whether or not it has been received. Once you’ve successfully submitted your application you should see a green button that says “Complete.” 3 FFA Scholarships to Put on Your Radar With so many scholarships available in one place, it might be easy to become overwhelmed. That’s why we’re providing an overview of three major awards, including the donor-specific requirements, to help ensure that you include all the supporting criteria required to be considered in your application. Grow Ag Leaders Scholarships Grow Ag Leaders, a Bayer Fund philanthropic program, offers this $1,500 scholarship to help students enhance their education and become aware of the many exciting career options in agriculture such as business management, biochemistry, and diesel mechanics. You must meet the following criteria to apply for this award: Be a high school senior (public, private, or home-schooled) or enrolled in a minimum of 12 credit hours at collegePlan to pursue a degree in a qualifying area of studyPlan to attend a vocational, two-year, or four-year qualifying ag related study program after high schoolHave a minimum 2.5 GPAObtain at least two electronic endorsements from qualifying farmers Built Ford Tough Scholarships The Built Ford Tough scholarship program was created to connect Ford Dealers to FFA members in their local communities. Since 1998, dealers across the country, and Ford Corporate, have awarded more than $13 million to help students pursue further education. You must meet the following criteria to be considered eligible: A Ford dealer must identify your chapterBe a high school senior or collegiate studentAttend a trade, two-year or four-year program (any major may apply) FFA Future Leaders Scholarships In addition to the generous scholarships detailed below, the Tractor Supply Foundationis offering scholarship winners the opportunity to interview for professional opportunities at its stores or distribution centers as they pursue their education. To qualify, you must be an FFA member studying agriculture or a skilled trade. Details include: 92 $5,000 scholarships for students at trade schools or two-year colleges54 $10,000 scholarships for students pursuing ag-related four-year majors Checklist for Completing an FAA Scholarship Application There’s no question that covering all your academic-related expenses may be stressful. And applying to scholarship programs might seem daunting. But there’s no need to panic. Below are a few tips to help ensure that you take all the necessary steps to enter a successful FAA Scholarship application. If possible, submit your application before the deadline. Life is full of surprises, and you never know when an Internet outage or another challenge could derail your efforts. Thus, don’t wait until the last minute to submit your FAA application. By getting started early you could have plenty of time to ensure that you included all the requirements and to double-check that your submission went through.Give detailed descriptions of your achievements . When it comes to your club and extracurricular activities, FFA leadership experiences, community service, and SAE, be prepared to explain exactly what you accomplished—including the skills you obtained and goals you achieved. The more compelling details you include to set yourself apart from other applicants, the better.Triple-read the directions and proofread everything. The last thing that you want to do is miss out on valuable scholarship funds because you didn’t take the time to understand and follow the requirements. It’s also critical to ensure that there no spelling or grammar mistakes in your forms, as such errors could detract from your accomplishments. In fact, consider asking a friend or family member to proofread all of your documents before you submit your application. Conclusion An FFA Scholarship could be the key to unlocking your future. These scholarships could provide a financial boost, making it potentially easier and faster for you to pursue an education that fits both your academic interests and career aspirations. Competition for scholarships may be tough, but there’s no need to get discouraged if things don’t immediately go your way. Remember that you may reapply next year if you still qualify—and do so with the advantage of having already completed an application. Wishing you the best of luck!