Creativity Scholarships

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What are Creative Scholarships?

Creative scholarships are merit based awards that tend to reward talents rather than grades. So, if you like to express your creativity, they can be a useful way to pay for college.

Many creative scholarships are for fine arts students with gifts in the visual arts. Visual arts majors are photography or design based arts like painting, graphic design or animation.

But you do not have to be a visual arts student to apply for a creative scholarship. Your artistic interests may lie in music, creative writing, dance, theater or film. It may be a hobby for you rather than your college major.

Either way, applying for a creative scholarship may be quick and simple. In fact, all you might need to do is upload a portfolio, project, photo, short video or essay.

What Creative Scholarships Can Students Apply for?

High school and college students may find many creative scholarships to show off their imagination. These types of awards are really fun to get your creative juices flowing in order to help pay for college.

Dixie Belle Paint Company Scholarship wants to help students succeed and graduate. To do this they offer a new award called the Creativity Leads to Success Scholarship. It is open to all high school, college and grad students who are also US citizens.

To apply, you fill out a quick form and write a 500 word essay that answers the question, “How does individual creativity lead to success?” There will be three winners. One grand prize of $2,500 and two prizes of $1,250 each.

Each year Arts for Life! awards $1,000 creative scholarships to 25 graduating high school seniors in Florida. Winners show their excellence in creative writing, dance, drama, music or visual art.  Launched by former First Lady Columba Bush in 1999, the program has awarded scholarships to more than 500 gifted high school seniors.

To apply, you must submit a completed application, a brief essay explaining “How the arts have positively influenced my life” and a portfolio of work in one of five areas. Creative writing, dance, drama, music or visual art.

How a Creativity Scholarship Helps Pay for College?

Scholarships could cover the high costs of pursuing a college degree. Tuition, fees, housing, and other expenses may be paid for by a creative scholarship. Also, scholarships are a better alternative to a student loan.

According to the NCES, the average student loan amount for undergraduates was $7,200 for one academic year. Within the last decade, college tuition has increased by 19% on average. Public institutions tuition and fees went up by 18% compared to private nonprofit schools increased by 15%.

Since college is getting more expensive every year, you should start applying for creative scholarships today! Many creative scholarships tend to be renewable so it may help pay for college until you graduate. That means you might not have to pay out of pocket or borrow more student loans!

List of Creative Scholarships

To help you in your search, here is a list of creative scholarships to apply for. Follow the application guidelines, be mindful of deadlines and let your originality and creativity shine through!

Michelle Obama Award for Memoir

We are honored to announce the Penguin Random House Creative Writing Awards’ Michelle Obama Award for Memoir. In recognition of Michelle Obama’s long-standing commitment to mentorship and education, as well as her inspiring leadership in encouraging young people to discover the power of telling their own stories, this award grants a college scholarship of $10,000 to one young, promising writer. This year, we are thrilled to announce that we are adding the Michelle Obama Award for Memoir to our program. This award is one of five creative writing awards given by Penguin Random House. Other categories include fiction/drama; the Amanda Gorman Award for Poetry; and the Maya Angelou Award for Spoken Word. In recognition of the Creative Writing Awards previously being centered in New York City, the competition will award an additional first-place prize to the top entrant from the NYC area.

Total: $10000

Awards: 1

Deadline: February 01, 2023

Create-A-Greeting-Card Scholarship Contest

U.S. residents aged 14 or older who will be attending school in the fall are eligible to participate. Applicants must design a greeting card.

Total: $10000

Awards: 1

Deadline: March 02, 2023

Doodle for Google

The Doodle 4 Google competition is offered annually for students in grades K-12. To apply, one must submit a sketch or image including the Google logo in the context of this year’s theme. All doodles must be sent no later than the deadline. Click here to learn more and apply today!

Total: $150000

Awards: 5

Deadline: March 04, 2023

Project Yellow Light scholarship

Project Yellow Light is a scholarship competition designed to bring about change. People know distracted driving is dangerous, but they do it anyway. As an applicant you have one clear mission: create a PSA to encourage your friends to avoid distracted driving, specifically using your phone while driving. Whether it’s sending a text, commenting on a photo, or messaging your friends in your favorite app, it’s never ok to message while driving.

Total: $12000

Awards: 6

Deadline: April 01, 2023

Kelly Somey Digital Marketing Scholarship

Despite the past year with COVID-19, college and career dreams still matter. That’s why our annual Kelly Somey Digital Marketing Scholarship is back this year to reward a college-bound student who is interested in pursuing a digital marketing career and has a deep passion for creativity.

Total: $1000

Awards: 1

Deadline: May 15, 2023

Brandon Wong & Associates Difference Makers Scholarship

Brandon Wong & Associates is a San Antonio-based family law firm founded on the principles of hard work and quality of representation. As a firm that practices exclusively in the area of family law, we have accumulated the depth of experience necessary to handle everything from a straightforward, uncontested divorce to high-conflict cases involving multiple contested issues, as well as high-asset matters where complex property division issues need to be addressed. With our experience representing clients from all walks of life, we can address unique concerns related to issues such as military divorce, spousal support, or business valuations.

Total: $1000

Awards: 1

Deadline: May 30, 2023

Mary Bowman Arts in Activism Award

In May of 2019, the HIV/AIDS world lost its most promising poet, advocate, author, singer and young person living with AIDS, Mary Bowman. Mary was 30 years old. Born with HIV, she lived out her experiences of growing up and living with HIV (and losing a mother to AIDS) through her art. As a young, out woman of color, she was a dynamic, vital voice for the next generation of individuals living with HIV—proud, willing to speak of her own challenges with not just her own health needs (mental health, social support) —but also a fierce advocate for other young people with HIV for whom a voice was lacking. For Mary, the arts gave her the platform and voice to channel her creative energy, her passion, her truth.

Total: $10000

Awards: 2

Deadline: July 16, 2023

2023 Fight for Freedom Scholarship

J. Ryan Brown Law, LLC’s Fight for Freedom Scholarship is intended to award one student with $1,000 who shares a piece of legislation or regulation that has been a recent controversial topic, and best explains why this law should be abolished or kept in place. We ask students to please share how this law has personally impacted them.

Total: $1000

Awards: 1

Deadline: July 31, 2023

Stuck at Prom Scholarship Contest

The Stuck at Prom Scholarship Program is available to high school students with creativity. Applicants must create and wear an outfit completely made of Duck brand duct tape to a school prom. Applicants must be 14 years of age or older and a resident of the United States or Canada to enter. Interested students can go to to obtain official contest rules and a registration form. Information is available under the ‘Contests’ link. Each applicant is required to submit a completed entry form and one color photograph (professional or amateur) of him or herself in prom attire; the applicant’s full name, address, telephone number, email address (if applicable) and age/grade level, and the name of the closest major city to the individual’s hometown; a release form and, if any entrant is a minor (under 18 years of age), that individual’s parent or guardian; and the name, address, and telephone number of the high school, or home school association, which is hosting the prom, and the date the prom was held. The complete entry must be received by 11:59 p.m. EST on the deadline date. If the students cannot scan and upload their signed release forms online, those forms must be faxed to the number provided. Students may also mail their entry information to the address provided. Entries postmarked after the deadline date will not be accepted.

Total: $20100

Awards: 4

Deadline: July 31, 2023

Zombie Apocalypse Scholarship

This creative and fun scholarship program is open to all U.S. students who are 14 and older and who are currently enrolled (or enroll no later than fall of 2026) in an accredited postsecondary institution of higher education. One scholarship winner with an imaginative and well-written response to the scholarship question about the Zombie Apocalypse will receive a $2,000 scholarship.

Total: $2000

Awards: 1

Deadline: October 31, 2023