Need-Based Scholarships

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What is a Need Based Scholarship?

Need based scholarships are given to students who show financial need. These awards determine eligibility based on family income. Financial need may come from filling out the FAFSA. About 58% of low income families used need based scholarships in 2019, according to a Sallie Mae study. A scholarship is a monetary gift. you typically do not to pay back the funds compared to a student loan. So receiving a scholarship may make college more affordable. 

10 Scholarships for Financial Need You Should Apply for

There are plenty of need based scholarships for college students. Start your scholarship search with these ten awards. Then look for more scholarship opportunities based on your goals, major and interests. 

  1. GE Reagan Foundation Scholarship Program
  2. Dell Scholarship Program 
  3. Jackie Robinson Foundation Scholarship 
  4. Jeannette Rankin Women’s Scholarship
  5. UNCF Koch Scholarships
  6. Smith College Need Based Financial Aid
  7. Anarcha, Betsy, and Lucy Memorial Scholarship Award
  8. AKA Educational Advancement Foundation Graduate Financial Need 
  9. National Association of Hispanic Nurses Scholarships
  10. Educational Opportunity Fund (EOF) – Graduate Student Grant (NJ)

How Do You Qualify for Need Based Scholarships?

To qualify for need based scholarships, the first step is to fill out the FAFSA. The Free Application for Federal Student Aid is a standard form to determine financial aid. The federal government, states and colleges use it. FAFSA forms are available on October 1st so make sure to apply by the deadline.

The FAFSA asks questions about family income, taxes, and other assets. This helps find what you are able to pay or your expected family contribution (EFC). You also list the colleges you applied to and the cost of attendance. Based on the math: COA minus EFC equals your unmet financial need. Keep in mind that tuition may vary over time but your EFC could stay the same. 

Here are some general eligibility requirements for need based scholarships: 

  • Full time enrollment status
  • U.S. citizen or legal resident 
  • Plans to attend an accredited two or four year college in the United States
  • Have a high school diploma or GED

With all these factors, there are need based scholarships for students majoring in certain subjects. UNCF STEM Scholars Program is one example. This award is for Black high school students. You must have at least 3.0 GPA and plans to pursue a STEM career.

What is the difference between need based and merit scholarships?

Need based scholarship is given to family assets and income while merit scholarships are based on academic success. The main goal of need based aid is to make college more affordable for low income families. Your GPA and test scores may not be a factor in receiving financial need awards. Assuming need is not a criteria, undergraduate students of all income levels may also qualify for merit scholarships.

Merit scholarships are for high achieving students. They look at academic achievements. You typically need a strong GPA and test scores in order to qualify. Other criteria such as community service, leadership, and other talents could help you earn a merit award. 

Where Do You Find Scholarships Based on Financial Need?

Many high schools, colleges, companies and nonprofits provide need based college scholarships. Federal and state governments also offer financial aid based on need. You should also look for local awards within your community. Your scholarship search should include awards based on your academic achievements, major, and personal interests.

The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation College Scholarship Program is for high school seniors with financial need. Eligible students may receive up to $40,000. You must be attending a four year undergraduate school. Many Cooke scholars exhibit a 3.5 GPA or higher and participate in community service projects. If you are selected, you may work with an education adviser. You also may attend a Scholars Weekend event in Washington D.C. 

Jeannette Rankin Women’s Scholarship Fund is for women over 35 years old who show unmet financial need. JRF Scholars may receive up to $8,000. The award empowers non traditional students to pursue undergraduate program or trade skills certification.

Federal and State Government 

The U.S. Department of Education offers need based aid as grants and work study. Once your school’s financial aid office has your FAFSA, it uses your EFC to make you an offer. It’s also called an award letter. It states the types of aid available, total amounts and outstanding cost. The letter may state a college scholarship especially if you’re a first year student.

Federal Pell Grants

This is the largest need based federal grant program. Amounts change but the maximum amount is $6,345 for the 2020 to 2021 academic year. According to Sallie Mae’s How America Pays for College 2020 report, 48% of families relied on grants to pay for college. Although grants are renewable, you may have to keep up with the terms and reapply each year. 

Federal Work Study

This program allows eligible students to earn money to pay for school through a part time job. As a rule, you must apply and interview for these jobs. You may find on campus or off campus work. Some typical work study jobs include office assistant, lab research, cafe worker, and others. 

TEACH Grant

Some colleges offer TEACH Grant eligible programs. If you’re enrolled as an undergraduate, post bachelor’s or grad student at one of these schools you may qualify. Eligible applicants need a 3.25 GPA and must sign a service contract. This states that upon graduation, you agree to teach in a high need field, full time and at a school that serves low income students. In return, this federal grant provides up to $4,000 per year.

State Grants

Many states have a certain amount of need based grants. You may have to fill out a FAFSA as well as state form and be accepted to a public four year college in your state. Just make sure to meet all application deadlines since they may differ.

List of Scholarships for Financial Need

Check out our list of 1,742,766 scholarships worth $7B.

Tennessee Dependent Children Scholarship Program

This award is available for Tennessee resident students who are planning to attend a Tennessee public or private college or university. Students must be the dependent child of a Tennessee law enforcement officer, fireman, or an emergency medical service technician who has been killed or totally and permanently disabled due to an incident that occurred in the line of duty while employed in Tennessee.

Total: $1000

Awards: 1

Deadline: July 15, 2022

Nurse Education Assistance Loan Program (NEALP) for Future Nurses

This award is for Ohio undergraduate students who are pursuing a career in nursing. The student must serve as a registered nurse in Ohio after graduation for loan forgiveness.

Total: $1620

Awards: 1

Deadline: July 15, 2022

Nurse Education Assistance Loan Program (NEALP) for Future Nurse Instructors

This forgivable loan is for Ohio registered nurses enrolled in approved Ohio post-licensure nurse education programs who intend to serve as nurse faculty after graduation. To qualify for loan cancellation, recipients must be employed as a faculty member instructing licensed practical nursing and/or registered nursing coursework to future nurses in the State of Ohio for a minimum of four years after graduation.

Total: $6000

Awards: 1

Deadline: July 15, 2022

Savory Experiments Scholarship Fund

If you follow Brand Like a Boss System or Blog Like a Boss Virtual Assistant Services, you know Jessica is action oriented and that meant that she needed to do something to provide a solution to a problem, that meant starting a scholarship fund. Well, $500 will pay for books, a few meals or help towards the massive cost of tuition these days. A small token to pay it forward and show how much we think education is important, regardless of what your degree is in. While we are putting aside what seems like a small amount for the big bills of schools these days, every little bit counts.

Total: $500

Awards: 1

Deadline: July 31, 2022

Gordan Hay Scholarship

The award is designed for special learning opportunities related to the recipient’s career interest in a non-performing area within the performing arts. Examples include but are not limited to professional conferences, seminars, workshops, participation in an unpaid internship program, professional performances, or technology needs.

Total: $5000

Awards: 1

Deadline: August 03, 2022

City of Boston Disability Scholarship Contest

The City of Boston Disability Scholarship Contest is available for current college students who have a family member with a disability. Applicants or one of their family members must be employed in the public sector.

Total: $3000

Awards: 3

Deadline: August 15, 2022

TMFC Covid Award

The Thurgood Marshall College Fund (TMCF) and varying partners are proud to offer COVID-19 emergency financial assistance to students attending one of TMCF’s 47 publicly-supported Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) or Predominantly Black Institutions (PBIs). Students selected will receive an emergency award of up to $1,000 for the 2021-2022 academic school year. Funding is intended to allow students to meet their needs and continue their education. Funding is available until the funds are exhausted or until the end of the summer term 2021, whichever comes first.

Total: $1000

Awards: 1

Deadline: August 31, 2022

Excelsior Scholarship Program

The Excelsior Scholarship Program is available for New York State residents who have an adjusted gross household income of $125,000 or less. Applicants must attend an undergraduate program at a SUNY or CUNY college and must enroll full time.

Total: $5500

Awards: 1

Deadline: August 31, 2022

Minority Teacher Scholarship

This scholarship is available to Indiana undergraduate students who are minority (black or Hispanic) and attending an Indiana college or university. The student must intend to pursue or be pursuing a course of study that would enable the student, upon graduation, to teach in an accredited school in Indiana.

Total: $1500

Awards: 1

Deadline: August 31, 2022

American Board of Funeral Service Education National Scholarship

College students who have completed one or more terms of study in funeral service or mortuary science education are eligible for this award. Students must be U.S. citizens.

Total: $5000

Awards: 2

Deadline: September 01, 2022