Scholarships for Non Traditional Students

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What is a Scholarship for Non Traditional Students?

If you postponed college, you may be eligible for scholarship for non traditional students. Scholarships for returning students are for people who are pursuing college later in their adult life. It could also be adults returning to school after being in the workforce. 

Scholarships for non traditional students often help pay for college along with other college expenses. Unlike a loan, a non traditional scholarship typically does not need to be paid back. So, if you abide by the terms, it should not add to your college debt.  

Who Offers Non Traditional Scholarships?

Providers of non traditional student scholarships are diverse. You may find them through corporations, professional associations and colleges and other organizations.  

One example is a Founders Scholarship. These awards are for members of ANTSHE. The Association for Non Traditional Students in Higher Education offers $500 to full tuition. There are many colleges offering this scholarship. Albright College and Beloit College are some schools that offer this award. 

Who is a Non Traditional Student?

Students who did not go from high school right into college are “non traditional.” Many students start working after earning their diploma. However, some may want to pursue college later in their life.  

Apart from that, non traditional students have diverse backgrounds. In general, you may qualify for a scholarship as a non traditional student if you meet one or more of the following six criteria from the NCES.  

  1. Non traditional students are over the age of 24. They may have already graduated from college and may want to go back to school.
  2. Enroll in college after graduating from high school after 1 year or more. Non traditional students did not immediately continue their education after high school. Many want to return to college after a gap year to finish their degree. 
  3. Attend college part time. Many non traditional students may have to raise a family or work full time. They may enroll in a part time program.  
  4. Have family duties and limited finances. Non traditional students may have to care for dependents other than a spouse. Some are single parents who are raising a child by themselves.
  5. Independent in terms of financial aid. Traditional college students may get financial help from their parents. Non traditional students are usually financially independent.
  6. Have a GED, not a high school diploma. Many non traditional students did not complete a high school diploma. But passed the GED exam and have a high school certificate of completion.    
  7. Work full time. Many non traditional students work a full time job or typical 9 to 5 job.

Can Non Traditional Students Get Financial Aid?

As a non traditional student, you may be eligible for federal student financial aid. Like anyone younger, you should soon fill out a FAFSA

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid figures out your financial needs. Since there is no age limit for a Federal Pell Grant, you may be eligible too. 

Many scholarships for non traditional students do not place age limits either. Though some providers may ask to see the results of your FAFSA. 

Can You Get a Scholarship at the age of 25?

There are scholarships that you may apply to if you are age 25. You may need to show financial need and have at least a GED. One example is the Tennessee Hope Scholarship. It awards up to $6,750 annually. You must also be a resident of Tennessee.

Why Consider  Non Traditional Student Scholarships? 

A scholarship may help a non traditional student reenter college and help pay for school. Studies show lifetime earnings are higher with a college degree.  

One study from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that people with less than a high school diploma may earn a weekly average of $520. Many workers could earn $836 per week with an associate’s degree. A bachelor’s degree has a weekly pay that averages at $1,173. 

How Many College Students are Considered Non Traditional?

Enrollment of students age 25 and over was 11 percent higher in 2016 than in 2006. The National Center for Education Statistics predicts that is on the rise by 1% through 2027. 

About 7.4 million students age 25 or older went to college in fall 2019. This is less than the number of ‘traditional’ students. About 12.5 million college students were under 25 years of age. 

About 10% of college students attending 4 year public colleges are non traditional. Of these, most students (8%) are age 25 to 34. The remaining 2% are 35 years or older.  

If you look at private for profit schools, about one third (39%) are 25 to 34. Another 28% are 35 plus. Somewhere between these two are private nonprofit colleges. While most (8%) are in the 25 to 34 range, 5% are adults age 35 and up. 

List of Non Traditional Student Scholarships

As a non traditional student, there are many scholarships to help you earn a college degree. There are awards worth below. Apply now to our list of scholarships for non traditional students.

A. Harry Passow Classroom Teacher Scholarship

This award is available for U.S. college graduate students who are currently teaching K-12 gifted education. Students must have been a member of the National Association for Gifted Children for one year or more and be returning to college to receive advanced training in gifted education.

Total: $4000

Awards: 2

Deadline: April 01, 2023

Desha County Single Parent Scholarship

This award is for single parents who are residents of Desha County, AR. Students must be high school graduates or older at the time of application, and demonstrate financial need.

Total: $500

Awards: 10

Deadline: June 15, 2023

Greene County Single Parent Scholarship

Single Parent Scholarships are awarded to eligible single parents who are residents of Greene County, Arkansas. The applicant must have a grade point average of 2.0 or better and apply for a Pell Grant to be eligible for this award.

Total: $4000

Awards: 11

Deadline: June 15, 2023

Clay County Single Parent Scholarship

Current undergraduate single parents who reside in Clay County, Arkansas are eligible for this award. Students must be the head of household and be living at or near the poverty level.

Total: $500

Awards: 6

Deadline: June 15, 2023

Santa Fe College Altrusa International of Starke Scholarship

This scholarship is open to Bradford County (FL) female residents who are 25 years of age or older and plan to attend Santa Fe College. Students must have a grade point average of 2.5 or higher.

Total: $6400

Awards: 4

Deadline: June 15, 2023

Santa Fe College Esther Porter Lane Memorial Scholarship

This scholarship is open to U.S. women who are 25 years of age or older and reside in Alachua or Bradford counties in Florida. Students must plan to attend Santa Fe College, and must have a grade point average of 2.5 or higher.

Total: $1600

Awards: 1

Deadline: June 15, 2023

Santa Fe College Altrusa International of Gainesville, Florida Scholarship

This scholarship is open to U.S. women who are 25 years of age or older and plan to attend Santa Fe College. Students must be residents of Alachua or Bradford counties in Florida, and must have a grade point average of 2.5 or higher.

Total: $4000

Awards: 4

Deadline: June 20, 2023

Arkansas Academic Challenge Scholarship – High School Seniors

This award is available for Arkansas high school seniors who are planning to attend a two-year or four-year postsecondary institution in Arkansas. Students must successfully complete the Smart Core curriculum established by the Arkansas Department of Education and have an ACT (or ACT equivalent) score of 19 or higher.

Total: $5000

Awards: 1

Deadline: July 01, 2023

Maeband Scholarship

Maeband, a company providing comfort and style to pregnant women through ingenious design, is pleased to announce the launch of the Maeband scholarship contest. Maeband, a local Utah company, produces a clever, comfy waistline extension band that allows moms to sidestep traditional maternity pants in favor of their own regular clothes — saving money in the process. Maeband makes it possible for women to keep doing things just as they have always done. Maeband is committed to helping mom students with their educational pursuits, and is anxious to help them accomplish their goals. Maeband is proud to offer a $500 scholarship prize to studying moms.

Total: $500

Awards: 1

Deadline: July 01, 2023

Make Me Laugh Scholarship

The Make Me Laugh Scholarship, offered by UNIGO, is open to all U.S. students who are 14 and older and who are currently enrolled (or enroll no later than fall of 2025) in an accredited postsecondary institution of higher education. One scholarship winner will receive a $1,500 scholarship.

Total: $1500

Awards: 1

Deadline: August 31, 2023