Honors College Scholarships

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How Do You Get Honors College Scholarships?

If you receive admissions into an honors college, you may qualify for a scholarship. Honors college scholarship recipients are usually incoming first year students and eligible transfer students.

Honors colleges tend to pick students based on academic achievement. So you might have a high grade point average and SAT / ACT scores or be in the top 5% of your class. Besides grades, applicants need to show they are eager to learn, grow, contribute and work hard.

Publicly funded state schools may set up honors programs to enhance their prestige. They also want to attract bright students who might otherwise attend a private or liberal arts college. 

Is Honors College Worth It?

Yes, honors college is worth it even though you need to work harder than other students. While enrolled as an honors student, you may enjoy smaller class sizes, networking opportunities, research opportunities, extracurricular and academic opportunities. These vary in each college but more benefits include:

  • Smaller classes: Many of your classes may be honors courses. These tend to be smaller in size and more intensive. As a result, you may have more time with faculty members. This may help you master the material and learn from a mentor.
  • Format: Honors programs may have more discussion vs lectures. Then spend time in class on analysis and debate. In some schools, honors students take extra modules in specific areas of interest. Other honors courses may focus on writing and research skills which set them apart from regular college classes.
  • Conferences: Honors students often take part in conferences. They may present material in their region, state or around the United States. There also could be an extra research project to undertake and these events may help you showcase your talent. 
  • Reserved housing: As a rule, honors college offer housing for students in the honors program. It may be nicer and more spacious. Plus, many students find it brings a feeling of community since you see these peers in class on a daily basis too
  • More affordable rates: Honors programs could be an affordable option if you attend an expensive private college. Per the NCES, the average cost of (tuition, fees, room and board) at a public college was $17,9797 per year. Total cost at private nonprofit schools is more expensive at $46,014 and $26,261 at private for profit schools. 

10 Scholarships for Honors College You Should Apply for Now

Here are 10 honors college scholarships you should apply for now.

  1. Park University McAffee Honors Scholarship
  2. Valparaiso University Honors Scholarship
  3. Aquinas College Transfer Honors Scholarship
  4. Regents High Honors Tuition Scholarship (AIMS)
  5. Union College Academic Honors Scholarship 
  6. Grace College Honors Scholarship 
  7. Hope College Alumni Honors Scholarship
  8. Wyoming Hathaway Honors Scholarship
  9. Stevenson University Honors Scholarship for Transfer Students
  10. SNHU Honors Scholarship

Merit Based Scholarships 

A merit scholarship is for high achievers. Many merit scholarship awards look at various factors such as above average GPA and strong SAT and ACT scores. Also, leadership skills and a record of giving back may play a deciding role too. 

Those accepted into Dordt College’s Kuyper Honors Program receive a $2,500 Kuyper Scholarship. To qualify, one needs a 3.50 high school GPA and a 28 ACT (or 1300 SAT) composite score. Finalists also need a solid entrance essay and letters of recommendation. The awards renew for three more academic years if a student keeps up a 3.25 GPA and actively takes part in the program. 

Need Based Scholarships

A need based scholarship looks at financial need. To qualify for this kind of financial aid you must fill out and file a FAFSA. It’s important do this in on time so that a college can figure out how much unmet need you have.

Smith College is one of the largest women’s colleges in the United States. Their undergraduate program only has female students. Students majoring in any field may apply to the honors program. To do so, one needs to speak with a Department director. The college tries to meet the unmet need of all incoming freshman. Last year, about 1,500 students received financial aid. The average scholarship award amount was more than $48,000. 

Honors Scholarships for Transfer Students

Transfer students from accredited schools may qualify for scholarships. Each school follows a certain process. For example, you may need a minimum number of credits to apply. To make the transfer seamless, make sure to apply  by the due dates. 

Union College Transfer Honors Scholarship is open to U.S. and international students. You must plan to transfer to Union College’s Honors Program in Nebraska. If interested, you must have 24 or more credit hours and a GPA of 3.5 or above. The scholarship pays $5,000 each year for up to five more semesters for a total value of $15,000.

Transfer Trustee Honors Scholarship is open to undergrads who plan to transfer to McMurray University in Texas. And, who’ve been accepted into the Honors Program. Applicants must be in the top 5% of their class to be eligible. That translates to a 27 or higher on the ACT, or at least 1220 on the SAT. Scholars receive $1,000 per year for up to 4 years ($4,000).

Study Abroad Scholarships for Honors Students

One of the potential perks for honors students is the opportunity to receive aid to study abroad. On a simple level, traveling exposes you to new cultures, food and people. Studying abroad may also broaden your understanding of your college major. You may gain fresh perspectives, learn a new language, or take part in community service. 

Rutgers Honors College Scholarship for Alternative International Experiences is for those who want to take part in a non credit international experience like a service learning trip. Priority goes to Honors College students who show both need and merit who make a strong case for why they deserve to go. One time awards range from $1,000 to $2,000 given availability of funds. The school suggests applicants apply early but accepts applications on a rolling basis. 

Why Honors College Students Should Apply for Scholarships?

Honors College scholarships could be useful for students who need financial assistance. This vital aid may decrease the number of student loans you may need to complete higher education. Some awards may also offset tuition and fees. Also, smaller amounts might fund your research thesis which many honors colleges require.

For first year students, an honors program may also provides valuable tools such as academic advising and mentorship. Plus, the opportunity to grow leadership skills, especially if you participate in on campus organizations. 

While you strive to keep up a competitive GPA, you may maximize your college experience through internships, externships and research opportunities. Many students attend conferences where they have the chance to present their findings to peers, potential employers and grad schools. 

Having a scholarship and being an honors student may boost your resume too. Honors college scholarships may be viewed as an accomplishment to future employers. This credential shows you are a high achiever, and have exceptional ability in academics. After graduating from college, the network and support system you build may set you up for continued success.

List of Scholarships

There are several other honors scholarships that college students should consider such as Dean’s List, Valedictorian, and National Honor Society awards. Check out our list of scholarships below.

Dean's List Scholarship

A dean's scholarship is financial aid based on academic achievement. These prestigious merit awards tend to go to first year undergraduate students in the top 1 to 5% of their high school class. Sometimes, with no extra application form to fill out. That said, you may need to commit to that college by their early action deadline when specified. If a current matriculated undergraduate student, you may qualify. In most colleges, a Dean's List is a list of all students that received A's and B's for the semester. While the President's List is a list of all student that received all A's for the semester.

AWARDS: 439
TOTAL: $2M

National Honor Society Scholarships

The National Honor Society (NHS) is a volunteer based club for high school students. It started in 1921 by the National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP). Their goal was to elevate students' and schools' academics as well as create involved leaders in communities nationwide. Today over 1 million students in grades 9 to 12 take part in their activities. On average, each chapter contributes 1,000 hours of school / community service and $26,000 in charitable donations.

AWARDS: 935
TOTAL: $15M

Valedictorian Scholarships

You ranked #1 in your class and many colleges set scholarships aside to reward high school valedictorians like you for your hard work. These awards base decisions on academic performance including grade point average, SAT and ACT scores. Having an above average GPA might also open doors to other sources of financial aid just for high achievers.

AWARDS: 10,534
TOTAL: $104M