Jewish Scholarships

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Are There Jewish Scholarships?

There are many agencies that offer scholarships for Jewish students. Jewish scholarships defray costs of college. But unlike loans, are free. They may fund studies in the U.S. or abroad in Israel.

The goal of this aid is to nurture the Jewish culture by promoting higher education. So, some Jewish scholarships are for those who want to study Judaism or the Hebrew language.

Other scholarships do not restrict the major to a Jewish theme. But may prefer candidates who plan to build the Jewish community.

Applying for a Jewish Scholarship

To apply for a scholarship, you will also have to meet criteria other than being Jewish. Strong grades and financial need are a few. A track record of service in your synagogue or community is another.


  • Being a resident of a certain area or state
  • Up to date member
  • Active promoter of Judaism, Israel or your local Jewish community
  • Enrolled at a certain college

I’m Jewish, Where Can I Find Scholarships?

Many Jewish Community Foundations offer scholarships. These funds may pay for academic and career training.

Of these, there are agencies that fund employees’ and members’ studies. And those that work with local or national students.

Colleges are another source. Alumni donors often sponsor College Scholarship Funds. You can find these at both Christian and Jewish colleges FYI.

Why Consider Jewish Scholarships?

Judaism is one of the oldest religions and about 42 million people practice it in America. Many Jews came to the States after the Holocaust of World War II.

To understand their history, many Jews study it in school and may learn the Hebrew language. Some venture to Israel either as part of a study abroad, college or a Jewish pilgrimage program.

If this appeals to you, scholarships come in varying amounts. Some are set aside for college tuition and fees. But others are for the extras like travel and getting to know your heritage.

Top Jewish Scholarships for 2020

Here is our curated list of great scholarships for you to look for in 2020.

American Jewish League for Israel Scholarships

The American Jewish League for Israel Scholarships is available for any person, regardless of background or faith, that helps further this mission. AJLI’s mission is to foster Jewish spiritual and cultural values through the experience of living and studying in Israel.

Total: $6000 Awards:  6
Deadline:  April 15

Professional Development Scholarship

The Professional Development Scholarship is available for full time or part time graduate degree students (does not need to be an applicant’s first graduate degree). Others are available for any graduate degree and/or one of the partnership programs.

Total: $20000 Awards:  1
Deadline:  June 1

Jewish Family and Children’s Services Scholarship

The Jewish Family and Children’s Services Scholarship is available for Jewish students to achieve their goals by providing them with loans and grants (scholarships). To be eligible, applicants must reside in one of the following California Counties: Sonoma, Marin, San Francisco, San Mateo, or Northern Santa Clara.

Total: $6000 Awards:  1
Deadline:  June 15

Jewish Vocational Service of Southern California Scholarship

This award is available for financially needy Jewish students from Los Angeles County. Applicants must have a grade point average of 2.7 or higher and plan to enroll full time.

Total: $5000 Awards:  166
Deadline:  March 19

Springfield Council of Jewish Women Scholarship

The Jewish Endowment Foundation Scholarship Awards are available to all qualified students regardless of race, religion and gender chosen based on a combination of academic performance, financial need, and community involvement.

Total: $54000 Awards:  10
Deadline:  April 01

JEF Common Fund Academic Scholarships

The JEF Common Fund Scholarships are available to Jewish students living in the Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts.

Total: $11000 Awards:  1
Deadline:  April 01

UJA- Federation of New York Rose Biller Scholarship Program

This award is for Jewish students living in and studying in the New York metropolitan area. Applicants must demonstrate significant financial need.

Total: $5000 Awards:  320
Deadline:  May 30

The Jean and Albert Nerken Scholarship

This award is for Jewish undergraduate or graduate students attending an institute of higher learning approved by UJA-Federation. Applicants must be international students with no U.S. citizenship.

Total: $5000 Awards:  1
Deadline:  June 01

Masa Israel Grants and Scholarships

Masa Israel Journey offers immersive international experiences in Israel for young people ages 18-30. Their diverse portfolio of 2 to 12 month programs includes undergraduate and graduate academic programs at Israeli universities as well as Jewish studies programs, gap year programs, internships and volunteering. You can apply to receive funding, or to donate your grant to another participant. Being part of the Masa ecosystem includes logistical support (housing, transportation, health insurance...

Total: $50000 Awards:  1
Deadline:  December 31

Helyn B. Reich Memorial Scholarship

The Helyn B. Reich Memorial Scholarship are awarded each fall and spring to a limited number of American students who choose to study at one of several designated Israeli universities or attend post-college long-term programs.

Total: $1500 Awards:  1
Deadline:  January 14

Jewish Federation Academic Scholarship

This scholarship is available for U.S. college juniors and seniors who are Jewish and demonstrate career promise in a helping profession. Students must also meet one or both of the following criteria: he/she was born or raised in either Cook County, the Chicago metropolitan area, or northwest Indiana OR he/she has completed one continuous year of full-time employment in Cook County or the Chicago metropolitan area prior to starting professional education.

Total: $120 Awards:  5000
Deadline:  February 01

Chicago Benton Bernstein Scholarship

This scholarship is available for Jewish graduate students who immigrated to the United States through the assistance of HIAS Chicago and/or applied for permanent residency or citizenship with the assistance of HIAS Chicago between Jan. 1, 2000 and the present. The student must be enrolled in professional study in one of the helping professions.

Total: $5 Awards:  5
Deadline:  February 01