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From Caddies to Trekkies to Just Because You’re Tall, Wide Variety of Scholarships Available
While summer offers students a break from hitting the books, Scholarship America recommends using that extra time to find scholarship dollars to pay for college. There are a variety of scholarships available that range from awarding dollars based on ethnicity to unique offerings for caddies, Star Trek fans and even individuals who are tall.
“Tuition costs are at an all-time high, which is significantly impacting the number of students who can afford higher education,” said Lauren Segal, president and CEO of Scholarship America. “The good news is that there are resources available based on a variety of interests, abilities and even genetics that will not only get students in the door but also keep them there so that they earn their degree and graduate with a manageable amount of debt but they need to devote time and energy to finding those resources.”
For the second year in a row, student loan debt – now totaling close to one trillion dollars – topped credit card debt. Scholarship America is offering advice to help students and families find financial resources that will allow them to earn an educational degree beyond high school and also graduate with a manageable level of debt. Scholarship America works with companies and organizations that offer a variety of scholarship programs.
There are also many unique scholarships available, and their criteria aren't limited to financial need or athletic or academic achievement. Some examples include:
In 2010, Scholarship America provided nearly $200 million to 105,000 students through its programs.
In addition to researching scholarships, students also are encouraged to spend the summer doing activities that will increase the likelihood they will be awarded scholarship dollars.
“Many scholarship applicants earn extra points for extra curricular activities and community service,” Segal said. “Summer is the perfect time to get the experience needed to make applications more appealing to the individuals making the decisions.”
Scholarship America offers the following tips for students and families looking for scholarship dollars:
This year, Scholarship America is celebrating 50 years of providing more than $2.5 billion in scholarships and sending 1.7 million students to college. The organization was founded in 1961 in Fall River, Massachusetts by Dr. Irving Fradkin, who noticed a discrepancy between students’ desires to go to college and their families’ abilities to pay for it. To bridge the gap, Fradkin asked each person in his Fall River community to donate just $1 towards sending Fall River seniors to college. His early efforts became known as the Dollars for Scholars program, which still exists today under Scholarship America and is active in more than 3,500 communities nationwide.
In addition to entry-level scholarships, Scholarship America awards renewable multi-year scholarships, as well as emergency financial grants – both of which provide students with the financial assistance they need to complete their college degree.
To learn more about Scholarship America, visit www.scholarshipamerica.org.
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About Scholarship America
Scholarship America is a national education service organization that mobilizes support for students getting into and graduating from college. Scholarship America has distributed more than $2.5 billion in scholarship assistance to more than 1.7 million students over the last 50 years. Scholarship America’s programs, which include Dollars for Scholars®, help fund both entry-level and multi-year scholarships, as well as emergency financial grants. More information is available at scholarshipamerica.org.
Scholarship America’s Dream Award is a renewable scholarship fund targeted toward completion. These annually-increasing awards will be given to students selected from across the nation who are entering their second year of education beyond high school.
Scholarship America's blog, The Scholarship Coach, appears weekly at USNews.com, featuring expert advice on all kinds of scholarship issues. Here on the site, we feature a new highlight from the blog every week, and you can also download a free Scholarship Coach e-book!
Nearly 1/4 of the U.S. population owes a collective $700 billion in student loan debt. We are committed to helping more students graduate from college with less debt. A gift of just $1 a day -- for a week, for a month, or for a year -- can help ensure that students are able to achieve their goals.