Community colleges in the United States are significantly less expensive than four-year institutions, including public ones.
Unfortunately, not many students attending community colleges are aware that they, like low-income students attending 4-year private and public institutions, can further reduce the cost of an associate degree through scholarships.
Can I Get Scholarships For Community College
While community college is a great value, there are still costs to consider: tuition, fees, books, and transportation. Scholarships can help cover some of these costs, and the answer is yes. Many scholarships can be used at community colleges across the country.
Community college financial aid
This article highlights a variety of scholarships available to community college students. These scholarships are designed to help current college students complete their degree programmes by emphasising individual experiences and academic excellence. Unless otherwise stated, if you meet the eligibility requirements and are enrolled in an accredited community college, you may be eligible for a scholarship. Use Bold.org in the way that works best for you to apply to a wide range of community college scholarships!
Furthermore, some scholarships are only available to community college students. Those community college scholarships can be used to pay for an associate degree at a community college or a bachelor’s degree at a four-year institution after transferring.
At times, you will also be free to make that decision, but in other cases, the scholarship rules may require you to use the money at a specific school. Many colleges offer scholarships to transfer students to attract more students. Community college transfer students may generate more revenue in scholarships than first-year students.
Athletic scholarships are among the most common types of college scholarships. The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) provides scholarships to student-athletes at the majority of private and public universities. Similarly, the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) assists student-athletes in their collegiate careers at junior colleges.
Playing a sport at Division 1 or 2 community college may result in full-ride athletic scholarships to your chosen college. The NJCAA currently has 520 participating institutions and has assisted over 58,000 student-athletes.
This resource is ideal for students who do not want to give up their dreams of playing their sport while also saving a significant amount of money for college. Seniors in high school who participate in sports and want to attend community college should look into available scholarship options.
Furthermore, other scholarship programmes may be more general, meaning they are not limited to a specific institution or individual. These scholarships are usually easier to apply for because they only require a simple survey. Because this scholarship is open to any college student pursuing any degree, keep in mind that the chances of winning are the same as winning a lottery ticket. Because the applicant pool is much larger, there is far more competition than with a smaller audience.
In addition to scholarships, it can be helpful for community college students to also look into grants from the government to help fund their education. Community college students can fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid and see their eligibility for financial aid.
Every college will offer a different aid package based on financial need, so you can apply for a few schools in the area and ultimately use the financial aid packages you’re offered as a guide when deciding which community college is right for you.
Just because community college is less cost-prohibitive than a traditional four-year college does not mean that it is essentially affordable for every student. Even the lower costs of community college can be overwhelming for low or middle-income students, especially when the cost of living is factored in. Fortunately, there are many resources available to help you make college more affordable so you can earn your degree and possibly even join the ranks of graduate students.
How to Apply for Scholarships as a Community College Student
Whether students from low-income families attend community colleges or four-year institutions, the first step in applying for scholarships is the same: filling out the FAFSA. Incoming freshman students can complete the FAFSA before deciding which school to attend.
The average annual cost of college is $25,487 at an in-state public school and $53,217 at a private non-profit school, according to Education Data. Meanwhile, the average annual cost of attending a community college is $15,748.
That is 38% less than the cost of an in-state public school and 70% less than the cost of a private non-profit school!
Even though community colleges are significantly less expensive than other options, students may still apply for financial aid and receive assistance in the form of federal or state grants, student loans, and work-study programmes. And it all starts with completing and submitting the FAFSA as soon as it becomes available on October 1.
However, it is important to note that only 44% of all community college students receive any type of financial aid. Those who do, however, are more likely to receive grants that involve borrowing money.
Students attending community colleges may be eligible for institutional or private scholarships in addition to federal or state government financial assistance. These scholarships may be awarded based on financial need, academic excellence, field of study, volunteer service, and other criteria.
How to Get Scholarships for Community College
Everyone knows that community colleges are so much cheaper than four-year institutions, public and private alike.
As a result, many people believe that community college students are no longer eligible for scholarships, which is incorrect. Going to a community college is less expensive than attending a four-year college or university — as previously stated, the average cost of attending a community college for one year can be 38% to 79% less expensive.
Earning an associate degree, however, does not end with enrolling in a community college. Before being admitted, remember to complete the FAFSA to determine which available aid you are eligible for. It’s also a good idea to look into institutional scholarships as well as private, non-profit organisations.
Community College Scholarships To Apply
Deadline: Quarterly (September 30, December 31, March 31, June 30)
Eligibility: This is my very own no-essay scholarship! Open to high school, college, and graduate school students of all years.
Deadline: Varies (June 30, December 31)
Eligibility: Open to high school students of all years, who are planning to eventually enroll at a US higher education institution (including community colleges!).
Deadline: September 30
Eligibility: A great no-essay scholarship, this opportunity is open to high school seniors and undergraduate students in the US.
Eligibility: Open to all students 13 and older!
5. CollegeXpress’ Monthly Scholarship
Amount: It varies, but it’s usually between $1,000 and $2,500!
Deadline: Last day of each month
Eligibility: Open to high school, college, and graduate students in the US.
Yes, you can get scholarships for community college! Many scholarships are specifically designed for community college students, recognizing the unique challenges and experiences of this population. These scholarships can significantly reduce your financial burden, allowing you to focus on your studies and achieve your academic goals.
Whether you are a high school graduate or an adult learner, pursuing a degree at a community college can be a financially smart decision.
With careful planning and research, you can find scholarships that will help you make your education affordable and open doors to rewarding career opportunities. Remember, the key to success is to start early, apply for a variety of scholarships, and follow the application instructions carefully.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
1. What types of scholarships are available for community college students?
There are a wide variety of scholarships available for community college students, including:
- Merit-based scholarships: Awarded based on academic achievement, leadership skills, and community involvement.
- Need-based scholarships: Awarded based on financial need.
- Field-specific scholarships: Awarded to students majoring in specific fields of study, such as healthcare, STEM fields, or business.
- Diversity and inclusion scholarships: Awarded to students from underrepresented groups, such as minorities, women, or first-generation college students.
- Local and regional scholarships: Awarded by local organizations and businesses to support students in their communities.
2. How can I find scholarships for community college?
Here are some ways to find scholarships for community college:
- Talk to your community college’s financial aid office: They can provide you with information about scholarships specifically for your school and students in your area.
- Search online scholarship databases: Websites like Fastweb, Scholarship.com, and College Board offer a comprehensive list of scholarships, including many for community college students.
- Contact local organizations and businesses: Many organizations and businesses offer scholarships to students in their communities. Check their websites or contact them directly for more information.
- Attend college fairs and scholarship workshops: These events provide valuable information and resources about scholarships and financial aid.
3. What are some tips for applying for community college scholarships?
Here are some tips for applying for community college scholarships:
- Start early: The scholarship application process can be competitive, so it’s important to start researching and applying for scholarships early.
- Meet all deadlines: Make sure you submit your application materials by the deadline to be considered for the scholarship.
- Follow the application instructions carefully: Pay close attention to the specific requirements and format for each scholarship application.
- Write a strong essay: Many scholarships require a written essay. Take time to craft a compelling essay that highlights your academic achievements, goals, and community involvement.
- Seek help from your counsellor or advisor: Your counsellor or advisor can help you review your applications and offer guidance throughout the scholarship application process.