If you are a high school senior anticipating graduation and looking forward to college, you are at the best time to look for scholarships. Most scholarships target graduating high school students who are looking for funds to pay for college. Financial aid organizations and institutions understand that this is an important time in young peoples’ lives and finding the money for school can be daunting. With that in mind, they have made available many lucrative scholarship opportunities, some of which offer full rides to deserving students.
Coca-Cola awards 250 four-year scholarships to college-bound high school seniors who already have a strong record of achievement. Preliminary applications must be in by October 31 and Coca-Cola will notify 2,200 semifinalists at the beginning of December. Semifinalists will then have to complete another application, including essays and letters of recommendation by mid-January. The Committee will then choose 250 finalists from that pool and invite them to Atlanta for interviews. All 250 finalists will receive scholarships, the only question is how much. After the interviews, 50 students will be chosen as National Scholars and receive a $20,000 per year scholarship. The other 200 will receive $10,000 per year. This is a scholarship program well worth applying to.
The Dell Scholars Program awards a scholarship to traditionally under-served students who demonstrate financial need, have overcome some hardship in their past, and are participating in an approved AVID program. Dell awards scholarships of $20,000 to 250 students. The program is committed to helping students who have overcome hardships in their lives and are goal oriented. Students must maintain a minimum GPA of 2.4, much lower than most scholarship requirements, and have been a part of one of the Michael and Susan Dell Foundation college readiness programs for a minimum of two years.
This program offers one of the more prestigious awards with a rigorous application process. Each year the National Merit Scholarship Program awards approximately 8,300 students one-time scholarships. Students begin the process by taking the PSAT/NMSQT by the third year of high school, at the latest. Fifty thousand of the 1.5 million test takers will qualify with the highest scores. Most of these students will not continue in the process, but they may still be eligible for special scholarship opportunities. Sixteen thousand semifinalists are chosen by the highest scores in each state. Finalists are then chosen from that group, who must then go on to provide evidence of a strong academic record, the high school’s official recommendation, an essay, and evidence of the student’s leadership and activities. Recipients of the award will receive $2500.
These are only a few of the many scholarship choices for college-bound high school seniors. There are many others that target their chosen profession, race, gender, religion, disability, region, and many other personal factors. The trick is to do as much research as possible to identify the scholarships that are right for you and apply to as many as possible. There is a lot of money out there. You just have to know how to get it.