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Last updated on June 17, 2024

Scholarships for Non-Traditional Students to Apply for in 2024

The Best Scholarships for Non-Traditional Students with Upcoming Deadlines

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15 SCHOLARSHIPS
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  1. Overcoming Adversity Cariño Scholarship

    Funded by
    Jonnathan Yepez Cariño
    This scholarship aims to support students who have demonstrated the ability to overcome adversity and fight for their success.

    Eligibility Criteria:

    • State: Washington
    • Education Level: High school student
    • Ethnicity: Latinx
    Amount:$15,000
    Deadline is Approaching! 12 days left
    One Click Apply
    1
  2. Sloane Stephens Doc & Glo Scholarship

    Funded by
    Sloane Stephens
    Sloane Stephens has always been committed to giving back and supporting her community. As she competes at the highest levels of her sport, winning the US Open in 2017 and rising to become the #3 ranked player in the world, she also dedicates her time to charitable efforts with the Sloane Stephens Foundation. She founded the nonprofit in 2013 at the age of 20 to provide more opportunities to underserved children through education and sports.Through her foundation, Sloane has helped level the playing field for over 10,000 underserved youth nationwide who otherwise would not have access to safe environments to learn, exercise or play.Sloane continues making her impact through the $30,000 Sloane Stephens Doc & Glo Scholarship, created in honor of her late grandparents who were instrumental in Sloane’s life and firm believers in the power of education. Lemon Perfect, the fastest-growing brand in the enhanced water category, shares Sloane's vision for a healthier, more equitable world and is contributing to Year 3 of the scholarship. This scholarship will support 6 students in paying for their education and following their dreams. All students who are studying healthcare or attending an HBCU with a 2.5 or higher GPA are eligible to apply.In the spirit of resilience and dedication that Doc and Glo demonstrated throughout their lives, please share a personal story or experience that highlights your determination to overcome challenges. How has this resilience shaped your character and influenced your pursuit of a career in medicine or attendance at an HBCU?

    Eligibility Criteria:

    • Schooling: Either studying healthcare or attending an HBCU
    • GPA: 2.5 or higher
    Amount:$31,138
    Deadline:Aug 01, 2024
    One Click Apply
    2
  3. Rebecca Hunter Memorial Scholarship

    Funded by
    Ryan Lester
    This scholarship will support a single parent pursuing education in memory of Rebecca Hunter.

    Eligibility Criteria:

    • Education Level: Any
    • Parental Status: Single parent
    Amount:$1,200
    Deadline:Aug 01, 2024
    One Click Apply
    3
  4. Slater Miller Memorial Fund

    Funded by
    Miller Family
    This scholarship seeks to honor the life of Slater Miller by supporting trade school students with financial need.

    Eligibility Criteria:

    • Education Level: Trade school student
    • Financial Status: Low-income
    • Background: Non-profit or volunteering experience
    Amount:$3,780
    Deadline:Oct 19, 2024
    One Click Apply
    4
  5. AB Foundation Scholarship

    Funded by
    AB Scholarship Foundation
    This scholarship will support college bound students who were pregnant during their high school years or children of teen mothers.

    Eligibility Criteria:

    • Education level : High school senior & undergraduates
    • Background: Teen mom and/or child of a teen mom
    Amount:$10,220
    Deadline:Oct 01, 2024
    One Click Apply
    5
  6. Juanita Robinson English Book Scholarship

    Funded by
    English Family
    This scholarship aims to honor the memory of Juanita Robinson English by assisting Howard University undergraduate students with the costs of books and tuition.

    Eligibility Criteria:

    • Education Level: Undergraduate student
    • School: Howard University
    • Background: Non-profit or volunteering experience
    Amount:$4,205
    Deadline:Sep 01, 2024
    One Click Apply
    6
  7. Marion John Shepard, Jr. Scholarship

    Funded by
    Shepard Family
    This scholarship aims to honor Marion John Shepard Jr. by supporting students who have lost a parent so they can stay on track and complete their education.

    Eligibility Criteria:

    • Education Level: Undergraduate student
    • Field of Study: Education
    • Background: Has lost a parent
    Amount:$1,500
    Deadline is Approaching! 10 days left
    One Click Apply
    7
  8. Eleanor Anderson-Miles Foundation Scholarship

    Funded by
    Sebastian Miles
    This scholarship seeks to create a path for students to develop themselves through access to education in hopes to create a foundation for academic, emotional, and social success.

    Eligibility Criteria:

    • Education Level: Undergraduate student
    • Background: Has overcome adversity
    Amount:$6,000
    Deadline is Approaching! 2 days left
    One Click Apply
    8
  9. Raquel Merlini Pay it Forward Scholarship

    Funded by
    raquel Merlini
    This scholarship is designed to support one divorced woman or a single mother with an opportunity to pursue the education she deserves.

    Eligibility Criteria:

    • Marital Status: Single Mother and/or divorced
    • Pending major: Pursuing or considering pursuing a degree in the medical field
    Amount:$1,000
    Deadline is Approaching! 6 days left
    One Click Apply
    9
  10. Hazel Joy Memorial Scholarship

    Funded by
    The Hazel Joy Memorial Foundation
    This scholarship will honor the memory of Hazel Joy and support a student who has experienced the loss of a sibling.

    Eligibility Criteria:

    • Education Level: High school senior or undergraduate
    • Background: Experienced loss of a sibling
    Amount:$2,500
    Deadline is Approaching! 12 days left
    One Click Apply
    10
  11. Darius Lee Memorial Scholarship

    Funded by
    Dlee23 Foundation
    This scholarship aims to honor Darius Lee's legacy by supporting students with big goals for their futures.

    Eligibility Criteria:

    • Education Level: Undergraduate
    • GPA: 2.5 or higher
    • Field of Study: sports medicine/management
    Amount:$2,500
    Deadline is Approaching! 12 days left
    One Click Apply
    11
  12. Finance Your Education No-Essay Scholarship

    Funded by
    Bold.org
    This scholarship seeks to support students who are looking for financial aid and tips on how to finance their education.
    All students are eligible
    Amount:$1,000
    Deadline is Approaching! 13 days left
    One Click Apply
    12
  13. Surveys and Savings No-Essay Scholarship

    Funded by
    Bold.org
    This scholarship aims to support students who are looking for free and easy opportunities to improve their finances.
    All students are eligible
    Amount:$500
    Deadline is Approaching! 13 days left
    One Click Apply
    13
  14. 100 Bold Points No-Essay Scholarship

    Funded by
    Bold.org
    This scholarship will be awarded to the student whose Bold.org profile is the most bold, and who has earned at least 100 Bold Points.
    All students are eligible
    Amount:$1,000
    Deadline is Approaching! 13 days left
    One Click Apply
    14
  15. 500 Bold Points No-Essay Scholarship

    Funded by
    Bold.org
    This scholarship will be awarded to the student whose Bold.org profile is the most bold, and who has earned at least 500 Bold Points.
    All students are eligible
    Amount:$5,000
    Deadline is Approaching! 13 days left
    One Click Apply
    15
3 Scholarships for Non-Traditional Students Have Approaching Deadlines.
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In a world characterized by constant change and evolving career landscapes, the conventional approach to education and career progression is no longer the only path to success. Every journey is unique, and the transformative potential of embracing a non-traditional path can not be underestimated.

Being non-traditional allows individuals to gather diverse experiences and perspectives that can set them apart from the crowd. In this blog, I have gathered information about diverse scholarships, everything about the application process, financial aid tips, and all the necessary information to start your journey to college as a non-traditional student.

Whether contemplating a career change, seeking personal growth, or simply feeling ready for something new, exploring non-traditional financial options could be the key to unlocking your full potential and seizing new opportunities for a lifetime.

Begin your scholarship hunt now! Numerous scholarship opportunities await eligible applicants. Start applying now for the upcoming academic year!



Scholarships that Non-Traditional Students Should Apply For

Adult Learners Returning to College

Adult learners returning to college face unique challenges and opportunities on their educational journey. As individuals who have taken diverse paths, pursuing higher education brings a wealth of life experiences and a strong commitment to personal and further academic achievement and growth.

We have plenty of scholarships available for adult learners and online learners that will help you financially with your school expenses. Remember to check the deadline for each scholarship before applying since some of them are in February 2024:

Mary D. Scholarship

Cappex Adult Learners Scholarship

WayUp Dream Job No-Essay Scholarship

Joseph Joshua Searor Memorial Scholarship

Phoebes in Philanthropy Scholarship

Debra S. Jackson New Horizons Scholarship

Charles Cheesman's Student Debt Reduction Scholarship

Cat Zingano Overcoming Loss Scholarship

Sandra West ALS Foundation Scholarship

Joanne Pransky Celebration of Women in Robotics

CapCut Meme Master Scholarship

SmartAsset College SmartStart Personal Finance Scholarship

Eduardo Uvaldo Memorial Scholarship

Peirce College Adult Learners Scholarship

Scholar Dudes in Computer Science Scholarship

Mary Schonfield PA School Scholarship

Jose Prado Memorial Scholarship

OxStem Educational Scholarship

Cosmetology No-Essay Scholarship — Adult Learner Award

Filipino-American Scholarship

Emma Jean Ridley Memorial Scholarship

Tracey Johnson-Webb Adult Learners Scholarship

Harvey and Geneva Mabry Second Time Around Scholarship

Steven Penn Bryan Scholarship Fund



Community College Scholarships

Alexander de Guia Memorial Scholarship

Girls Ready to Empower Girls

Community Health Ambassador Scholarship for Nursing Students

Brayden Blankley Memorial Scholarship

@frankadvice National Scholarship Month TikTok Scholarship

BJB Scholarship

Act Locally Scholarship

Community Service is Key Scholarship

Holt ScholarshipMind, Body, & Soul Scholarship

Cazares Family Trade Scholarship

Charles R. Ullman & Associates Educational Support Scholarship

831 Legacy Scholarship

Community Reinvestment Grant: Pride Scholarship

Roger Boston Scholarship

Marilyn J. Palmer Memorial

Perseverance Pays Scholarship

Small Town, Big Dreams Scholarship

Gourmet Foods International Culinary Scholarship



Minorities

Minority scholarships are designed to provide financial support to students who belong to underrepresented racial or ethnic groups.

These are some of the best scholarships that aim to promote diversity and inclusion by offering opportunities for individuals from minority backgrounds to pursue their academic and career goals. Here is a list with more than 400 scholarships tailored for you:

Native Americans

Black Students

Hispanic and Latinx Students

Filipino-American Students

South Asian Students

Muslim Students



Scholarships for Veterans Pursuing Education

Veterans scholarships are specifically tailored to honor and assist those who have served in the armed forces. These scholarships recognize the dedication of veterans and aim to ease their transition into civilian life by providing financial support for their education and career advancement:

Top 28 Military Scholarships

Military Spouse Scholarships



Scholarships for Single-Parenting Students

Scholarships for single-parenting students are designed to provide support to individuals who are not only pursuing their education but also managing the responsibilities of single parenthood.

These scholarships aim to help with some of the unique challenges faced by single parents, helping them achieve their educational and career goals while balancing the demands of raising a family on their own.

List of Scholarships for single-parent students



Scholarships for Artists and Performers

Scholarships for artists and performers are dedicated to nurturing and celebrating the creative talents of individuals in various artistic disciplines.

These scholarships recognize the importance of supporting emerging artists, musicians, actors, dancers, and other performers on their journey to honing their craft and pursuing a career in the arts. By providing financial assistance and opportunities for artistic growth, these scholarships empower aspiring artists to follow their passion and contribute to the world of creativity and culture.

Scholarships for Art Students

Scholarships for Photography Students

Scholarships for Writers

Scholarships for Musicians

Scholarships for Filmmakers



Scholarships for International Students

Scholarships for international students, including those pursuing dual Bachelor's degrees, play a vital role in facilitating global education and fostering cross-cultural understanding. These scholarships are designed to assist students from different countries in pursuing their academic aspirations and experiencing the value of international education.

These scholarships open doors to diverse learning environments and help bridge the gap between nations, promoting global collaboration and cooperation in the pursuit of knowledge:

Top 30 best scholarships for International Students



Graduate School Opportunities

If you decide to continue your education and expand your expertise after graduating from your undergraduate program, scholarships for graduate school become a valuable resource. These scholarships are specifically aimed at individuals seeking advanced degrees, whether it's a Master's, Ph.D., or professional degree.

Masters Degree scholarships

MBA Scholarships

These scholarships offer financial support to help graduate students pursue their academic and career goals, making postgraduate education more accessible and affordable. Whether you're delving deeper into your field of study or transitioning to a new specialization, graduate school scholarships can ease the financial burden and pave the way for advanced learning and research.



Attend College

The path to college education is not a standardized route. Some individuals may choose to attend college right after graduating from high school, while others become non-traditional students. People follow different timelines, learn in the same way, or come from the same background.

Whether it's taking a gap year after high school, transitioning from a creative or professional career, immigrating from a different country, assuming caregiving responsibilities, or simply encountering life's challenges, there are multiple reasons why individuals may pause their education.

By taking advantage of numerous resources such as financial aid, scholarships, or grants, you can become the person you are meant to be. Many recent high school graduatesinternational students, and adult learners become college graduates yearly. Every little step counts, and the best time to start your education is now.

However, it's essential to understand that regardless of the circumstances, there are numerous avenues to access education, and each person's unique life experiences can be valuable assets in the college environment.



High School Diploma

If you don't have a high school diploma, obtaining one is the first step to college. It's the foundational requirement for an adult student who wants to enroll in college and access more career opportunities. However, it's worth noting that only some take the traditional high school route, and alternative paths exist to achieve this crucial milestone.

Many institutions and nonprofit organizations offer free programs to help individuals prepare for and become high school graduates or equivalent, such as the GED (General Educational Development) certificate. To find these programs, you can start by checking with local educational institutions, community colleges, adult education centers, and online resources in your state.

Nonprofit organizations like Goodwill, Literacy Councils, and community-based initiatives often provide free adult education classes and resources to help individuals earn their high school equivalency credentials.

Participating in these programs allows you to earn your high school diploma and opens doors to various opportunities.

Upon obtaining your diploma or equivalent, you become eligible for further education, including free college classes at community colleges. Attending college often comes with possibilities of scholarship programs and financial aid opportunities for students who have completed their high school education and are looking to pursue higher education, such as a bachelor's degree.

By taking this crucial first step toward your educational journey, you gain a high school diploma and access to a world of possibilities, including the chance to pursue college courses without the financial burden. These programs are designed to support individuals from diverse backgrounds and life stages, from non-native speakers to working parents, emphasizing that the path to education is both inclusive and flexible to individual needs and circumstances.



Benefits of College Education

Venturing on a college education journey gives you a unique sense of freedom. It's a transformative experience that enriches your life in countless ways: 



  1. One of the benefits is the improvement of your language skills. Language is power, and as you sharpen your communication abilities, you gain a voice – a tool to confidently express your thoughts and ideas essential for the contemporary world. 
  2. A college education opens doors to better job opportunities. It equips you with the knowledge and skills needed to excel in your chosen field, making you a valuable asset in the job market.
  3. Beyond career prospects, it also raises awareness of social disparities, encouraging you to engage with critical issues and contribute positively to society.
  4. Education offers community and mentorship. You'll connect with peers who share your interests and professors who are passionate about their subjects. These connections can shape your perspective, inspire your ambitions, and provide invaluable guidance.
  5. College education provides a deeper understanding of the world and yourself. It challenges your preconceptions, encourages critical thinking, and broadens your horizons. The knowledge gained extends beyond textbooks – it's about developing a well-rounded, adaptable, and empathetic outlook on life. 

Become college-educated to empower you with the tools to navigate the world, advocate for change, and forge a brighter future for yourself and those around you. You can start exploring financial options with some of the best scholarships and scholarship programs at Bold.org.



Pursuing Higher Education

Crafting a well-thought-out plan is crucial. Whether your dream involves earning a bachelor's degree and attending a prestigious institution or earning a degree from a community college, the significance of strategy cannot be underestimated. The importance to know that it is possible and you can do it.

What matters most is initiating your journey and taking deliberate steps toward your aspirations. Planning offers a sense of direction, allowing you to establish achievable milestones. This blueprint guides your educational pursuit, helping you make informed decisions regarding courses, majors, and institutions.

For example, if you want to become a software engineer and avoid having many student loans, start by taking courses in your community college to get the basic skills needed to get a job or transfer to a bigger institution. By doing this, you can transfer up to 60 credits from community college to another university when pursuing a bachelor's degree.

Maintain the best GPA possible, which will help you transfer to other universities and get a scholarship.

The same can apply to any other major or career. Never underestimate the career counselor and the deans, but commit to your dreams and don't let others dictate your future. Dreaming big is admirable, and striving for prestigious universities is a worthy objective. However, remaining practical and considering your unique circumstances is equally crucial.

Pursuing higher education is different for non-traditional students, with many pathways to success available. Whether through scholarships, financial aid, or community college, options are tailored to your situation and financial need.

What truly matters is taking that first step and embarking on a path toward academic achievement and personal growth.



Community College

Choosing a community college is a fantastic option for non-traditional students. The cost of community college is often free for most students through financial aid after showing the documentation necessary to prove their financial need. Additionally, if you are a full-time student, you can access student loans to cover your expenses.

Community college offers exposure to a wide range of majors, excellent professors, and fellow students from whom you can learn, build a community, and gain insights into your desired career path.

Whether you're interested in theater or psychology, earning an associate's degree can open numerous doors to other universities for you to pursue a bachelor's degree. Simultaneously, having an associate degree can expand your job prospects significantly.



College Education Opportunities

Before embarking on your educational journey, learning the diverse benefits of pursuing a degree is essential to take advantage of great opportunities. From diverse academic programs to financial aid opportunities, internships, and global experiences, higher education offers a multifaceted landscape with possibilities.

In this list, I have gathered different avenues that await as you step into college.



  1. Types of Institutions: The academic landscape has a kaleidoscope of institutions, from community colleges and respected public universities to the intimate settings of private colleges and online learning.
  2. Majors and Programs: In academia, one can span from the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) disciplines to the alluring narratives of the humanities and the vocational avenues leading to specialized expertise.
  3. Scholarships and Financial Aid: Scholarships, grants, and financial aid offer a lifeline to aspiring scholars, easing their financial need and putting the unattainable within reach.
  4. Career Pathways: Higher education often leads to better financial opportunities and improved socio-economic status for individuals and families.
  5. Internships and Co-op Programs: Beyond the classroom, colleges frequently offer internships and cooperative programs where students apply theory to practice, gaining wisdom from real-world experience.
  6. Research Opportunities: Students can immerse themselves in research endeavors, stand shoulder to shoulder with mentors, and find new paths in knowledge.
  7. Campus Life: Beyond academia, campuses have a vibrant life. It is a way to socialize, embrace others, and create a community. 
  8. Support Services: College students can boost their academics with mentors, counseling, career guidance, and tutoring.
  9. Alumni Network: Graduation is not the end; it's the threshold of a lifelong affiliation. The alumni network extends open arms, offering connections, mentorship, and a legacy of shared experiences.
  10. Accessibility: Colleges emphasize inclusivity, making quality education attainable for individuals of diverse backgrounds and championing the cause of the non-traditional and people with disabilities.
  11. Online Education: The digital frontier expands educational possibilities, accommodating remote learners, working adults, and lifelong learners. It presents flexibility and accessibility.
  12. Transfer Options: There is a way to connect community colleges with four-year institutions, easing the transition for transfer students and enabling seamless progression toward academic goals.
  13. Graduate Education: After graduating from an undergraduate program, many go for master's and doctorate programs, specialized knowledge that opens doors to leadership and research.



Understanding Non-Traditional Students

Educational journeys may differ in timing, life experiences, and motivations. Non-traditional students often bring a wealth of diverse perspectives and responsibilities, from career transitions to family obligations. Be proud of yourself, appreciate your unique path and needs, and find your route toward achieving your educational goals.



Challenges Faced by Non-Traditional Students

Non-traditional students often face a set of unique challenges on their educational journeys. If you feel like any of these challenges interfere with your goals, you are not alone. I recommend finding strategies early on your journey, finding a support system, and communicating your financial need to your advisors.

Anticipate possible risks that interfere with your education and start preparing for them. Ask for help and talk to your academic advisor. And in some cases, you can always take a break and enroll again for the following year. Some of these challenges may include:

Balancing Multiple Responsibilities: Many non-traditional students juggle responsibilities such as work, family, and caregiving alongside their studies, making time management a significant challenge.

Financial Need: Non-traditional students may need more financial resources, making it challenging to cover their tuition costs, textbooks, and other educational and living expenses alone.

Lack of Flexibility: Traditional class schedules may need to align with their work or family commitments, limiting their course choices and scheduling options.

Academic Reentry: Returning to academics after a hiatus can be daunting, as non-traditional students may feel out of practice or need help adjusting to the academic environment.

Access to Support Services: Non-traditional students may need more access to support services, such as tutoring or counseling, due to time constraints or remote learning.

Social Integration: Building a sense of belonging on campus can be challenging, as non-traditional students may feel disconnected from younger, traditional students.

Technology Barriers: Technological requirements for online courses can pose challenges for those who are not tech-savvy or need access to necessary devices and reliable internet connections.

Limited Scholarships: Scholarships and financial aid options may be more limited for non-traditional students, making financing their education a significant hurdle.

Navigating Administrative Processes: Non-traditional students may find navigating complex administrative processes, such as admissions and financial applications, overwhelming.

Career Transition Challenges: Those pursuing a career change may need help bridging the gap between their previous experience or professional degree and their desired field.



Financial Aid Programs Overview

Financial aid includes grants, scholarships, work-study programs, and loans, all offered by different organizations.

Federal Government Aid:

The federal government offers students pursuing college education the chance to apply for financial aid through the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) each year. This application analyzes aspects such as household income and, for dependent students, family contributions that will determine the award amount.

Your institution's financial aid office assesses this information to determine your aid package, including Pell Grants, work-study opportunities, and student loans. Priority is often given to students demonstrating exceptional financial need, with full-time students normally receiving more substantial aid.

Pell Grant: The Federal Pell Grant provides financial assistance for academic expenses and doesn't require repayment unless specific circumstances occur. Pell Grants aims to cover the full academic year for undergraduate students, providing potential support per semester to add to your award amount.

Work-Study: The Federal Work-Study program offers students on- and off-campus job opportunities without affecting their financial aid package. Eligibility is determined by the FAFSA, and your college must grant you work-study participation. Students must apply and be interviewed for positions.

Federal Student Loans: Federal student loans are a financing option, with repayment expected after graduation. The amount you can borrow depends on your loan type and enrollment status. Two primary loan types exist: Direct unsubsidized and Direct subsidized. Direct subsidized loans cover interest payments during your time as a student.

Private Student Loans: This option only helps after you have used all the other resources and your award amount isn't enough to cover for your education. Unlike federal aid, private lenders often do credit checks and ask for future income predictions and co-signer details. This information guides their lending decisions, and they are offered higher interest rates.



Financial Aid for Non-Traditional Students

Financial aid for a "non-traditional student" may differ from that of "traditional students" in several key aspects. Non-traditional students, often older and with unique life circumstances, experience different eligibility criteria that reflect their backgrounds. Their financial independence, prior work experience, and responsibilities, such as caring for dependents or managing household expenses, shape their eligibility for specific aid programs.

Non-traditional students may find more flexible aid options, including part-time work-study programs and scholarships tailored to adult learners.

Some institutions allocate scholarship programs and resources exclusively for non-traditional students, recognizing their contributions to the academic community. Additionally, specialized scholarships target veterans, single parents, and individuals returning to education after extended hiatuses.

Finding these financial aid opportunities is crucial for non-traditional students to access the support they need for their educational goals.



Scholarships vs. Grants

Institutions, organizations, or donors often award scholarships based on merit, talents, or specific criteria. Grants are typically need-based and awarded by government agencies, institutions, or nonprofits.

Here are some important points that will help you understand the differences between the two:



  1. Eligibility: Scholarships may require academic achievements, talents, or specific criteria. Grants are primarily based on financial need.
  2. Repayment: Scholarships do not require repayment, while grants are typically only repaid if specific conditions are met.
  3. Purpose: Scholarships reward excellence and support various pursuits. Grants are primarily intended to provide financial assistance to cover educational expenses.
  4. Application Process: Scholarship programs often involve essays, interviews, or portfolio submissions. Grants typically require completion of financial aid forms like the FAFSA.
  5. Availability: Scholarships vary widely in availability and criteria, while certain grants, like federal Pell Grants, have specific income-based eligibility requirements.
  6. Use: Both scholarships and grants can cover tuition, fees, books, and other educational expenses, but grants may also assist with basic living costs for students with significant financial needs.

Types of Scholarships Available

  1. Merit-Based Scholarships: These scholarships are awarded based on academic performance, typically to students with exceptional grades and test scores. They recognize academic excellence and are based on something other than financial need.
  2. Private Scholarships: Organizations, companies, and individual donors offer private scholarships. They can reflect the values or interests of the donor and may support specific majors or demographics.
  3. Activity-Based Scholarships: These scholarships are awarded to students for their involvement in various activities, such as athletics, community service, or hobbies. They celebrate a wide range of interests and experiences.
  4. Major-Based Scholarships: Scholarships based on the student's chosen major or field of study. Some institutions offer scholarships for specific majors, and students can find scholarships that match their degree program.
  5. Identity-Based Scholarships: Students are awarded based on their background, identity, or life experiences. They include scholarships for minorities, women, first-generation college students, LGBTQ+ students, and more, aiming to support diverse student populations.

Scholarships for Non-Traditional Students

While there isn't a specific category labeled "non-traditional students" for scholarships, most scholarships are also open to non-traditional students who demonstrate financial need.

You can apply for merit-based scholarships, private scholarships, activity-based scholarships, major-based scholarships, and identity-based scholarships like anyone else. Scholarships for specific demographics, such as adult learners or those returning to education after a break, may also be available.

Students should explore scholarship opportunities that align with their academic interests, background, or activities. Bold.org offers a platform where donors create multiple scholarships tailored to various student demographics and interests, making it easier for non-traditional students to find scholarships that suit their unique situation.



Applying for Scholarships

When it comes to applying for scholarships, the process can vary significantly. Some scholarships, like no-essay scholarships, require minimal effort. In contrast, others may ask for letters of recommendation, essays, or additional materials. The time and effort you invest in your scholarship search and applications depend on the specific scholarship's requirements.

Consistently applying for scholarships is essential, as they are not impossible to obtain. Scholarships can significantly offset the cost of education, and numerous opportunities are available to students of all backgrounds and interests.

If you are a non-traditional student, you could start applying now. You can refer to our comprehensive guide on scholarship application tips for detailed guidance on best practices for applying for scholarships for undergraduate degrees. This guide will provide valuable insights and strategies to increase your chances of securing scholarships and making higher education more affordable.