Top 15 Merit Scholarships for Undergraduates (2023)

Top 15 Merit Scholarships for Undergraduates (1)

We know that the cost of a college education may seem out of reach for many students. Fortunately, there are a number of ways to lower the price of your degree, from scholarships and tuition to student loans. Even better, if you're an exemplary student, you'll likely qualify for one or more merit-based scholarships, which are a great way to offset tuition, fees, room and board.

In this post, we will discuss what merit scholarships are and provide a list of the top merit aid programs.We'll also share our expert recommendations on how to apply so you can maximize your chances of graduating with little or no debt. Let's start!

What is a merit-based scholarship?

Amerit scholarship, also called a merit scholarship, is free money that reduces the cost of college. While need-based scholarships are awarded based on a student's ability to pay for school,Merit-based scholarships recognize distinguished performance in one or more areas, including academics,artistic ability, athletic talent,Community serviceand leadership in extracurricular activities. Many merit scholarship programs take financial need into account.

Some merit scholarships are unique awards. But the most competitive and generous merit scholarships, awarded to students who demonstrate outstanding performance in a variety of fields, are renewable throughout their college career.

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Types of Merit Scholarships

Merit scholarships can generally be divided into two categories: those awarded by colleges and universities and those offered by public and private organizations.

Many schools will automatically consider you for merit scholarships when you apply.But not all schools offer aid based on merit. For example,ivy league collegesand many other prestigious institutions only offer awards based on need.

Merit scholarship programs hosted by outside organizations often require a separate application, which may include one or more essays, letters of recommendation, and other evidence of your exemplary performance. These awards are available through community groups, religious institutions, and civic organizations, as well as philanthropic associations, honor societies, and private companies. The federal government does not offer merit scholarships, but many state and local governments do.

How to Find College Merit Scholarships

Most schools advertise their merit scholarships on their institutional websites.You will likely find this information on the admissions, financial aid, and scholarship pages, where you can find details about eligibility requirements and application instructions. For more specific awards, we also recommend checking college pages for specific majors, community charges or civic involvement, athletics, and the arts.

You can also find specific college merit scholarships by searching online.[school name] merit scholarship.

Your designated college admissions counselor is another excellent resource.Once they know more about your interests and skill sets, they will be able to tell you more about the opportunities that are best suited to your accomplishments.

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Higher Merit Scholarships from Outside Sources

To locate merit scholarships offered by outside organizations, try searching online for the phrasemerit scholarshipspaired with the specific interest or activity in which you excel, such asCommunity Service Merit Scholarshipsomerit scholarships for writing. You can also check out our insider guide onthe best available scholarship databases and research tools.

But if you're looking for the best merit scholarships available, start with the list below.

National Merit Scholarship

Since 1955, the National Merit Scholarship Program has awarded financial awards to US citizens or permanent high school residents who take the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Test (PSAT/NMSQT) in their freshman year or earlier. Among the highest scorers, approximately 16,000 are selected as semifinalists and 15,000 become finalists after meeting specific academic and other qualifications. Ultimately, 800 finalists will receive special scholarships from National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC) corporate partners, while 7,250 finalists will win one of three types of awards: a one-time $2,500 NMSC National Merit Scholarship, a scholarship sponsored by a company or a university. -sponsored scholarship.

National Merit Scholarships are prestigious awards, so check them out.our expert guide on how to preparethrough the lengthy scholarship application process.

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Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation Program

The Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation annually awards a $20,000 merit award to 150 high school seniors who are not the children or grandchildren of current or former Coca-Cola employees.The scholarship recognizes students who have earned at least a 3.0 GPA, demonstrate leadership, and have a passion for school and community service, as well as social justice.The selection process consists of several steps, including rehearsals in the semi-final stage and interviews if you are selected as a finalist.

The annual deadline for the prize is usually around Halloween.Our Insider's Guide to the Coca-Cola Scholarshipprovides more details about this opportunity and how to apply.

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Cameron Impact Study Bag

A four-year award of merit that covers full tuition, fees, and books at any accredited US college or university.the Cameron Impact Scholarship recognizes up to 15 high school students each year for exemplary academic achievement(ie, at least a cumulative GPA of 3.7), extracurricular involvement, leadership and community service. To qualify, you must demonstrate a commitment to making a direct positive impact in your local and global community during and after college. The first registrations must be made in May; Regular applications are due in September.

La beca Barry Goldwater

If you are interested in pursuing a career in STEM, the Barry Goldwater Scholarship offers up to $7,500 for sophomores and juniors who are U.S. citizens, have a GPA of at least 3.0, and intend to pursue postdoctoral research: a degree in natural sciences, engineering or mathematics.The multi-stage scholarship application involves being nominated by a Goldwater campus representative and requires several components, which includes a profile and pre-application, questionnaire, research essay, letters of recommendation, and transcripts. The deadline for nominations is the last Friday of January.

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Carson Scholarship Fund

Each year, the Carson Scholars Fund selects students in grades 4-11 who demonstrate academic excellence and a passion for community service to receive $1,000. To be eligible, you must have a minimum GPA of 3.75. However,you cannot apply directly; must first be nominated by an educator at your school, and there can only be one nominee from each school per year.

Applications include an information form, teacher recommendation letters, community service tests, and an essay. Nominations open in mid-October and close in mid-December each year; Applications are extended until mid-January.

The Equitable Excellence Scholarship

Recognizing leadership, determination and resilience, the Equitable Foundation awards $5,000 scholarships, renewable for up to four years, to 100 students each year. They also offer one-time $2,500 scholarships to another 100 students each year. These scholarships are intended to cover tuition, room, board, and books.

The organization also provides academics with mentoring and networking opportunities, as well as professional development.

The program has additional benefits for affiliates and beneficiaries. For example, your school will receive a $500 grant if it wins a revolving or one-time grant. And if you attend a public school, you can choose an educator who made a difference in your life to receive a $500 gift card.

To qualify, you must be a US citizen or legal resident.The app includes an essay in which you have to describe how you show courage in seeking what is possible, strength to overcome obstacles, and wisdom that you share with others.You can start submitting applications in October; the deadline is mid-December.

Top 15 Merit Scholarships for Undergraduates (6)As an Equitable Excellence Scholar, you can give an educator a $500 gift card from the organization.

Davidson Institute Scholarships

The Davidson Institute is a non-profit organization serving highly gifted students who score in the 99.9th percentile on achievement and IQ tests.Each year, it awards $10,000, $25,000, and $50,000 to high-achieving students who have completed substantial work.—defined as an idea, project, discovery, performance, or other achievement that experts would recognize as significant and that exhibits the potential to make a positive difference in the local or global community. Work in the visual arts does not qualify, but contributions in science, technology, engineering, mathematics, literature, philosophy, music, or an innovative discipline are eligible.

Applicants may apply for teams, but both team members must meet the requirements. You must be a US citizen or permanent resident age 18 or younger by the application deadline, but there is no minimum age to be eligible. The application process requires the nomination of at least two people and the deadline is mid-February.

National Honor Society Scholarships

If you are a high achiever who has already demonstrated scholarship, dedication to community service, leadership and character, chances are you have been inducted into the National Honor Society (NHS) chapter at your school.If you are a senior and active member of your NHS chapter, you may be eligible to apply for a non-renewable NHS Merit Scholarship.

In 2023, 575 semi-finalists will receive US$3,200, while 24 national finalists will receive US$5,625 and 1 national finalist will receive US$25,000. National finalists also receive an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington, DC, for a week-long leadership-focused scholarship event.

The deadline is the end of November or the beginning of December of each year.

Merit scholarships that are also need-based

As mentioned above, many of the best scholarship programs also take into account a student's financial need when awarding merit aid. These are some of the most prestigious and generous scholarship programs that are based on merit and need.

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Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Scholarship

Cooke's highly selective college scholarship program awards up to $55,000, as well as college prep counseling and networking opportunities, to high school students in financial need.(defined as having a gross annual household income of less than $95,000)who have earned at least a 3.5 GPAand intends to attend a four-year college or university. To qualify, you must also demonstrate that you are a positive role model to others, a leader in community service, and a goal-oriented individual who adapts well to change and remains resilient in the face of challenges.

To apply, you must submitthe common application, adding the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation as one of its schools. You will then be required to submit several short essays, a list of your extracurricular activities, your awards and honors, your intended course of study, your financial information, and two letters of recommendation. A recommendation must be written by an 11th grade teacher in a core subject (ie English, math, social studies, science, or a foreign language).

Applications open at the end of August and the deadline is mid-November.

Ronald McDonald House Charitable Scholarship

Each year, the 322 Ronald McDonald House (RMHC) charities across the country award scholarships to high school seniors who reside in the US and live near a participating RMHC chapter.

(Video) How students can find scholarships and grants to help pay for college

RMHC scholarshipsIt starts at $1,000 but can go as high as $100,000. They may be applied to tuition, fees, books, and supplies. The application deadline is usually in January of each year.

Each chapter has its own eligibility criteria and may offer more than one type of scholarship, so it's best to research your local chapter's requirements.

GE-Reagan Foundation Scholarship

Each year, General Electric partners with the Ronald Reagan Presidential Institute and Foundation to select U.S. citizen high school seniors with a GPA of at least 3.0 to receive a $10,000 renewable scholarship for up to three additional years (ie , for a total of up to $40,000).

To be eligible, you must demonstrate distinguished leadership, ambition, motivation, reliability, and integrity.You must also provide evidence of your commitment to civic participation and pride within your school and workplace.

In addition to receiving a significant financial award, recipients also attend an all-expenses retreat in California and enjoy leadership support throughout their college careers. The deadline is usually in early January of each year.

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Elks National Foundation Most Valuable Scholarship

Awarded to 500 seniors each year, the Elks National Foundation Most Valuable Student Scholarship recognizes college-bound students who demonstrate distinguished academic achievement, community service and leadership, as well as financial need. Most recipients receive $1,000 a year, for a total of $4,000 during their college career. ButTwenty finalists are selected to participate in a weekend of interviews to compete for prizes ranging from $5,000 per year ($20,000 total) to $12,500 per year ($50,000 total).

To be eligible, you must be a US citizen and submit an application, essay, and financial information. The deadline is usually mid-November. You do not need to be a member or family member of the Elks Foundation to qualify.

The Elks Foundation also offers several other scholarship programs at the local, district, and state levels, so be sure to search for homes in your area to see if you are eligible for these awards. Please note that you cannot combine scholarships from different organizations.

The Gates Scholarship

Ogates stock marketrecognizes 300 exemplary high school seniors each year who demonstrate exceptional leadership in extracurricular activities and/or community service.To qualify, you must be African American, American Indian, Asian American, Pacific Islander American, and/or Hispanic American; have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.3; and be in the top 10% of your graduating class.

The award covers any tuition not already covered by other scholarships, financial aid, and your family's contribution as determined by the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for up to five years. It also provides a variety of other services, including academic support, counseling, and financial literacy training. The deadline is usually mid-September.

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The Burger King Curriculum

Established in 2005, the Burger King General Track Scholarship recognizes academic excellence; active leadership in community service, athletics, and/or extracurricular activities; work experience; and financial need. You must be a US or Canadian citizen living in the US, Puerto Rico, Guam or Canada and have completed high school with at least a 2.0 GPA and qualify. The Burger King Foundation also offers scholarships to employees and family members of the company's employees.

Eligibility requirements for the more competitive James W. McLamore Whopper Scholarship are similar to those for the General Track Scholarship, except the minimum GPA is 3.5.General Tracking Scholarships start at $1,000; the McLamore Whopper prize is up to $50,000.The annual deadline for all Burger King Foundation awards is usually mid-December.

La beca QuestBridge Match

The nonprofit organization QuestBridge partners with top universities to help academically gifted high school students and seniors from low-income families prepare for and pay for a world-class college education. The organization's long list of partner institutions includes Yale, Columbia, CalTech, MIT, Dartmouth College, Rice University, and Williams College. Students who graduate from high school in the summer of the current academic year and enroll in a partner university in the fall of the same year may apply for a QuestBridge Match scholarship as part of the organization's program.National University Party Program.

If you are selected as a finalist and match one of QuestBridge's partner universities, you will receive early admission and a four-year full scholarship totaling more than $200,000.The award covers tuition, fees, lodging, food, books, supplies, and travel expenses. If you win a Match Scholarship, you will have no student loans and your parents will not have to contribute to pay for your college education, but you will be expected to contribute through federal work-study, summer employment, or savings.

If you're not a match for one of your top schools, you can still apply for a QuestBridge scholarship, but withnormal decisionat any number of its partner institutions. If selected, you will have 100% of your demonstrated financial need covered.

While QuestBridge does not have specific thresholds, eligibility depends on academic excellence (eg, grades, the rigor of your course, class rank, test scores if any, and the ability to demonstrated writing) and financial need. They also consider your personal circumstances, which range from honors, awards, and extracurricular activities to your family or household responsibilities, parental education, character, and motivation.Applications open in late summer and are generally due at the end of September.

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How to Increase Your Chances of Winning a Merit Scholarship

Even if you are applying for niche-focused merit scholarships, you will stand out from other applicants if you excel in multiple areas of your application. You will also be able to access a greater number of help programs if you have a complete profile. These are the broader ways in which you can set yourself apart from other candidates.

differentiate yourself academically

You can demonstrate academic distinction by achieving high marks in specific core subjects, maintaining aHigh cumulative GPA, and graduate from a certainclass classification(for example, 10% or even 5% of the class). In addition to grades, you should make sure you enroll in as many rigorous courses as possible, such as honors, AP, and/or IB classes, if offered at your school.

(Video) Merit Scholarship Pop-up Event (6/24/22)

Another way to earn merit-based scholarships is by earning excellentstandardized test scores, which will demonstrate your readiness for college courses.

Cultivate specific skill sets

Whether your talents lie in the arts, athletics, or extracurricular activities,honing your skills in specific areas is crucial if you want to qualify for a scholarship. If you're a musician, for example, that means practicing your instrument diligently, taking lessons (if you can afford it), performing in concerts and recitals, and participating in mock auditions. Sports scholarships require a similar dedication: you'll need to participate in training, work with your coach to improve your performance, and win trophies in individual and/or group competitions.

Try not to overextend yourself;focusing on one or two specific areas leads to the type of domain that is most likely to win a merit scholarshipthan simply participating or exhibiting average performance in various activities.

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demonstrate leadership

Evidence ofstrong leadership skills or potentialit comes from serving as an official, team captain, or other important role in one or more extracurricular activities, from student organizations, sports, and honor societies to community groups and jobs. He will need to go beyond simply serving in the post. you will also needachieve specific results and have a measurable impact(for example, raising $2,000 for a local charity or leading your team to state championships)to differentiate yourself from other scholarship applicants.

You can also show initiative by starting and running your own student organization.

Volunteer in your community

Whether through a group of students at your school, through a member organization (for example, Girl Scouts of the USA or Navigators USA), or individually,showing genuine dedication to community service is an important part of building your resume as a scholarship candidate.Volunteering has many benefitsIn addition to merit aid eligibility: you can develop leadership skills, expand your social network, and perhaps most importantly, make a difference in the lives of others.

Just make sure you volunteer regularly and consistently; Attending one or two National Honor Society community service events won't be enough to attract the attention of a scholarship committee.

Develop strong mentoring relationships

Most scholarship applications require one and usually morerecommendation letters. Therefore, you will need to build relationships of trust and respect with mentors at your school and in your community who know you well (ie, for at least two years) and can talk to you about your abilities and potential. This may include specific teachers, coaches, high school counselors, after-school counselors, job supervisors, or members of your church or community organizations.

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Tips for getting a merit scholarship

You worked hard on your grades and test scores and served as a leader in your extracurricular activities and community service. Good job – you have stood out as an ideal candidate for a merit scholarship. Now here are some tips to apply.

Start Enrolling Early

Merit scholarships often require a lot of time and effort when it comes to compiling application materials, writing essays, and requesting letters of recommendation from professors and other trusted mentors. So be sure to start preparing your applications well in advance of the deadline dates.We recommend starting the scholarship application process four months before the first deadline dates.

stay organized

Keep a spreadsheet with the names and deadlines for each scholarship opportunity you are applying for.You'll probably want to organize this list with the earliest expiration dates first so you keep track of them.

Additionally,include a checklist of required application materials for each program. This will help you keep track of the letters of recommendation you've requested and any missing documents you need to submit.

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follow the directions

Whether you are applying for merit scholarships offered by colleges and universities or sponsored by outside organizations,Please read the application instructions carefully to find out exactly what the criteria are. Take careful note of the formats required for the documents, how and where to send them, and the exact wording instructions. You don't want to disqualify yourself simply for not completing an application correctly, answering essay questions, or not submitting your materials on time.

Consider if the effort is worth it

Some merit scholarships require significant effort but provide comparatively small rewards (for example, $100-$200). Other scholarship funds are generous but also highly competitive and require a large investment on your part to apply.

Evaluate carefully if these scholarship programs are really worth it.For example, only the largest financial awards (eg, $500 or more) may be valuable enough to justify the time and effort required to apply. You can also check with your high school counselor, teachers, and adult family members if it makes sense to apply for the more selective scholarships if you barely meet the requirements.

What happens if you do not meet all the requirements for a scholarship?basiceligibility requirements, don't waste time applying. Instead of,spend your time exclusively applying for merit-based grants that you truly qualify for.

Ask for references and recommendations as soon as possible

Remember that before you can apply for any of the merit scholarships above, you will need to be referred by an educator or professional who knows you well and can authentically and enthusiastically describe your accomplishments and potential. Almost all merit award applications require letters of reference from mentors.

Make suresolicit nominations and recommendations at least one month before the deadline. If you can ask even sooner, your references will appreciate the extra time.Our insider guide to requesting letters of recommendationprovides more helpful suggestions for handling this part of your scholarship application.

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ask for feedback

Always look for constructive criticism from professors, advisors, and mentors in your scholarship documents, especially your essays.That's why you should start the application process early: You'll need at least a few weeks, if not a full month or more, to give your teachers, tutors, counselors, or family members enough time to review your materials and provide your comments. . It is also better to reserve several days to apply the suggestions.

If the scholarships you are applying for require semifinal or final stage interviews, talk to your high school guidance counselor, trusted teachers, and/or other mentors about participating in one or more mock interviews. Interviews can be anxiety-inducing for even the highest-achieving students, but a practice interview gives you the space to test and improve your interviewing skills while figuring out how to express why you're the ideal candidate for a particular merit award.

Apply for a series of merit awards

Similar to requestsecurity, correspondence and disclosure of colleges and universities, you will want to apply to a number of scholarship programs. Look for merit awards that vary in terms of origin (eg, schools, as well as national, regional, state, and community organizations), competition, award amount, and eligibility criteria, as long as you meet all the basic requirements.

For example, if you are an all-Astudent in the top 10% of your graduating class who also volunteers weekly at the county animal shelter and plays first class in marching band, consider applying for academic, community,mimusic scholarships, or awards that recognize students who excel in a variety of areas, such as those listed earlier in this article. Broad application will maximize your chances of earning one or more merit-based scholarships.

Good luck!

What's next?

Want to cover all your college costs with one award?to checkour expert guide on how to get a full scholarship.

Getting a perfect score on a standardized test is just one great way to qualify for a merit scholarship.learn how you canaccept the ACToget a 1600 on the SAT.

Are you a vegetarian, trekkie or future shopkeeper? Sothere's a scholarship out there for you, and for just about every other niche imaginable!here is ourfull list of odd scholarships.

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About the Author

Meilee Bridges earned her Ph.D. and Master's degrees in English Language and Literature from the University of Michigan and graduated summa cum laude from the Trinity University Honors English Program. A former teacher turned professional writer and editor, she is dedicated to supporting the educational goals of students of all backgrounds.

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Which college gives the most merit scholarships? ›

Most Students Receiving Merit Aid
SchoolLocationPercent of students receiving non-need based aid
Gonzaga UniversitySpokane, WA51%
University of DenverDenver, CO50%
The New SchoolNew York, NY49%
University of South CarolinaColumbia, SC49%
17 more rows

What is a good GPA for merit scholarship? ›

Minimum requirements range from around 2.0 on the lower end to 3.75 or higher for competitive academic scholarships. Generally speaking, a 3.0 GPA or higher will give you a decent shot at qualifying for a variety of scholarships.

What is the easiest scholarship to get? ›

Top easy scholarships in 2023
  • $10,000 “No Essay” Scholarship.
  • $2,000 Nitro College Scholarship – No Essay.
  • $25,000 No Essay Scholarship.
  • March Madness Scholarship.
  • $5,000 Christian Connector Scholarship.
  • $2,000 CampusReel Virtual Tour Scholarship.
  • Annual Protestant Faith Based College Scholarship.
Mar 2, 2023

What SAT score do you need for a full scholarship? ›

So you're probably wondering, What's a good SAT score for scholarships, and how can I find them? The short answer is that you should aim for an SAT score between 1200 and 1600 if you want to secure some scholarships based on merit–and the higher within that range you score the more money you're looking at.

Is a merit scholarship a big deal? ›

Gaining recognition as a National Merit Semifinalist is a prestigious achievement to include on college applications, and many colleges and corporate sponsors offer special scholarships to these students, even if they don't become finalists.

What is the hardest scholarship to get? ›

7 Hardest Scholarships to Get But Worth Every Penny
  • The Gates Cambridge Scholarship.
  • The Gates Millennium Scholars Program.
  • The Fulbright scholarship program.
  • Rhodes Scholarship.
  • Churchill Scholarship.
  • Princeton Scholarship.
  • Mitchell Scholarship.
  • Conclusion On The hardest scholarships to get.
Nov 29, 2022

How much is the Coca Cola scholarship? ›

Coca-Cola Scholars Program Scholarship – High school seniors with a minimum 3.0 unweighted GPA may apply on our website in August of their senior year until the October 31 deadline. 150 Coca-Cola Scholars are selected each year to receive this $20,000 scholarship.

Can I get a full ride scholarship with a 4.0 GPA? ›

A 4.0 Grade Point Average is not only a high GPA, it's an impressive GPA that's sure to catch the eyes of many scholarship providers. Since the minimum GPA for a full-ride scholarship is usually set at 3.5, a 4.0 is sure to always be above and beyond what's required.

Can I negotiate merit scholarships? ›

Can You Really Negotiate Scholarships? The simple answer to this is yes! While it may not be talked about very often, it is definitely something that can be done. Colleges will make initial offers to a number of students during their first round of admissions.

Are merit scholarships rare? ›

Merit-based financial awards can occasionally cover a substantial portion of four or more years of college, but full-ride scholarships are exceedingly rare.

How do you find scholarships that almost nobody knows about? ›

So, Where Do You Find Unclaimed Scholarships? One good place to look for scholarships is on the Financial Aid Finder Scholarship Announcement Blog. Every Friday, the site lists several scholarship opportunities with upcoming deadlines.

What is the best place to begin looking for scholarships? ›

Try these free sources of information about scholarships:
  • the financial aid office at a college or career school.
  • a high school or TRIO counselor.
  • the U.S. Department of Labor's FREE scholarship search tool.
  • federal agencies.
  • your state grant agency.
  • your library's reference section.

What type of scholarship pays for everything? ›

What is a full ride scholarship? A full ride scholarship is an award that covers all expenses related with college. This includes tuition, books, fees, room and board, and possibly even living costs. The goal is to remove any need for additional financial aid.

What ACT score gets you a full ride? ›

You will need to have at least a 3.75 GPA and SAT scores of 1270 or above or ACT scores of 27 or above.

Is 13500 a good SAT score? ›

In 2019, the average SAT score was 1050. Any score above that would be above average and perfectly acceptable for many colleges. A score of 1350 would put you in the top 10% of test takers and help make your application competitive at more selective schools.

Can I get full ride scholarship with 1450 SAT? ›

Earning a 1450 SAT score makes you eligible for most (if not all) merit-aid scholarships based on SAT score.

Does a 1400 PSAT qualify for National Merit? ›

Practically speaking, this means that anyone who qualifies as a National Merit Scholarship semifinalist (PSAT scores of 1400/1520 and up, depending on the state of residence) should be able to easily achieve a confirming score (SAT scores as low as 1320/1600, and ACT scores as low as 26/36), especially given multiple ...

What PSAT score is needed for National Merit? ›

To be competitive for National Merit Semifinalist status, students need to score about 1400 on the PSAT in less competitive states like Wyoming, Montana, and North Dakota . . . or about 1470 on the PSAT in more competitive states like Connecticut or New Jersey.

Does fafsa affect merit scholarships? ›

Most schools don't require students to fill out the FAFSA to qualify for merit scholarships. However, this is not standard practice. Scholarship policies vary from one college to another. Some colleges may not offer merit aid to students who have not filled out the FAFSA.

How many A's do you need for a scholarship? ›

Sometimes referred to as merit scholarship, you will need to demonstrate remarkable academic results (typically at least 5As at SPM or equivalent) to secure this award. The scholarship quantum differs depending on your results.

Are there any fully funded undergraduate scholarships? ›

1. Clark Global Scholarship Program. Clark Global Scholarship Program 2022 is a fully funded undergraduate scholarship for international students. This scholarship Program covers $15,000 to $25,000 per year for four years, contingent upon meeting academic standards for renewal.

Is it possible to get 100k in scholarships? ›

Surprisingly, there are only four private scholarship programs with a top prize of $100,000 or more. These scholarships can provide the winners with a free ride to the college of their choice.

What is the most common scholarship? ›

Need-Based Scholarships

One of the most popular types of scholarships for college are need-based. These scholarships are accessible to applicants who have a demonstrated financial need, and a program might ask for proof, such as income documentation or FAFSA® information.

What is the best type of scholarship? ›

Full-Ride Scholarships

A full-ride scholarship is an all-expense ride to college, and it's the most coveted among all the different types of scholarships. Most full-ride scholarships are specific to a school, but there are a few organizations that don't restrict the use of funds to any specific school.

What is the best scholarship in the world? ›

Top 30 fully-funded scholarships for International Students
  • Chevening Scholarship🇬🇧 Degree: Master. ...
  • Schwarzman Scholarship🇨🇳 Degree: Master. ...
  • MIT Financial Aid🇺🇸 ...
  • Princeton University Financial Aid🇺🇸 ...
  • Erasmus Mundus🇪🇺 ...
  • Harvard University Financial Aid🇺🇸 ...
  • Global Korea Scholarship🇰🇷 ...
  • Yale University Financial Aid🇺🇸
Oct 2, 2022

How much is the Bill Gates Scholarship? ›

The Gates Millennium Scholars Program is another Gates minority scholarship. The program grants an average of $12,785 to 1,000 annually-selected scholars.

What is the Burger King scholarship? ›

Scholarship grants range from $1,000 to $50,000 and are intended to help students in the United States, Puerto Rico, Guam and Canada offset the cost of attending college or post-secondary vocational/technical school.

How much is the Mcdonald's scholarship worth? ›

Tier 1 recipients are awarded up to $100,000. Tier 2 recipients receive $20,000 or $10,000 and Tier 3 recipients receive $5,000. Recipients are selected based on their academic achievement, community involvement, personal statement and financial need.

What GPA is required for Harvard? ›

You should also have a 4.18 GPA or higher. If your GPA is lower than this, you need to compensate with a higher SAT/ACT score. For a school as selective as Harvard, you'll also need to impress them with the rest of your application.

What big brands have scholarships? ›

  • Burger King Scholars Program. Offered by Burger King Foundation. ...
  • U.S. Creative Writing Awards Scholarship. Offered by Penguin Random House. ...
  • Dell Scholars Program. Offered by Michael & Susan Dell Foundation. ...
  • Coca Cola Scholars Program Scholarship. ...
  • Remarkable Futures Scholarships. ...
  • Heisman High School Scholarship. ...
  • Dr.
Feb 24, 2023

What GPA do colleges look at? ›

Colleges consider your unweighted or weighted high school GPA alongside other grades, including your semester GPA and cumulative GPA. Admissions officers look at your official transcripts to contextualize your GPA and understand which classes you thrived.

Will colleges give more money if you ask? ›

Yes, financial aid is negotiable. “There is very little downside to asking, so you might as well make the request,” says Shannon Vasconcelos, a college finance educator at College Coach. She estimates that negotiations are successful in about half of the cases she's seen, so it's worthwhile to put the effort in.

Does financial aid include merit scholarships? ›

Merit-based financial aid (also called merit scholarships or merit awards) is financial aid offered in recognition of student achievements (e.g. academic, athletic, artistic, etc.). Unlike need-based financial aid, merit-based financial aid does not consider the financial need of the student or family.

How do I ask my college coach for more money? ›

Athletes should ask for more money through a letter or phone call to the college coach. Before you reach out to a coach who has shown interest and asking for a larger scholarship, it is important to know whether the sport you play is an equivalency program or a head-count program.

How are Merit Scholars chosen? ›

Winner Selection

All winners of Merit Scholarship awards (Merit Scholar® designees) are chosen from the Finalist group based on their abilities, skills, and accomplishments—without regard to gender, race, ethnic origin, or religious preference.

Why don t Ivy Leagues give merit scholarships? ›

Ivy Leagues do not provide merit and athletic scholarships due to the highly competitive nature of the Ivy League admissions process. With much slimmer acceptance rates than an average college or university, students admitted into the Ivy Leagues have already proven their merit in both academics and athletics.

How hard is it to be a National Merit Scholar? ›

Out of the roughly 1.5 million students taking the exam in 2021, only 50,000 will qualify for National Merit Program recognition. Right off the bat, 34,000 of this high-scoring group will be handed Letters of Commendation, but they will not continue on in the competition for a monetary scholarship.

What are some weird scholarships you can get? ›

Weird scholarships - THE LIST!
  • Too Cool to Pay for School Scholarship. ...
  • Do Something Scholarships. ...
  • Doodle for Google Scholarship. ...
  • Vegetarian Resource Group Scholarship. ...
  • Tall Clubs International Foundation Scholarship. ...
  • The American Society for Enology and Viticulture Scholarships. ...
  • Create a Greeting Card Scholarship.
Dec 28, 2022

How do you find scholarships you can actually win? ›

Top Tips for Winning Scholarships for College
  1. Create an accomplishments resume. ...
  2. Don't miss deadlines. ...
  3. Complete the scholarship matching profile thoroughly. ...
  4. Apply to as many scholarships as possible. ...
  5. Look for scholarship listing books. ...
  6. Find local scholarships on bulletin boards. ...
  7. Tap into family connections.

Are scholarships without essays legit? ›

Yes, no essay scholarships are a real thing! Some might ask you to volunteer or fill out a survey or make a short video -- others may just ask for your name. The important thing is that you don't have to push out a million different essays to qualify for financial aid.

What is the easiest full scholarship to get? ›

Top easy scholarships in 2023
  • $10,000 “No Essay” Scholarship.
  • $2,000 Nitro College Scholarship – No Essay.
  • $25,000 No Essay Scholarship.
  • March Madness Scholarship.
  • $5,000 Christian Connector Scholarship.
  • $2,000 CampusReel Virtual Tour Scholarship.
  • Annual Protestant Faith Based College Scholarship.
Mar 2, 2023

What is the best age to apply for scholarships? ›

Federal Student Aid recommends that students start researching for scholarships the summer after your junior year of high school. If you have time and energy, you should even start before that. Every scholarship has different rules and different deadlines. Some even require submissions a year prior to starting college.

When should I start applying for scholarships? ›

When to apply for scholarships. Apply for scholarships early and often. Some scholarship deadlines are as early as a year before you start college. You don't need to wait until you've made your final decision about your school to apply.

How do you get 100% free scholarships? ›

Full-ride academic scholarship: Be at the top of your class with a great GPA, take AP/honors classes, and get perfect (or close to perfect) SAT or ACT scores. Along with academic merit, it also helps to also have leadership skills or community involvement, too (see below).

How to get 100% scholarship? ›

How to get a full scholarship
  1. Know where to look. ...
  2. Prepare in advance. ...
  3. Work hard and keep motivated. ...
  4. Make yourself stand out from other applicants. ...
  5. Read the application instructions carefully. ...
  6. Submit an exceptional scholarship essay or cover letter. ...
  7. Be realistic.

How much scholarship money do most students get? ›

The average scholarship award was $6,041 in 2022 — a 22 percent decrease from last year. During the 2021-22 academic year, 60 percent of American families used scholarships to pay for college.

Which college has the most National Merit finalists? ›

College enrollment
RankUniversityTotal scholars (including college-sponsored)
1University of Florida270
2University of Southern California265
3University of Alabama (Tuscaloosa)258
4Northwestern University244
16 more rows

How can I maximize merit scholarships? ›

Apply to colleges where your grades and test scores are above average—institutions where you'll stand out from the crowd—and you are likely to be recruited with scholarship offers. You can then negotiate to get those offers higher and/or use those offers as leverage when negotiating with other schools.

Which Ivy Leagues offer merit scholarships? ›

Ivy League universities don't offer merit aid.

"All Ivy League schools, as well as several other very selective schools like Stanford, MIT and Caltech, do not give any academic merit scholarships.

Can you negotiate merit scholarships with colleges? ›

You can always negotiate your merit aid package. If you are accepted to multiple schools, and your first choice is more expensive than your second choice, call the school to negotiate.

What PSAT score do you need for National Merit? ›

Out of 50,000 recognized students, around 34,000 fall into this category. For the 2022 scholarship cycle, the national minimum qualifying score was 207.

How rare is a National Merit Scholar? ›

A finalist chances of winning

Of the 1.5 million applicants who submitted a PSAT score, there are only 7,500 National Merit Scholarship winners. This means you have a 0.5% chance of becoming a National Merit Scholar, making this one of the most competitive merit-based scholarships.

Is National Merit a full ride? ›

National Merit Scholarships are one of the best ways to receive substantial merit-based scholarships ranging from $1,000 per year to full rides. To become a national merit semifinalist or finalist, you need to take the PSAT (which is also great practice for the SAT).

How do I ask for a full ride scholarship? ›

Full-ride academic scholarship: Be at the top of your class with a great GPA, take AP/honors classes, and get perfect (or close to perfect) SAT or ACT scores. Along with academic merit, it also helps to also have leadership skills or community involvement, too (see below).

Does FAFSA affect merit scholarships? ›

Most schools don't require students to fill out the FAFSA to qualify for merit scholarships. However, this is not standard practice. Scholarship policies vary from one college to another. Some colleges may not offer merit aid to students who have not filled out the FAFSA.

How do colleges decide who gets scholarships? ›

If the school gives merit scholarships, the decision typically will be made during the acceptance process, usually based on the student's grades and test scores. This often happens before the school knows if a student qualifies for need-based aid.

What is the most elite high school in America? ›

Most prestigious high schools in America
  1. Phillips Exeter Academy. ...
  2. Phillips Academy Andover. ...
  3. Los Angeles' Harvard-Westlake High School. ...
  4. Vegas, Nevada's Bishop Gorman High School. ...
  5. 5. California's Concord De La Salle High School. ...
  6. Santa Ana, California's Mater Dei High School. ...
  7. New York's Horace Mann School.
Jan 2, 2023

Can you get full ride to Ivy? ›

As mentioned, Ivy League schools do not provide full-ride scholarships – Harvard is no exception. Harvard takes a need-blind approach in their admissions process. This means that financial need does not factor into your acceptance.

Can you get a full ride to Yale? ›

Undergraduate students

Yale College does not award merit-based scholarships. Read more about the types of financial aid available to undergraduates.

How do I ask for more athletic scholarship money? ›

Athletes should ask for more money through a letter or phone call to the college coach. Before you reach out to a coach who has shown interest and asking for a larger scholarship, it is important to know whether the sport you play is an equivalency program or a head-count program.


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