Hundreds of associations across the U.S. raise funds to help African American students succeed in their education and in their careers. Often, when we hear the word “scholarship” we think general financial aid to attend college. Some of these programs benefit African Americans with very specific goals and areas of interest. Here are 12 unique scholarships for African American students.
The Gates Millennium Scholarship Program gave out average award of $12,492 each to 17,000-plus minority students between 2001 and 2014. An impressive 28 percent of Gates Millennium Scholars go on to enroll in graduate school, according to Gmsp.org.
The goal of the scholarship program is to increase the representation of minority groups including African Americans in the disciplines of computer science, education, engineering, library science, mathematics, public health and the sciences — areas where minorities are severely underrepresented, according to the Gates organization.
Established in 1999, the scholarships were initially funded by a $1 billion grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
The NBLSA gives out just four scholarships a year to students who are already attending law school. In order to apply for the scholarship, students must be a member of this non-profit organization. There are four categories of scholarships based on things like the student’s year in school, goals after school, and academic achievements, according to Scholarshipsonline.org.
The Tom Joyner Scholarship is a full ride scholarship that sends students to schools qualifying as historically black colleges and universities (HBCU). High school students with a grade point average of 3.5 or above are eligible, and the scholarship covers tuition, room and board, books and fees, according to Scholarshiponline.org.
The AWG Scholarship Program provides financial aid and mentoring to minority women pursuing an education and career in the geosciences. The application requirements published on Cappex.com specify that applicants must currently be enrolled in an undergraduate program and studying geoscience.
The National Black Police Association gave out 10 scholarships in 2015. The association is dedicated to promoting justice, fairness, and effectiveness in law enforcement. It serves as an advocate forum for minority police officers in the U.S., and has members in Canada, Bermuda, and the United Kingdom. You can read the profiles of past scholarship recipients on BlackPolice.org. Each has goals to study or work in law enforcement or related fields.
The IABA gives out scholarships to current undergraduate and graduate students pursuing careers as an actuary. Scholarship recipients must serve on an IABA committee for at least a year to receive money, according to Blackactuaries.org. Actuary was ranked the best job of 2015 by Careercast based on job satisfaction, high average pay and positive hiring outlook. Average income for actuaries is $94,209. The anticipated demand for actuaries is due in part to implementation of the Affordable Care Act.
The Ron Brown Scholar Program puts an emphasis on students who are engaged in community service, and who take on leadership goals in their community and high school. Beneficiaries of the award receive $10,000 for each year of college, according to Ronbrown.org.
The Hallie Q. Brown Scholarship is a part of the National Association of Colored Women’s Clubs (NACWC). Recipients must be active members of NACWC, must have a high school grade average of C, and must demonstrate financial need, according to Nacwc.org.
The RMHC gives out four types of scholarships including local and national, and one is the African-American Future Achievers reward. Only one award is given each year. Recipients must be under 21, have at least one parent of African American or black Caribbean heritage, and be in financial need, according to Rmhc.org.
The NABJ Scholarship Program gives awards of up to $2,500 to African American students pursuing careers in journalism. Qualifying applicants must currently be studying journalism in college and have at least one year of school remaining to get the award, according to Nabj.org.
The National Achievement Scholarship Program was established in 1964, the year the U.S. Civil Rights Act was passed that outlawed discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin. National Achievement has worked since then to encourage African American students to continue their education. The association is helping over 3,000 students to get through undergraduate programs, according to Nationalmerit.org.
The Go On Girl Book Club gives out $1,000 scholarships to aspiring black female writers. There are two scholarships — the Unpublished Writer Award and the Aspiring Writer Scholarship, according to GoOnGirl.org. The latter is for current students at historically black colleges and universities. Applicants must write an 800-word essay on “The Power of the Written Word.”
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