Myth: Scholarships Are Just For Minority Students

You may think that scholarships are only for minority students but it's not

Flickr user heacphotos

As you move through high school and get closer to college, it’s time to start applying for scholarships. There’s a common thought among high school seniors and juniors that scholarships are only for minority students. If you limit your search, that may seem the case, but it’s far from the truth.

When You Only Skim the Surface

If you only look at the surface of what’s available scholarship wise, it may absolutely look like the only scholarships available are for minority students. Some colleges lay out the information for awards in the counselor office, but this is often a very limited amount of actual awards you qualify for. While they may only show you 10 scholarships, there are in fact millions out there you can potentially apply to.

I mention this because that is exactly what my high school did. The few scholarships they showed available were only for minority students or first generation students. But that doesn’t mean that other scholarships don’t exist. You just need to go find them.

The Data Shows Otherwise

If you take a look at the actual statistics, you can see that minority students actually win fewer scholarships than white students at four year colleges. About 71.5% of white students receive scholarships, with minorities winning 28.5%.

You can look further into the data in this report.

Scholarships for Everyone

There are, in fact, scholarships for just about everyone. There are awards for specific sports, majors, or locations. You can even find scholarships for very unique niche subjects, including Duct Tape Prom Dress Scholarships, Duck Calling Scholarships, or for those pursing a career in retail grocery.

That’s not to say there aren’t scholarships that are restricted to minorities. Some scholarships will do just that. They may just be for Hispanic students in the United States, or a specific state. Or they may be restricted to African American Women interested in STEM programs. Each scholarship has its restrictions and qualifications, and some will be based on religion, race, orientation, or locale, and more. There will always be a scholarship you won’t qualify for, regardless of who or where you are. But don’t worry; for every scholarship you don’t qualify for, there are plenty that you fit perfectly.

How To Find Ones For You

There are more than likely several (or even hundreds) of scholarships you may find you qualify for. The best place to start is with your counselor’s office. Check out the ones their advertising and apply to the ones you fit. Then talk to your counselor; they may know the perfect ones you can apply to. Also check with your college. They might offer scholarships for your major.

Even if it appears at first glance that scholarships are only for minorities, that is simply not the case. There is an abundance of awards available out there, for any race, sex, major, career, college, ancestry, or locale. You only need to know where to look.

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