8 College Scholarships for Black and African-American Students

College degrees have taken the place of high school diplomas when it comes to obtaining an entry-level position. With the cost of college constantly on the rise, scholarships and grants are more important than ever. Here are some great scholarships and grants offered for Black and African-American students who need help paying for college.

A group of graduating students.

1. Ron Brown Scholars Program

Amount: $10,000

Deadline: January 9

The Ron Brown Scholars Program is open to African-American high school seniors nationally. Applicants must show a record of academic excellence, community service participation, financial need, and also have the potential to be a leader. Students accepted into the program receive $10,000 a year for up to 4 years and mentoring throughout their college careers and beyond.

2. Jackie Robinson Foundation Scholarships

Amount: Up to $30,000

Deadline: TBD for 2020

The Jackie Robinson Foundation scholarship awards graduating high school minority seniors who show leadership potential and dedicate themselves to community service. Applicants must also demonstrate financial need, and have a minimum SAT score of 1,000 or a composite ACT score of 21. Those awarded scholarships receive $30,000 over four years.

3. National Achievement Scholarship Program

Amount: Varies

Deadline: Varies

This program runs concurrently with the National Merit Scholarship Program. Entrance to the program is done in the same manner. Students who take the PSAT or NMSQT in their junior year of high school are eligible to participate. The program selects winners based on their PSAT/NMSQT scores, academics, recommendations, as well as essays.

4. National SMART Grant

Amount: Up to $4,000

Deadline: Complete the FAFSA

Third- and fourth-year undergraduate college students studying physical, life, or computer sciences, mathematics, technology, engineering, or a foreign language determined critical to national security are eligible for the National Science and Mathematics Access to Retain Talent (SMART) Grant. Students must also be Pell Grant recipients and have a minimum 3.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Recipients of this grant receive $4,000.

5. United Negro College Fund (UNCF) Scholarships

Amount: Varies

Deadline: Varies

The UNCF has been dedicated to minority education since its founding in 1944. In the more than 70 years since then, UNCF has helped more than 400,000 students fund their college educations. UNCF administers more than 400 scholarship, internship, and fellowship programs each year.

6. The Gates Scholarship

Amount: Varies

Deadline: TBD for 2020

Bill and Melinda Gates set up the Gates Scholarship in 2017, with the goal of helping minority students who meet Pell eligibility afford a college education. Applicants must be of African American, American Indian-Alaska Native, Asian & Pacific Islander American, or Hispanic American ethnicity, and have a 3.3 GPA on a 4.0 scale. They must also be a high school graduate, GED recipient or high school senior entering college for the first time as a first-year student.

7. Royce Osborn Minority Student Scholarship

Amount: $4,000

Deadline: Varies

ASRT funds the Royce Osborn Minority Student Scholarships, which helps minority students who want to pursue a career in radiology. That includes “radiography, sonography, magnetic resonance, radiation therapy or nuclear medicine” programs. To apply, students must be an ASRT member. 

8. Lagrant Foundation Scholarship

Amount: $2,500; $3,750

Deadline: February 28, 2020

Minority students majoring in advertising, marketing, or public relations are eligible to apply for the Lagrant Foundation Scholarships. Applicants must have a minimum GPA of 2.75 on a 4.0 scale, be an African-American, Asian-American/Pacific Islander, Hispanic/Latino or Native-American/Alaskan Native, and have at least one year to complete his or her degree. Recipients of Lagrant Foundation Scholarships receive $2,500 if they are undergraduates and $3,750 if they are graduate students.

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