Many nonprofit and private organizations and businesses offer college scholarships as a way of giving back to the community. These scholarships can be offered on the basis of merit, need or demographic.
What kinds of Nonprofits and Private Organizations give scholarships?
All kinds of charities and businesses – big and small – provide scholarships, and they do so for a variety of reasons:
- Be helpful to those in need
- Generate goodwill for the organization
- Increase the charity or company’s visibility
- Encourage educational advancement in a particular field
- Make it easier for a certain demographic to attend college
There’s not always an easy way of knowing why a particular entity is offering a scholarship, but that’s OK. What’s important is that thousands of charities and businesses are offering scholarships each year, making it easier for millions of students to attend college.
The following Nonprofits currently or have in the past offered college scholarships:
- The United Way
- Big Brother Big Sister
In many cases, scholarship programs from bigger nonprofit organizations come from local chapters and branches.
The following private companies currently or have in the past offered college scholarships:
Given the number of scholarships offered each year, it’s difficult to categorize which nonprofits and which companies are likely to award scholarships. Instead, it’s best for students to search for companies and charities that align with their own interests or background and see if they offer any college scholarships.
Fortunately, there are tools to make your search easier.
There are millions of scholarships awarded each year, totaling billions of dollars in aid. Scholarships are offered for the following reasons:
- Merit-Based Scholarships: These funding opportunities are awarded to students based on academic, special talent or athletic achievements.
- Need-Based Scholarships: These scholarships are designed for students who demonstrate an appropriate level of financial need.
- Demographics-Based Scholarships: These funding opportunities don’t depend on your grades or your level of financial need. Instead, they’re awarded to college students who fall into certain categories, such as ethnicity, religion, or gender.
Search high and low to find scholarships that pertain to your talents, interests or background. Here are four databases to help make your search easier:
Most scholarships will require students to prove their candidacy, although this typically means you’ll have to write an essay on a specific topic. When applying for multiple scholarships, it’s important to stay organized and keep track of deadlines and requirements.
If you’re not finding what you’re looking for online, reach out to local charities and businesses to find out if they offer scholarships. Smaller organizations don’t always advertise their scholarships to a wide audience.
Many charities and businesses will ask local teachers and guidance counselors if they know of any good candidates, so ask around your high school or college if they know of any scholarships for which you might be eligible.