What happens if you get more scholarship money than needed?

What happens if you get more scholarship money than needed?

What happens if you get more scholarship money than needed? First of all, pat yourself on the back. Covering college with scholarship money is a dream come true.

Now, let’s take a look at what happens to all that money you’ve been awarded.

Scholarship Money and Financial Aid

When you win a scholarship, you should report it to your school so they can include the amount in your overall aid package. The school will look at your scholarship award and may subtract it from your aid package. 

Generally, colleges subtract your scholarship winnings from student loans — leaving things like grant money and work-study alone. If you have any concerns about how your school is calculating your scholarships in terms of your aid package, reach out to your financial aid office. Each school operates differently and you may want to understand their process.

What if you have money left over?

Having money left over is excellent. Beyond tuition, room and board, and other associated college fees, there are so many costs involved with going to college you might not have thought about.

First, check-in with the organization that awarded you each scholarship and make sure they don’t have limits on how you can use the money. If there are limits, ensure those specific scholarships only go towards those things.

If there aren’t any limits, contact the organization that awarded you the scholarship to learn how you can obtain any additional funds. 

What should you spend scholarship money on? 

Be smart with your scholarship money. Beyond all the significant costs, there are things like food, transportation, textbooks, supplies, and even printing costs. Using your scholarship money for all those additional expenses will help you keep your college spending even lower.

If your scholarship money covers everything you can possibly think of, you’re free to use it however you want. We suggest opening a savings account to build a little nest egg for the future.


After all, thousands of students graduate college each year already in debt from student loans. If you’re lucky enough to have something left over, give yourself a head start on the future.

Have questions about financial aid? We can help! Contact us at withfrank.org.