Scholarship Opportunities for Students with Disabilities

Last updated: April 23, 2019

More than ever, colleges and universities around the United States not only welcome students with disabilities into their programs, but also cater to their needs through supportive staff, academic assistance programs, free shuttles and more.

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, over 11 percent of undergraduate students in the U.S. reported having a disability—to put that into perspective, that’s over 2 million students. Although opportunities exist for students with a wide range of disabilities, the cost of college can still deter high school graduates from pursuing higher education. To help you finance your degree, check out the resources for prospective students and sort through the scholarships for disabled students below. 

Navigating college with a disability is possible by advocating for yourself. Clinical psychologist and college admissions consultant with Tourette Syndrome, Dr. Shirag Shemmassian, weighed in on how his resourcefulness played a role in his college career, “...at Cornell and UCLA, the Student Disability Services offices were incredibly helpful: they took the time to learn about the supports I needed and made every effort to provide effective accommodations.” He went on to say, “You have to believe that you can get into your top-choice schools, and also that you are just as capable as everyone else.”

“You have to believe that you can get into your top-choice schools, and also that you are just as capable as everyone else.”
Dr. Shirag Shemmassian

To learn more about how you can advocate for yourself and excel in your college courses, take advice from these governmental resources, organizations and advocacy groups.

Resources for Students with Disabilities

American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD)

AAPD works to improve the lives of people with disabilities by acting as a convener, connector and catalyst for change.

Disability Rights, Education, Activism, and Mentoring (DREAM)

DREAM is a national organization for and by college students with disabilities that advocates for disability culture, community and pride.

Association on Higher Education and Disability (AHEAD)

AHEAD is a professional association committed to full participation of persons with disabilities in postsecondary education.

National Center for College Students with Disabilities (NCCSD)

NCCSD is a federally-funded project under the U.S. Department of Education.

Mobility International USA (MIUSA)

MIUSA is a disability-led non-profit organization advancing disability rights and leadership globally.

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)

A national network with information, guidance and training on the Americans with Disabilities Act.

National Center on Secondary Education and Transition (NCSET)

NCSET helps youth with disabilities achieve successful futures.

PACER Center

PACER provides assistance to help families make decisions about education and other services for their child or young adults with disabilities.

 
 

Scholarships for Students with Disabilities

Instructions: If you’re a student living with a disability and want know how to finance your college degree, sort through the scholarships below and click “view scholarship” to apply directly on their website. If the scholarship deadline has passed, check the website to see when their next scholarship application is available—all scholarship opportunities are annual.

Turner Syndrome Society College Scholarships

Amount: $500

Deadline: July 15, 2021

Students with Turner syndrome are eligible for awards through the Turner Syndrome Society. Eligibility criteria and deadlines are updated on the website.

C.A.R.E.S. Scholarship

Amount: $500

Deadline: July 15, 2021

Scholarships are awarded to students with hemophilia or a similar bleeding disorder or students with an immediate family member with a bleeding disorder.

College Scholarships for Women with Turner Syndrome

Amount: $500

Deadline: July 15, 2021

Appllicants must be a current TSSUS member attending a 2- or 4-year college, university, vocational/technical school, or online program.

Disabled Student Scholarship

Amount: $500

Deadline: August 1, 2021

This scholarship is for students who have a medically diagnosed impairment (physical or mental) that interferes with everyday activities and quality of life while continuing their college education. The applicant will need to provide a physician’s statement of diagnosis for their impairment in addition to other documentation.

CHASA Scholarship for Childhood Stroke Survivors

Amount: $3,000

Deadline: August 31, 2021

Students pursuing post-secondary education may apply. Candidates must be affected by childhood hemiplegia or hemiparesis due to any cause or by pediatric stroke, or be currently diagnosed with hemiplegia or hemiparesis or pediatric stroke.

CHASA Scholarship

Amount: Varies

Deadline: August 31, 2021

Eligible students must have been diagnosed with hemiplegia or hemiparesis due to any cause, or a pediatric stroke.