Minority Scholarships for 2020

Last updated: December 30, 2019

Colleges campuses across America are becoming more diverse every year. Underrepresented minority students are not only enrolling in college, but are making educational and professional impacts in all fields—from science to education to civil service—at an unstoppable rate. 

College costs, however, are climbing. According to U.S. News & World Report, from 1995 to 2015, in-state tuition and fees at public universities rose a staggering 296 percent. Average costs continue to rise every year, well beyond the rate of inflation. With tuition bills and extra expenses like housing, meal plans, parking permits, books and fees, any financial assistance can make a sizeable difference.

To help offset college costs, you can obtain minority scholarships, grants and fellowships that are available to men and women of African American, Alaska Native, Asian American, Hispanic and Latino, Native American and Pacific Islander descent. Use this guide, including our interactive scholarship tool, to locate and apply for unique opportunities to help pay for college. After all, you can be the student who brings new ideas and perspectives to your own college campus.

Educational Milestones for Minorities

evolution-of-education-for-minorities.jpg
 

Talented and diverse young leaders have further opportunity to make an impact through a college education and scholarship opportunities. The first U.S. Congressional woman of color and first Asian American woman elected to the House of Representatives expresses the power of making contributions as a minority:

“We have to build things that we want to see accomplished, in life and in our country, based on our own personal experiences...to make sure that others...do not have to suffer the same discrimination.”
- Patsy Matsu Takemoto Mink

To start building your future, consider the many college scholarships available to minorities through corporations, charitable organizations, advocacy groups and professional associations.

 

How to Pay for College

1

Scholarships

There are hundreds of scholarships for minorities, which are awarded by local organizations, private companies, societies and more.

 
2

Grants

Grants don’t need to be paid back and are based on your financial circumstances. They are usually funded by the federal government, your state or college.

 
3

Fellowships

While scholarships usually fund tuition, fellowships typically cover graduate study, research projects and abroad experiences without needing to be paid back.

 
4

Student Loans

You can borrow money from the government or a bank, but it needs to be paid back with interest. The federal government offers many loan options—fill out the free application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to see if you qualify for financial aid. If you need help, use our interactive guide to learn how to answer every question.

 
5

Federal Work-Study Program

Provides part-time jobs for undergraduate and graduate students with financial need, allowing them to earn money to pay education expenses.

 
 

If you’re just beginning the process of finding suitable scholarships, make sure you’re prepared for the application process by starting a folder with the assets below.

Scholarship Application Preparation

Not all scholarships are based off of your GPA, but most need to verify your high school education to qualify. Try to get certified copies of your transcript early, so you have plenty of time to meet the deadline.
Although there are scholarship opportunities that aren’t merit-based, it’s valuable to take the SAT or ACT standardized tests in case it’s a scholarship qualification.
Your scholarship essay is what will bring attention to your application out of the pool of applicants. That’s why it’s important to craft a stand out piece that attests to your experience, adheres to the scholarship guidelines and most importantly, highlights your true personality.
Letters of recommendation are a true judgement of your character—something that can’t be revealed through your test scores or transcript. Reach out to former teachers, counselors or bosses, so that they can speak to your qualifications. You may also want to provide them with a resume that outlines your achievements and goals as well.
 

No matter your background, where you’re from or if your family members attended college, you can find ways to pay for college through scholarships and fellowships. Check out the scholarships below to see the opportunities available.

Scholarship Opportunities for Minorities

Instructions: Click through the dropdowns below to sort by your ethnicity, field of study and award amount. Click the box for a larger view.

American Sociological Association Minority Fellowship Program

Amount: $18,000

Deadline: January 31, 2020

This scholarship awards graduate students pursuing a degree in sociology demonstrating strong mental health research and/or interest. Students will be selected based on intent on research and development in mental health, academic achievement and financial need.

Esperanza Scholarship

Amount: Varies

Deadline: January 31, 2020

This scholarship is awarded to a student of Hispanic heritage pursuing the dream of a career in communications. 

Edward S. Roth Manufacturing Engineering Scholarship

Amount: Varies

Deadline: February 1, 2020

Minorities of any group are eligible to apply for this award. Candidates are high school seniors and undergraduate or graduate students. Students must be pursuing a degree in manufacturing engineering at an ABET accredited school.

Vincint and Catherine Sansalone Scholarship

Amount: Varies

Deadline: February 1, 2020

Students must be enrolled in a math or science program at an accredited U.S. university. Must maintain a GPA of 3.0 or higher for consideration. Preference for students of Italian descent.

Chickasaw Nation Scholarship Program

Amount: Varies

Deadline: February 1, 2020

Chickasaw citizens who are pursuing higher education are eligible for numerous awards. Details for current scholarships and eligibility are listed on the website.

RMHC/HACER National Scholarship

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: February 5, 2020

Applicants must be continuing undergraduate students at UCSD who are actively involved in the lesbian and gay community. Applicants must be openly LGBTQ.

Pauahi Foundation Public Scholarships

Amount: Varies

Deadline: February 8, 2020

Candidates must be attending a trade, vocational or undergraduate institution. Preference is given to students of Hawaiian ancestry.

Fontana Transport Inc. Scholars Program

Amount: $5,000

Deadline: March 15, 2020

First generation college prospective students who are underrepresented, low income, and passionate about pursuing a career in health related fields. Students are not required to be U.S. citizens, but must have a 3.5 GPA to be considered.

Sidney B. Williams, Jr. Scholarships

Amount: $10,000

Deadline: March 15, 2020

The scholarship is intended for students entering or attending law school and demonstrate a commitment to developing a career in intellectual property law. The applicant must be US citizen and demonstrate merit and financial need before applying for the scholarship.

Science Systems and Applications, Inc. (SSAI) Underrepresented Student Scholarship

Amount: $2,000

Deadline: March 15, 2020

U.S. citizens or permanent residents who are undergraduate student members of the SPS national organization are eligible to apply. The program awards students who are majoring in physics or a related science and intend for continued scholastic development in physics in the future.

Anna N Dosen Serbian Educational Fund

Amount: $3,000

Deadline: March 31, 2020

Graduating seniors and undergraduate students are eligible to apply for this award. Must have a GPA of 2.0 or higher and pursue a degree in health related fields. Preference to students of Serbian heritage.

A.T. Anderson Memorial Scholarship

Amount: up to $2,000

Deadline: March 31, 2020

This scholarship is awarded to college students who are AISES members of American Indian or Alaskan Native ethnicity, and are pursuing a degree in engineering, medicine, natural resources, math, and other sciences. Must have a GPA of 3.0 or higher. Native American and Alaska Natives are preferred.

Herbert Lehman Scholarship

Amount: $2,000

Deadline: April 1, 2020

Student must be enrolled in a full-time accredited university. Must have a record of excellence in academic achievement and commitment to community service.

Great Minds in Stem Scholarship Program

Amount: $500-$10,000

Deadline: April 1, 2020

Applicants must be of Hispanic origin and/or must demonstrate leadership or service within the Hispanic community. Applicant must also be enrolled in an accredited 2 or 4-year undergraduate or graduate program and have at least a 3.0 GPA. Must be pursuing a STEM degree.

EMPOWER Scholarships

Amount: $1,500

Deadline: April 15, 2020

The EMPOWER Scholarship, supports minority students who are pursuing a career in a medical or rehabilitation field.

Mae & Mary Scholarship Fund

Amount: Varies

Deadline: April 30, 2020

The Mae & Mary Scholarship Fund supports the advancement of African Americans in health care and medical related fields. Eligible students are high school seniors planning to attend a university or technical school.

Indian-American Foundation Upakar Scholarship

Amount: $2,000

Deadline: April 30, 2020

Eligible candidates are those either born in or have a parent born in the Republic of India. High school seniors should apply and be pursuing enrollment in a two or four year degree program.

Moss Adams Foundation

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: April 30, 2020

The Moss Adams Foundation is available to minority women, or women returning to school to earn a bachelor's degree in accounting. Must demonstrate clear evidence persistence towards personal and professional goals.

LiveLikeLyly Memorial Scholarship

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: May 6, 2020

Scholarship applicants must be of at least 25% Asian and/or Pacific Islander ethnicity, be pursuing a major in fashion or graphic design, have demonstrated involvement in community service, extracurricular, or other activities, and have a minimum GPA of at least 3.0.

TMCF Scholarships

Amount: Varies

Deadline: May 27, 2020

Scholarships are available through the Guam Society of America to students pursuing undergraduate degrees. Current scholarships and eligibility requirements are listed on the website.

George Washington Carver Scholarship Fund

Amount: Varies

Deadline: May 30, 2020

Students must be demonstrated leaders planning to attend or currently enrolled at a HBCU.

Guam Society of America Scholarship Program

Amount: $7,500

Deadline: May 30, 2020

Applicant must be of Armenian heritage, be a full-time graduate student at a top tier American university and have a minimum of 3.5 GPA to apply.

American Indian Nurse Scholarship Awards

Amount: $1,500

Deadline: June 1, 2020

Candidates must be at least 1/4 American Indian and enrolled in a tribe, or able to prove direct tribal ancestry. Candidates must be enrolled an undergraduate or graduate nursing program are eligible.

Migrant Farmworker Baccalaureate Scholarship

Amount: $20,000

Deadline: July 1, 2020

Children of migrant workers who demonstrate pursuit of a career in agriculture are eligible to apply for this scholarship. Students must have completed one year of college to qualify.

Immigration Scholarship Essay Contest

Amount: $500

Deadline: July 1, 2020

Any U.S. resident that has been accepted to an accredited university can apply. Applicants are asked to answer questions on immigration for a chance to win.

Denny's Hungry for Education Scholarship

Amount: Varies

Deadline: August 18, 2020

All applicants must be enrolled in an accredited educational institution (K-12, high school and college) in the United States or Puerto Rico

EPP/MSI Undergraduate Scholarship Program

Amount: $45,000

Deadline: September 1, 2020

Applicants must be studying a discipline related to NOAA's programs and mission at an accredited minority serving institution within the United States, and maintain a GPA of at least 3.2.

Catching The Dream Program

Amount: Varies

Deadline: September 15, 2020

The scholarship assists Native American high school students with their college academic pursuits. All tribes and regions are welcome to apply. Preference is given to those who plan to study engineering, math, science, business, computers and education.

Golden Door Scholars

Amount: Varies

Deadline: September 16, 2020

Applicants from states where DACA or TPS should have strong academic performance. Students attending community college or public universities paying out-of-state-tuition are perfered.

Golden Door Scholars

Amount: Varies

Deadline: September 30, 2020

Applicants from states where DACA or TPS should have strong academic performance. Students attending community college or public universities paying out-of-state-tuition are perfered.