Scholarships for Average Students
February 13, 2014
Ordinary students often ask whether there are any scholarships available to students who don’t have an A average. This page lists some scholarships for average students. Although these scholarships don’t require a high GPA, they do require excellence in a non-academic area. Every scholarship sponsor is trying to find the students that best fulfill their selection criteria. If the selection criteria don’t depend on academic merit, then they might depend on athletic or artistic merit, community service, extracurricular activities, or on skill in a non-academic discipline.
Other sources of non-academic scholarships include your employer or your parent’s employer, your church, synagogue or mosque, hobbyist groups, local businesses, community service organizations, fraternal organizations, unions and minority groups. There are also many essay contests. To find other scholarships for students with specific interests or abilities, complete your profile on Fastweb.
David Letterman Telecommunications Scholarship
The David Letterman Scholarship was established by David Letterman in 1985 to provide scholarships for telecommunications students at Ball State University. The awards are intended for average students who nevertheless have a creative mind. Winners are selected primarily based on creativity. Projects may involve a variety of media, including written work, research, audio, video, graphics and film.
Duck Brand Duct Tape Stuck at Prom Contest
The Duck Brand Duct Tape Stuck on Prom Contest is open to students age 14 years or older who are attending a high school prom in the spring. US citizenship is required. Entrants must enter as a couple (two individuals) and attend a high school prom wearing complete attire or accessories made from duct tape. The submission must include a color photograph of the couple together in prom attire. The winning couple will be selected based on a variety of criteria, including originality, workmanship, quantity of Duck Tape used, use of colors, and creative use of accessories. The Duck Tape contest web site includes photographs of the winning costumes.
Horatio Alger Association Scholarships
The Horatio Alger Association provides scholarships for students who have demonstrated integrity and perseverance in overcoming adversity. Other selection criteria include strength of character, financial need, a good academic record (a GPA of 2.0 or higher), and a desire to contribute to society.
Patricia M. McNamara Memorial Scholarship
The Patricia M. McNamara Memorial Scholarship awards a scholarship to current college students who have had to overcome obstacles to achieve their goals.
DoSomething provides community grants and scholarships to students who are age 25 and younger that are committed to taking action on social issues and to improve their communities.
Prudential Spirit of Community Awards
The Prudential Spirit of Community Awards recognize children in grades 5-12 who have engaged in volunteer activities and have demonstrated exceptional community service. The program is sponsored by Prudential in conjunction with the National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP).
The Tylenol Scholarship program seeks to award students pursuing careers in healthcare, life sciences or related fields. The Tylenol Future Care Scholarship is awarded based on leadership qualities, academic excellence and community involvement.
Acts of Kindness
Hiram College Hal Reichle Memorial Scholarship
Hal Reichle took great pleasure in helping others and would do so secretly and serendipitously. In his memory, family and friends funded a scholarship at Hiram College to reward students for their random acts of kindness. Recipients are chosen on the basis of their humanitarian efforts, community involvement, and volunteerism. There is no application for this scholarship. Instead, the selection committee relies on an army of stealthy observers, the Secret Society of Serendipitous Service to Hal (SSSSH!), to identify students of strong moral character with a spirit of giving and dedication to others.
AXA Achievement Scholarship Program
The AXA Achievement Scholarship Program awards more than $1.3 million a year to high school seniors who have demonstrated outstanding achievement in non-academic activities in school, community or workplace. The award is sponsored by the AXA Foundation. US citizenship or legal residency is required.
AFSA National Scholarship Essay Grant
The AFSA National Scholarship Essay Contest is sponsored by the American Fire Sprinkler Association. Multiple awards are distributed each year.
Americanism Essay Contest
The Americanism Essay Contest is sponsored by the Fleet Reserve Association (FRA) National Committee on Americanism-Patriotism. The contest is open to students in grades 7 through 12. Entrants must be sponsored by a FRA member or by a chartered branch or unit.
Holocaust Remembrance Project Essay Contest
The Holocaust Remembrance Project Essay Contest is designed to encourage and promote the study of the Holocaust. The contest is open to all residents of the United States and Mexico, and also to US Citizens living abroad. Candidates should be enrolled in high school (grades 9-12) and age 19 or younger.
Maryknoll Essay Contest
The Maryknoll Student Essay Contest awards a scholarship in each division (grades 6-8, grades 9-12). MaryKnoll is a US-based Catholic mission movement. The essay contests are usually on religious topics.
School Band and Orchestra Magazine Scholarship
The School Band and Orchestra Magazine Scholarship awards scholarships to five to students in grades 4-8 and five to students in grades 9-12. The essay topics focus on music.
Vegetarian Resource Group Association
The Vegetarian Resource Group (VRG) offers two $5,000 scholarships each year to graduating US high school seniors who have promoted vegetarianism in their schools and communities. The application requires an essay about how the applicant promoted vegetarianism in their high school or community.
Voice of Democracy Essay Contest
The Voice of Democracy Essay Contest is sponsored by the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States (VFW). The audio essay contest is open to high school students in grades 9-12.
Christopher College Video and High School Poster Contests
The Christophers hold an annual video contest for college students and an annual poster contest for high school students. Several winners receive varying amounts.
American Harlequin Dance Scholarship
The American Harlequin Dance Scholarship is sponsored by Harlequin Floors. Several scholarships are awarded each year.
Federal Duck Stamp Art Contest
The Federal Junior Duck Stamp Art Competition is sponsored by the US Department of the Interior, US Fish and Wildlife Service. Students in grades K-12 may submit a drawing, painting or sketch of any North American waterfowl species. Each state, territory or district has its own competition, with the “Best of Show” winners submitted to the national competition. One of the 53 Best of Show images will be selected as the next Junior Duck Stamp.