Kansas Scholarships and Grants
While many people have a firm understanding that college education is essential in today’s society, the idea of financing a college education can seem overwhelming to both students and parents.
Much of the anxiety surrounding paying for college stems from the idea that students will have to borrow large sums of money and graduate with significant debt. Fortunately, scholarships and grants programs provide a welcomed alternative to student loans because students who receive awards from these programs have the potential to graduate without much debt.
Several scholarships and grants programs are available to Kansas residents in the form of government funds and specific college/university funds.
Beginning the Application Process for Kansas Scholarships and Grants Programs
Kansas scholarships and grants programs can have a wide range of standards for determining which students receive funding. Usually at least one of the eligibility factors for many scholarship or grant programs includes financial need. Aid granting organizations often use the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, better known as theFAFSA, to determine financial need.
Students can submit the FAFSA through mail, but online submissions are received more quickly. Another criterion used to decide scholarship or grant eligibility is academic achievement. Academic achievement can be verified by a number of factors including grade point average (GPA) and/or standardized test scores.
The most popular standardized tests used to judge academic ability are the ACT and SAT. Both of these tests are also used in the general college admissions process. Therefore, students should plan to take the ACT or SAT early enough to meet college admissions and financial aid deadlines.
Types of Kansas Scholarships and Grants Programs
There are several types of scholarships and grants including need-based, merit-based, discipline specific, and college/university specific. Need-based scholarships are awarded to students based on demonstrated financial need, as determined by the FAFSA.
Merit-based scholarship and grant programs consider elements of students’ academic performance as the main criteria for funding selection. Sometimes merit-based scholarship and grant programs consider financial need in conjunction with academic achievement. Discipline specific scholarship and grant programs limit funding to students pursuing study within certain fields. For example, a scholarship or grant program may award funds to students who plan to become teachers.
To qualify for these types of scholarships, students have to choose a major designated by the organization from which they wish to receive funding. College/University specific scholarship and grants programs are those offered exclusively by certain colleges or universities. The following list of scholarships will be split into these four categories.
Need-Based Kansas scholarships and grants programs
-Kansas Comprehensive Grants, offered by the state government, are available to residents of Kansas wishing to attend a public or private in-state school. In order to be eligible for a Kansas Comprehensive Grant, students must exhibit financial need as determined by the FAFSA and be enrolled full-time in a state college or university.
The award amount for this grant ranges from $100 to $3,000 depending on whether the student attends a public or private institution. Students can find the application for Kansas Comprehensive Grants at the Kansas Board of Regents website.
Merit-Based Kansas scholarships and grants programs
-The State Scholars Program awards $1,000 awards annually to students who have been identified as State Scholars during their senior year of high school. In order to be considered a State Scholar, students have to take the ACT before December of their senior year and complete the Kansas State Scholar curriculum.
A school official must verify potential applicants’ completion of the Kansas State Scholar curriculum and applicants’ 7th semester GPA. Application for this scholarship can be completed at the Kansas Board of Regents website.
-The Kansas Ethnic Minority Scholarship, worth $1,850 a year, is available to minorities wishing to attend a Kansas college or university. Those applicants considered minorities include African Americans, American Indians or Alaskan Natives, Asians or Pacific Islanders, and Hispanics. Even though this award acknowledges students’ financial need, outstanding academic achievement is a requirement.
To be eligible for this scholarship, students have to have at least one of the following: ACT score of 21 or SAT score of 990, cumulative GPA of 3.0, high school rank in upper 30%, completion of Kansas Scholars curriculum, selection by National Merit Corporation, or selection by the College Board as a Hispanic scholar. Students wishing to apply for this scholarship should visit the Kansas Board of Regents website.
-Another merit-based scholarship offered to students by the Kansas state government is the Vocational Scholarship in the amount of $500. This scholarship is designed for full-time students completing a two-year vocational program. To qualify for this funding, applicants must take a vocational exam at any of thepre -designated sites. The State of Kansas offers about 240 Vocational Scholarships to students receiving the highest scores on the exam. To complete an application and register for a vocational exam, interested students should visit the Kansas Board of Regents Website.
-The Kansas Distinguished Scholarship Program for graduate students provides tuition reimbursement to Kansas residents who have been designated Brasenose, Clevening, Fulbright, Madison, Marshall, Mellon, Rhodes, and Truman Scholars. To receive this award, applicants must continue graduate study at a university in Kansas. For more information about the Kansas Distinguished Scholarship Program, students should contact the Kansas Board of Regents.
Discipline-Specific Kansas scholarships and grants programs
-The Kansas Teacher Service Scholarship is designed for students who wish to become teachers in hard-to-fill disciplines (Special Education, Math, Science, Foreign Language, and English as a Second Language) or under served geographic locations. This award comes with a service obligation; recipients must serve as teachers for a term no shorter than the length of time they received funding. This scholarship can be awarded to undergraduate and graduate students.
Eligible students must be residents of the State of Kansas and admitted to or enrolled in a Kansas school in the appropriate fields. The award amounts vary based on the amount of credit hours in which the student is enrolled. Full-time students receive $2,687 per semester. Students can find the application for this scholarship on the Kansas Board of Regents website.
-The Kansas Nursing Service Scholarship is available to students wishing to enroll in Licensed Practitioner Nurse (LPN) and Registered Nurse (RN) programs. To be eligible for this award, students have to be accepted into a state nursing program. Recipients must also have commitment from a sponsor. This sponsor agrees to provide half of the scholarship and full-time employment to the recipient within six months oflicensure . Kansas Nursing Service Scholarships are granted on a first-come, first-serve basis.
Therefore, students should complete the application andFAFSA as early as possible. Students in LPN programs receive $2,500 each year, and students in RN programs receive $3,500 each year. Scholarship recipients agree to work for the sponsor for the same amount of years they received the scholarship. Applications can be found at the Kansas Board of Regents website.
-Another discipline specific award offered to Kansas residents is the James B. Pearson Fellowship, which was developed to encourage graduate students attending Kansas public universities to study abroad. Preference is given to students pursuing degrees related to foreign affairs. The award amount varies, but the average stipend is $2,456. Interested students may request an application from their graduate school offices.
College/University Specific Kansas scholarships and grants programs
While most of the colleges and universities in Kansas have scholarships available for their students, some Kansas colleges and universities offer scholarships and grants especially for Kansas residents. The following scholarships are college/university-specific. Unless otherwise stated, the application for admission to the college or university also serves as the application for scholarships and grants.
-Bethel College has scholarships and grants ranging from $500 to $40,000. From now until 2012, Bethel College is offering a 125th Anniversary Scholarship in the amount of $40,000 to residents of Newton or North Newton. In addition to being residents of Newton or North Newton, students must have a 2.5 GPA and an SAT score of 890 or ACT score of 19 to receive this award.
-Emporia State University offers the Capitol Federal Savings Scholarship. To qualify, students must be enrolled as full-time undergraduate or graduate students in the School of Business and have a 3.25 GPA or higher. Students from Emporia , Kansas City, Lawrence, Manhattan, Topeka and Wichita receive first preference.
The Capitol Federal Savings Scholarship awards range from $1,000 to $2,000 depending on student classification. Students interested in applying for this scholarship should contact the ESU School of Business directly at (620) 341-5225. Another scholarship available to ESU applicants is the Elberta Harris Scholarship. To be eligible for the Elberta Harris Scholarship, students must be from Johnson County, Kansas, pursue a teaching degree, and have at least a 3.0 GPA.
Potential recipients should submit an application, an essay, letters of recommendation, and a transcript. The award amount is $2,000. Students should contact the Dean of the Teacher’s College at (620) 341-5367 for information regarding the Elberta Harris Scholarship.
-Kansas State University provides quite a few scholarships with various award amounts. Most of these scholarships are merit-based, but some scholarships are available for those exhibiting leadership and members of various clubs. The Presidential Scholarship is available to Kansas students who have been named semifinalists or finalists for the National Merit, National Achievement, or National Hispanic Scholarship programs. Other awards offered by Kansas State University include the Putnam Scholarship and the K-State Wabash Scholarship.
The Putnam Scholarship, in the amount of $7,000, rewards Kansas residents exhibiting high academic achievement, and the K-State Wabash Scholarship is available to students graduating from a high school in Kansas City. For applications for each of these scholarships, visit http://consider.k-state.edu/premierscholarships/.
-Ottowa University awards the Franklin County scholarship to students who graduated from a high school in Franklin County, Kansas and live on campus. These awards are available on a first-come, first-serve basis.
-Pittsburg State University offers numerous awards to Kansas residents. The award amounts for these scholarships vary based on available funding. The Barney K. Baker Scholarship is available to males who graduate from a high school in Kansas. Another scholarship offered by Pittsburg State University is the Bryan Dunn & Matt Micheal Memorial Scholarship. To qualify for this award, students should have at least a 2.5 GPA and be enrolled in the Kelce College of Business.
First preference is given to students graduating from Humboldt High School and Iola High School, but all Kansas high school graduates are considered. Pittsburg State University also offers the C. Merrill Colean and Vivian L. Colean Scholarship Fund. Students wishing to receive this award must demonstrate financial need, and preference is given to graduates of Girard High School and Northeast High School. The Davidson Memorial Trust Fund is available to students with a minimum GPA of 2.500 from the following cities: Chanute, Buffalo, Roper, Yates Center, Vernon, Toronto, Coyville, New Albany, Fredonia, Neodesha, Morehead, Parsons, Thayer, Earlton, Erie, St Paul, South Mound, Walnut, Hepler, Stark, Savonburg, Elsmore, Bronson, Moran, Mildred, Carlyle, Colony, Le Roy. For a comprehensive list of Pittsburg State University scholarships available to Kansas residents visit the school’s financial aid website.
-University of Kansas has several scholarships and grants programs available to Kansas residents. The Summerfield and Watkins-Berger Scholarships are awarded to Kansas high school students graduating at the top of their classes. Students must have a minimum 3.65 GPA, ACT score of 31 or an SAT math and critical reading score of 1360. In addition to academic excellence, students must also demonstrate service and leadership. The Summerfield and Watkins-Berger Scholarship is worth $4,500 a year.
University of Kansas’ Crimson and Blue Scholarships provide assistance to students based on academic achievement, leadership, and geographic location. Students from the following counties are given preference for the Crimson and Blue Scholarship-Allen, Barber, Barton, Bourbon, Butler, Cherokee, Clark, Clay, Decatur, Ellsworth, Ford, Greenwood, Harvey, Jackson,Kingman, Kiowa, Leavenworth, Lincoln, Linn, Logan, Marshall, Meade, Miami, Mitchell, Montgomery, Morris, Nemaha, Norton, Osage, Pawnee, Pottawatomie, Pratt, Rawlins, Reno, Rooks, Shawnee, Sheridan, Sherman, Seward, Sumner, Thomas, Trego, Tribune, Wabaunsee, Wallace, Washington, Woodson, and Wyandotte.
For first-generation college students, University of Kansas offers the Hixon Opportunity Award. To receive this award, applicants must be Kansas residents entering as freshmen who have faced personal challenges or financial hardship. Priority will be given to students whose parents do not have four-year college degrees. To apply students must submit an application, a transcript, a letter of recommendation, and an essay. The application can be found at www.scholarships.ku.edu/hixson.shtml.
-Wichita State University offers the Sedgwick County Scholarship, $1,000 for part-time students and $2,000 for full-time students. To qualify, new freshmen must have a minimum ACT score of 21 or SAT score of 980, rank in the top 1/3 of high school graduating class, or be an admissible student who participated in Kansas Kids orUSD 259 GEAR UP Program. Students wishing to apply for the Sedgwick County Scholarship should visit the Wichita State University financial aid website.
Whether Kansas students are looking for scholarships and grants that address financial need, acknowledge academic merit, or encourage study in a specific field, they will find numerous opportunities for educational assistance.