Paying for college is harder than ever now. And while student loans can definitely help, you have to pay them back, AND with interest. Scholarships on the other hand are FREE money. You never have to pay them back. Really, NEVER! You literally have nothing to lose.
That’s why the National Scholarship Providers Association (NSPA) sponsors National Scholarship Month each November. It highlights how extremely beneficial scholarships are and encourages students to spend time exploring and applying for them. And get creative in your search, you won’t believe what’s out there!
A common misconception is that all scholarships require financial need or a perfect GPA.
But that’s not true! There are actually A LOT of eccentric and unique scholarships out there that are based on your interests, hobbies and passions.
Check out a few fun and interesting examples…
Zombie Apocalypse $2,000 Scholarship
Love zombie movies? Ever watch one and yell at the people in it because they’re going the wrong way or just aren’t thinking? Then this scholarship is for you! Here’s the description on Unigo’s website:
Submit an online written response to the question:
“Imagine your high school or college is overrun with zombies. Your math professor, the cafeteria ladies, and even your best friend have all joined the walking dead. Flesh out a plan to avoid the zombies, including where you’d hide and the top-five things you’d bring to stay alive.” (250 words or less)
You can apply here. It’s only fitting that the deadline is Halloween. 🎃👻 Bwahahaha!
Minecraft $2,000 Scholarship
Do you like using your imagination to create things in Minecraft? If so, then this scholarship is built for you (pun intended) 😉. Here’s the description from the Apex Hosting website:
“Students are able to apply for our $2,000 scholarship which can be used towards tuition for their next semester at college. All drawings are done early August each year after submission deadlines pass. All interested students will have to write a short essay about their opinion on how Minecraft can be a positive influence within their education and career development. Minecraft is used in many different facets of education and we want to know how you believe that the game can be further utilized to enhance learning and development. We are interested in hearing your thoughts and experiences about how this amazing game that we love can be much more than just a game.”
You can apply here.
The rise of Esports
We’ve all heard about scholarships for sports like football, basketball and hockey, but you don’t have to be an athlete to get a scholarship for playing games. Now you can get them for electronic sports, (esports) – team-based video game competitions. They range between $500 to $8,000 per year and awards are on a school-by-school basis. Schools are starting to offer full tuition or even full-ride scholarships! Some games included are League of Legends (LoL), Smite, Fortnite, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO), Rocket League, and Madden, just to name a few. GAME ON!
So go on and explore scholarships that are a good fit for you! Did you know that Author-turned CEO Ben Kaplan was able to go to Harvard for FREE? Yup, he combined a year’s worth of AP credits, along with two dozen different scholarships and didn’t have to pay a cent! So go on, start searching and get those scholarships! It may take some time, but it’s totally worth it. November is national scholarship month, but you can research and find them all year round. So go on, start searching and get those scholarships!