What is a scholarship?

A scholarship is an award of financial aid for a student to further his/her education. Scholarships are awarded based upon various criteria, which usually reflect the values and purposes of the donor or founder of the award. Scholarship money is not required to be repaid. Scholarships are a major component of financial aid for many college students.

In Washington state students receive in excess of $50 million annually in scholarships. Scholarships are awarded based on a variety of factors. Students may qualify for an award because of their familial background, choice of college/university, high school attended, geographic region, and more. Once qualified, s tudents are reviewed based on one or more of the following: financial need, scholastic aptitude & effort, leadership, community service, athletics, commitment, goals, and much, much more.

Ready to familiarize yourself with what's available?

  • Pell Grant – Maximum amount for 2019-20 was $6195. This grant does not need to be paid back. It is based on several factors, the weightiest being family financial need. Students must complete FAFSA.
  • State Need Grant – Maximum funding varies by institution with the largest grants awarded in excess of $10,000. Application is through either FAFSA or WAFSA.
  • Work study – Work Study funding is provided to colleges/universities to employ students. Learn More
  • Student Loans Subsidized loans may be available for students needing to fill in final amounts of their college funding plan. Subsidized loans require completion of FAFSA. Learn More

Federal/State Aid – The FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) is a form prepared annually by current and prospective college students to determine eligibility for student financial aid (including the Pell Grant, student loans and federal work study). Learn More

Washington/State Aid – The WASFA (Washington Application for State Financial Aid) is state financial aid for DREAMers. Washington State offers financial aid programs to students who aren’t eligible for federal financial aid because of immigration status. These students still need to meet other program requirements. Learn More

CAMP, TRIO, Institutional Aid

  • CAMP – Learn More
  • Trio – Learn More
  • Institution Merit Awards – Awards based on components of a student’s admission application. These awards are funded by the college/university to meet desired student admission goals. Merit awards are not based on financial need.

Washington Apple Education Foundation

The Washington Apple Education Foundation awards over $1 million in scholarships annually to students with a tie to the tree fruit industry. The foundation assists students attending two-year, four-year and vocational colleges. Students pursuing a technical certificate or degree must complete the application titled “Vocational/Technical” while students attending a two- or four-year college/university should complete the “Universal Application”. Awards are based on family ties to the industry, financial need, scholastics and ability to convey drive & commitment.

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Community Foundation of NCW

The Community Foundation of NCW manages over 120 scholarship funds established by donors who want to help ease the financial burden of college for local students. Scholarship criteria varies – such as community service, personal growth, or area of study – and is determined by the donor. Most scholarships have criteria aimed at assisting students with the most financial need. CFNCW scholarships may be available to technical school, community college and university students. Check each application for specifics, including deadline.

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SeaMar Foundation

Sea Mar recognizes and acknowledges the barriers children of farm working families face in their pursuit of a college degree. Economic strains, as well as the language and cultural barriers can often affect these students. Sometimes students need to work after-school and all summer to assist their family.

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Mollie Davis Scholarship/Yakima Rotary Trust

Mary Monroe “Mollie” Davis left an educational bequest to Yakima County. The Yakima Rotary Trust administers the scholarship program with oversight by the Yakima Valley Community Foundation. Renewable scholarships for tuition and fees are offered each year for full-time study at an accredited two or four-year college or university of the student’s choice in the amounts of $7,500 or $3,500. Applicants for this scholarship must be both a U.S. citizen and a resident of Yakima County.

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Paul Lauzier Foundation

Scholarships are provided to high school seniors and graduates of Grant County high schools. Students must be enrolled full-time and attend an accredited technical/vocational college, two-year community college or four-year university in Washington State.

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What should you be thinking about?

Junior Year
university student using internet search data for doing homework from computer in campus.
  1. Start looking for scholarships and keep notes of scholarship deadlines.
  2. If you haven’t been very involved with extracurricular activities, start getting involved now!
  3. Keep a log of every activity you participate in.
  4. Start looking for colleges you want to attend.
  5. Take the SAT/ACT
Senior Year
Young man writing college or university application form with pen and paper. Student applying or filling document. Scholarship, grant or admission. School website in laptop.
  • (October 1st): Apply for FAFSA/WAFSA
  • Start applying for colleges you want to attend
  • Start applying for scholarships
  • Start writing your personal statements
  • Start requesting letters of reference
  • When your fall grades are posted, start requesting your transcripts
  • NOTE: every scholarship provider is different, please make sure you read and follow their instructions.
  • Submit all of your materials on time.
  • Scholarship providers will notify you if you were awarded with a scholarship
  • Accept your scholarship
  • Colleges and Universities will admit students
  • Confirm your attendance
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