African-American scholarships refer to scholarship programs that are only available to African-American students, or those of African-American or African descent. These scholarships are available at almost every level of study and nearly every subject, and usually seek to increase diversity in a particular field or industry. They range from small amounts to full tuition scholarships. As a minority culture, African-American students can choose from a variety of scholarship programs specifically for minorities and African-Americans to help pay for college.
Because African-American scholarships are so varied, the eligibility requirements can be very different from one scholarship to the next. Some scholarships are only for undergraduate programs while others are only for accounting degrees. However, the consistent eligibility requirement is that the applicant be African-American. Many scholarships of this type also emphasize stellar academic and community involvement records as well as financial need. Other requirements might include:
- Are a high school graduate or graduating senior
- Are of African-American descent
- Are a legal U.S. resident
- Meet specific GPA, SAT, GRE, or other merit requirements
- Present documented unmet financial need
- Enrolled in an accredited program
- Are attending a Historically Black College or University
- Planning to study a specific subject or field
This list of eligibility requirements is not all-inclusive, and some African-American scholarships may require more documentation regarding the applicant's heritage. In the case of scholarships with larger rewards, the eligibility requirements are more specific and the application is more involved. Below is a list of potential scholarships with varying eligibility requirements:
Types of African-American Scholarships
- Blacks at Microsoft Scholarship: The Black at Microsoft Scholarship offered by the technology giant is available for African-American students with strong academic records, who need financial assistance to pay for college, and are planning to pursue specific subjects at a four-year college.
- RMHC/African-American Future Achievers Scholarship: Offered in partnership with the Ronald McDonald House, this scholarship is awarded based on merit and academic need to students who have at least one parent of African-American descent.
- NABA National Scholarship Program: The National Association of Black Accountants offers scholarships in various amounts from $1000 to $10,000 to African-American students pursuing accounting degrees at four-year universities or graduate degrees in accounting.
- Ron Brown Scholar Program: The Ron Brown Scholar Program awards four $10,000 scholarships to African-American high school students attending college who demonstrate exemplary academics, leadership, and community participation.
- Hercules Scholarship: The Tom Joyner Foundation Hercules Scholarship offers a "full ride" scholarship to exemplary scholars attending Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs).
- National Association of Black Journalists Scholarships: The NABJ offers several scholarship awards of up to $2500 to qualifying African-American students interested in pursuing a career in journalism.
- The Agnes Jones Jackson Scholarship: The Agnes Jones Jackson Scholarship is offered by The Poise Foundation for between 20-40 students. The $2000 scholarship is available to NAACP members who can demonstrate a financial need and are subject to a committee review.
- Hallie Q. Brown Scholarship: The NACWC Hallie Q. Brown Scholarship is offered to African-American women who are recommended by an active member of the NACWC. Applicants must prove their need of financial assistance, be enrolled in an accredited institution, have completed one semester of post secondary studies while maintaining a C average.
- The George Washington Carver Scholarship: This scholarship awards grants for up to $10,000 to students attending historically black colleges who major in one or more of several select areas.