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Scholarships

General Information and Additional Resources

Scholarship categories:

College of the Redwoods scholarships: Those scholarships made available by charitable contributions to College of the Redwoods, e.g., individuals, foundations, corporations, and organizations.   The identification, selection, and awarding of CR scholarships varies according to the specific terms of each scholarship.  In general, they are administered by the Scholarship Office.

Non-College of the Redwoods scholarships (external scholarships):  Those awarded by organizations, corporations, and foundations outside of College of the Redwoods which establish their own guidelines and procedures for applications, selections, and awards.  The College does not maintain extensive information about these scholarships.  Potential applicants are encouraged to independently research availability and to contact the sponsors directly. 

Tips for students:

  • Allow time.  Students are encouraged to begin searching for scholarships a year in advance of their need for assistance.   Use free searches such as FastWeb:   www.fastweb.com.
  • File a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).  All students, regardless of their financial need, should file a FAFSA by March 2 of each year (or the Cal Grant deadline).  FAFSA applications are often used by College of the Redwoods to help identify potential scholarship applicants.   A FAFSA may be filed by completing a paper application or an online application at http://www.fafsa.ed.gov
  • Contact high school counselors and scholarship foundations particular to your high school area.

Scholarship criteria the Scholarship Office commonly uses to make scholarship selections (one or more):

  • Financial need (requiring completion of the FAFSA form)
  • Academic achievement (e.g., G.P.A.)
  • Academic major
  • Enrollment status (often requiring full-time enrollment of a minimum of 12 units per semester for undergraduate students)
  • Location of residence or high school (e.g., Humboldt County resident or graduate from specific high school or geographic region)
  • Essays
  • Special circumstances (e.g., student athlete, community service)

SEARCHING FOR SCHOLARSHIPS

There is no quick shortcut to locating scholarships.  Scholarship search organizations advertise their services to students who hope to decrease the work involved; however, these organizations are not consistently successful and charge varying fees for services usually available at no cost.  Additionally, while many scholarships are reported to go unclaimed each year, typically this is due to donor restrictions that are so narrow that few students even qualify.   Most scholarships have broad general qualifications that many applicants will meet.  Consequently, there are often many applicants for each scholarship.   The successful student is one who independently pursues possible sources with attention to application details, requirements, and deadlines.  Searches take time, but are often profitable.

Scholarships may be based purely on merit or may be partially based on financial need.  Don't assume your family will have no need.  With the cost of attending college increasing each year, students from higher-income families may find they can demonstrate financial need.

Be prepared to take notes and/or make copies of announcements. When recording pertinent information, do not forget to list the name of the aid source, the specific contact person/organization and address, the deadline, and the requirements.  Make other notes that might later be helpful (for instance, "requires three letters of recommendation" or "autobiography required").

All information in the entry/announcement should be studied carefully.  If, under "Eligibility Requirement," only female descendants of Confederate soldiers are ruled eligible for any award, it is a waste of time for others to apply.  Additionally, ineligible applicants create a great burden of time and money on the sponsoring organizations that frequently must respond to these requests.  On the other hand, if there is some indication of eligibility, prospective applicants should inquire further.   If application procedures are confusing, you should request assistance.

If you are a high school senior, scholarship searches should begin during the fall of your senior year, as deadlines may occur in October or November.  Your high school counselor should have information regarding scholarships for local community members.  While one award may be as low as $250-$500, the student may be eligible for more than one award.   Renewable scholarships are the most desirable scholarships because the award spans several years of education and often increases with each year of education.

Try searching for various aid sources on the Web.  Check college scholarship pages that may have links to other Web pages.  Conduct searches using terms such as; scholarships, fellowships, education, financial aid, etc. Beware of scholarship scams!  There are specific Web pages devoted to warning the public regarding these scams.  You may wish to conduct your initial search on this topic.

The Humboldt Area Foundation (HAF) has many scholarship opportunities and resources.  Scholarship applications are accepted throughout February and March of each year.  Money is distributed in the subsequent Fall semester.  Visit their Web site for a variety of scholarship opportunities and resources:  www.hafoundation.org

Libraries are another source for additional financial aid opportunities. Some college libraries may have reference materials available on computer-assisted searches.  Information found in libraries generally reflects national and statewide organizations.  There are also sources regarding financial assistance for international study.

Our Scholarship Office receives announcements from organizations advertising the availability of various scholarships and aid opportunities.  These announcements can be found in the Scholarship Office.

Keep aid searches broad.  For example, do not search for just "History major."  Think about possible careers, like teaching, and explore resources available for students planning to teach. Consider contacting former and current employers, parent's employers, unions, clubs, fraternal organizations, religious organizations, professional (and student affiliate) organizations, and educational and business groups.   Many of these organizations have funds designated for educational endeavors. 

There is no easy path to locating assistance, but resources are available.   Make sure that the time you invest is time well spent.  Neatly print or type applications; complete them thoroughly; submit them on time.  Pay careful attention to content, grammar, and spelling.   Incomplete applications are generally discarded in favor of well done and complete applications.   Take the time to represent yourself well.

 

The mission of the CR Scholarship Office is to assist students financially in attaining their educational goals by rewarding academic achievements, strengthening donor relationships, and increasing scholarship funds through endowments and contributions.

 

College of the Redwoods
7351 Tompkins Hill Rd
Eureka, CA  95501

Phone:  (707) 476-4191
Toll Free:  (800) 641-0400
FAX #:  (707) 476-4409
E-Mail:  scholarships@redwoods.edu

www.redwoods.edu/district/scholarships

 

Adapted from Humboldt State University's "Scholarship News"
Printed with permission from HSU
7/05