Are you a student looking for scholarships, grants, or other financial aid? Are you studying something like History, Philosophy, Theology or English? Or maybe you are one of the “studies” majors – American Studies, Cultural Studies or Media Studies? Undergraduate or graduate scholarships for the liberal arts or humanities really do exist. And we here at College Consensus will tell you just what to look for when starting your Liberal Arts scholarship search.
it’s technology married with liberal arts that yields us the results that make our hearts sing – Steve Jobs
Thinking About Majoring in the Liberal Arts or Humanities?
You may have heard the term “small Liberal Arts school” in reference to just about every university or college on the planet. Liberal Arts are everywhere and encompass most of today’s undergraduate degree offerings. Have you ever stopped to think what the heck is a liberal art anyway? Is it just a bunch of liberals running around making art? Well, in many cases, yes, but that is not where the name comes from. The history of the idea of “liberal arts” dates back to the beginnings of western civilization, with Greek and Roman scholars holding up the artes liberalis, or the actions and ideas one needed to know to be a free person, as essential in being an educated member of society (think lib- like in liberty/freedom). These included logic, grammar, and rhetoric. Today’s liberal arts has a more, well, liberal usage, identifying subject areas outside of the hard sciences and technological arts. Some of these subjects include the arts (fine arts, music, performing arts, literature), the social sciences (anthropology, economics, geography, political science, psychology, sociology, linguistics, history), philosophy, and religious studies, as well as a few others.
The Cost of Studying a Liberal Art
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Liberal Arts degrees make up 51.7% of all undergraduate degrees awarded in the U.S. With a little more than half of graduates coming out of school with these degrees, the competition for a job upon graduation is fierce, as the number of professional jobs available to liberal art majors fell 3% in 2015 according to Inside HigherEd. As a result of all of this, Liberal Arts degrees and more importantly students seeking these degrees, often have a hard time finding the extra funds necessary to make a degree like this possible in today’s educational economy. Programs like STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) seem to be getting the most support and the biggest dollars, but where, you might ask yourself, does that leave the more theoretical thinkers among us?
Our editors have pieced together the top 25 Liberal Arts scholarships, sorting for most general applicability (scholarships that are not specific to any school, and few to any particular region), and the most far-reaching. While some of these 25 are focused on a particular topic, these topics range from wide knowledge areas like history to narrow focuses like artists in the fiber arts. With recurring deadlines throughout the academic year and award amounts that range from $500 to $50,000, we hope you will find the liberal arts scholarship that meets your needs. We also hope that you can run around making art, regardless of your political affiliation.
¡Adelante! US Education Leadership Fund
In 1993 the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU) partnered with the Miller Brewing company to coalition build around the concern of a high dropout rate for Hispanic students in the US. The ¡Adelante! US Education Leadership Fund came out of these discussions as a solution to address the needs of the college-aged Hispanic community while making sure they have are equipped with the skills that corporate America is seeking. This is a comprehensive project that was designed to create more opportunities for Hispanic students while providing opportunities, scholarships, and internships. The scholars and program participants have proven that with such support in place, it is possible for successful academic completion, paving way for successful careers.
¡Adelante! Fund Gilbert G. Pompa Memorial Scholarship was designed to support Hispanic and Latin students who are pursuing a pre-law liberal arts education, with the intention of eventually attending law school. Students must be enrolled in a four-year college or university in the state of Texas, and have completed 90 credit hours before applying. Applicants must have maintained a 2.75 GPA in order to be eligible, and posses US citizenry or residency. Applicants will be expected to submit a letter of recommendation from a faculty member familiar with their academic career as of yet. Higher ranking will be given to female Hispanic students.
Against the Grain Artistic Productions
Against the Grain is a comprehensive art and media organization geared towards lifting up the stories of Asian American College students, while simultaneously working to create better-living conditions for underserved youth in Asia. One of the focal points of the organization is offering talented students of Asian decent scholarship opportunities, in support of their artistic and creative endeavors, academic achievement and leadership. Following the production of their film Operation Baby Lift, in 2009, the organization Against the Grain Productions was founded, initially as a support system for children living in orphanages in Vietnam. They have since expanded their reach to work with orphaned and underserved children also living in Thailand, Cambodia, and the Philippines while broadening their support for Asian college students in the US.
Against the Grain Artistic Productions supports talented young Asian American students, as future creators and cultural producers, by providing scholarship, exposure, and leadership opportunities. The Against the Grain Artistic Scholarship offers a $1000 award towards education costs to talented Asian American Students who are majoring in Journalism and Mass Communications, and/ or Performing or Visual Arts. Applicants must be at least 50% Asian and/or Pacific Islander. Applicants must also be able to prove engagement in community service activities and extracurricular activities and have a minimum of a 3.0 GPA. Winners will be invited to their annual Fashion for a Passion event, which is held each fall in Dallas, Texas.
The American Institute for Certified Public Accountants is a professional membership organization for CPAs in the U.S. AICPA was founded as the American Association of Public Accountants (AAPA) in 1887 and has come a very long way from its humble beginnings. Along with providing community and resources for CPAs across the country, they serve as setters and keepers of the industry standard, issuing credentials within the world of accountancy, auditing, financial IT systems, and taxation, providing continuing education, and helping create the Uniform CPA examination for students who wish to become Accountants and financial advisors. In addition to private and nonprofit financial management, the AICPA runs targeted ad campaigns to help consumers with better understand their own finances.
The John L. Carey Scholarship is a program that was set up in 1969 in honor John Carey when he retired from the board of directors of AICPA after 40 years of service. In his many roles at the organization, including directing AICPA’s newsletter, the Journal of Accountancy, Mr. Carey often tirelessly recruited excellent students to the profession of accounting. The scholarship is designed for liberal arts bachelor’s degree holders who want to earn a graduate degree in accounting and hope to become a licensed CPA. Award recipients will be chosen based on academic performance and demonstrated an interest in accounting, as well as leadership skills and character.
American Association on Health and Disability (AAHD)
The American Association on Health and Disability is a national multi-faceted organization that works to promote health and wellness initiatives for youth and adults with disabilities. They were founded in response to a growing movement related to disability rights, and creation of a national disability agenda. Part of their core mission is to bridge gaps between related to the health care disparities that disabled people have, especially in relation to the general population. Much of their work is centered around awareness and measures to make society more accessible for people who experience all kind of disability. The AAHD hosts a digital Health Promotion Resource Center; they also offer representation for disabled people with regard to national activities related to policy and health.
The American Association of Health and Disability offers a Scholarship titled AAHD Frederick J Krause Scholarship on Health and Disability. Frederick J Krause was a trailblazer in the fields of special education, as he developed a praxis for empowering education for youth with severe intellectual disabilities. He was a veteran special education teacher and committed advocate for disability rights, and as a result of his accomplishments in the field, he was honored with the role of Executive Director of the President’s Committee on Mental Retardation. The scholarship is in honor of his work and legacy and is offered to a disabled undergraduate or graduate student who is studying in the fields of health and disability. The student must attend an accredited university and must be at least in their sophomore year. Applicants with a history of community service will be prioritized.
Association of Food and Drug Officials (AFDO)
While the inspection of food for the purpose of distribution to the public has been happening since the beginning of the American colonies beginning with local inspections of specific food products out of concern for safety and handling. Nearly 200 years later, the Association of Food and Drug Officials was founded when the dairy inspector for the state of Ohio met with the dairy inspector for Michigan to establish uniform regulations and get input from one another on best practices. The year was 1886. The following year, the two men invited others in their position from states surrounding theirs, and after that, more inspectors still. Initially called the National Association of State Dairy and Food Departments, today the AFDO is a nonprofit organization with an international presence. The goal of the organization is to regulate and simplify safety among food industry production and support legislative enforcement of safety standards across the lines of agriculture, production, and handling. Through regional affiliations across North, Central and South Americas, AFDO is able to inform and support industry leaders towards consumer safety.
For liberal arts majors in their third undergraduate year, the George M. Burditt Scholarship, the Betsy B. Woodward Scholarship, and the Denise C. Rooney Scholarships are all offered annually by the AFDO to students who have shown a desire for a career of research, regulatory work, quality control, or teaching, in an area related to some aspect of foods, drugs, or consumer product safety. Preference will be given to students who have shown leadership and have demonstrated experience in research or education in community consumer safety. Applicants will need two letters of recommendation, and to submit their official transcripts to be considered for these awards.
A Place for Mom
When a family realizes that they need help caring for one of the most important members of their family, finding adequate senior care assistance is not always easy, nor straightforward. Matching up the region, with the particular need for a family, with types of complicated insurance options can all be a very complicated task, especially for working adults with families of their own to care for. The goal of A Place for Mom is to provide a guide for locating and assessing facilities and services for senior care. They specifically identify memory care, nursing facilities, and assisted living facilities. By receiving funding from participating companies and agencies, A Place for Mom operates at no cost to families and can act as a trusted friend in navigating what can seem like an impossible decision.
Rooted in a deep appreciation for the elders in our lives, A Place for Mom offers one of a kind assistance in choosing the best care for our beloved predecessors. The A Place for Mom Scholarship takes this sentiment a step further and offers financial assistance to students who are interested in working in some capacity with elders, and are engaged with that population in some form already. The scholarship is specifically for full-time student in the US and Canada who are getting an associates degree, bachelors degree, or graduate level degree in a medical, nursing, or liberal arts or social sciences related major with an emphasis on gerontology or some other form of elder care. A Place for Mom asks that applicants submit a film that is 2-3 minutes in length on the topic of “The Value of Seniors in Our Lives and Benefits to Society.” From choosing the best care to advancing the importance of elders in our lives, A Place for Mom is prioritizing elder loved ones in every direction.
Beinecke Scholarship Program
The Sperry Fund was created by William Sperry Beinecke who played key roles in the Sperry Hutchinson Company from 1952 until the 1980’s when he retired. He developed this charitable arm when he was the sitting president of the company. The company started as a small enterprise and by 1975, it was a known Fortune 500 company. Their success make William want to give back, and his example set the pace for corporate charitable giving in the country. He was passionate about supporting education and the health of small businesses, and was instrumental in gifting Yale with the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library. In 1971 the Beinecke Scholarship program was developed by the board in honor of William, Edwin and Frederick Beinecke.
The Beinecke Scholarship is gifted from a large endowment created exclusively to support the graduate education of gifted students. It was tailored to support brave educational endeavors including choosing a graduate liberal arts track encompassing disciplines such as: the arts, humanities, and social sciences. Over 610 college juniors have been award recipients, from 110 institutions. Each winner receives an immediate $4000 prior to graduate school entrance, and additionally $30,000 while attending their graduate program. Recipients have no geographical limitations, and can supplement the award with additional funding, assistant opportunities, and research grants. Recipients are encouraged to enter a graduate program directly after undergraduate graduate, and all funds must be used within 5 years of reception.
Bess Whitehead Scott Scholarship Fund
The Bess Whitehead Scott Scholarship Fund was founded in honor of Bess Whitehead Scott, who lived to be 107 and died in 1997, leaving a timeless legacy behind. She contributed so much to the field of journalism, as a Texas-based journalist and educator, she wrote two textbooks on the journalism. She was also known for two-reel silent screenplays that she traveled to Hollywood to write, and she taught journalism, at a high school in Milby Texas. She was also known as the first female news reporter, for the Houston Post, beginning in 1915. Her famous advice was simply, “Write!” The scholarships in her name were created in 1991.
There are two scholarship offerings granted by the Bess Whitehead Scott Scholarship Fund:
Journalism Scholarship: This scholarship is expressly for the purpose of annually supporting one junior or senior college student who is studying in the field of Journalism, Mass Communication, Radio, Television, Film or similar designation. Applicants must be students at one of the following schools: Baylor University, Sam Houston State University, Texas A&M University, University of Mary Hardin-Baylor, or University of North Texas. The funds will go directly to the University towards the student’s academic expenses. The Scribes Scholarship: This opportunity is for current residents in the state of Texas who are interested in pursuing a degree in Journalism or related field. Applicants must be age 40 or over on the day of the application submission and demonstrate financial need. The winner may use the funds in stages for classes or workshops in the related field, though it must be spent within 28 months of reception.
Daughters of the American Revolution Foundation
The Daughters of the American Revolution is a chapter-based, membership organization for women whose ancestral lineage can be traced back to men and women who contributed to the independence movement for the United States from British Colonial rule. They are a non-profit group with over 3000 chapters nationally and internationally, whose mission is to promote historic preservation, education, and patriotism among its members and beyond. With a strong emphasis on giving back in order to promote strong communities, DAR promotes many avenues for volunteer work, and are proud that their members donate over 1.5 million hours in volunteer work each year. As might be expected to be a lineage oriented group, DAR also is very interested in and promotes genealogical studies, so that people have access to the histories of their families.
- The DAR centennial award is available to two undergraduate students who are committed to a course of study that focuses on historic preservation at a college or university. While this definition can be loosely interpreted, the ways that DAR members understand and engage with historical preservations include: restoring and maintaining historical sites, locating, restoring and marking Revolutionary War patriot gravesites and headstones, organizing and contributing to major restorations, commemorations and memorials, placing monuments around the world to memorialize people and events throughout American history, and preserving genealogical records, artifacts and historical documents and making these items available to the public at DAR Headquarters. While students may not be doing exactly these things, DAR is always interested in new interpretations of preservation, and look forward to receiving creativity in their applications submissions.
- The Dr. Aura-Lee A. and James Hobbs Pittenger American History Scholarship is available to high school seniors who intend to study American History and American Government as a large component of their undergraduate degree. This 4-year renewable scholarship requires awardees to maintain a 3.25 or higher GPA throughout the award period of their undergraduate degree and to study a minimum of 24 credit hours in these two subjects. Intended to promote the study of U.S. history among students who will create even more avenues of this type of study for others. U.S. Citizens residing abroad may apply through a Units Overseas Chapter.
- The Enid Hall Griswold Memorial Scholarship is a one time award for college juniors or seniors who are currently attending a college or university in the U.S. The purpose of the award is to promote some of the things that Enid Hall Griswold was passionate about, and is therefore limited to two students per year who study political science, history, government or economics. Qualified applicants should apply through the DAR website, filling out the DAR scholarship application, including a 1000 word essay on the applicant’s career goals, transcripts, extracurricular activities, and proof of citizenship. Applicants whose values as shown in their volunteer and extracurricular activities closely resemble those of the organization will be prioritized.
- The Lucinda Beneventi Findley History scholarship promotes exactly this study of history by awarding a one-time scholarship to two high school seniors who have demonstrated a precocious interest in studying history and plan to explore their interest in history at a 4-year college or university in the United States. The applicant must have a GPA of 3.25 and should apply through the DAR website, filling out the DAR scholarship application, including a 1000 word essay on the applicant’s career goals, transcripts, extracurricular activities, and proof of citizenship. Applicants will be prioritized whose values, as shown in their volunteer work, closely resemble those of the organization.
The Davidson Institute was founded in 1999 in Reno, Nevada as a private 501c3 foundation funded by the Davidson family. The Davidsons had previously founded Davidson and Associates Inc, which became a successful educational software company, with “The Math Blaster” and “Reading Blaster” as one of their more popular series. In 1997, they sold the company in an effort to focus more on philanthropic endeavors, specifically with the goal of providing more educational opportunities. They provide a myriad of opportunities for extremely gifted young people from ages 5-18 to participate in events and opportunities, and achieve merit-based scholarships, they also have an online school.
The Davidson Fellows Scholarship has been named as one of the “10 Biggest Scholarships in the World,” and one of the “7 prestigious Undergraduate Scholarships,” by the US News and World Report. This impressive opportunity is designed for talented young people under the age of 18 who have created a significant piece of work in a discipline of their choosing. Many of the application categories are within the liberal arts framework, including Literature, Philosophy, and Music, as well as the category “Outside the Box.” Davidson Fellows are brought to Washington, DC each year to be honored with Congressional meetings and a special reception.
The Guttmacher Institute was established in 1968 as a public health and public policy research institution focused on research and advocacy on global sexual and reproductive healthcare. A part of their core vision is to contribute to a world where people have access to the kind of information that will allow them to make decisions about their sexual and reproductive health with freedom and dignity. With a relatively small staff of only 120 people globally, Guttmacher is committed to excellence in the field of reproductive health research, and through evidence-based advocacy and strategic communications, have assisted in advancing the conversations around sexual health and reproductive rights for people all over the world.
The Cory L. Richards Memorial Scholarship is for full-time masters and doctoral students who attend accredited U.S. universities and are studying public health or public policy for careers devoted to advancing sexual and reproductive health. For nearly 40 years, Cory L. Richards lead at Guttmacher, with kindness and compassion, making nurturing the development of new leaders his main priority. He eventually became the Executive Vice President and Vice President for Public Policy, and continued his legacy for leadership development and giving young professionals from all different backgrounds the experience of equal opportunity to excel. Extending this example, the Richards Scholarship is reserved for students who demonstrated financial need and show promise in the field.
Handweavers Guild of America, Inc.
For professionals in the textile arts, finding support and community around their rare and ancient craft can be tricky. The Handweavers Guild of America was founded in 1969 to address these two needs directly. Since then, HGA has developed several programs that have evolved directly from input of the needs of Handweavers and other textile workers in the U.S. With the publication of their periodical Shuttle, Spindle and Dyepot, and an annual conference called Convergence hosted by different regional member guilds, and educational resources for artistic and professional development and student support, HGA connects textile workers and fiber artists from all over the world.
The Dendel Scholarship through the Handweavers Guild of America was started in 1970 to support students in the fiber arts pay for tuition and materials during school. The scholarship is open to textile workers who are enrolled in a college or university in the U.S., and scholarship funds are intended to be used for furthering students’ education in the field of textiles, weaving or fiber arts, including materials, training for research, textile history and conservation. The recipients can apply anytime during the academic year and are awarded for artistic and technical excellence rather than financial need or any other factor.
For some students, one of the most transformational experiences of college happens off campus, even way off campus. In 1950, IES Abroad sent their first group of 23 undergraduate students to study for a year in Vienna, Austria. In more than six decades since that inaugural group, IES Abroad has become one of the most sought-after study-abroad partnership organizations, setting up affiliations with colleges and universities in the U.S. and abroad, essentially exchanging students who are interested in studying specific programs in participating regions. Although not every area of study is available in every region, there are many options for students studying in the liberal arts, both coming from and coming to the U.S. With public and private partner schools students can expand their educational horizons to include this enriching program.
Shortly after its inception, IES Abroad began offering scholarships to students to help them offset the costs of this life-changing experience. One of these is the David Porter Need-Based Diversity Scholarship in honor of board member David Porter, who has been serving on the IES Board since 1995. Eligible students must be studying at a private IES member school, demonstrate financial need, and come from a demographic group that is traditionally underrepresented in study abroad programs. These groups include students identifying by a minority race, color, religion, creed, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, disability, age, marital status, national origin or ancestry, ethnic origin or veteran status and women.
Islamic Scholarship Fund
The Islamic Scholarship fund has a very distinct and simple mission, which revolves around working to build a society where all are eligible for equal rights, regardless of race, culture ethnicity and religion. Their mission-driven goal is to make sure that Muslim Americans are more accurately represented in the media and culture, which has a huge impact on the political landscape and public policy. The organization takes a self-determined approach to offer a myriad of programs that are in line with their mission and messaging which include. creating congressional internships, youth workshops, offer film grants and provide merit-based scholarships.
The Islamic Scholarship Fund seeks to support Muslim students to attend college, with an interest in promoting more positive representations of Muslim students in media, politics, and government. Applicants must be focusing on one of a myriad of disciplines within the liberal arts field including International Studies, Public Administration, Public Policy (Civil Rights-Social Justice), Writing, Journalism, Media, and Film, also History, Sociology, or Religious Studies with a focus on Contemporary Muslim Communities or Social Justice. Applicants must be Muslim, or active in the Muslim Community, be enrolled in an accredited four-year university in the US, a citizen or permanent resident of the US. The application must be submitted through the online portal.
Jewish Community Centers of North America
The Jewish Community Center movement is more than just a fitness center or a summer camp for kids. It is an all-inclusive celebration of Jewish life, and a commitment to the wellness of a community, both Jewish and not. With a JCC in most major U.S. cities and many even in smaller towns, the local JCC can be the site of non-religious congregational fellowship and recreation for communities as diverse as they come. The worldwide JCC organization is called the JCC Association (JCCA) and it offers resources and opportunities for affiliated groups to provide recreational programs, cultural, educational, social, and Jewish identity-building, for people of all ages and backgrounds, celebrating religious holidays as well as having a space for focused Jewish heritage.
With such a wide scope of needs and commitment to excellence at JCCs across the world, the JCCs of North America Graduate Scholarship offers an opportunity to students who are studying in an area that be of use to advancing the mission of the JCCA globally. For full-time master’s degree-seeking students, the JCCA is offering $10,000 over the two years of study in Jewish communal service, nonprofit management or MBA, public policy, sports management, health and physical education, Jewish studies, early childhood education, or any other field that may benefit the JCCs in the U.S. and abroad. Applicants must be prepared to commit to two professional years of work at a JCC in the U.S. upon graduation and must be willing to relocate for the job if necessary.
National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ)
Founded in 1975 by a group of 44 dedicated men and women in Washington, DC, the National Association of Black Journalists is a network of journalists, students, and media-related professionals who provide support, programming, and advocacy for Black journalists, and students across the globe. As a chapter-based membership organization, NABJ can provide a close-knit community to its members, as well as offering a vast professional network through conferences and other programs both nationwide and internationally. The student chapters located in Colleges and Universities in the U.S. promote excellence among students who are pursuing a journalism or other media careers, by giving the type of support and peer mentorship needed to excel as a minority in a professional field. Upon graduation, the network also provides further mentorship, encouragement towards entrepreneurship, and expanded job opportunities, as well as providing continued professional development and training.
The Allison E. Fisher Scholarship offered by NABJ is generously provided by Ronald and Pat Fisher in honor of their daughter. In her relatively short career, Allison was a journalist at BET, PBS, Voice of America, and Channel One News. She lost her battle with cancer at age 28. The annual award is given to a black college student who is majoring in journalism, broadcasting, mass communications, or other journalistic media related discipline and has a demonstrated record in community service and engagement. Applicants are asked to write an essay, between one and two thousand words in length, answering the question “What are the top three reasons you would like to pursue a career in journalism and what do you hope your legacy as a journalist will be?”. Winners will be selected based on academic performance, community involvement, and essay answers.
National Federation for the Blind
The National Federation for the Blind believes in the full potential of blind people, and work to create more access the visually impaired populations to live to their fullest. The organization is run democratically, and the people who play leadership roles are blind, as well as their family and community members. They operate under the premise that blindness doesn’t define their futures, and engagement in collective action will contribute to better lives for all. Some of the things that they offer are: networking opportunities for blind people to find resources, as well as each other, learning opportunities about adaptive technologies for blind people, access to a free slate and stylus, a tool to write in braille, and innovative opportunities for young blind people, along with so many additional offerings and opportunities.
The National Federation for the Blind offers merit-based scholarships to 30 blind college students annually in the US and Puerto Rico. The awards are given based on academic achievement, community service, and leadership. Applicants must provide written certification that they are legally blind, and be able to attend the entire NFB convention, and will provide assistance for winners to do so. Applicants are required to write a 700-word essay, and submit educational transcripts along with their application. Applicants must request an interview with the local affiliate’s President and participate in the interview, most likely of which will take place on the phone.
National Women’s Studies Association
The National Women’s Studies Association (NWSA) is an academic organization that focuses on scholarship in the fields of women’s and gender studies research, cultural production, knowledge, and education. Founded in 1977, they have continued to commit their vision and work to bring to life contemporary discourse about why women studies are critical to the academe, not only pedagogically, but in practice in the campus environment. This includes applying feminist epistemologies to women’s centers and other campus organizations and honoring an intersectional praxis by design. This includes a social justice component, implying that everybody deserves to live with justice, dignity, and access.
The National Women’s Studies Association awards the NWSA Graduate Scholarship to one student annually who will be in the process of writing a dissertation, in the stage of either writing or research. Applicants may be either Masters or Ph.D. Students engaged in any aspect of the interdisciplinary field of Women’s Studies. The subject of the applicant’s work must be one that illuminates the vision of organizations mission. A letter of recommendation from a program director is required, as is a one page CV, the completed online application form, and an up-to-date membership to NWSA. Students who apply must be qualified in the Fall of the application.
Radio Television Digital News Association (RTDNA) - Carole Simpson Scholarship
The Radio Television Digital News Association was once known as the National Association of Radio News Editors upon its establishment in 1946. Much of their vision and mission surrounds the defense of the first amendment as an industry standard. They took on their current name in 2010. RTDNA is a member organization and known as one of the only professional associations of it’s kind, specifically geared towards journalists. There are several membership types including News Directors and Newsroom Managers, Broadcast and Digital Newsroom Staff, Academics, Vendor and Supplier companies, Corporate Station Groups, and Friends. Members pay annual dues and in return have access to partner discounts, a comprehensive job board, access to conferences and seminars, among many other networking and skill building opportunities.
One of the many offerings of the Radio Television Digital News Association is the Carole Simpson Scholarship, directed towards students who are rising sophomores, juniors and seniors who are in pursuit of a degree that will support a career in radio, television or digital journalism. Applicants must be enrolled in a full-time accredited program and be in good academic standing. The application process includes submission of links to 3 or 4 work samples that exhibit competency in creating radio or television broadcasting pieces, and be uploaded to a host such as Vimeo or youtube. Supplementary materials such as a cv and written documentation of how you will use the funding are also required. As this scholarship honors the legacy of Carole Simpson, who was a trailblazer in a journalistic representation of women and minorities in the field, applicants with a similar trajectory will be prioritized.
The Jack and Jill America Foundation - Jacqueline Moore Bowles Scholarship
The Jack and Jill Foundation was founded to be in service African American children and families. They work to provide structures by way of programming and services for African American youth, that enable them to have what they need to thrive. All of their programmings is focused on transforming the circumstances that are at the root of the adversity that so many African American families face, including infant mortality rates, health issues, poverty, and education disparities. Health and wellness is a major focal point for the organization’s philanthropic work, as well as education, and issues that impact families, such as food insecurity.
In collaboration with the United Negro College Fund, the Jack and Jill Foundation sponsors the Jacqueline Moore Bowles Scholarship opportunity, granted to 2 African American full-time students. Applicants must be returning college students entering their junior or senior year, and majoring in Communications. Applicants must have financial need that is demonstrated by the FAFSA submitted to their accredited institution. They must also have written verification that they have completed at least 60 hours of community service, and a GPA of 3.0 or above, as proven by official current transcripts. The application requires a one-page essay that details the applicant’s career goals.
The National Press Club
The National Press Club is an organization that brings together journalists and professionals in the field of communications located in Washington DC. Established in 1908, every president since Theodore Roosevelt has visited their site. Their membership base includes journalists, former journalists, “regular” news outlets, and government information officers. Many notable figures have appeared at the clubs podium, including prime ministers, monarchs, members of Congress and cabinet officials, ambassadors, scholars, athletes, entertainers, and business leaders. The club has an emblem of the owl, to symbolize wisdom, as well as late nights of hard work. They also offer a venue that is open to the public, which can be used as a site to host meetings, press conferences, or social events and gatherings.
The Press National Press Club facilitates the Richard G. Zimmerman Scholarship, which was named after a long time member of the club who passed away in 2008. He endowed a scholarship to be given to high school seniors, who will be pursuing a post-secondary education and ultimately a career in journalism. Recipients win the one time $5,000 scholarship to go toward their academic endeavors. There are opportunities for people to support this scholarship fund by donating to the Friends of the National Journalism Library. Applicants must have a 3.0 GPA or above, and a plan to attend a four-year institution in the current year.
Truth Initiative - Dr. Alma S. Adams Scholarship for Outreach and Health Communications
The Truth Initiative, which is formally known as the American Legacy Foundation or Legacy, is a not for profit, anti-tobacco organization, “dedicated to achieving a culture where all youth and young adults reject tobacco.” It was established in March 1999 following the Master Settlement agreement between the tobacco industry and the Attorneys General of the majority of the states in the union, Washington DC and 5 US territories. They have made a name for themselves by creating an extensive youth smoking prevention campaign. The organization has over $957 million in assets, and a staff of 133, who are mostly based in Washington DC.
The Dr. Alma S. Adams Scholarship for Outreach and Health Communications is a competitive opportunity for students whose studies center the disciplines related to health communications, while also having a track record of addressing the negative impact tobacco has on individuals and communities from specifically underserved populations. Applicants may have engaged in tobacco-free advocacy from a number of angles, including research, education, activism, advocacy, and awareness, with details such endeavors outlined in their personal statement. They are especially interested in students who make use of visual arts and media, culturally appropriate health messaging creative writing, and other creative resourceful messaging. Applicants must demonstrate financial need and a grade point average of 2.0 or above.
The Udall Foundation is a U.S. government agency that focuses on increasing awareness of environmental needs and land appreciation, as well as promoting relationships between the environment, public lands, and natural resources to strengthen Native Nations and facilitate self-determination. With programs that range from after-school photography programs in national parks to Native Youth congressional fellowships and so much in between, the Udall Foundation supports indigenous youth to find their voice in leadership through connecting with the earth and amplifying their strength by tapping into that of the land. Along with the program called the U.S. Institute for Environmental Conflict Resolution, the Udall Foundation exists as the U.S. government’s cultural production wing of environmental protection and awareness.
Udall Undergraduate scholarships support Native American youth through an educational journey, both with money to be used at an accredited post-secondary institution, as well as access to an alumni network of Native American scholars. The latter of these two has proven to be as important, as the network is an association of leaders who have dedicated their professional lives to environmental fields that specifically benefit First Nations and Native Nations peoples, sharing innovative ideas, professional advice, and job and internship opportunities with youth engaged with Udall. Award recipients are also invited to a five-day orientation in Tuscon, Arizona to extend professionals networks and learn skills from others in their fields. Students may be a sophomore or junior-level college student at a two-year or four-year accredited institution, and be focused in the areas of environmental sciences, Indigenous/American Indian studies, public health, history with an emphasis on North American colonization, or English with a focus in indigenous literature or something similar.
United Negro College Fund (UNCF)
Founded in 1944, the United Negro College Fund is dedicated to supporting black and African American students in the United States be able to go to college, to graduate, and to thrive as professionals. In the 70+ years since the beginning of this vitally important organization, UNCF has supported students to graduate 11 percent more than the national average, and 31 percent more than the general population of African Americans in the U.S. If it was not enough to have created over 400 programs administering more than 10,000 individual scholarships, ensuring young people have the funds to stay in school, UNCF also provides support to institutions that primarily serve black students and faculty, provide mentorship to students and young professionals, and lobby in government to promote and institute programs that focus on the improvement of education of black and African American students at all levels.
The Diverse Voices in Storytelling Liberal Arts Scholarship gives a one time award to applicants who are college juniors majoring in Communications, Creative Writing, Film, Journalism. Emphasizing these often overlooked majors is a priority for UNCF’s partner in this award, the Time Warner Foundation, so that more perspectives can join the ranks of creatives and cultural producers that have most often been present at the table. Students must be enrolled in an HBCU and must maintain a 3.0 GPA to be eligible for this award, as well as must have declared a major in the four majors listed above. With more storytellers of color, more and different types of stories can be told, and more people in the world can be understood as they are, not simply as they are observed.
Worldstudio Foundation and AIGA
AIGA is the world’s oldest and largest professional design membership organization. Their goals include to unite professional designers with each other, as well as to advance the field for future designers. With many membership levels, AIGA is committed to being able to engage with everyone, regardless of their level of design background. They also strive to advance the global impact of design and bring artists and designers together to inspire each other from all around the world. An important partnership that AIGA has is with the design and communications firm Worldstudio, who work with civic and nonprofit groups to advance messages of social innovation.
Together these two organizations administer the Worldstudio AIGA Scholarships. Focused on students who are studying design and art who are racial/ethnic minorities and who demonstrate financial need, the scholarships attempt to extend the goals of these organizations beyond the professional sphere, into education. Ultimately, the more opportunity that artists and art students have to develop their skills and connect with one another, the more diverse and supportive the art world will be. Applicants must be enrolled in a two or four-year college or university in the United States and must be specifically studying Fine art, Graphic design, Illustration, Interactive Design, Photography.