Being the first in your family to go to college is a big move and you will definitely need all the support you can get especially financially. In this blog post, I have curated the list of first-generation scholarships in Florida, you will also find other recommendations that are not location specific that you can equally apply for.
Going to college opens up many possibilities, brings opportunities closer to your doorstep, and takes you out of poverty. You get to connect with geniuses, and professors, and create a wide network of friends and connections from different parts of the world. These are some of the wonderful benefits that come with getting a college education and also some of the reasons why many people want to get a college education at all costs.
College is expensive but the dream of many young people is tied to it and even though they cannot afford it, they try all they can to see that they get a college degree like taking out a student loan, applying for scholarships, and applying for federal and state grants. All these are recommended ways to pay for college and achieve your dreams.
However, I will be concentrating on just scholarships and other financial aid options that you do not have to repay like bursaries, grants, and awards offering cash prizes. These are options I will continue to recommend if you are about to enter college or already in college and looking for ways to pay for college that will not weigh you down after graduation.
Applying for scholarships can also help to mitigate your student loan debt so that when you graduate you won’t have so much student debt to repay.
Now, when it comes to scholarships and how they are offered, it is generally based on merit, financial need, or both. These three bases are applied across all scholarship criteria and criteria are also something you should look out for before applying for a scholarship. What I mean is that, if you see a scholarship for lefthanded people and you are not lefthanded but still apply, then you have just wasted time, effort, and resources applying for that scholarship because you won’t get it.
So, you have to only apply for scholarships whose criteria you specifically fit into and then meet the eligibility requirements set by the scholarship donors or committee. There are thousands of scholarship criteria and there is no way you won’t fit into more than one of them. We have covered a number of them on our site such as scholarships for people with ADHD and scholarships for forestry students. You will find a lot more when you explore our scholarships category.
The first generation scholarships in Florida are also one of the scholarship criteria and from the title you instantly know whether you fit in or not. If you do then keep reading else scroll down to the ‘recommendations’ section of this page to find one that you fit into.
Moving on, to observe clarity let’s take a quick look at what first generation scholarships mean to give you a clear direction of what you are reading.
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What is First Generation Scholarship?
To define first generation scholarship, you should, first of all, know who first generation students are because they are the recipient of such a scholarship in this case.
So, a first-generation student is an individual who is the first in their family to attend college. Being a first-gen student means that your parents did not complete a college degree or didn’t even attend one at all.
A first generation scholarship is an award given to a college student who is first in their family to attend college. The scholarship is set up to recognize their achievement in pursuing a college degree and reward them as a way of encouraging them to do better, achieve their dreams, and encourage the others coming after them.
Just like scholarships for minorities are sprouting up here and there to promote diversity in college campuses and professional spaces so are first-generation scholarships also sprouting up. Recently, I have published a few that you will find helpful and interesting like the best law scholarships for first-gen students and another on first-gen scholarships in Texas.
With all clarity observed, let’s get into the main topic.
First Generation Scholarships In Florida
If you are a resident of Florida or you wish to go to a college in Florida and you are a first-gen student, the scholarships curated here will go a long way to mitigate the cost of your tuition at one of the universities or colleges in Florida.
The first-generation scholarships in Florida are:
- FIU First Generation Scholarship
- First Generation Matching Grant Program (FGMG)
- Stanley G. Tate Florida Prepaid College Foundation First Generation Scholarship
- Wayne M. Densch First Generation Scholarships Program
- The University of West Florida First Generation Scholarship
- Helios Education FDN First Generation Scholarship
- Cohen Family First Generation Scholarship
1. FIU First Generation Scholarship
Florida International University (FIU) offers a wide range of scholarship opportunities to make the cost of tuition affordable to everyone and give everyone coming to the school equal chances of getting a world-class education. Among its streams of scholarships is the first generation scholarship awarded to students who are the first in their families to pursue a bachelor’s degree in their family.
The scholarship is awarded based on need and you must be a resident of Florida and plan to attend FIU or already enrolled in FIU to be eligible to apply. Since it is awarded based on need, you will be required to demonstrate financial need by submitting the FAFSA and be eligible for a Pell Grant. Applicants must also maintain a 2.0 CGPA or higher as part of the eligibility requirement.
2. First Generation Matching Grant Program (FGMG)
The First Generation Matching Grant Program is the most popular scholarship program in Florida for first-gen students because it is available at all state and community colleges in Florida. The scholarship is awarded based on the needs of Florida residents who are enrolled in an accredited 2 or 4-year college in Florida.
To demonstrate financial need, applicants must complete the FAFSA and submit it before the deadline. All first-gen students who are residents of Florida and plan to attend a postsecondary institution in the state are eligible for this award. The application procedure, deadline, and award amount are determined by your host institution.
3. Stanley G. Tate Florida Prepaid College Foundation First Generation Scholarship
Stanley G. Tate Florida Prepaid College Foundation launched the first-gen scholarship program in 2017 to support the higher education of incoming first-generation freshman college students. 14 institutions in Florida have partnered with the foundation to pilot the program.
To be eligible, you must be a graduating high school senior accepted by a university or college in Florida and approved by your host institution to join in this scholarship program. Of course, you must be a first-generation student and also a resident of Florida.
4. Wayne M. Densch First Generation Scholarships Program
The above-named scholarship is tenable only at Seminole State College of Florida and open to incoming freshmen who are the first in their families to pursue a college degree. To be eligible, you must be enrolling in an Associate of Arts program at Seminole State, demonstrate financial need through your FAFSA, and have a high school diploma or GED.
Applicants are also required to submit an essay and one letter of recommendation while submitting the completed scholarship application form. The program provides financial assistance, academic advisement, peer mentoring, and social activities and workshops.
5. The University of West Florida First Generation Scholarship
UWF set aside scholarships for students who will be the first in their families to receive a college degree. To be eligible for the award, such students must have been accepted into an academic program at the University of West Florida. You can also apply if you are already enrolled in a degree program. Both residents and non-residents of Florida qualify to apply.
6. Helios Education FDN First Generation Scholarship
The Helios Education FDN First Generation Scholarship is part of the First Generation Matching Grant Program. It is open to Florida residents and non-residents who are enrolled in the College of Community Innovation and Education at the University of Central Florida. Preference will be given to students seeking a degree in education with an intent to become a teacher in Florida.
Applicants must be first-gen and must not have a prior bachelor’s degree. Since the scholarship is awarded based on financial need the applicant must demonstrate financial need by submitting the FAFSA.
7. Cohen Family First Generation Scholarship
This scholarship is similar to the one above, it is a part of the First Generation Matching Grant Program and is tenable at the University of Central Florida (UCF). The scholarship is awarded based on financial need, therefore applicants must demonstrate financial need by submitting a FAFSA. Applicants must also be eligible for Pell Grant and be a resident of Florida to be eligible for the award.
There are a handful of first generation scholarships in Florida but there are more out there that you can apply for which are not location specific and you can qualify for them. The recommendations below will guide you to more scholarship opportunities that you can apply for even as a first-gen student.
- 12 Best Law School Scholarships in Florida
- 3 Best Anesthesiology Assistant Programs in Florida
- 8 Best Colleges For Anesthesiology In Florida
- Top 7 Dental Schools in Florida That Do Dental Work
- 12 Best Scholarships for First-Generation Immigrants
- 10 Law School Scholarships For Older Students