Got a low GPA and looking for scholarships? Don’t worry, scholarships for low GPA students exist and we have provided all important information about them in this blog post. Read on to find scholarships you can apply for with a low GPA.
I have a low GPA can I still get a scholarship? My GPA is 2.0, will I be able to get a scholarship? These are some of the questions that students with low GPA looking for scholarships are asking. I don’t blame them for looking for answers to these questions. Many students, especially high school graduates going to college, have this mentality that if they do not have a high GPA then they can’t receive scholarships.
While this is correct, it isn’t entirely true. I have been writing scholarship guides for more than 3 years and have written and published over 300 articles related to scholarships and I am correct when I tell you that not all scholarship requires you to have a high GPA. There are many scholarships out there that you can still get even with your low GPA, and as you continue reading this piece, you will learn how it works.
Firstly, don’t get it twisted but academic excellence is a major criterion or requirement for nearly every scholarship. If you have a high GPA, the chances of you securing a scholarship are high but then, possessing a high GPA is usually not the only requirement for scholarships. There are other requirements like involvement in community service, participation in extracurricular activities, and many others.
All of these requirements work hand in hand with each other. If you have one and don’t have the other you won’t be considered for that scholarship.
Now, there are two major basis or categories for offering scholarships, it could either be need-based or merit-based, or in a few cases, both. Merit-based scholarships are awarded based on excellence in academics, sports, music performing arts, or any other talent. Merit-based scholarships take the academic performance of students very seriously which means you must have a high GPA of at least 3.0 to be considered for a merit-based scholarship.
Some of the merit-based scholarships you will find on our blog are law school scholarships in Florida and scholarships for sophomore college students. For these scholarships, if you don’t have a minimum of 3.0 to 3.5 GPA, don’t bother applying for them.
Then need-based scholarships, often referred to as Bursary or Grant, is awarded based on the financial need of students. Need-based scholarships mainly concentrate on the financial situation of the students and put little or less concentration or focus on students’ academic performance but if you do have excellent academic performance then it is a plus and greatly increases your chances of receiving the scholarship in need-based awards, academic performance is not the major driver for awarding scholarships. Do you understand?
Bursaries or grants concentrates more on promising students who want to go to higher institution but cannot afford them maybe because they are from a low-income household, developing or third-world country, underrepresented group, poor background, or war-torn countries. So, you now have a better understanding of how need-based scholarships work. They focus on your financial situation and award you scholarships to enable you to achieve your educational goals and pursue your ambitions to increase your chances of becoming successful and change the lives of your family.
Some need-based scholarships you will find on our blog are government grants for nursing school and grants for African-American students. The main aim of grants is to allow financially handicapped students to pursue higher education without restriction.
From what I have discussed so far I think you have a pretty good idea of where I am heading with this.
If you have a low GPA and you are looking for scholarships, you can veer towards need-based scholarships like grants and bursaries because they do not concentrate on academic performance but rather on your financial situation. This means, you have to demonstrate financial need to be eligible for a need-based award along with a minimum GPA between 2.0 to 2.5 and you will be able to receive a scholarship.
But then, this doesn’t mean you cannot qualify for merit-based scholarships as well. You can receive a merit-based scholarship with a low GPA but you will have to make up for it in voluntary participation/experience, leadership abilities, and involvement in community services. Having all of these in your portfolio with a GPA of 2.0 or 2.5 you can still bag a merit-based scholarship.
Now, you know you can get a scholarship even with a low GPA, and yes, the scholarships exist. Read on to find them and begin applying for them.
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Scholarships for Low GPA Students
If you have a low GPA, don’t worry, you can still apply for scholarships. Here, I have curated a list of scholarships for students with low GPAs, and without any further ado, let’s get into them…
- Gen and Kelly Tanabe Scholarship
- The American Foreign Service Association (AFSA) Scholarship Fund Program
- Central Florida Black Nurses Association of Orlando, Inc. Scholarships
- The American Fire Sprinkler Association (AFSA) Scholarship
- Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program
- Gateway to Success Minority Nursing Scholarship
- Army ROTC Scholarships
- David Letterman Scholarship
- Dell Scholars Program
- Legal Opportunity Scholarship Fund
- William K. Schubert Minority Nursing Scholarship
1. Gen and Kelly Tanabe Scholarship
First on the list of scholarships for low GPA students is the Gen and Kelly Tanabe Scholarship. It is a merit-based scholarship made available to all high school, college, and graduate students. The scholarship is set up to help students achieve their dreams of higher education. The Gen and Kelly Tanabe Scholarship is a merit-based scholarship that does not take your GPA into account.
Students are selected and awarded scholarships based on their submitted personal statement. The value is $1,000 and can be applied toward any educational expense. You must be a legal resident of the US and currently in school or planning to attend college or graduate school to be eligible. Whatever your GPA is, you can apply for the Gen and Kelly Tanabe Scholarship.
2. The American Foreign Service Association (AFSA) Scholarship Fund Program
If your parent(s) is a member of the AFSA whether in active duty, retired, deceased, and/or separated you can be eligible for the AFSA Scholarship Fund. However, you must be a current high school senior college freshman, or sophomore or junior to be able to apply. This scholarship from AFSA is best for students with low GPAs to apply for because it offers need-based scholarships as well as merit-based scholarships.
If you meet the requirements and have a minimum GPA of 2.75 you can apply for the AFSA need-based scholarship. Those high students whose parents are not in the US Government Foreign Service, can apply for the AFSA High School Essay Contest.
3. Central Florida Black Nurses Association of Orlando, Inc. Scholarships
For the past 40 years, the Central Florida Black Nurses Association of Orlando (CFBNA) has been offering scholarships to assist black students pursuing a nursing degree. To apply, you must be a member of CFBNA, a resident of Orange, Seminole, Lake, or Osceola County, accepted or currently enrolled in an accredited nursing program, demonstrate financial need, a minimum of 2.5 GPA, and proof of participation in community activities.
Documents required for application include an essay, an official transcript from your current nursing school, two letters of recommendation, and a clear headshot photograph. The CFBNA scholarship is one of the best black male nursing scholarships, although not specifically for males, but preference may be given to them since they are a minority in the field.
This is one of the best scholarships for Black students with low GPAs who want to study nursing.
4. The American Fire Sprinkler Association (AFSA) Scholarship
The American Fire Sprinkler Association is a non-profit, international association representing merit shop fire sprinkler contractors, dedicated to the educational advancement of its members and promotion of the use of automatic fire sprinklers. In line with the association’s dedication to educational advancement, AFSA offers scholarships to US high school seniors who want to pursue higher education in the US.
An amazing thing about this scholarship is that it is not awarded based on financial need, GPA, or demographic criteria. This makes it the best scholarship for students with low GPAs to apply for since it does not consider your GPA. The scholarship value is $5,000 awarded to five students, each with $1,000.
5. Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program
The Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program is a program of the US Department of the State with funding provided by the US Government and supported in its implementation by the Institute of International Education (IEE). The scholarship is a grant offered to students with who want to study or intern abroad but cannot afford it.
The grant does not consider a student’s GPA therefore those with a low GPA who dream of studying or interning abroad for a few months to gain critical skills are welcome to apply for the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program. Applicants must be US citizens in an undergraduate program receiving Federal Pell Grant funding at a two or four-year college or university.
Although the program does not consider your GPA ensure to be in good academic standing for your application to be accepted. The scholarship value is up to $5,000.
6. Gateway to Success Minority Nursing Scholarship
Gateway to Success Minority Nursing Scholarship is funded by Clarkson College, a college with one of the best nursing programs in the region. Each year, Gateway to Success Minority Nursing Scholarship the cost of nursing at Clarkson College for select racial minority students. This award is for all students, male and female, from all the ethnic minority groups to apply therefore, black male students in nursing programs also qualify.
To be eligible, you must have a high school GPA of 2.5 on a scale of 4.0, meet the eligibility requirements for employment at Nebraska Medicine, and complete the summer internship program at Nebraska Medicine. The scholarship value is $14,000 per student for an academic year and is awarded for 4 years provided you maintain a 2.5 GPA for scholarship renewal. Applying for this scholarship also means that you intend to pursue a BSN degree at Clarkson College.
A GPA of 2.5 is low, especially for a program like nursing and if your GPA is this low, this is an opportunity for you to receive funding to support your nursing education.
7. Army ROTC Scholarships
As a member of the US Army ROTC, you can study at almost any university in the US on a scholarship. To be eligible, you must be a US Citizen, be at least 17, and under 31 in the year of commissioning, have a high school diploma or equivalent, have a high school GPA of at least 2.0, have taken the SAT or ACT, meet the physical weight and height requirements, and agree to accept a commission to serve in the Army, Army Reserve, or Army National Guard.
If you have a low GPA and you want to study on a scholarship, then you should join the Army ROTC to be eligible for awards to fund your education.
8. David Letterman Scholarship
The David Letterman Scholarship is one of the popular scholarships for students with low GPAs. It was established by David M. Letterman retired talk-show host during the 1985-1986 academic year. He created the scholarship for “C” students because according to him, he believes that grades aren’t all that matter as he believes that all students have their abilities and strengths.
The David Letterman Scholarship is tenable only at Ball State University for students with a media major or minor. To be eligible, you must have between 30 and 102 total credit hours at the end of the fall semester before applying, be enrolled in at least 12 hours of media courses at the time of applying, and continue as a full-time student at the semester after receiving the scholarship.
9. Dell Scholars Program
Do you have a low GPA of 2.4 and looking for a scholarship? The Dell Scholars Program is an opportunity you shouldn’t miss. Every year, the Dell Scholars Program provides scholarships to 500 Dell Scholars and if you meet the eligibility criteria and present a strong application, you may be one of the winners.
As a Dell Scholar, you will receive $20,000 to support your college education, personalized multifaceted support, a laptop computer, textbook credits, a scholar’s resource network, and access to teletherapy. To be eligible, you must participate in a program-approved college readiness program in grades 11 and 12, be on track to graduate from an accredited high school in the current academic year, be eligible to receive a Federal Pell Grant in the first year of college, and demonstrate financial need.
10. Legal Opportunity Scholarship Fund
The Legal Opportunity Scholarship Fund was created by the American Bar Association (ABA) to encourage racial and ethnic minority students to apply to law school and provide them with financial assistance to achieve their goals.
The scholarship provides $15,000 each to 10-20 first-year law students over their three years of law school and it is offered every year so if you missed it this year, check in next year. Applicants are also required to have a minimum CGPA of 2.5 on a scale of 4.0 at their undergraduate institution. You will not be eligible if you have completed one or more semesters in law school.
The Legal Opportunity Scholarship Fund is one of the best scholarships for minority students with low GPAs.
11. William K. Schubert Minority Nursing Scholarship
The William K. Schubert Minority Nursing Scholarship is offered by the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center to increase the diversity of Registered Nurses, especially males, in the hospital. The scholarship is dedicated to the underrepresented minority in the nursing profession and this includes males and ethnic minority groups like Hispanics, Black Americans, and others.
To be eligible, you must have enrolled or accepted into a prelicensure RN bachelor or master’s degree program at an accredited nursing school on a full-time or part-time basis. Applicants must also have and maintain a minimum of 2.75 GPA on a 4.0 scale. The scholarship award is $2,750 per year, the funds are sent directly to recipients’ schools to be used for tuition and fees only.
The William K. Schubert Minority Nursing Scholarship is one of the best scholarships for students with low GPAs who want to enter nursing programs.
If you have a low GPA, don’t lose hope! Just because you have a low GPA doesn’t mean you can’t find a scholarship. There are many scholarships out there that are specifically designed for students with lower grades. The important thing is to look beyond the numbers and focus on the skills and attributes such as community service, leadership, and other extracurricular activities that make you a strong candidate.
With the right scholarship, you can still reach your goals and achieve success. Don’t give up – you have what it takes.
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