Alabama's Scholarship and Grant Programs
Don't Let Your Bank Account Go Down South
Alabama supports a variety of need-based, and merit-based, scholarships and grants for its resident students. These financial aid programs are sponsored by the state, and administered through the Alabama Commission on Higher Education and the Southeast Alabama Community Foundation. These state-funded programs provide vital financial assistance to students struggling to meet the rising costs of college tuition.
For college-bound students in the great state of Alabama, state sponsored financial aid programs are making college more accessible than ever before.
All students applying for any Federal or state supported financial aid must first fill out and submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. The FAFSA is used to determine a student’s overall financial need, and the levels of government funded financial aid for which they may be eligible. All state and Federal financial aid programs, as well as most campus-based and independent programs, require the FAFSA. Students should make the submission of their FAFSA a priority before applying for any scholarships, grants or college loans.
General Scholarships and Grants from the state of Alabama
Alabama provides a wide range of scholarships and grants for its resident college-bound students. These awards may be based on merit or need, or a combination of the two. As always, programs are subject to change depending on the availability of funding.
The following examples should demonstrate the scope of Alabama’s financial aid programs as administered by either the Alabama Commission on Higher Education or the Southeast Alabama Community Foundation.
- The Alabama Student Assistance Program provides need-based grants for undergraduate students enrolled in an accredited state college or university. Students must be Alabama residents. Award amounts range from $300 to $2500.
- The Alabama Student Grant Program offers grant awards to eligible students enrolled at least part-time in a participating independent Alabama college or university. This is a merit-based grant program, and is only open to undergraduate students. Eligible students may receive up to $1200 per academic year subject to the availability of state funds.
- The Alabama Junior and Community College Athletic Scholarship Program provides scholarship funds to full-time students enrolled at an Alabama public junior or community college. Awards are based on demonstrated athletic ability as determined by trials. The scholarship offers awards up to the full cost of tuition, less any other financial aid already received.
- The Alabama Junior and Community College Performing Arts Scholarship is a merit-based award available to full-time students enrolled in a performing arts program at an Alabama public junior or community college. Awards are determined by audition, and may not exceed the full cost of tuition less any other financial aid already received.
- The Ronnie Mendheim Memorial Scholarship is available to graduating seniors of any Dothan County High School. Awards are based on a combination of academic merit and a history of community service.
- The Earl P. Andrews Jr. Memorial Scholarship is available to graduating seniors attending high school in Montgomery County. The annual award is given to a minority student who meets the required levels of academic achievement and financial needs. The annual award amounts is $2000.
- The Dr. James H. French Memorial Scholarship is available to graduating seniors from any Pike County high school. The award is based on a combination of merit, need, and a history of community service. Applicants must submit two letters of reference, and an essay outlining their educational and career goals in order to be considered for the award. Scholarship awards range from $1000 to $2000.
Career Specific Scholarships and Grants
The state of Alabama supports a variety of scholarships and grants dedicated to encouraging and supporting those resident students with specific career goals. Many of these programs are designed to encourage students to pursue careers in high need fields that are critical to the infrastructure of the state.
The following are a few examples of career specific financial aid programs for resident students attending one of Alabama’s state colleges or universities.
- The Martha Holley Memorial Nursing Scholarshi is available to graduating seniors of any Elmore County High School who is pursuing a degree in nursing. The award is determined on the basis of academic accomplishment, community service and financial need. Annual award amounts vary.
- The Marie Aron Panhorst Scholarship Fund provides financial assistance to students enrolled in a Business Marketing course at an accredited Alabama college or university. Award amounts vary, and are determined by academic merit and financial need.
- The Jackson Family Phoenix Fund Scholarship is available to graduating African-American seniors from any Montgomery or Lowndes County High School who are pursuing a degree in mathematics, biology or agricultural science. Applicants must have a minimum 3.0 GPA, a minimum SAT score of 1200, and must be attending one of Alabama’s Historically Black Colleges. Award amounts vary depending on financial need, and area of study.
Scholarships and Grants for Students in Specific Circumstances
Like most states, Alabama supports a variety of financial aid programs for students from specific backgrounds or with specific needs. Many of these programs will be need-based, though a few will be determined strictly on the basis of merit. As always, these scholarship and grant programs are subject to change according to the availability of state funds.
The following is a sampling of available scholarship and grant programs dedicated to the needs of students with special needs, or from unique backgrounds.
- The Herbert M. Christian Scholarship is available to physically disabled graduating seniors from any Elmore County High School. Students must have a minimum 2.5 GPA, and must demonstrate the requisite level of financial need. Eligible students may receive up to $3000 in scholarship award money.
- The Alabama G.I. Dependents Educational Benefit Program provides tuition assistance to the children and spouses of eligible Alabama veterans who were disabled in combat. Awards vary, and can be used at any state college or university.
- The Alabama Scholarship for the Dependents of Blind Parents provides financial assistance to cover tuition and fees at a state institute of higher education. To be eligible, applicants must be the dependent child of a legally blind parent whose family income is insufficient to provide educational benefits. Award amounts are determined by financial need.
These are only a few of the scholarship and grant programs open to resident students of the state of Alabama. Interested students are encouraged to visit the Alabama Commission on Higher Education and the Southeast Alabama Community Foundation for more financial aid programs designed to help Alabama’s students achieve their educational goals.