Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta offers college scholarships
Applications due January 22, 2021
The Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta provides hundreds of scholarships each year to students through a variety of scholarship funds. Scholarships are available for graduating high school seniors as well as some for students currently enrolled in college or other post-secondary programs. Applications are now open for scholarships funding the 2021 – 2022 academic year, the deadline to apply is January 22.
Scholarships are an integral part of the Community Foundation’s commitment to advance equity of opportunity in our region. Attainment of a college degree or advanced certificate is a key to economic and social mobility. Each scholarship has different eligibility criteria and award amounts, reflecting the interests and values of the individual or family that established the scholarship fund. Options are available for students pursuing a four-year degree as well as a technical college certification program. Many scholarships are targeted to specific courses of study, geographic region or specific school and many are renewable as long as students maintain eligibility. Students may apply for more than one scholarship if they meet eligibility criteria for multiple programs. Find a complete list online here.
“These scholarships are made possible by our generous donors who recognize the value of education and support students seeking to achieve their dream of earning a degree,” said Lita Pardi, vice president, Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta. “Our donors have been intentional about expanding scholarship opportunities to applicants who are excluded from other scholarship funding options. In recent years we’ve seen a notable increase in applications from students who are first-generation college attendees, who have completed literacy programs or who are pursuing a technical college certificate program that will lead to a good-paying job.”
The Foundation awarded nearly $5 million in academic scholarships for the 2019-2020 academic year, benefiting almost 2,000 students. Scholarships range in size from $500 to $40,000 and many are renewable for up to three additional years as long as students maintain eligibility. Among recipients, 25% of students are first in their family to attend college, and approximately 42% are students whose families cannot afford to support any portion of their education.
Ashley Allen is a graduate of North Oconee High School currently attending Vanderbilt University with the help of two Community Foundation scholarships. “I had originally applied for the Everett Williams Scholarship Fund which is specifically for students in my county, and while on the Foundation’s website I realized I qualified for others,” Allen said. “Having scholarships listed on one site and one portal for the application streamlined the process,” she added.
Students who wish to attend a Historically Black College or University (HBCU) have multiple options for Community Foundation scholarships. Two examples are the George and Pearl Strickland scholarship, which has paid out nearly $900,000 in its history to students at Atlanta University Center schools, and the E. David and Linda C. Ballard Family Foundation Scholarship, which helps Black, Indigenous and people of color (BIPOC) juniors and seniors at Atlanta-area HBCUs overcome financial barriers in order to graduate.
Some scholarships are open to students who may not have the academic credentials to be eligible for typical scholarship funding. The Dreams Squared (Dreams2) Scholarship was established by a Community Foundation donor who was determined to provide opportunities for average students whose grades fell short of most merit scholarship criteria. The scholarship supports students who demonstrate potential and provides $3,000 to students who have GPAs between 2.0 and 3.0.
To be competitive for our scholarships, students should carefully read the eligibility criteria for each scholarship to see which are the best fit and then begin an application in the Foundation’s Online Scholarship Portal. All scholarships require the completion and submission of a FAFSA Student Aid Report.
The application process is currently open, and most applications are due by January 22, 2021. Please see FAQs on the website for further details. Interested students may register for a webinar on Thursday, January 6 at 6 p.m. For those unable to attend, a recording will be posted to the Foundation’s scholarships webpage.