Exclusive Guide on Scholarships for African American Graduate Students

Are you an African-American student interested in Scholarships for African American graduates? Discover a wealth of scholarship opportunities designed to support your graduate studies. Explore funding options, application tips, and eligibility criteria. Get ready to unlock your potential and achieve your academic goals.

Explore college scholarship opportunities tailored for Black and African American graduate students, as numerous institutions and educational entities extend financial support. Discover prominent scholarships designed specifically for these learners. 

Studies indicate that Black students often bear a higher burden of student debt compared to their white counterparts. Mitigate the financial strain of college by leveraging scholarships and grants, which alleviate the overall cost and diminish the impact of student loans. 

Uncover exclusive scholarship offerings exclusively catering to Black and African American students while also considering grants accessible through educational institutions, various organizations, and government initiatives.

Affordability poses a significant concern for many potential college students, with a notable racial disparity in financial support affecting Black and African American individuals. Distinctly, a higher proportion of Black students resort to federal loans for four-year college attendance compared to their white counterparts, resulting in increased debt accumulation. The significance of scholarships tailored for Black students becomes evident in light of these statistics. These financial awards play a crucial role in mitigating the financial burden associated with a college education, thereby reducing reliance on loans.

Encouragingly, there is a range of scholarships and financial aid opportunities explicitly designed to support the educational pursuits and graduation of Black and African American students. Notably, certain scholarships cater to more specific demographics, such as Black women and those pursuing degrees in STEM, providing targeted assistance within these academic spheres.

SEE ALSO: Unlock Your Teaching Dreams: Scholarships for Future Teachers Await!

Scholarships for African American
Scholarships for African American

Table of Contents

Types of college scholarships 

Various types of college scholarships are available to students, catering to diverse interests and backgrounds:

1. Academic Scholarships:

Based on high SAT/ACT scores or maintaining a certain minimum GPA in high school, typically around 3.0-3.5.

2. Demographic Scholarships:

Target underrepresented student populations, such as students of color, women, and LGBTQ+ students, promoting diversity on campuses.

3. Athletic Scholarships:

Aimed at students with strong athletic abilities, focusing on specific sports like basketball, football, and volleyball.

4. Creative Scholarships:

For aspiring artists in fields like music, fine arts, and performing arts, often requiring a portfolio or performance along with an application.

5. Community Service Scholarships:

Awarded to students with significant volunteer experience, emphasizing community service and leadership roles.

6. Talent and Hobby Scholarships:

Unique scholarships focusing on students’ specific talents or hobbies, such as creating art, designing, or unique skill sets.

Academic and athletic scholarships often provide substantial awards, with exceptional creative abilities potentially qualifying for full-ride scholarships. Local businesses, community organizations, foundations, civic groups, religious institutions, and employer sponsorship for working students are additional sources of scholarship opportunities. Students can inquire about available options through their school’s financial aid department.

Black and African American Scholarships:

1. Jackie Robinson Foundation Scholarship

Amount: Up to $30,000 over four years

Eligibility: Minority high school seniors with leadership potential and academic excellence, planning to attend an approved four-year college. Recipients receive career guidance and internship placement.

2. Ron Brown Scholar Program

Amount: $40,000 over four years

Eligibility: Low-income Black or African American high school seniors interested in public service, entrepreneurship, and community involvement. A selective program with a focus on leadership.

3. American Bus Association Diversity Scholarship

Deadline: Varies

Amount: $5,000

Eligibility: Targeted towards underrepresented groups pursuing careers in transportation, travel, and tourism at the management or operational level. Open to both undergraduate and graduate students.

4. AMS Minority Scholarships

Amount: $6,000 over two years

Eligibility: Awarded by the American Meteorological Society to minority students starting their first year of college, aspiring to pursue a career in atmospheric or related oceanic and hydrologic sciences.

5. BLM² Foundation Scholarship

Deadline: Varies

Amount: Varies

Eligibility: Open to minority high school seniors residing in Illinois with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher. Applicants must provide a copy of their college or university acceptance letter.

6. American Association of Blacks in Energy Scholarship

Amount: Varies

Eligibility: AABE awards 13 scholarships annually to underrepresented minority high school seniors, including African Americans. Students must pursue majors in business, technology, engineering, mathematics, or the physical sciences.

7. Congressional Black Caucus Spouses Education Scholarship

Amount: $2,500-$20,000

Eligibility: Open to Black and African American students pursuing undergraduate or graduate degrees, including high school seniors. Applicants must either reside or attend school in a Congressional Black Caucus Members district.

8. National Black Nurses Association Scholarship Program

Amount: $1,000-$15,000

Eligibility: NBNA provides multiple scholarships for Black and African American students aspiring to pursue a career in nursing. Applicants must be NBNA members currently enrolled in a nursing program.

Scholarships Tailored for Black and African American Women:

1. Dr. Julianne Malveaux Scholarship

Amount: Varies

Eligibility: Open to sophomore or junior African American women enrolled at an accredited university, majoring in journalism, economics, or a related field with a minimum GPA of 3.0.

2. The Phyllis G. Meekins Scholarship

Amount: $5,000

Eligibility: Administered by the Ladies Professional Golf Association, this scholarship is for female high school seniors planning to play collegiate golf while pursuing a degree. Two need-based scholarships are awarded to minority students annually.

3. Dr. Barbara Odom-Wesley Spirit of Achievement Scholarship

Amount: $3,000

Eligibility: Open to African American female seniors in high school in Tarrant County or Grand Prairie, Texas. The scholarship is applicable for use at any two- or four-year college or university.

STEM Scholarships for Black and African American Students:

1. ACS Scholars Program

Amount: Up to $5,000 per academic year

Eligibility: The American Chemical Society offers this renewable scholarship to underrepresented students majoring in chemistry-related disciplines. Applicants should hold a GPA of 3.0 or higher and have aspirations for a career in chemistry-related science.

2. Blacks at Microsoft Scholarship

Amount: Varies

Eligibility: Open to Black and African American high school seniors with a passion for technology, aiming to pursue a bachelor’s degree in engineering, computer science, computer information systems, or specific business programs.

3. KnowBe4 Scholarship for Black Americans in Cybersecurity

Deadline: To be announced

Amount: $10,000 (applicable to college expenses) and up to $3,000 for on-campus housing

Eligibility: Administered by the Center for Cyber Safety and Education, this scholarship is for Black and African American students pursuing degrees focused on cybersecurity or information assurance. Open to undergraduates or graduate students with a minimum GPA of 3.2.

4. Brown and Caldwell Minority Scholarship

Deadline: To be announced

Amount: $5,000

Eligibility: Open to Black, African American, and other minority students, including undergraduates in their junior or senior year or those enrolled in a graduate program in engineering or environmental science.

Scholarships Dedicated to First-generation Black and African American students:

1. Enterprise Holdings ROAD Forward Scholarship

Amount: Up to $12,222

Eligibility: Open to first-year African American college students attending a United Negro College Fund-member institution. Applicants must be first-generation college students with demonstrated financial need.

2. Fontana Transport Inc. Scholars Program

Amount: Varies

Eligibility: Available to underrepresented first-generation high school seniors accepted into a four-year university. Students must major in various subjects, including transportation management, math, science, engineering, architecture, and psychology.

3. Fund for Education Abroad Scholarships

Deadline: Varies

Amount: Up to $5,000

Eligibility: The Fund for Education Abroad offers multiple scholarships catering to minority and first-generation college students interested in studying abroad.

Scholarships for African American
Scholarships for African American

Scholarships for Black and African American Graduate Students:

1. Albert W. Dent Graduate Student Scholarship

  • Amount: $5,000
  • Eligibility: The Foundation of the American College of Healthcare Executives offers this scholarship for racially and ethnically diverse students in their final year of a healthcare management master’s degree program, such as healthcare administration.

2. National Black MBA Association Scholarship

  • Amount: Up to $5,000
  • Eligibility: Financially active members of the NBMBAA engaged in their communities can apply for this scholarship. Applicants must be enrolled in an accredited graduate business degree program when receiving the award.

3. George A. Strait Minority Scholarship and Fellowship

  • Amount: Varies
  • Eligibility: Honoring distinguished law librarians, this scholarship accepts minority applicants intending to pursue a career in law librarianship. Eligible students must be enrolled in law school or an ALA-accredited library graduate program.

4. 100 Black Men of Upstate SC, Inc. Scholarship

  • Amount: $2,000
  • Closing Date: December 11, 2023
  • Description: Open to full-time students at accredited post-secondary institutions, with preference given to African American male youth.

5. BD Scholarship

  • Amount: $10,000
  • Closing Date: December 11, 2023
  • Description: Open to juniors and seniors majoring in biomedical science, biology, and related fields, with preference for residents of specific states.

6. NGLCC – Denny’s Hungry for Education Scholarship

  • Amount: $2,000
  • Closing Date: December 11, 2023
  • Description: Open to college students in the U.S. who identify as members of the LGBT community, with a focus on diversity.

7. Tom Joyner Foundation – Denny’s Hungry for Education Scholarship

  • Amount: $3,200
  • Closing Date: December 11, 2023
  • Description: Open to students enrolled in accredited Historically Black Colleges or Universities in the U.S. or Puerto Rico.

5. HBCYOU Scholarship

  • Amount: Up to $2,500
  • Closing Date: December 14, 2023
  • Description: Open to full-time students with a 3.0 or higher GPA at select HBCUs in specific states.

6. UNCF Social Justice Scholarship

  • Amount: Up to $5,000
  • Closing Date: December 14, 2023
  • Description: Open to African American students from New York, New Jersey, Vermont, and Connecticut committed to social justice.

7. Bimbo Bakeries Student Professional Development Program

  • Amount: Up to $5,000
  • Closing Date: December 15, 2023
  • Description: Open to African American college sophomores majoring in specific disciplines, with a preference for those attending HBCUs.

8. AWWA Scholarships

  • Amount: Varies
  • Closing Date: December 19, 2023
  • Description: Open to current undergraduate and graduate students interested in the water industry, with scholarships for female and minority students.

9. EA Madden Scholarship Program

  • Amount: Up to $12,000
  • Closing Date: December 21, 2023
  • Description: Open to Black/African American college freshmen, sophomores, and juniors at specific HBCUs, with a preference for certain majors.

10. Anheuser-Busch Foundation Scholarship

  •  Amount: $2,500
  •  Closing Date: December 29, 2023
  •  Description: Open to graduating undergraduate seniors majoring in business, engineering, or related fields at UNCF member institutions.

11. GFOA Scholarships

  •  Amount: Varies
  •  Closing Date: December 29, 2023
  •  Description: Scholarships for students pursuing a career in state/local government finance, with a specific scholarship for minority students.

12. Integra Foundation, Inc. Scholarship

  •  Amount: $5,000
  •  Closing Date: December 29, 2023
  •  Description: Open to residents of specific areas majoring in STEM disciplines at UNCF member institutions.

13. Scholarship for Students of Color

  •  Amount: $1,500
  •  Closing Date: December 31, 2023
  •  Description: Open to graduating high school seniors of color, with a short essay on their dream career.

14. John Lennon Endowed Scholarship

  • Sponsor: UNCF | Yoko Ono
  • Amount: Up to $5,000
  • Closing Date: January 4, 2024
  • Description: Open to undergraduate students majoring in communications, mass communications, mass media arts, music, or performing arts at a UNCF member institution.

15. WXIA TV11 Community Service Scholarship

  • Sponsor: WXIA-TV | UNCF
  • Amount: $5,000
  • Closing Date: January 4, 2024
  • Description: Open to college freshmen majoring in English, Communications, Journalism, or related fields, residing in Atlanta, Georgia, and enrolled in one of the Atlanta University Center schools.

16. Nevada-UNCF Scholarship

  • Sponsor: UNCF
  • Amount: Varies
  • Closing Date: January 9, 2024
  • Description: Open to African American 2023 high school graduates attending a HBCU, who are permanent residents of metropolitan Las Vegas, Nevada.

17. Jackie Robinson Foundation Scholarship

  • Sponsor: Jackie Robinson Foundation
  • Amount: Up to $30,000 over four years
  • Closing Date: January 10, 2024
  • Description: Open to graduating minority high school seniors planning to attend an accredited four-year institution in the U.S., with leadership potential, dedication to community service, and evidence of financial need.

18. Fidelity Scholars Program

  • Sponsor: UNCF | Fidelity
  • Amount: Varies
  • Closing Date: January 11, 2024
  • Description: Open to students ages 16 to 24, permanent residents of specific states, planning to attend a four-year accredited, non-profit college or university.

19. Better Brothers LA Book Scholarship

  • Sponsor: Better Brothers Los Angeles
  • Amount: Up to $5,000
  • Closing Date: January 12, 2024
  • Description: Open to Black LGBTQ students in Los Angeles County admitted or attending an accredited degree, licensing, or vocational program.

20. ASRT Foundation Scholarship

  • Sponsor: American Society of Radiologic Technologists (ASRT) Foundation
  • Amount: Up to $5,000
  • Closing Date: January 14, 2024
  • Description: Multiple scholarships available for radiologic science students, with a specific scholarship for minority students, LGBTQ+ students, and students from Northern California.

21. Mensa Foundation College Scholarship program

  • Sponsor: Mensa Foundation
  • Amount: Varies
  • Closing Date: January 15, 2024
  • Description: Open to students worldwide enrolled in an accredited U.S. institution for the 2024-2025 academic year, with specific scholarships for various groups, including LGBTQ+ students and students of color.

22. Ralph and Fanny Ellison Scholarship

  • Sponsor: UNCF
  • Amount: Up to $10,000
  • Closing Date: January 15, 2024
  • Description: Open to current college students in New York State or Oklahoma with a 3.0 or higher GPA, majoring in Literature or Music.

23. Mamie Earl Sells Scholarship

  •  Sponsor: YWCA of Greater Cincinnati
  •  Amount: $1,000
  •  Closing Date: January 17, 2024
  •  Description: Open to African American female graduating high school seniors in the Greater Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky area with a 3.0 GPA or higher.

24. Catherine W. Pierce Scholarship

  •  Sponsor: UNCF
  •  Amount: Up to $3,400
  •  Closing Date: January 18, 2024
  •  Description: Open to current college students pursuing a degree in Art, Art History, and other eligible majors.

25. Diversity Advancement Scholarship

  •  Sponsor: Architects Foundation
  •  Amount: Up to $20,000
  •  Closing Date: January 19, 2024
  •  Description: Open to high school and undergraduate minority students entering, enrolled in, or transferring into a NAAB-accredited undergraduate architecture program.

26. Amtrak Academic Scholarships

  •  Sponsor: Amtrak
  •  Amount: Up to $5,000
  •  Closing Date: January 24, 2024
  •  Description: Open to incoming and current undergraduate and graduate students with a 2.8 or higher GPA, with specific scholarships for various majors and minority students.

27. FOSSI Scholarship

  • Sponsor: Future of STEM Scholars Initiative
  • Amount: $10,000 for four years
  • Closing Date: January 31, 2024
  • Description: Open to graduating high school seniors planning to attend an HBCU in the next academic year, majoring in a STEM field.

28. LPGA Scholarships

  • Sponsor: LPGA Foundation
  • Amount: Varies
  • Closing Date: January 31, 2024
  • Description: Open to female graduating high school seniors who played golf in high school, with scholarships for those planning on playing collegiate golf and for those not planning on it. Scholarships open to minority female students.

29. Philadelphia Flyers Rising Leadership Scholarship

  • Sponsor: Philadelphia Flyers | UNCF
  • Amount: Up to $2,500
  • Closing Date: January 31, 2024
  • Description: Open to African American first-year college freshmen from the Philadelphia region, actively involved in the sport of Ball or Hockey.

30. Playstation Career Pathways Program

  • Sponsor: UNCF
  • Amount: Up to $10,000
  • Closing Date: January 31, 2024
  • Description: Open to Black/African American undergraduate students majoring in computer science or computer engineering.

31. Dr. Joseph A. Towles African Study Abroad Scholarship

  • Sponsor: UNCF
  • Amount: Up to $10,000
  • Closing Date: February 12, 2024
  • Description: Open to African-American students studying abroad in Spring 2024 within Africa.

32. Barbara Jordan Historical Essay Competition

  • Sponsor: University Interscholastic League
  • Amount: Varies
  • Closing Date: February 14, 2024
  • Description: Open to Texas high school students (grades 9-12) attending a UIL member school. Essay prompt: “African Americans in Texas: Past and Present.”

33. TMCF | McDonald’s Black and Positively Golden Scholarships

  • Sponsor: TMCF | McDonalds
  • Amount: Up to $15,000
  • Closing Date: March 27, 2024
  • Description: Open to graduating high school seniors and current undergraduates attending an HBCU or PBI.

34. UNCF General Scholarship

  • Sponsor: UNCF
  • Amount: Varies
  • Closing Date: March 28, 2024
  • Description: Open to students enrolled full-time at one of the 37 UNCF member institutions during the 2023-2024 academic year, with demonstrated financial need and a minimum GPA of 2.5.

35. WebstaurantStore Scholarships

  • Sponsor: WebstaurantStore
  • Amount: $5,000
  • Closing Date: June 15, 2024
  • Description: Open to incoming and current college students majoring in Culinary Arts, Hospitality Management, or a related field. Scholarship available to ethnic minority students.

36. TMCF | Sallie Mae Fund Completing the Dream Gap Scholarship

  •  Sponsor: The Sallie Mae Fund
  •  Amount: Up to $2,500
  •  Closing Date: June 28, 2024
  •  Description: Open to students whose degree or program will end in Spring 2024, with a GPA of at least 2.75 and an unpaid school balance up to $2,500.

37. art + biz Scholarship

  •  Sponsor: Barrel and Flow Fest
  •  Amount: Varies
  •  Closing Date: Rolling
  •  Description: Open to Western Pennsylvania residents who identify as Black, African American, Indigenous, or a Person of Color, pursuing an undergraduate degree in visual arts, performing arts, or culinary arts.

Enhance your chances of securing a scholarship

To enhance your chances of securing a scholarship, consider the following strategies:

 

  1. Self-Assessment:

Evaluate your academic background, strengths, and weaknesses to identify scholarships aligning with your profile. If your GPA is lower, focus on need-based scholarships rather than merit-based ones.

 

  1. Organize Scholarship Opportunities:

Compile a list of potential scholarships and categorize them by deadlines. This organized approach aids in effective time management, ensuring you don’t miss application due dates.

 

  1. Strategic Applications:

Tailor your applications to highlight your strengths and address any weaknesses. Emphasize relevant achievements, experiences, and aspirations that align with the scholarship criteria.

 

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  1. Local Scholarships:

Explore and apply for local scholarships, especially those tied to organizations you’re part of or actively engage with. These opportunities may have fewer applicants, increasing your chances of success.

  1. Recommendations and Essays:

Secure strong letters of recommendation and craft compelling essays that showcase your unique qualities, experiences, and aspirations. Personalized and well-articulated applications can leave a lasting impression.

  1. Meet Eligibility Criteria:

Ensure that you meet all eligibility criteria for each scholarship you apply to. Thoroughly review requirements to avoid disqualification due to overlooked details.

  1. Submit Complete Applications:

Double-check all application materials before submission to ensure completeness and accuracy. Incomplete applications may be disregarded.

  1. Engage in Extracurriculars:

Active involvement in extracurricular activities, community service, or leadership roles can strengthen your scholarship applications, showcasing a well-rounded profile.

Is it hard to get these scholarships?

By carefully assessing your situation, organizing your approach, and strategically applying to scholarships that align with your strengths, you can increase your likelihood of securing valuable financial support for your education.

Acquiring a scholarship for graduate school can be more challenging than undergraduates, but various resources exist to aid you. It involves diligent research and creative approaches when applying for grants.

Explore university-specific scholarship programs and those tailored to your field of study or identity. Identifying and applying for scholarships that align with your academic pursuits can increase your chances of success.

Explore additional resources for students:

1. United Negro College Fund (UNCF)

The largest minority education organization offering scholarships and internships for low-income and moderate-income students at over 1,100 colleges throughout the U.S.

2. HBCU Network

Provides resources for Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) students, including a comprehensive listing of HBCUs, events, and career information for graduates or internship seekers.

3. Black Career Network

A job board specifically for African American graduates or those seeking internship opportunities while in school.

4. First In the Family

A comprehensive site featuring planning checklists, links, videos, and books tailored for first-generation college students seeking advice.

5. ImFirst.org

An online community where students can find support and resources to plan their college careers as first-generation attendees.

6. FirstGEN Fellows

Provides information about community, nonprofit, and other nationwide programs that support low-income and first-generation students.

Conclusion on Scholarships for African American Graduate Students

While obtaining scholarships for graduate school may pose additional challenges compared to undergraduate studies, the pursuit is worthwhile. A strategic and thorough approach, including researching university-specific programs and scholarships aligned with your field or identity, can enhance your chances. Remember, creative exploration and persistence in your search can open doors to valuable financial support for your advanced education.

 

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