If you are an older student returning to college after a number of years in the workforce or after having raised children, you should conduct your scholarship search in much the same way traditional students would. Non-traditional students sometimes get discouraged when they first begin a scholarships search because many scholarships focus on high school seniors’ GPA’s and activities, but there are numerous scholarship opportunities available for adult students.
Whether you are looking to complete a degree, get one started, or proceed with graduate work, a scholarship may be the only way you can afford to go back to school. Many adult students find the schedule requirements of adult scholarships to be a problem. Some scholarship programs require their recipients to enroll in coursework on a full-time basis, which is not always possible for those who are already in the workforce. Also, many adult students are already working, so they are not eligible for scholarships that require financial incapability.
Where to Find Scholarships for Adults
In order to find adult scholarships to pay for higher education, you should ask other adult students where they found financial aid through scholarships. Here are some suggestions on how to find scholarships for adults (or non-traditional students):
- If you are already enrolled, or thinking of enrolling in CCU, talk to a financial aid counselor here. Many adult learning scholarships are provided by individual colleges and universities like Colorado Christian University to help nontraditional students begin or stay in school. We can also provide you with information regarding alumni associations and local organizations or foundations that offer adult scholarships for higher education.
- If you belong to a union, professional association, or trade association, you should contact your local representative and ask if the group provides any adult learning scholarships. A good example is the Union Plus Scholarship Program, which has awarded more than $2 million in scholarships to labor union members and their families.
- Some national organizations, philanthropic societies, charitable foundations, and private companies offer adult scholarships. The clothing store, Talbot’s, awards 55 scholarships per year to women who are returning to school to complete their first undergraduate degree. There are many others.
- Check with your local Chamber of Commerce.