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For Students and Parents

Scholarships are money for college that students do not need to repay. Some scholarships only cover tuition or other direct expenses (i.e., fees, room, and board) whereas other scholarships also cover indirect expenses (e.g., books, transportation). Some scholarships are paid directly to the college whereas other scholarships are paid to the student.

Students may apply for scholarships from colleges/universities and/or other organizations. Scholarships are need-based, merit-based, or both. Need-based scholarships award money to students based on their ability to pay for college. These scholarships often require the FAFSA or other financial documentation. Merit-based scholarships award money to students based on their achievements or characteristics (e.g., academic accomplishments, leadership abilities, community involvement, athletics, artistic talents). Some scholarships award money only to students in certain groups based on gender, location, race/ethnicity, religious affiliation, etc. 

DCPS publishes the monthly Dollars4College newsletter to inform our students and families about local and national scholarship opportunities. Complete this form to subscribe to Dollars4College. View archived copies of the newsletter here.

Additionally, students should research the scholarships offered by each college they are considering. Most importantly, students should apply to each college by that college’s priority scholarship deadline (often the same as the Early Action deadline).

Students can also search for scholarships through reputable websites such as:

Scholarship application tips:

  • Focus on local and/or specific scholarships.
  • Review eligibility criteria and application requirements carefully.
  • Ask for letters of recommendation early.
  • Tailor your application to the specific scholarship.
  • Meet deadlines.

If you receive a scholarship:

  • Ask how/when the scholarship will be paid.
  • Ask if you will receive the scholarship for multiple years.
  • Ask if you need to/can apply for the scholarship next year.
  • Ask if you need to maintain any academic standards to keep the scholarship.

For Scholarship Sponsors

Organizations interested in providing scholarships to DCPS students should complete the DCPS Scholarship Sponsor Form. If you have any questions, please contact Rachel Venator at [email protected].