Don't Overlook These Five Need-Based Scholarships

May 7th 2016

Prepare to apply for all of the scholarships you qualify for by analyzing your finances, extracurricular activities, family history and state legislation. Don't forget to fill out your FAFSA form in good time, as most need-based scholarships use this information to check your financial eligibility.

American Culinary Federation

The ACF offers 30 scholarships each year to students who are majoring in culinary arts and who aim to become chefs or pastry chefs. If food is your passion and you are sustaining a grade-point average of 2.5 or higher, apply by September in the year you want the award. You need to have completed at least one full marking period, and you must also be a U.S. citizen. The scholarship is awarded based on overall academic progress and financial need as well as extracurricular activities, participation in culinary activities and competitions, and a set of essay questions.

Wal-Mart Foundation

Wal-Mart offers scholarships to up to 10 percent of its qualified associates, and its scholarships can apply to all levels of study. Qualifying associates can apply for grants for up to six years; there is a cumulative maximum amount that is awarded to any single student. The main criteria for this scholarship include that you provide documented proof of financial need, must have been employed part time or full time with any division of Wal-Mart for at least six consecutive months prior to the application deadline date, and that you are a U.S. citizen.

Mississippi Office of Student Financial Aid

The Mississippi legislature enacted the provision of this scholarship to provide support to Mississippi residents attending state-approved two-year and four-year eligible courses. You must have been a resident of Mississippi for a year, have applied for full-time study and not be receiving the full Pell Grant to qualify. Satisfactory academic progress is also required. Numbers are limited by eligibility, not an arbitrary limit.

Evans Scholars Foundation

This scholarship is awarded to students who have acted as caddies for two or more years at any Western Golf Association member club. You must demonstrate your requirement for financial assistance and provide evidence of your character, integrity and leadership. Eligibility is judged by competition and interview. If you are successful and your university has an Evans Scholarship House on campus, you must live in the building. Up to 220 of these awards are available each year.

NYS Indian Aid

This award is funded by the New York State Higher Education Services Corporation. It awards up to $2,000 annually for up to four years of full-time study, sometimes five if that is specifically required by a certain degree program, and part-time equivalents are available. Applicants or their parents must be on the tribal roll of a New York State tribe, which includes the Iroquoian tribes, the Shinnecock tribe and the Poospatuck tribe, and you must also currently live in New York to qualify.


Getting ready for college is as much a matter of financial readiness as academic preparation. As well as brushing up on your budgeting skills, investigate all of the scholarships for which you may be eligible. Eligibility criteria may include factors such as your parents' occupation or demographic background, your hometown and your career plan or current role, so there's likely to be several that are applicable to your circumstances. Many of these scholarships are provided by private organizations and not-for-profits, so some have only one recipient per year. Some of these are for new students, while others are for those who have already started their courses.

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