Key takeaways

  • Using multiple search engines can help you find a wide variety of scholarship opportunities
  • Stay organized as you apply to avoid missed deadlines or incomplete submissions
  • Browse social media websites and popular hashtags to find options not listed on scholarship search engines

With student loan debt continuing to affect borrowers for years, even decades, after graduation, it’s more important than ever for college students to lower their tuition bill. Scholarships, or college aid that never has to be repaid, are one way to reduce education-related costs. They offer students the chance to showcase unique skills, backgrounds and perspectives to earn money for college.

Scholarships aren’t limited to high school seniors; there are plenty of scholarships for current college students. The best scholarships to apply for are ones that you qualify for and win. To get an idea of what scholarships are out there, here are some great options to consider — and some tips on how to find the perfect scholarship for you.

Where to find undergraduate scholarships worth applying for

One of the best ways to find college scholarships is to utilize scholarship search engines that compile scholarship opportunities for undergraduate students. These include:

On these sites, you can usually filter scholarships by the deadline, grade level, amount awarded and more. Most sites let you create a profile to receive email alerts when a new scholarship matching your parameters pops up.

But don’t limit your search to just these sites. Look for specific scholarships on Google using keywords that apply to you. For example, if you’re studying journalism, search for “journalism scholarship” to find relevant opportunities.

You can also follow scholarship hashtags like #scholarship, #scholarships, #scholarshipopportunities and #collegescholarship on Instagram and X (formerly known as Twitter). When you click on a post with one of these hashtags, scroll down to find other relevant hashtags and follow those too.

5 scholarships for current college students worth applying for

There are hundreds of college scholarships out there, and the best way to find ones you qualify for is to use a search engine. However, these five scholarships are a good place to start.

1. U.S. Bank Student Scholarship Program

The U.S. Bank Scholarship Program is a unique way for current students to gain financial literacy while entering to win scholarships. Instead of submitting an essay, college students download an app and complete free lessons on personal finance topics. The scholarship award increases as students complete more modules. For example, students who complete 25+ modules will be entered to win up to $2,500, while students who complete 150+ modules will be entered to win up to $20,000.

Applicants are required to register on the U.S. Bank scholarship site and then follow instructions to download the U.S. Bank version of the Zogo app, where they complete the learning modules. As you complete modules, you’ll be entered to win different scholarship amounts.

Amount: $2,500-$20,000
Application deadline: June 30 and October 30, 2024
Apply here:

2. Cat Zingano Overcoming Loss Scholarship

Cat Zingano is an MMA fighter passionate about helping students fight through hardships in daily life and after tragedies. The Cat Zingano Overcoming Loss Scholarship is specifically offered to students who have experienced a loss in their families. The winner is selected based on a 200- to 800-word essay on the topic “How has the loss of a close family member or loved one caused you to focus on what matters most in your life and what you want to ‘fight’ to achieve?”

Amount: $10,000
Application deadline: July 20, 2024
Apply here:

3. Employment BOOST College Scholarship

Employment BOOST College Scholarships are awarded quarterly to high school students accepted to college and current college students. Employment BOOST offers two awards: one scholarship for students in any major (including those undecided) and one for students majoring in business or STEM.

Applicants must submit a letter of reference and a 500- to 1,000-word essay. The topic of the essay is either a response to an Allen Ginsberg poem or a description of how technology will change the applicant’s way of life in 15 years — the essay topic depends on the applicant’s major. Students must also have a GPA of at least 3.6 to qualify.

Amount: $1,000
Application deadline: Applications are accepted on a rolling basis
Apply here:

4. Sallie Mae Scholarship

The Sallie Mae scholarship is an easy way for current college students to potentially win tuition money as Sallie Mae’s goal is to help students successfully navigate financing college. As a current college student, the only requirement is that you are enrolled in an accredited college or university in the U.S.

The award is given monthly. Applicants will need to submit the short entry form on Sallie Mae‘s website. If a submission is received after the current deadline, it will be considered for the next one.

Amount: $2,000
Application deadline: Awarded on a monthly basis
Apply here:

5. Clubs of America Scholarship Program

The Clubs of America Scholarship Program was created to help current college students achieve their career aspirations. Any current college student of an accredited U.S. college or university with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher is eligible. Applicants have to write an essay of at least 600 words detailing their career aspirations and how their current studies will help. Students have the option of submitting a YouTube video as well.

Amount: $1,000
Application deadline: August 31, 2024
Apply here:

Bankrate insight
While scholarships are a great way to pay for your education, having a budget is also important for your financial health. Check out our college student budget calculator to help you plan out the year.

Next steps

Applying for multiple scholarships can get confusing, especially when juggling different requirements and due dates. The key is to stay organized and create a system for managing scholarships.

Many scholarships have similar requirements, so keep digital copies of important documents, like your most recent transcript, a reference letter and a list of your extracurricular activities. To stay organized, use a spreadsheet to track deadlines and set calendar reminders a week before the application is due. Keeping all this information in one place will make it easier to apply for more awards. The more scholarships you apply for, the easier it will be to find the money for school and help reduce the amount of federal or private student loans you take out, so try to apply for as many as you qualify for.