What is the deadline to apply for a scholarship?
The application and all supporting uploaded documentation must be complete and submitted by 11:59 pm MST on March 3, 2019 to be considered for a scholarship.
Are there any scholarships available for non-traditional students?
Yes, there are currently five scholarship opportunities for adults wishing to return to college or gain skills through vocational training. The eligibility requirements are unique to each scholarship, so please refer to the individual descriptions located under Available Scholarships for information on the Colorado Opportunity Scholarship Initiative (COSI) , the Fresh Start Scholarship the Lew Goodhart Memorial Scholarship, the Lena Sammons Reed Scholarship and the Richard W. Pippenger Scholarship.
How much does it cost to apply for a scholarship?
It does not cost anything to apply for a scholarship through WCCF. Students must only invest their time to apply. Scholarship scams do exist, however, which cost money and do not provide any useful scholarship information. Students should beware of organizations and websites that charge a fee, guarantee a scholarship or send a scholarship through direct mail or email spam.
I am not a straight A student or athlete. Am I still eligible?
WCCF’s scholarships are not solely based on academic merit, athletic ability or leadership experience. Most are geared to applicants with some financial need, participation in community service, extra- curricular activities and/or work experience, a minimum GPA of 2.5, attendance at particular high schools or colleges or specific majors or career goals.
In the application, you ask for my financial information but my parents have not yet completed their tax return. How should I gather my financial information?
All financial information submitted in the 2019 scholarship applications (and the FAFSA form) require 2017 tax return information. Since that is prior year information, those tax returns should be completed.
How will my application be evaluated?
All scholarships have different criteria and different priorities. Staff will check applications for basic eligibility and then a scholarship selection committee will consider any and all of the information that is provided in the application, such as the student’s activities, academics, financial need and personal statements.
What are my chances of receiving a scholarship?
The possibility of any student receiving a scholarship depends on several factors, including how many applicants are eligible for the scholarship, how many scholarships will be awarded and how competitive the other applicants are. Because of this, WCCF encourages students to apply for all scholarships for which they are eligible.
Will I be interviewed during the application process?
WCCF does not conduct interviews for all of the scholarships that are managed by the foundation, but some require a personal interview. If an interview is required, students will be contacted in March or April in order to schedule a time for that process.
When will I be notified about the outcome of my application?
Students will be notified whether or not they are awarded a scholarship. If students are awarded a scholarship, WCCF will notify them in May or June and provide more details on next steps. Please note that WCCF communicates primarily through email, so if a student has ANY email address changes, they must notify WCCF as soon as possible.
Will my scholarship check be sent directly to me?
All scholarship checks are made payable to an educational institution and are designated for a particular student and include the student id number. Checks are mailed directly to the school’s financial aid or scholarship office, which will deposit the check and post it to scholarship recipient’s account. There are no exceptions. Scholarships more than $2,000 are divided into two equal payments – one for the fall semester or quarter and the other for the spring semester or winter quarter. Scholarship checks are only paid once WCCF has received all required documents and any additional necessary verification.
If I receive a scholarship one year, will I automatically receive it the next?
Some of WCCF’s scholarships are renewable for up to four years but others are one-year awards or require that students submit renewal applications the following year. If the student’s scholarship is renewable, they will need to maintain their GPA, fulfill any other required criteria and submit required documents for additional payments.
If I change schools, will my scholarship be transferred to my new school?
Some scholarships are limited to certain schools. If a scholarship recipient transfers schools, the WCCF scholarship team will determine whether they are still eligible for the scholarship. If they are, the scholarship award will be transferred to the new school.
Do I have to be a permanent resident to be eligible for a scholarship?
No, as long as you fit the scholarship criteria you may apply.
Do I have to attend a four-year college to apply for a scholarship from the Western Colorado Community Foundation?
Not necessarily. While most scholarships are for four-year college programs, many cover the costs of two-year programs, vocational or technical training.
Do I have to be a graduating high school senior to apply for a scholarship?
Not necessarily. While most scholarships are awarded to graduating high school seniors, there are also some for non-traditional students, such as those returning to college as an adult or an adult going to college for the first time, or attending a community, vocational, or technical college.
Who can write a scholarship recommendation for me?
Recommendations may be written by a teacher, counselor, spiritual leader, employer, etc. The recommender cannot be related to the student. The recommender must be able to describe how they personally know the student and support the information that has been provided in the scholarship application.
What is FAFSA?
To apply for federal student aid, such as federal grants, loans, and work-study, students need to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Completing and submitting the FAFSA is free and gives students access to the largest source of financial aid to pay for college or career school.
In addition, many states and colleges use student FAFSA information to determine eligibility for state and school aid, and some private financial aid providers may use the FAFSA information to determine whether students qualify for their aid.
Apply online at www.fafsa.ed.gov or download the application.
What is SAR?
The Student Aid Report (SAR) is a paper or electronic document that gives students some basic information about eligibility for federal student aid and lists answers to the questions on the student’s Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
What is EFC?
The SAR will include an Expected Family Contribution (EFC). The EFC determines student eligibility for a Federal Pell Grant, and the college uses the EFC to assess eligibility for other federal and nonfederal student aid.
Your EFC is an index that college financial aid staff use to determine how much financial aid you would receive if you were to attend their school. The information you report is one your FASFA form is used to calculate your EFC.
The EFC is calculated according to a formula established by law. Your family’s taxes and untaxed income, assets, and benefits (such as unemployment or Social Security) all could be considered in the formula. Also considered are your family size and the number of family members who will attend college or career school during the year.
Boettcher Foundation – a competitive, merit-based undergraduate scholarship to any 4-year institution in Colorado.
Boundless Opportunity Scholarships – provide college scholarships for non-traditional students of all ages, awarded by select colleges and universities using funds provided by the Daniels Fund.
Daniels Fund Scholarship Program – a four-year college scholarship for graduating high school seniors who demonstrate exceptional character, leadership, and a commitment to serving their communities.
Saccomanno Higher Education Foundation – scholarships for students of Mesa County with financial need. Application is available on their website.
FAFSA – Free Application for Federal Student Aid is a necessary form for most scholarship applications and for all forms of public financial aid.
Federal Student Aid – Information about different types of student aid and paying for college.
College Opportunity Fund – Colorado’s education stipend and tax advantaged 529 savings programs.
College In Colorado – comprehensive resource for college bound students. Especially helpful for not-for-profit schools.
The College Board – Official college planning and preparation tools to help students succeed.
Occupational Outlook Handbook – compiles U.S. Department of Labor information about career opportunities and trends.
Fastweb – Search for scholarships for college students with a matching service for scholarships. Also learn about financial aid and student loan options to find money to pay for college.