Many of Colorado’s top students decide to pursue a secondary education, which is why numerous organizations and individuals have created scholarships to help those students achieve a secondary education in the state of Colorado. Scholarships are an excellent way to obtain individualized funding for students who are not able to afford college with government financial aid alone. Many students who qualify for financial aid would prefer to avoid the debt associated with certain types of aid, mainly student loans, and opt for scholarships instead.
Colorado has numerous options for students who wish to pursue scholarships. The Boettcher Scholarship program, for example, offers students the funds to obtain an in-state education. The 529 Scholarship is available to residents who have saved money using a CollegeInvest 529 College Savings Plan. Furthermore, the Colorado Lions Foundation offers a scholarship to Colorado residents, and there are numerous more available to students who want to find money for college. Continue read the sections below for more information about scholarship opportunities in Colorado.
Colorado’s Boettcher Scholarship
This program was initiated over 60 years ago to support the top students of Colorado in obtaining an in-state education. This is a merit-based scholarship for high school seniors, and provides the funds for a four-year degree for Colorado institutions. The scholarship is more than just financial support, though. It provides scholars with opportunities to enhance their time in college with additional grants and experiences to expand future careers and allows access to a network of successful college alumni.
Included in the scholarship is full tuition and fees for a four-year program. Every recipient receives $2,800 per year to be used toward room and board. The program pays for books and for a campus enrichment program. Those chosen for the Boettcher Scholarship have the opportunity to participate in Educational Enrichment Grants, which is a one-time, $3,000 grant to complete a program for internships, academic development, special classes or research. In addition, recipients qualify for the International Education Grant, which is funding to spend a semester or one year studying abroad.
The 529 Scholarship
To be eligible for this scholarship, the applicant must complete and submit the application, complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form and specify an Expected Family Contribution (EFC) of up to $35,000. Applicants cannot already be receiving a Federal Pell Grant. The account holder has to be a resident of Colorado, be the beneficiary or owner of the qualified CollegeInvest 529 College Savings Account and have opened and maintained the account for at least two years. The minimum balance in the account must be $2,000 on the final day of the application period. A student is able to renew every year he or she meets the requirements and receives up to $2,000 for up to four years.
Colorado Lions Foundation's Educational Scholarship
To be eligible for this scholarship, a student must be a graduate of a high school in Colorado and accepted to an accredited institution of higher learning. To apply, a student must write a personal essay stating his or her present and future goals in less than 350 words. Moreover, the student must state how participating in a community service activity has affected him or her and offered motivation for pursuing higher education. There must be a brief description of work experience and community service activities the student participated in during high school, along with recommendations from three individuals, such as a coach, teacher, employer or clergy member. A student should make a list of sports activities, awards, achievements and positions he or she held during high school for the application.
John S. Martinez Leadership Scholarship
This program was created to specifically help high school students of Hispanic descent achieve a higher education. It has been adopted in 38 states, including Colorado. The award is given to 11 Hispanic high school students, and no more than two recipients are selected in each state. The student has to have a minimum grade point average of 3.0 and must be enrolled in a public high school full-time. One caveat of the award is that the school the student current attends must be located in a Hispanic state legislator’s district. Furthermore, the student has to be nominated by a teacher, school principal, Hispanic state legislator or a guidance counselor. To apply, the student has to have an academic transcript, resume, two letters of recommendation and a 500 word personal statement describing what public service means to him or her. Additionally, the student must have a current copy of a valid school picture identification.