College and University Blog

Scholarships Are Out There: How to Save Money on College Tuition

The news is full of stories about people racking up huge amounts of debt in order to attend college, but you may be able to earn your degree without spending a fortune. Grants are one type of financial aid that does not have to be paid back, and scholarships are another. There are seemingly endless types of scholarships available if you take the time to look!

Scholarships are a form of financial aid awarded to students to help them pay for tuition, room and board, and any necessary supplies. They do not need to be repaid; you can think of them as a gift. Scholarships may be based on your academic achievements, your talents, your athletic abilities, and many other factors. Some scholarships are federal awards, which mean that the FAFSA is required in order to apply for them. offers a thorough college financial aid guide and college scholarship listing but I’m also going to provide some further examples of types of scholarships right here.

Types of College Scholarships

  • School Scholarships. Most colleges and universities offer scholarships based on academics, talents, leadership qualities, and athletics, among other things. When I was in college, I received scholarships from my university due to my past academic record and my audition for the music department. These scholarships renewed each semester as long as I maintained a certain GPA and stayed in the music department.
  • Local Scholarships. Local scholarships are often awarded to students living in a particular area or graduating from a certain high school. High school counselors are usually aware of local scholarships that you can apply for.
  • National Scholarships. National scholarships are those which can be awarded to students located anywhere in the country. They often come from large corporations, such as Coca-Cola or Siemens.
  • Need-Based Scholarships. Need-based scholarships are awarded based on the financial record of a student and their family. Proof of income may be required.
  • Ethnicity and Gender Scholarships. Scholarships are often available based upon a student’s race or ethnicity or even their gender.
  • Career Specific Scholarships. Students that are going to pursue a particular field of study in college may be eligible for career specific scholarships.
  • Employer Scholarships. Many companies offer tuition reimbursement programs, but others award scholarship money which is sent directly to your school, meaning you will not have to wait for a reimbursement check. Some companies even offer scholarships for employees’ children.

It’s important to realize that this short list does not include all types of scholarships out there – that would be next to impossible! My best advice? Search around! You never know where you can find free money for school, so be sure to visit our scholarship information section often to check for updates.


Melissa Rhone+

Melissa Rhone earned her Bachelor of Music in Education from the University of Tampa. She resides in the Tampa Bay area and enjoys writing about college, pop culture, and epilepsy awareness.