Did you know that a recent study done at the University of Chicago found that only one-half of all adopted and foster students actually graduate from high school AND only six percent earn a college degree? Since adopted children often have faced tremendous hardships in their lives, such as abuse and neglect, many organizations have created scholarships for adopted students to help them overcome their tough past and create a brighter future for adoptees. Even though there could be a multiple amount of reasons why adoptees may not attend post-secondary education, a big part is the struggle of paying for school. That is why we wanted to provide some of the best scholarship opportunities and grants specifically for children who have been adopted not only from foster care but from birth as well.
Scholarships that are geared to Fostered and Adopted Children in SPECIFIC States
Foster and adopted children not only have access to general scholarship programs, but also those that are specifically designated for students who have been in the foster care system or recently adopted. Here are just a few of the scholarships we found interesting but are only available if you are attending the specific school addressed in the scholarship and/or a specific state.
1. Jack Pollack Sponsorship
- School- Graduating from Lake Waccamaw Boys and Girls Home in North Carolina
- Requirements- Students must plan to attend the University of North Carolina
- Value of Scholarship– Each valued at approximately $7,200 annually (renewable for up to six semesters).
- Link to Apply- http://www.pkf.org/
2. Armstrong Family Foundation Scholars Program
- School – Arizona State University
- Requirements- Must be a resident of Arizona and have a grade point average of 3.0 or higher
- Value of Scholarship– up to $8,000
- Link to Apply– https://scholarships.asu.edu/scholarship/1409
3. Maine Tuition Waver Program for Foster/Adopted Children
- School- Any school in Maine
- Requirements- Students must be residents of Maine and a high school graduate (or have obtained a GED). Students currently enrolled in college are also eligible to apply.
- Value of Scholarship- No more than 30 awards will be available annually. The amount varies, based on tuition and fees
- Link to Apply-http://www.nacac.org/adoptionsubsidy/factsheets/tuition.html
Maine isn’t the only state to offer a tuition waver program. Florida, Connecticut, Kentucky, Maryland, Massachusetts, Texas and Virginia do as well. These states all have specific programs to support children adopted from foster care. College tuition waiver programs are the most supportive, but some states also have scholarship programs.
National Scholarships Offered to Fostered and Adopted Students
Students that are adopted are able to take full advantage of adopted scholarships. These scholarships are meant for students that were adopted, whether at birth or at any other point in life. A lot of these scholarships will ask you to talk about your experiences and feelings about being adopted. Please do not let this affect you from applying. We know how hard it can be to share your adoption experience but we encourage you to be bold and step out of your comfort zone.
1. Friends of Foster Children
- Requirements- Foster care or ward court for at least 1 yr. by 18th b-day, Under age of 25 by March 31 of the year they apply,
- Value of Sponsorship- Scholarships range in value from $5,000 to $10,000
- How to Apply– Contact: 800-950-4673, firstname.lastname@example.org
2. NSORO Foundation
The NSORO foundation provides non-merit based academic scholarships to youth in foster care and to “aged-out” students.
- Requirements- Graduating high school seniors as well as current undergraduate or trade school students may apply
- All applicants must show State documentation of foster care placement. Eligible applicants can be emancipated or “aged-out” from foster care.
- All applicants must show written acceptance and enrollment in a college, university or trade school.
- Value of Scholarship- Scholarship awards range between $4,000 and $8,000 per student per degree
- How to Apply- https://www.thenf.org/scholarships.html
3. Casey Family Scholarships
- Requirements- Students under the age of 25 who are presently in or were in foster care for more than one year at the time they graduated high school; must participate in the vMentor Program.
- Value of Scholarship- $1,000-$7,000
- How to Apply- http://www.fc2success.org/programs/the-sponsored-scholarship-program/
4. Fostering a Future Scholarship Award
Sponsored by the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption and Children’s Action Network
- Requirements- Adopted from foster care at or after age of 13 and candidates under the age of the 21 must be currently pursing a college
- Value of Sponsorship- Amount varies depending on college and circumstances
- How to Apply- Call (310) 477-7611 or email email@example.com
5. Gordon Evans Scholarship
Created by the NFPA, this scholarship is awarded each year to deserving birth, adoptive, and foster children of foster parents who are members of the national association in good standing.
- Requirements- must be currently accepted or enrolled as a full-time undergraduate student at an accredited post-secondary U.S. institution.
- Value of Sponsorship– $1,000 each of the five scholarships offered
- How to Apply- Call (253) 683-4246 or email info@NFPAinc.org
6. John H. Chafee Education and Training Scholarship
A federally funded state administered initiative to provide financial support for transiting children from foster care to adulthood.
- Requirements- Available to students from all 50 states who were in the foster care system through their 18th birthday or were adopted after age 16 from foster care. Qualified candidates must be -pursuing post-secondary education at an accredited U.S. school, be under the age of 23 years old, and demonstrate financial need.
- Value of Sponsorship– up to $5,000 Annually
- How to Apply- Contact (571) 203-0270 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
A Positive Note to End on…
Always remember that you can do anything you put your mind to and there are so many scholarships available that money should never be an excuse on why you aren’t continuing your education. We also want you to remember that you are not underprivileged or different than any other child. There are many scholarships out there for students of a certain type, so start thinking of your own demographics. For example, there are scholarships for women, scholarships for single moms and dads, scholarships for students in the LGBT community and the list goes on. We know sometimes that scholarships could seem way to “categorized” but really they are just available to help you succeed in life. So please take advantage of all these amazing scholarships that are being offered. To find a full list for adopted/fostered students and other scholarships that might be available to you, please check out https://www.unigo.com/scholarships/by-type.