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Top 16 First Generation Scholarships for Students in September 2022
Will you be the first person in your immediate family to attend college? If so, you are a first-generation college student! There are numerous colleges and private organizations that offer first generation scholarships for students who will be the first in their family to attend college!
Generally, first generation scholarships are open to students whose parents have not earned a four year undergraduate degree. However, specific organizations and colleges may define first generation differently, so always double-check.
Keep on reading to learn more about eligibility, award amount, and tips for how to find and win first generation scholarships!
Jump ahead to.
- Top first generation scholarships
- Resources for first generation college students
- Frequently asked questions about first generation scholarships
- Explore these additional scholarship categories
Top 16 First Generation Scholarships for Students in September 2022
The Scholarships360 Research Team reviews all scholarships individually and strives to exclude any scholarship where any of the below applies:
- The scholarship requires a fee to apply
- The scholarship requires paid membership in an organization (with certain exceptions for reputable trade organizations and others)
- Student are required to sign up for a site or service to apply*
- The scholarship seems primarily used for lead generation** or idea harvesting purposes***
- The scholarship website has many grammatical errors and/or advertisements
- The scholarship or scholarship providing organization seem untrustworthy
- There is no evidence the scholarship was previously awarded
- The scholarship has not been awarded in the past 12 months
- There is no available contact information
If you believe a scholarship has been published in error, please reach out to [email protected] and we’ll take a look!
* There are certain exceptions to this, for example if the sponsoring organization is a major corporation or nonprofit with its own scholarship application system.
** Lead generation scholarships will require students to sign up for an app or website and require minimal (if any) application requirements.
***Idea harvesting scholarships will require students to submit blog posts or other materials that companies may use for marketing purposes.
Minority/Women in STEM Scholarship
Open to any BIPOC and/or female high school senior or undergraduate who is a first-generation, low-income student interested in STEM.
APIA Scholarship Program
Offered by APIA Scholars
Open to low-income, first generation, incoming or current college students who identify as APIA.
APF Queen-Nellie Evans Scholarship
Offered by American Psychological Foundation
Open to minority graduate students who have financial need and demonstrate a dedication to improving social disparities.
First Generation Matching Grant Program
Offered by Florida Department of Education
Open to Florida residents who are first generation college students and enrolled at Florida state universities.
Chairish Design Your Future Scholarship
Offered by Chairish
Open to all students, with preference given to design and engineering majors and students from underrepresented backgrounds.
The Gates Scholarship
Offered by The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Open to minority high school seniors from low-income households with outstanding academic records and demonstrated leadership abilities.
Douvas Memorial Scholarship
Offered by Wyoming Department of Education
Open to first-generation American high school seniors from Wyoming who exhibit need and motivation to go to college and do so in Wyoming.
National Institutes of Health (NIH) Undergraduate Scholarship
Offered by NIH Office of Intramural Training & Education
Open to high school seniors & college students from disadvantaged backgrounds who are committed to careers in health-related research.
$2,000 Nitro College Scholarship – No Essay
Easy scholarship open to all high school, college, community and graduate students.
Niche $50,000 “No Essay” College Scholarship
Open to high school and college students, as well as anyone looking to attend college or graduate school in the next year.
Resources for first generation college students
First generation college students often face unique barriers in their college application process. Because their parents have not gone through the same trials and tribulations, they may not be able to help as thoroughly as parents who have. First-generation college students should check if they qualify for CollegePoint, a free online resource that matches you with a current college student to counsel you through the entire application process.
Many schools also have specific programs and resource hubs for first-generation college students. For example, the FirstGen program at University of California schools is a great initiative to improve college accessibility aimed towards first generation students. These resources can help with admissions as well as adjusting to campus life when you’re enrolled. Similar programs exist across the country, so make sure to inquire about them at any school you’re considering.
Frequently asked questions about first-generation scholarships
Am I first generation if my siblings went to college?
Some organizations may define first generation as students whose parents and siblings do not have four year degrees. Others may say that you are only first generation if your parents have not received any degree at all (including two year degrees).
However, the most common definition is students whose parents have not completed four year college degrees. If you are interested in learning more about why being a first generation college student matters, check out this post!
Am I first gen if a parent started college, but did not finish?
Yes, the key part of being first generation is that your parents did not complete college. If they took a few classes or semesters, but did not ultimately graduate, you are first generation.
Do you have any application tips for first generation colleges students applying for scholarships?
Yes, we do! Our Ultimate Guide to Finding and Winning Scholarships is just what you’re looking for. This guide will help you also discover and apply for other great scholarships.
First generation college students can also apply for need-based financial aid through the FAFSA and for some colleges, the CSS Profile. This can allow students to access grants like the Pell Grant, federal student loans, state financial aid, and work-study.