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What’s the Average Amount of Scholarships That Students Win?

“How much can I win in scholarships?” This is something lots of students wonder, but the answer is complicated. The average amount of scholarships that students can win is a difficult figure to pinpoint; there are thousands and thousands of scholarships available which range from a few hundred dollars to full ride scholarships.

A 2016-2017 study found that the average amount of institutional aid received by students was $10,818.74, but your scholarship award total will vary widely based on your financial situation and how aggressively you apply for scholarships.

It’s a good idea to explore scholarships of many different award amounts during your search to fund your education. In this article, we will provide insight into the average amount of scholarships that students win. We examine scholarships from several different levels of funding and describe what their applications entail.

What are the top sources of scholarships?

Let’s start by discussing where the scholarships you might be applying for will come from. Scholarships are offered by state or federal governments, private corporations, and non-profits. Specific colleges and universities and as well as individual people offer scholarships Depending on the funding and priorities of an organization, it could choose to distribute a large number of small scholarships or just a few full ride scholarships.

Average Pell Grant award

The Pell Grant program is specifically designed to support low income students. The grant is awarded by the federal government, and applicants are considered for it automatically when they submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). In the 2018-2019 school year, the average amount awarded to undergraduate students for the Pell Grant was $4,418

This is just another reason why it is important to fill out your FAFSA on time and ensure that your information is correct. It instantly puts you in the running for a substantial award that can help provide aid in funding your college education.

But while the Pell Grant is a good start, students should still be on the hunt for other scholarships!

Next Step: Learn all about Pell Grant eligibility 

Small scholarships can add up

Smaller scholarships with amounts ranging from about $100 to $2,000 are a great opportunity to help fund your higher education. Every dollar counts, and applying to a breadth of small scholarships can be very helpful in funding your degree.

Oftentimes, the application process for small scholarships is easier than that of larger ones. This can be helpful because it allows you to apply to many of them in a short period of time. You can consult our list of the top easy scholarships to find some scholarship opportunities that don’t require a ton of time to apply.

Other small scholarships are offered by regional organizations such as community foundations. These programs usually offer small scholarships but this is no reason to pass them over. Regional scholarships typically have small applicant pools, which means that you will have a much better chance of winning the scholarship. Check out our state scholarship guides to find some regional scholarships in your area.

Even small scholarships with more involved application processes can be worthwhile, especially if they cater to a niche audience. Complicated applications usually deter other candidates, so if you have the time to fill them out, you may end up in a small applicant pool and increase your chances of winning the award.

Larger scholarships

Medium scholarship awards ranging from about $2,000 to $20,000 usually have more in-depth application processes than small scholarships. Though they may require more work, they are a great resource for funding your education. For students attending private colleges and universities, this can represent a good chunk of your tuition bill. If you are attending an in-state public university, your tuition might be covered (depending on the award).

These awards can provide substantial aid and are typically easier to obtain than larger scholarships. Start by looking up our scholarships lists that are sorted by field of study. There, you can find some medium scholarships that suit your major. Larger scholarships tend to be offered by larger organizations and are not as common in regional or city-wide competitions.

Related: Top essay and writing scholarships

Full ride scholarships

Full ride scholarship awards cover the entire cost of your education. They often entail a very intensive application process and can be very difficult to obtain. Some of these scholarships come with additional benefits, such as leadership workshops and additional resources to complement your studies. They also offer networking benefits with a cohort of other full ride recipients.

Because these scholarships have such intensive application processes, it’s a good idea to ensure that you are a good fit before applying You can contact someone at the organization and to see if you fit the qualifications listed on their website. This can be a great way to make a good first impression as well.

Individual institutions offer merit-based full ride scholarships that you are automatically consider for when applying. Applying to schools with a lower average GPA can raise your chances of being offered a sizable merit-based scholarship by an institution.

Next Step: Top full ride scholarships for high school students

Good luck in your scholarship searching, and remember to cast your net far and wide! The amount of scholarship aid you receive will be based on how many opportunities you apply for. As a next step, you should make sure to complete your FAFSA. Remember, if you’re a current student, you’ll need to renew your FAFSA. You can also start your scholarship search today with our scholarship search tool. This way you will maximize the average amount of scholarships that students can win!