Having a disability may make it more difficult to pay for your college education. The good news is that there are scholarships for disabled students that will help pay the tuition for you. You can apply for multiple scholarships and it all adds up to help ensure you finish college without having a lot of student loan debt.
The scholarships for disabled students are offered through the federal government, as well as through independent organizations and nonprofits. Each of them provide a certain amount each year to help pay tuition, and most will allow you to reapply each year that you need the assistance. Some will give you the approval of the whole degree program right from the start.
Scholarships for Disabled
American Association on Health & Disability – This organization provides scholarships for disabled students around the country. The scholarships are only open to students who have a disability. You also have to be enrolled in college full or part time. They give a preference to students who are majoring in the areas of disability studies, public health, or another health-related area. You also have to be a legal citizen. The maximum amount of scholarship they provide is $1,000. The application window closes each year on March 31st. To apply, you will have to submit a written paper stating your history, career goals, and why you should be selected for a scholarship for disabled students.
Pell Grants – The federal government offers scholarships for disabled students who meet the low income requirements. If you are under 25 and don’t have an income they will go by your parents income to determine if you qualify for a scholarship. The Pell Grant scholarships can help pay for all of your college education. They typically give enough in a grant that it will pay for the whole year, depending on where you are going to school and what you are studying. These are grants therefore they do not have to ever be paid back, unlike student loans. You can apply for a Pell Grant at your school’s financial aid office or you can begin the application process online. To determine if you qualify they will consider your income, academic plans, and student status.
Academy of Special Dreams – The Helen Woo Scholarships are awarded to artists who have disabilities. The cash awards are intended to help those who are disabled to pursue their career in the arts. To apply for this scholarship for disabled artists you will have to submit an artist’s portfolio of at least 10 pieces of artwork, as well as an artist’s statement. All submissions are reviewed by the academy and they select which artists with disabilities will receive the scholarships to continue their study in the field of art.
American Council of the Blind – This organization provides scholarships for disabled students who are legally blind. To be eligible for the scholarship you have to have at minimum GPA of 3.0, be at least 18 years old, and be a full or part time college student. To apply for the scholarship you will have to show that you are legally blind, and be accepted into a college program. The scholarships they provide range from $2,000 up to $7,500 and can be used on anything related to the college education, including housing, tuition, and fees.
Lep Foundation for Youth Education – This organization offers two types of scholarships for disabled students. The John Lepping Memorial Scholarship is for disabled students and those who have been diagnosed with cancer. The mission is to help those families that have had a significant financial burden due to the disability. It’s open to students in New York, Pennsylvania, and New York. The Cancer Support Scholarship is for students who have been diagnosed with cancer. This scholarship is open to students around the country. You can download the application online.
Veterans of Foreign Wars – This organization offers scholarships of up to $5,000. Each year they give away several college scholarships. To apply for one of the scholarships you will have to submit an essay regarding the voice of democracy or what it means to be patriotic in the country. They give away first place scholarships of $30,000 each year, and they have winners from each state that get between $1,000 and $16,000 in scholarships. The deadline to apply for this scholarship is October 31st each year.
In addition to these scholarships for disabled students be sure to check with the college’s financial aid office, as well local organizations. Many will have access to local scholarship information.