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Posted by Jessica Russo on February 28, 2013
Hello, non-traditional students! It is the time of the year when everyone should have filled their FAFSAs by now, and if you haven’t, do so right away. But even after getting your FAFSA done and your TAP (for NYS residents), you know that the funding will not likely cover the whole cost of going to college. And unlike traditional students, you likely have to pay for family expenses, apartment or house payments, job commuting, and car loans as well. To ease the financial burden, it is a great idea to apply for many scholarships, especially ones that are specifically focused on non-traditional students. By applying to scholarships for non-traditional students, your application rests in a smaller pool of applicants, increasing the chance that you will get it. However, every scholarship that seems relevant to you is worth a shot.
While some scholarships and grants are limited to full-time students, part-time students in New York can also get government assistance through The Part Time TAP Program and more Aid for Part Time Study. Make sure to scroll down the list of other scholarships in the HESC website for one that may fit you. I will highlight some more of these scholarships that may specifically help non-traditional students.
Under the Veterans Tuition Awards, Vietnam, Persian Gulf, Afghanistan, or other eligible combat veterans matriculated at an undergraduate or graduate degree-granting institution or in an approved vocational training program in New York State are eligible for awards for full or part-time study. Complete the NYS Veterans Tuition Award Supplement.
The NYS Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) provides assistance to NYS residents who are academically and financially disadvantaged, according to state guidelines. Learn more by visiting the Opportunity Program admissions office at your college of choice.
The New York World Trade Center Memorial Scholarship is given to families and dependants of those who have died or have been severely and permanently disabled by the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the US.
The Military Service Recognition Scholarship gives aid to family and dependents of members of the armed forces who have died or have been severely and permanently disabled, while they were a New York State resident, from hostilities or training for hostilities after Aug. 2, 1990.
Another source of scholarships includes online databases like FastWeb or Sallie Mae’s Scholarship Search. They are free to register for and have a huge variety of scholarships. Try restricting your search to grants and scholarships available to non-traditional students. Also try looking at this Binghamton University’s listing for more opportunities that might fit you as well as BU’s Office of External Scholarships. Even though there aren’t scholarships there specifically for non-traditional students, you will likely find ones associated with other interests that match with yours.
For more advice in your scholarship search, the Scholarships Page on http://nontradstudents.com/ helps with some dos and don’ts as well as more resources for scholarships. So don’t give up on your search. It can be frustrating, because many scholarships focus on recent high-school graduates, but there are also scholarships and grants out there that are made for you. They are calling your name, and you just need to find them.