4 Scholarships for Student Activists

Consider applying for one of these scholarships if you’ve spent your high school years fighting for a good cause.

By Sydney Nikols | February 17, 2017

If you're politically active, then there may be a scholarship for you!
Photo: Zimbio.com

Your activism may be good for more than just making the world a better place -- it may also help you pay for college. If you’ve been loud and proud about making progressive changes surrounding an issue you care about, you might be a good candidate for one of these four scholarship funds.

By applying for the right scholarships, you can begin using your activist undertakings as leverage to help you pay for college.

1. Davis-Putter Scholarship Fund

Since its inception in 1961, the Davis-Putter scholarship fund has granted more than 1,200 scholarships to students who have fought for peace and justice. Early grantees fought against McCarthyism and the Vietnam War; recent recipients have been champions for equal rights and economic justice. The fund’s board of educators and activists assess candidates based on their dedication to peace and justice, their academic prowess and their financial need (the board only selects students who truly need funds for college tuition). The maximum grant is $10,000, though the amount winners receive depends on their financial need and how much money is available in the fund.

2. Barbara Wiedner and Dorothy Vandercook Memorial Peace Scholarship

The Barbara Wiedner and Dorothy Vandercook Memorial Peace Scholarship, offered by non-profit organization Grandmothers for Peace, gives awards of $250 and $500 to high school seniors who demonstrate leadership in the areas of peace and social justice, nuclear disarmament and conflict resolution. The organization’s selection committee, who has chosen more than 175 people to give funds to in the past, asks that applicants show evidence of the volunteer or paid work they’ve completed for their chosen causes.

3. Alliant Energy Foundation Community Service Scholarship

The Alliant Energy Foundation Community Service Scholarship Program selects up to 25 recipients annually, all of whom must be less than 25 years of age and have plans to enroll in college for the first time. The foundation seeks out young people who have taken on leadership roles in community service and volunteer work. The board also considers applicants’ GPAs, standardized test scores and 300-word essay submissions (required on the application provided).

4. ACLU Youth Activist Scholarship

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Utah grants scholarships to high school seniors living in Utah who actively demonstrate a passion for civil liberties. The board selects three winners annually, all of whom receive $1,000 dollars to put towards their college tuition freshman year. Recent recipients have been activists in their schools and communities for issues like immigration rights, religious freedom and sex education.

Now that you know which scholarships to pursue, you can begin using your activist undertakings as leverage to help you pay for college.

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