12 Community Service Scholarships for Students Who Give Back
Want personalized (and free) advice while applying to college?
We’re building a free college guidance platform for high school students like you! This means we’ll let you know exactly what and when you should be focusing on things like extracurriculars, college essays, standardized tests, and more. Sign up now to get early access to our platform and get guidance applying to college!
Have you made substantial efforts to be involved with and give back to your community? Are you looking for ways to supplement paying for your college tuition? Look no further. Here’s your guide to national community service scholarships.
This list includes general scholarships awarded on the basis of involvement in community service. It does not include scholarships aimed at specific demographics, locations, or areas of study or interest.
Why Community Service Matters
It’s important to give back to and participate in your community. Not only is the experience rewarding, but it also enables you to learn important leadership and professional skills.
Colleges don’t require community service, but it can be a valuable addition to your extracurricular activities. Read Do I Need Community Service for My College Applications? for more reasons why you should get involved.
Why Scholarships Matter
Scholarships often allow you to save significant money on tuition and other college expenses. There are many different scholarships available for particular demographics, such as first-generation students, as well as disciplines and fields, such as STEM.
There are two general classifications of scholarships. Merit scholarships are achievement-based, meaning you earn the award through your own efforts, such as community service participation or leadership. Need-based scholarships are awarded on the basis of who needs the award financially. Some scholarships take both factors into account.
Americorps offers the Segal Education Award, a roughly $6,000 value, for education expenses upon the completion of a 10–11-month period of service. Alternatively, you may receive a $1,800 cash stipend upon your service completion. The program also pays for living expenses during this period.
One student from each state, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico will receive scholarships of $2,500, $10,000 or $25,000. Students must demonstrate achievement in work-, school-, and community-related activities.
The Cornelia and Bertram F. Bonner Foundation awards $4,000 scholarships to up to 1,500 students. In order to qualify, students must complete 10 hours of community service per week and participate in the foundation’s summer community service internship.
The Heart of America recognizes one student per year with the Christopher Reeve Award. The $1,000 scholarship is awarded to a student who displays compassion in caring in her community.
This program recognizes 150 students for leading, serving, and making an impact on their schools and communities. The awards are $20,000 each.
One student per high school may be nominated by a principal or guidance counselor to receive a scholarship totaling $1,000. Recipients must demonstrate a commitment to community service, academics, and leadership.
For a chance at winning scholarships of different amounts, many totaling thousands of dollars, students take part in Do Something volunteer campaigns and demonstrate their participation through photos. Students may participate in multiple campaigns to earn more scholarship money.
The GE-Reagan Foundation recognizes students who demonstrate exemplary leadership, drive, integrity, and citizenship with this $10,000 award. The scholarship is renewable for each year of college.
“Young heroes” who undertake community service projects are eligible to receive $10,000 scholarships.
Students who have shown passion for community service and enhanced their education through service may enter to win this $1,500 scholarship.
Sponsored by the Caring Institute, this award recognizes five young adults who exhibit significant volunteer community service and commitment. The scholarships amount to $2,000 each.
These awards honor middle- and high-school students for outstanding service to others at the local, state, and national level. State honorees receive $1,000 scholarships, and national honorees receive an additional $5,000 each and a $5,000 grant to the charity of their choice. Local honorees are also recognized with a certificate.
To learn more about applying for scholarships and performing community service, read:
Looking for help with your college applications? Check out our College Application Guidance Program. When you sign up for our program, we carefully pair you with the perfect admissions specialist based on your current academic and extracurricular profile and the schools in which you’re interested. Your personal application specialist will help you with branding, essays, and interviews, and provide you with support and guidance in all other aspects of the application process.
Want more college admissions tips?
We'll send you information to help you throughout the college admissions process.