April Maguire 5 min read 11th Grade, 12th Grade, Scholarships

9 College Scholarships for Cheerleading

Gone are the days when people believed cheerleaders were just there to support the football team. On the contrary, modern colleges recognize cheering as the impressive feat of athleticism that it is. And while the activity still isn’t considered an official sport by the NCAA, plenty of schools and organizations offer cheerleading scholarships to young people who take part.

 

To earn a cheerleading scholarship, students typically need more than skill on the field. The most desirable scholarships also require applicants to have brag-worthy GPAs and a resume full of additional extracurriculars. Keep reading to learn about some of the best scholarships available to cheerleaders and other high school athletes, along with what it takes to apply.

 

Best College Cheerleading Scholarships

 

1. Positive Coaching Alliance: Triple-Impact Competitor Scholarship 

Amount: $500 to $2,000 (depending on location) 

Deadline: Entries for 2021 open January 1

Eligibility: 

  • Student in grades 10 to 12
  • Resides in the U.S.
  • Cheers or plays a high school sport
  • GPA of 2.5 or above

 

Application Requirements:

  • Complete application
  • Responses to three essay prompts
  • 1 reference from a school administrator or teacher
  • 1 reference from a coach
  • 1-3 references from teammates, competitors, or referees

 

The PCA seeks out and rewards high school athletes who excel at their sport, while demonstrating the standards outlined in Elevating Your Game: Becoming a Triple-Impact Competitor by PCA Founder Jim Thompson. Along with showcasing personal mastery, applicants should work to support their teammates and make the game better. For the best shot at success, select references who can speak to the way you embody the Triple-Impact Competitor principles in your attitude and performance.

 

2. Sports Unlimited Scholarship

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: TBD for 2021

Eligibility: High school seniors, college freshman, and college sophomores

Application Requirements: Inspirational essay between 500 and 1000 words

 

Sports Unlimited is passionate about sponsoring athletes who want to earn a college degree. Recognizing that academic achievement is just as important as what happens on the athletic field, the organization offers students $1,000 in scholarship money. Applicants are primarily judged based on the contents of their essay, and impressive entries may be featured on the company blog. The most recent prompt asked whether collegiate athletes should be allowed to be paid for playing sports. 

 

3. Foot Locker Scholar Athletes

Amount: $20,250

Deadline: January 3, 2021

Eligibility: 

  • High school seniors with a GPA of 3.0 or above
  • Involved in after-school athletics

 

Application Requirements: 

  • Completed application form
  • Two essays
  • One required recommendation letter and one optional recommendation letter
  • Interview (if selected as a finalist)

 

For the Foot Locker scholarship, sportsmanship is as important as athletic achievement. The award committee will evaluate applicants based on a range of factors, including their moral character, enthusiasm, academic excellence, and commitment to building their community. To increase your odds of securing this cheerleading scholarship, look for ways to demonstrate characteristics like honesty, trustworthiness, and courage in your essays. Those applicants selected as semi-finalists will need to sit for interviews. 

 

4. South Dakota Cheer Coaches Association Scholarship

Amount: $250

Deadline: TBD for 2021

Eligibility: 

  • High school senior cheerleaders
  • GPA of 3.5 or above through the end of junior year
  • Cheerleading coach must be in South Dakota Cheer Coaches’ Association

 

Application Requirements:

  • Completed application
  • Essay
  • Transcript
  • Three, one-page letters of recommendation from the applicant’s cheer coach, a teacher or administrator, and a community representative, respectively

 

The South Dakota Cheer Coaches’ Association scholarship celebrates cheerleaders who are as impressive in the classroom as they are on the court or field. Each year, the organization selects two high school seniors to receive $250 each. For best results, make sure your essay highlights your scholastic achievements as well as your accomplishments in cheering.

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5. Competitive Cheer Coaches Association of Michigan Scholarship

Amount: $5,000

Deadline: December 13, 2020

Eligibility: 

  • Graduating high school senior
  • GPA of 3.5 or above through junior year
  • Cheerleader who participated in MHSAA Competitive Cheer team

 

Application Requirements: 

  • Completed online application
  • List of extracurriculars, hobbies, and talents
  • Autobiographical essay
  • Transcript
  • Two letters of recommendation from a coach and a teacher or administrator, respectively

 

The Competitive Cheer Coaches Association of Michigan Scholarship is open to cheerleaders who competed in the annual Scholarship Invitational. To apply for the award, you must submit an essay answering the prompt of how competitive cheer has impacted your life. Additionally, your essay should describe your career goals. Note that your coach must be a current CCAM member for you to apply.

 

6. Auburn University

Amount: $1800 ($900 for fall semester and $900 for spring)

Deadline: Students must attend tryouts (typically in March or April).

Eligibility: Full-time students enrolled at Auburn University

Application Requirements: Try out for the cheer team and be accepted

 

While Auburn University doesn’t technically offer cheerleading scholarships, the institution does provide those who cheer with generous stipends. Designed to help students pay for tuition and fees, the stipends vary from one year to the next and are currently set at $1800 per year. Students who try out for the cheer team and are accepted are eligible for the award.

 

7. University of Delaware

Amount: Up to $7500 for in-state students

Deadline: Currently postponed due to COVID-19

Eligibility: Full-time students enrolled at and cheering for the university

Application Requirements: Try out for the cheer team and be accepted

 

The University of Delaware offers several scholarships for its well-known Fightin’ Blue Hens Cheer Team. If you try out for the team and are accepted, you can earn up to $7500 as an in-state student. Along with appearing at school events and games, Delaware cheerleaders perform for public events and charities.

 

8. University of Kansas

Amount: Up to $750 per year plus benefits

Deadline: February 1 (Freshman fall enrollment date)

Eligibility: Full-time cheerleaders enrolled at KU

Application Requirements: Try out for the cheer team and be accepted

 

Students accepted to the University of Kansas cheer team will receive $650 per year to fund their education. As a bonus, students with a GPA of 3.0 or above qualify for an additional $100 annually, along with extra perks. For example, cheerleaders receive free Adidas apparel and shoes, free uniforms, per diems for away games, access to a top-notch weight room, and two tickets to every home football game. 

 

9. Wisconsin Association of Cheer/Pom Coaches

Amount: $1,000

Deadline: TBD for 2021

Eligibility:  

  • Graduating seniors 
  • GPA of 3.25 or above
  • Involved in high school’s cheer or dance team
  • Participates in extracurriculars

 

Application Requirements: Applicants must write a 500-word personal essay addressing the following:

  • Strengths obtained from your experience with cheer or dance
  • How cheering has impacted your professional growth and choice for career/major
  • How cheering has improved your leadership aptitude
  • Financial circumstances specific to your family

 

The WACPC has been honoring talented cheerleaders for almost two decades. As a graduating senior on your school’s dance or cheer team, you will have the opportunity to win one of 16 scholarships for $1,000 each. The most competitive applicants boast a high GPA and a wide array of extracurriculars.

 

CollegeVine believes that applying to colleges shouldn’t be a guessing game. Understanding that students and families hear plenty of false information when it comes to acceptance rates, we go to great lengths to provide them with accurate chancing data. To learn more about your odds of attending your dream school, try our admissions calculator for yourself.

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April Maguire
Blogger at CollegeVine
Short bio
A graduate of the Master of Professional Writing program at USC, April Maguire taught freshman composition while earning her degree. Over the years, she has worked as a writer, editor, tutor, and content manager. Currently, she operates a freelance writing business and lives in Los Angeles with her husband and their three rowdy cats.