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SAT: 720 math
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Chick-fil-A Scholarship: Everything You Need to Know

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More than 40 years ago, Chick-fil-A employee Truett Cathay put a mayo jar on the restaurant counter as a way of helping one of her fellow Team Members earn money for college. Shortly after, the Chick-fil-a scholarship program was launched in order to support company employees in achieving their dreams. Today, the eatery offers two exciting scholarship opportunities: the Leadership Scholarship and the True Inspiration Scholarship, formerly known as the S. Truett Cathy Award.


With an award value of $2,500, the Leadership award can be renewed once a year for up to four years. On the other hand, the True Inspiration Scholarship provides two Team Members from each region with up to $25,000 for college. Since the programs were created, Chick-fil-A restaurants have gifted their employees up to $61 million in college scholarship money. Keep reading to find out if you’re eligible for these awards and learn what you can do to boost your odds of selection. 


Who Is Eligible for the Chick-fil-A Scholarship?


Wondering if you’re a candidate for the Chick-fil-A scholarships? Awarded on an annual basis, the Leadership Scholarship provides funding to individuals who work at a Chick-fil-A- branded or affiliated restaurant at the time they apply. Here are the current requirements for potential scholarship recipients:


  • Be a current undergraduate or graduate student or a post-secondary student planning to enroll in college
  • Receive a recommendation from your Chick-fil-A Operator, Interim Manager, or Executive General Manager
  • Be involved in community service in the year prior to applying
  • Maintain a GPA of at least 2.5


A larger award, the Inspiration Scholarship comes with stricter eligibility requirements. To qualify for this award, Chick-fil-A Team Members must:


  • Be a current undergraduate or graduate student or a post-secondary student planning to enroll in college
  • Receive a recommendation from your Chick-fil-A Operator, Interim Manager, or Executive General Manager
  • Be involved in community service for the year prior to applying
  • Maintain a GPA of at least 3.0
  • Demonstrate financial need


Both scholarship funds consider an applicant’s academic performance and awards when making decisions.


How to Apply for the Chick-fil-A Scholarship


Eligible employees can apply for the Chick-fil-A awards online at cfa.scholarsapply.org or chick-fil-a.com/scholarships. Individuals can fill out just one application to apply for both the Leadership and the True Inspiration Scholarships. Be sure to fill out all the required information and answer every question thoroughly. 


Along with meeting the GPA requirements for these awards, applicants need to be sure they fulfill the community service obligation. While there’s no set number of hours for service, individuals do need to have volunteered their time in the 12 months prior to applying. Accepted service organizations include, but aren’t limited to, schools, churches, non-profits, and Chick-fil-A-sponsored groups. 


It’s worth noting that students can use awards for various purposes. Along with tuition, scholarship money can go toward books, school fees, and other educational costs. Money can’t be used to pay student loans.

Tips for Applying to the Chick-fil-A Scholarship


You can take steps to boost your odds of receiving one of the Chick-fil-A scholarships. Here are some tips on applying for these awards:


Start Early. The college application process can be stressful, and students often get overwhelmed by tasks like writing essays and filling out forms. If you want to give yourself the best shot at success, get started as early as possible. 


Remember to Ask for Recommendations. You can’t win a Chick-fil-A scholarship without a recommendation from your restaurant Operator or Manager. For best results, ask for a recommendation early, so the Operator has plenty of time to fill out the paperwork detailing your professional accomplishments. Let your Operator know they will receive an email notification reminding them of what to do. 


Keep Track of Deadlines. The 2020 application deadlines have yet to be released. However, for 2019, scholarship applications opened on September 3, 2019, and closed on December 3. Operators had until December 11 to submit their recommendations online. Visit the Chick-fil-A scholarship website regularly to stay abreast of important dates.


Request Your Transcript. GPA plays a significant role in the decision-making process for this award. If you’re planning to apply for the scholarship, be sure to request your high school or college transcript early so you have time to receive it and upload it online.


Check Your Answers. Students with incomplete applications are unlikely to be selected for these awards. Boost your odds of winning by checking your application over to ensure all questions have been answered. Additionally, you should read over your essays. Aim to be clear, specific, and original, avoiding cliches and vague responses. Chick-fil-A also recommends sharing your essays with an Operator or Manager for feedback before submitting.


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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.