10 Indiana Scholarships to Save You Thousands on College
There are a lot of theories as to why Indianans are called “Hoosiers.” Some popular theories include:
- The name dates back to a contractor named Samuel Hoosier, whose laborers were called “Hoosier’s men”
- The name is derived from a Native American word for corn, hoosa, and the boatmen transporting corn were called “hoosa men” or Hoosiers”
- Indiana rivermen were so successful hushing their rivals they became known as hushers and later Hoosiers
While it’s likely we’ll never learn the true origin of the term Hoosiers, one thing is for sure: Indiana has a lot of great scholarships available to its students. Keep reading to learn about the best Indiana scholarships.
10 Indiana Scholarships
1. 21st Century Scholarship Program
Amount: Up to four years of up to 100% tuition at an eligible Indiana college or university
Deadline: June 30
Eligibility: Indiana residents who meet income requirements and are enrolled in 7th or 8th grade in a qualifying Indiana school
Application Requirements: Graduate from an Indiana high school with a minimum 2.5 GPA, earn a “Core 40” diploma, Indiana residency, and enroll in a qualifying Indiana college
The 21st Century Scholarship Program is designed to help Indiana students meet their goals of achieving a higher education by providing financial support and guidance on their path to an undergraduate degree. The program starts early in a student’s academic career—either in the 7th or 8th grade—and students must hit numerous benchmarks in order to receive the award, such as maintaining a minimum 2.5 GPA and graduating with a “Core 40” diploma. They also must take a pledge to stay on track academically and to not use drugs, commit any crimes or delinquent acts, or consume alcohol before reaching the legal drinking age.
2. Linda Craig Memorial Scholarship
Deadline: April 15
Eligibility: Must attend an accredited two- or four-year Indiana college or university
Application Requirements: Transcript, letter of recommendation, and personal statement
This scholarship was established by David Craig and Dr. John Abrams, the former athletic trainer and team administrator of the NBA’s Indiana Pacers. The scholarship honors the memory of Linda Lorraine Sharvelle Craig. Three awards are given out annually and paid directly to the college or university.
3. Frank O’Bannon Grant
Deadline: May 15
Eligibility: Indiana residents with financial need who have graduated high school, or have a GED, and plan to enroll or already attend an eligible Indiana postsecondary institution full-time in pursuit of an associate’s or first bachelor’s degree
Application Requirements: FAFSA
The Frank O’Bannon Grant aims to help low-income Indiana students meet their goals of attending a postsecondary institution. The award is renewable and students are required to meet a satisfactory level of academic performance and complete a certain number of credits to continue receiving the grant. The number of credits completed also influences the amount of the award:
- 24-29 credit hours results in a “full-time” award
- 30 or more credit hours results in an “on-time” award (the maximum award)
4. AAF Greater Evansville Scholarship Award
Eligibility: Graduating high school or attending college in one of the following counties:
- Indiana: Vanderburgh, Warrick, Posey, Gibson, and Pike
- Illinois: Edwards, White, Wabash, and Wayne
- Kentucky: Henderson, Union, and Daviess
Application Requirements: Minimum 3.0 GPA and majoring in advertising, marketing, graphic design, or public relations
The AAF Greater Evansville Scholarship Award was established as a way for its founding organization to fulfill one of its missions: energizing young, talented persons to seek careers in advertising. The AAF Greater Evansville Scholarship award is open to students from select counties in Indiana, Illinois, and Kentucky. To receive the award, applicants must pursue a degree in advertising, marketing, graphic design, or public relations in college. This Indiana scholarship has awarded more than $160,000 to students over the years.
5. American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC) Indiana Engineering Scholarships
Deadline: February 25
Eligibility: Indiana resident pursuing a degree (bachelor’s or master’s) in civil, environmental, mechanical, electrical, or structural engineering from an ABET-accredited school in Indiana
Application Requirements: Transcript, essay, and a letter of recommendation
The ACEC funds this scholarship to help attract outstanding students to the fields of engineering. Indiana residency and attending an ABET-accredited school in Indiana are both requirements to receive this award. Winners are chosen using the following scale:
- GPA 20 points
- Essay 25 points
- Work experience 27 points
- Recommendation 15 points
- Extracurricular college activities 13 points
6. William A. Crawford Minority Teacher Scholarship
Amount: Up to $4,000
Deadline: August 31
Eligibility: Indiana resident and minority student who plans to enroll, or already attends, an accredited Indiana school full-time in pursuit of a degree that would allow them to teach after graduation
Application Requirements: Apply for a teaching position in Indiana, and, if hired, teach for at least three years
This awesome Indiana scholarship provides funding to minority students who plan to teach in Indiana after graduating college. The William A. Crawford Minority Teacher Scholarship defines minority students as Black and Hispanic/Latinx individuals. The award is renewable, provided students maintain a minimum 2.0 GPA and complete an annual application. After graduation, students are required to apply for a teaching job, and to teach for at least three years if hired.
7. Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship Program
Amount: Full tuition, required fees, and book stipend for four years
Deadline: Varies by county
Eligibility: Indiana resident, have a high school diploma from an Indiana high school, and attend a four-year Indiana college or university
Application Requirements: Individual counties each have their own unique requirements
The intention of the Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship Program is to raise the level of educational attainment of the state’s communities and encourage its most talented students to attend college (and ultimately pursue careers) in Indiana. Applications are processed through the local community foundations and 143 scholarships are awarded annually.
8. Electronic Security Association (ESA) Indiana Youth Scholarship Program
Deadline: April 29
Eligibility: Graduating Indiana high school senior matriculating into an accredited college or university with a parent or guardian employed in a qualifying public safety sector
Application Requirements: Transcript, SAT/ACT scores, resume, letter of recommendation, college acceptance letter, proof of parent’s occupation, and essay
The ESA Indiana Youth Scholarship Program is intended to provide financial support to the children of police, firefighters, paramedics, and EMTs. Scholarship winners receive a $1,000 award and are entered to win larger $12,000 and $4,000 national awards. Decisions are made using the following scoring system:
- GPA: 20 points
- SAT/ACT: 15 points
- Essay: 35 points
- Community service: 20 points
- Additional prizes, awards, honors, activities: 10 points
9. Indiana Sheriffs’ Association Scholarship
Deadline: April 1
Eligibility: Indiana resident planning to pursue a career in law enforcement who is a member (or child or grandchild of a member)
Application Requirements: Transcript, letter of recommendation, and short essay
The Indiana Sheriffs’ Association established this scholarship to support Indiana students pursuing an education and career in law enforcement. Membership in the association—or close relation to a member—is a requirement of eligibility. Applicants also must submit a short essay describing what they expect to gain from college and their dreams and goals after graduation. The reward is renewable for up to three years.
10. Indiana CPA Educational Foundation Scholarship
Deadline: April 1
Eligibility: Pursuing a degree full-time (bachelor’s or master’s) in an accounting-related major at a four-year college or university in Indiana
Application Requirements: Minimum 3.0 GPA, Indiana CPA Society student member, and three essays
This award provided by the Indiana CPA Educational Foundation offers financial assistance to students pursuing their accounting major and ultimately careers as CPAs. Enrollment in a business or accounting program and the completion of at least 30 semester hours of college coursework—including at least 6 semester hours in accounting business—is required to become eligible for this award, as is membership in the organization and a willingness to remain engaged with it after graduation. The award is renewable, provided the recipient meets certain criteria.
Tips on Applying to Scholarships
Competition for scholarships continues to grow, but luckily there are some steps you can take to improve your odds of winning an award.
Focus on the Schools Themselves
Outside organizations are a great place to look for scholarships, but colleges and universities have substantially more money to award—they grant $175 billion in scholarship money each year. Compare that to the $11 billion granted by other organizations and it’s obvious that trying to earn scholarship money from schools requires your attention.
Selective School List
Some colleges and universities with super-competitive admissions don’t offer merit-based scholarships—for example, the Ivy League schools—since they don’t need to attract more applicants. That said, less-selective institutions often offer generous merit aid to make themselves more appealing to top students. Applying to a school where your profile is especially strong is a sound strategy for winning an award.
Apply for a Lot of Awards
The more scholarships you apply for, the better your chances become for winning an award. Take a strategic approach and find awards that you are uniquely suited to and have a strong chance of winning, and that have minimal competition. Niche awards—like those that limit eligibility to only Indiana residents—are a great place for scholarship seekers to focus their attention.