10 Ohio Scholarships to Save You Thousands on College
Ohio is the home state of seven U.S. presidents—James A. Garfield, Ulysses S. Grant, Warren G. Harding, Benjamin Harrison, Rutherford B. Hayes, William McKinley, and William Howard Taft—only Virginia has produced more (eight). The state’s terrific colleges and universities help keep Ohio producing great leaders, and a number of excellent Ohio scholarships ensure that talented students are able to attend those institutions.
10 Ohio Scholarships
Amount: $1,000 to $1,500
Deadline: March 15
Eligibility: Ohio resident preparing to enter their first year of college who is a veteran or direct descendant of a veteran
Application Requirements: Transcript, essay, three letters of recommendation, and proof of service
This great Ohio scholarship helps Ohio residents who are veterans (or direct descendants of veterans) attend college by providing financial support—it awards one $1,500 scholarship and one $1,000 scholarship annually. Applicants are required to submit an original 500-word essay titled Education and the American Dream. Scholarship recipients are chosen based on their Americanism, character, financial need, leadership, and academics.
Deadline: May 15
Eligibility: Child of a deceased or severely disabled Ohio veteran, Ohio resident, and enrolled as a full-time undergraduate pursuing an associate or bachelor’s degree at an eligible Ohio college or university
Application Requirements: Proof of service record
The Ohio War Orphan & Severely Disabled Veterans’ Children Scholarship provides funding for college to the children of Ohio veterans who served in a period of declared war or conflict. In 2021, the scholarship covered 84% of tuition and general fees at Ohio public institutions while recipients attending private institutions were awarded $7,532. The award is renewable so long as the recipient attends college full time and maintains a minimum 2.0 GPA.
Deadline: February 28
Eligibility: Graduating high school senior who has been admitted to an ABET-accredited engineering program and is an Ohio resident from one of the following counties: Cuyahoga, Lorain, Lake, Geauga, Medina, and Ashtabula
Application Requirements: Minimum 3.0 GPA, minimum 1100 SAT, transcript, essay, and recommendation
This scholarship administered by the Ohio Society of Professional Engineers (OSPE) honors the legacy of its namesake and his interest in helping young engineers begin their professional lives. Recipients can use the award at an ABET-accredited engineering program in Ohio or at the University of Notre Dame (Neff’s alma mater). The Cyril W. Neff, P.E., P.S., Memorial Scholarship is renewable for up to three years.
Deadline: March 31
Eligibility: Individuals with a disability planning to enroll or enrolled in a post-secondary program with a permanent address in the following counties:
- Ohio: Lucas, Wood, Fulton, Henry, Ottawa, Defiance, or Williams
- Michigan: Monroe or Lenawee
Application Requirements: Minimum 3.0 GPA, essay, and three letters of recommendation
The Ability Center of Greater Toledo Scholarship isn’t specifically an Ohio scholarship—as some Michigan residents are able to apply—however, this is a great award if you’re eligible. The intention of this scholarship is to ensure that students with disabilities are given the opportunity to achieve higher education. Applicants must complete an essay that describes how their disability affects their life, what sets them apart from their peers, and how they plan to give back to their community. Applicants are also encouraged to share their career objectives, plans, goals, qualities, and anything else they feel makes them uniquely suited to receive this award.
Deadline: April 15
Eligibility: Ashtabula County high school student planning to attend a college, university, or trade school
Application Requirements: Minimum 3.0 GPA, transcript, two letters of recommendation, and personal statement
This scholarship provided by the Ashtabula County Business Exchange provides financial support to Ashtabula County (Ohio’s northeasternmost county) high school seniors planning to pursue post-secondary education. Recipients can apply the scholarship to any educational path they desire. As part of the application, students are required to submit a personal statement explaining why they believe they deserve to win the award.
Deadline: April 1
Eligibility: Student 18 years of age or older who is a full-time undergraduate pursuing a minimum four-year degree in a welding or welding-related program
Application Requirements: Minimum 2.5 GPA and a personal statement
Although this scholarship isn’t restricted to Ohio applicants, those residing or attending school in Ohio are given priority. The scholarship is run by the American Welding Society—membership in which isn’t required to win an award—and seeks to support students with an interest in a career in welding. Recipients of a William A. & Ann M. Brothers Scholarship can use it to cover the expense of tuition and books, and the award is renewable for up to four years.
Deadline: April 22
Eligibility: College-bound Shelby County high school senior
Application Requirements: Minimum 2.5 GPA, transcript, personal statement, and three letters of recommendation
This scholarship sponsored by the Sidney-Shelby County YMCA honors the life of a Sidney High School sophomore who lost his life in a 1986 car accident. YMCA membership is not required to compete for this scholarship, however, members are given additional consideration. Other factors considered when selecting a winner include need, commitment to community service, leadership, and exemplification of Christian values. Along those lines, as part of the application, students must submit a paragraph explaining how they demonstrate the Y core values.
Eligibility: Ohio high school graduates who were Ohio residents at the time of their graduation
Application Requirements: Application
This unique program seeks to encourage Ohio high school graduates who left the state to return for college and ultimately establish roots and stay for their careers. Through the Forever Buckeyes Program, Ohio high school graduates—who were Ohio residents at the time of their graduation—who enroll at any Ohio public institution of higher education are eligible for in-state tuition rates. The Forever Buckeyes Program is applicable to every degree program, including undergraduate and graduate degrees.
Deadline: May 6
Eligibility: Ohio resident at an Ohio college or university with a declared major in recreation
Application Requirements: Minimum overall 2.5 GPA, minimum 3.0 GPA in major, resume, essay, and three professional references
This scholarship offered by the Ohio Parks and Recreation Association supports Ohio students at Ohio colleges and universities majoring in recreation, which includes:
- Park operations
- Natural resource management
- Commercial recreation
- Outdoor recreation
- Recreation management
- Sports management
- Leisure studies
Applicants must submit an essay explaining how they will contribute to the promotion of parks, recreation, and leisure services in their future careers.
Deadline: March 31
Eligibility: Member or child of members of the Huron County Farm Bureau entering an agricultural program at a post-secondary program at an Ohio institution
Application Requirements: Short-answer questions and two letters of recommendation
This Ohio scholarship is available to members of the Huron County Farm Bureau who have an interest in pursuing a degree in agriculture. In order to receive the funds, the recipient must complete their first term with a minimum 2.25 GPA and remain a full-time student. As part of the application, students are required to answer a handful of short questions detailing their interest in agriculture and why they want to pursue a college education.
Tips on Applying to Scholarships
As more and more college-bound students are looking to reduce the cost of post-secondary education, competition for scholarships is intensifying. Luckily, there are some simple steps you can take to improve your odds of earning an award.
Colleges and universities offer significantly more scholarship funding than outside scholarships ($175 billion annually compared to $11 billion). An abundance of the scholarships awarded by colleges are merit-based—that is, they’re awarded based on a student’s academic or extracurricular achievements. Before turning your attention to outside scholarships, make sure you’ve taken full advantage of the available institutional opportunities.
Because many highly selective colleges receive more qualified applicants than they have space for, they don’t offer merit-based awards. After all, they don’t need to convince students to attend their school. Conversely, many less-selective schools use generous merit-based scholarships to lure applicants with strong profiles to their campuses. When building your college list, consider including one or two “safety” schools where you have a good chance of winning a substantial award.
In general, private institutions award more merit aid than their public counterparts—consider that all the schools on CollegeVine’s list of the colleges that award the most merit aid are private. On average, students receiving a scholarship or grant from a private 4-year college will get $7,834 more than a student at a public 4-year college, which is a pretty compelling reason to consider adding a few private colleges to your list.