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Duke University
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Unweighted GPA: 3.7
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Timothy Peck
4 Scholarships

Taco Bell Scholarship: Everything You Need to Know

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The Taco Bell Scholarship has two primary scholarship tracks—the Live Más Scholarship and the Live Más Scholarship for Restaurant Employees—as well as a third “renewal” option that previous scholarship winners are eligible to apply for. The focus of each Taco Bell Scholarship is to give young people with a dream the means to pursue it through higher education. While Taco Bell Scholarships help support to spirited young people to pursue their dreams, the recipients also need the courage to chase their aspirations.


What is the Taco Bell Scholarship?


Unlike traditional scholarships, Taco Bell Scholarships are not awarded on scholastic excellence, superior standardized test scores, or extracurricular achievement. Rather, they’re awarded to those whom the Taco Bell Foundation calls “Passioneers,” loosely defined as innovators, creators, and dreamers who influence their peers and passionately blaze their own paths. 


This year, the Taco Bell Scholarship will award more than $6 million in scholarships—$1 million through the Live Más Scholarship, $1 million through the Live Más Scholarship for Restaurant Employees, and $4 million through the foundation’s renewal program for previous applicants. 


Who is Eligible for the Taco Bell Scholarship?


Because there are three scholarship tracks for the Taco Bell Scholarship, the criteria an applicant must meet to qualify varies slightly. 


The general qualifications required for consideration for a Taco Bell Scholarship are as follows:  


  • A legal resident of the United States 
  • Between the ages of 16 and 24 (minors must receive consent from a parent/legal guardian to apply)
  • On track to apply for, or enrolled in, an accredited post-high school/post-secondary education program such as a two-year or four-year college, or a vocational/technical/trade school


Live Más Scholarship: In addition to the above criteria, there is also a restriction—namely, employees of the Taco Bell Foundation and its adjacent entities such as Taco Bell of America, LLC; Taco Bell Corp.; and its parent, subsidiaries of its parent, franchisees, licensees, and the advertising and promotion agencies involved with the Taco Bell Scholarship are not eligible to apply for or receive a scholarship through this version of the program. Taco Bell restaurant employees are welcome to apply for the Live Más Scholarship for Restaurant Employees.


Live Más Scholarship for Restaurant Employees: Eligibility for the Live Más Scholarship for Restaurant Employees is dependent upon an applicant being an employee of Taco Bell of America, LLC, Taco Bell Corp., or any of its franchisees or licensees. Applicants must have a minimum of three months of continuous service in positions such as Team Member, Trainer, Shift Leader, Assistant General Manager, or Restaurant General Manager. Applicants must also identify the specific program they need the funds for and work with Taco Bell Foundation’s Scholarship Management Company throughout the application and award process. 


Live Más Scholarship Renewal Program: As the name implies, to qualify for the Live Más Scholarship renewal program, you must have previously been awarded a Live Más Scholarship. Additionally, applicants need to be enrolled in—and in good academic standing—at an accredited post-high school/post-secondary educational program in the US, and have used 75% or more of the previously awarded funds. 

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How to Apply for the Taco Bell Scholarship


Forget paper and online applications and long lists of achievements—Taco Bell Scholarships are awarded based on video submissions between 30 seconds and two minutes in length. Don’t stress if filmmaking isn’t your forte; the selection committee is more interested in learning about you and your passions, not whether or not you’re destined to become the next Spielberg. They welcome films shot on phones, tablets, computers, or any other M4 video-enabled camera, and are open to all formats, whether it’s a short film, animation, or simple testimonial. 


While the Taco Bell Scholarship is open to how you shoot and style your video, they want the video to address four key questions. Those questions for Live Más Scholarship and Live Más Scholarship for Restaurant Employees are:


  • What post-secondary education program, college, or certificate/degree program are you attending?
  • What impact will following your passion have on your local community or the world?
  • How do you plan to achieve your passion through your educational goals?
  • What is your dream college, school, or next step in your education?


The questions are slightly different for those applying to the Live Más Scholarship Renewal Program:


  • What post-secondary education program, college, or certificate/degree program are you attending?
  • What impact will following your passion have on your local community or the world?
  • What is your passion and how have you been living it since being awarded a Live Más Scholarship?
  • How has your enrollment into post-secondary education helped you to develop or enhance your passion?


Deadlines for the Taco Bell Scholarship


The application phase for all Taco Bell Scholarship Programs runs between November 6, 2019, 5 pm Pacific Standard Time and January 23, 2020, Pacific Standard Time. The announcement of scholarship recipients will occur around May 15, 2020. 


Tips for Applying for the Taco Bell Scholarship


Highlight Your Passion: A common theme in past Live Más Scholarship winners, according to the post 10 Tips on Applying for the Live Más Scholarship, is to put your passion front and center. Make sure your message (along with video and sound) is clear, spotlights what you’re passionate about, and tells your own powerful story. 


Be a Trailblazer: The Taco Bell Scholarship is on the lookout for “passioneers,” and 2019 scholarship recipient Shawn Patel recommends that you “put yourself out there. It can be intimidating to speak up and share your experience, but there is always someone willing to listen, help, and collaborate.” 


Study Past Winners: The Taco Bell Foundation’s blog is a great resource for applicants. On their blog, you’ll find a handful of profiles of past winners, which include their submission videos—offering incredible insight into what a successful submission looks like. 


CollegeVine’s free chancing engine can’t predict your odds of winning a Taco Bell Scholarship, but it can take the guesswork out of applying to college. Using a selection of data points like GPA, standardized test scores, and extracurricular activities, our chancing engine can give you your odds of acceptance at over 500 colleges. Sign up for your free CollegeVine account to start using our chancing engine today!

Short Bio
A graduate of Northeastern University with a degree in English, Tim Peck currently lives in Concord, New Hampshire, where he balances a freelance writing career with the needs of his two Australian Shepherds to play outside.