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by Susan Dutca

Black Friday deals will be unleashed in just two weeks with some of the largest retailers getting an early start on Thanksgiving Day. When it comes to end-of-the-year scholarship hunting, no worries - we've got you covered. Score big this holiday season (and semester) with free college money:

  1. RMA Foundation Scholarship Program

    Deadline: November 13
    Maximum Award: $10,000

  2. Arizona Milk Producers Scholarship

    Deadline: November 21
    Maximum Award: $12,000

  3. North American International Auto Show Poster Contest

    Deadline: November 22
    Maximum Award: $1,000

  4. Courage to Grow Scholarship

    Deadline: November 30
    Maximum Award: $500

  5. No Bull Sports Scholarship

    Deadline: December 1
    Maximum Award: $5,000

  6. Girls Who Illustrate Awesomeness Scholarship

    Deadline: December 1
    Maximum Award: $750

  7. Doodle 4 Google Competition

    Deadline: December 2
    Maximum Award: $30,000

  8. PepsiCo Cesar Chavez Latino Scholarship

    Deadline: December 2
    Maximum Award: $2,000

  9. Burger King Scholars Program

    Deadline: December 15
    Maximum Award: $1,000

  10. Foot Locker Scholar Athletes

    Deadline: December 16
    Maximum Award: $25,000

And remember, there’s no need to rely on expensive student loan options to pay for your college education. For more information on finding free scholarship money for college, conduct a Scholarships.com free college scholarship search today, then apply and win! It’s that easy!

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by Susan Dutca

The generous $500 million gift from Phil and Penny Knight to the University of Oregon is the "largest ever for a public flagship institution" and is intended to support and strengthen interdisciplinary scientific research.

With the donation, the university plans to extend its current science campus by 210,000 square feet, with three new research facilities. The initiative is expected to create 30 new positions for research scientists and open 250 graduate and 150 postdoctoral slots.

This won't be the first time the Knights have made such a large contribution. In 2014, they gave more than $300 million to the University of Oregon's athletic department. Also, in February 2016, they announced their plan to donate $400 million to Stanford University's graduate scholar program. Mega-gifts such as these given to Knights' alma maters are not uncommon; however, they are "rare at public universities." While some argue that these donations are simply "gifts from the top 1% to the top 1%," University of Oregon President Michael Schill notes that "more than one-third of Oregon undergraduates are considered low-income." Furthermore, statistics from the White House indicate that only "73% of Oregon students graduated high school last year, one of the lowest graduation rates in the country."

Mr. Knight's states that "collaborative scientific research is a comparative strength at the University of Oregon, and with appropriate support could develop into a major center of excellence and a national treasure." He notes that the lack of funding to basic scientific research programs "threaten to choke off opportunities to enhance standards of living." The University of Oregon hopes to complete and open the new facilities in three years.

Do you think the $500 million donation is a good investment? If you had the resources, how and where would you invest your dollars? Let us know in the comments section below and be sure to check out our extended list of scholarships by state for more opportunities.

And don't forget, you should pay for your college education with as much free money as possible! Find as many scholarships and grants as you can before turning to student loans. Visit the Scholarships.com free college scholarship search today where you'll get matched with countless scholarships and grants for which you qualify, then apply and win! It’s that easy!

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by Susan Dutca

Faculty at CUNY were relatively concerned when they noticed a $500,000 donation account only had $76 left in it. It was especially suspicious after City College President Lisa Coico previously used $150,000 towards personal expenses.

The account - the Martin and Toni Sosnoff Fund for the Arts - is intended to support the humanities and arts department at the City University of New York. The donation, which is part of the holdings of CUNY's 21st Century Foundation, serves as the "school's principal fund-raising arm," and was already under investigation. In May, The Times revealed that City College's 21st Century Foundation had paid for Coico's personal expenses, including "fruit baskets, housekeeping services and rugs," when she took office in 2010. The foundation was reimbursed $150,000 from the Research Foundation of the City University of New York, which manages research funds for CUNY. A CUNY spokesperson defended Coico, claiming the "expenditures were authorized by the CCNY 21st Century foundation" but that recent hire Coico "had not known that permission was [also] required by the university."

When CUNY faculty members initially demanded an explanation for the "improperly diverted" funds, they experienced "silence, delay and deflection" before reaching out to University Chancellor James B. Milliken. According to The New York Times, Milliken's "willingness to conduct an internal investigation suggests that the finances of City College, and the leadership of Mrs. Coico, are likely to be under more scrutiny."

Faculty members are “deeply concerned about the practical, ethical and legal implications of the situation.” CUNY isn’t the only school in such a predicament - chancellors at the University of California, Berkeley and at Davis have resigned over similar expenditure controversies. Currently, it is unknown “who withdrew the money, when and for what purpose."

How should the situation be remedied if the funds are found to be improperly diverted, again? Share with us your thoughts below.

And don't forget, you should pay for your college education with as much free money as possible! Find as many scholarships and grants as you can before turning to student loans. Visit the Scholarships.com free college scholarship search today where you'll get matched with countless scholarships and grants for which you qualify, then apply and win! It’s that easy!

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by Susan Dutca

Some dormitory rooms at the University of Mississippi are "worthy of interior design magazines," even on a budget. Photos of two students' room went viral, and some call the décor over-the-top and unnecessary. The majority of the decorations were bought on a budget from stores such as TJ Maxx, Marshalls, Hobby Lobby, Home Goods, Target, Home Depot, and antique stores.

Check out the room here and let us know what you think. In the meantime, if you have a knack for interior design and want to put your craft to use beyond a dorm room, check out these interior design scholarships to help pay for your college education:

  1. Irene Winifred Eno Grant

    Deadline: April 18
    Maximum Award: $5,000

  2. Vectorworks Design Scholarship

    Deadline: August 31
    Maximum Award: $10,000

  3. Ruth Clark Furniture Design Scholarship

    Deadline: March 31
    Maximum Award: $3,000

  4. Deborah Snyder Scholarship

    Deadline: May 20
    Maximum Award: $5,000

  5. NEWH Sustainable Design Competition

    Deadline: February 19
    Maximum Award: $5,000

  6. Tom Tolen Educational Scholarship

    Deadline: April 1
    Maximum Award: Varies

  7. Robert W. Thunen Memorial Scholarship

    Deadline: April 1
    Maximum Award: $5,000

  8. Joel Polsky Prize

    Deadline: April 18
    Maximum Award: $5,000

  9. CBC Spouses Visual Arts Scholarship

    Deadline: April 29
    Maximum Award: $3,000

  10. Tricia LeVangie Green/Sustainable Design Scholarship

    Deadline: March 31
    Maximum Award: $1,500

And don't forget, you should pay for your college education with as much free money as possible! Find as many scholarships and grants as you can before turning to student loans. Visit the Scholarships.com free college scholarship search today where you'll get matched with countless scholarships and grants for which you qualify, then apply and win! It’s that easy!

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by Susan Dutca

The University of Wisconsin - Green Bay is offering a course to educate students on the environmental justice movement, and it's titled "Green Lives Matter." From topics of flint lead contamination to migrant farm worker pesticide exposure, the program "argues the effects of capitalism force poor and minority community to live in dangerous and unhealthy situations". If you have a passion for environmental science, engineering or food science, check out these green scholarships:

  1. Albuquerque Ecologist Open Space Scholarship

    Deadline: December 31
    Maximum Award: $500

  2. Beulah Frey Environmental Scholarship

    Deadline: March 31
    Maximum Award: $1,000

  3. Colorado Garden Show Scholarship

    Deadline: March 15
    Maximum Award: Varies

  4. Ecotrust Native American Scholarship

    Deadline: May 31
    Maximum Award: $2,250

  5. Elmhurst Garden Club Scholarship

    Deadline: May 15
    Maximum Award: Varies

  6. Alabama Environmental Health Association Scholarship

    Deadline: February 25
    Maximum Award: $1,000

  7. Freehold Soil Conservation Scholarship

    Deadline: May 13
    Maximum Award: $2,000

  8. Girls Impact the World Film Festival Green IS Award

    Deadline: March 1
    Maximum Award: $2,500

  9. National Park Service Fellowship

    Deadline: Varies
    Maximum Award: Varies

  10. RTK Scholars Program

    Deadline: Varies
    Maximum Award: $1,000

And don't forget, you should pay for your college education with as much free money as possible! Find as many scholarships and grants as you can before turning to student loans. Visit the Scholarships.com free college scholarship search today where you'll get matched with countless scholarships and grants for which you qualify, then apply and win! It’s that easy!

Comments (1)

by Susan Dutca

President Obama gets paid $400,000 per year to serve as President of the United States of America. Many college presidents get paid more for running a school than they would for being the leader of the free world, according to a new report from the Chronicle of Higher Education. Presidents at public universities received a median salary of $431,000 in the 2015 fiscal year, with a 4.3 percent increase. Five presidents have even entered the "million-dollar club", earning as much as $1.3 million annually. While the pay might be quite generous, being a college president has quickly become a job that's very hard to keep.

High-profile resignations or firings are becoming commonplace in the world of higher education. From heated race issues to sexual assault cases, being a college or university president has become more complex than it was a decade ago, according to The Washington Post. In addition to administrative responsibilities, presidents are increasingly responsible for pleasing alumni, faculty, and students because, "at any one time, one of those groups is upset about something." The University of Houston's President Renu Khato earned the highest salary at $1.3 million in 2015. Former University of Oregon President Mark Gottfredson followed with a total compensation of $1,215,142 and an additional $940,000 severance payout after he resigned amid controversy over the school's mishandling of a sexual assault case.

College presidents are taking on different roles, and future leadership may require individuals who don't necessarily follow "typical pathways through academia" and who don't come from traditional backgrounds. Candidates may need to keep up with evolving trends in teaching, learning and technology as well as being well-versed in finances as opposed to following conventional academic careers such as scholars, professors, and researchers. Only 30 percent of sitting provosts actually want to become a college president which is daunting, considering many of current college and university presidents are expected to retire. Who will rise up to the high-pay, high-turnover challenge?

In your opinion, should college and university residents get paid such high salaries or take a pay cut? Leave us your thoughtful comments below.

And don't forget, you should pay for your college education with as much free money as possible! Find as many scholarships and grants as you can before turning to student loans. Visit the Scholarships.com free college scholarship search today where you'll get matched with countless scholarships and grants for which you qualify, then apply and win! It’s that easy!

Comments (11)

by Susan Dutca

Not even a day after the FBI announced her "extremely careless" dissemination of sensitive and classified information via a private server, Hillary Clinton proposed a tuition-free college program for roughly 80 percent of American families. Amidst the email traffic scandal, Clinton is moving forward and attempting to handle a new beast: college affordability.

Clinton, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, also feels the Bern when it comes to college tuition. But unlike Bernie Sanders - who proposed free public higher education for all - she proposed "debt-free" education for students from families with incomes of up to $125,000. The plan, aimed to entice young voters, would offer free tuition to families earning $85,000 a year at first and gradually increase to a $125,000 threshold by 2021. Furthermore, she pledged to restore year-round Pell grants and impose a three-month moratorium on all repayments for federal student loans, which would allow borrowers to finance their loans or move into income-based repayment options.

Clinton herself cautioned young Bernie supporters in the past saying, "When somebody tells you something is free, ask for the fine print." With a looming national debt exceeding $19T ($1.3T of which is student loan debt), freebies may seem appealing. However, the issue of tuition inflation persists. Incentives such as these are not available to hardworking parents and incentivize families to make a calculated goal to meet the bare minimum requirements, and nothing beyond it. Furthermore, students who have spent years paying off their student loan debt will not be receiving any reimbursement checks. Many taxpayers who wouldn't receive any benefits from the program (those who have already paid college tuition for their progeny or don't have kids) are forced to pay into programs they may not support.

Though Clinton may face consequences as large as losing her security clearance, she made no comments regarding the FBI's address and instead focused on solving one of the nation's largest debt issues.

In your opinion, do you think a free college education program is feasible? Do you think it will help alleviate or solve the student debt issue? Leave your thoughtful opinions below to start a discussion.

Going to college doesn't have to break the bank or saddle you with tens of thousands of dollars in student loan debt. Check out the Scholarships.com free college scholarship search where you’ll discover you qualify for hundreds of thousands of dollars in scholarships in just a few minutes, then apply and win! It’s that easy!

Comments (21)

by Susan Dutca

Don't have the necessary funds to pay your college tuition? That may be a problem if you plan to attend colleges or universities like Haverford College, where they will suspend their admissions office's "need blind" application review policy, at least temporarily. Dropping the commitment to need-blind admissions is a concern among the fairly short list of private colleges; those that historically have had large enough endowments to be able to offer all students admission without the need for the student and/or parent to take out student loans. Some students have spoken out claiming that this isn't a form of diversifying but rather, "financially viable diversity."

Haverford claims the "changes will be modest" and applicants will be reviewed and admitted as they were in the past - without regard to financial need. Once the college depletes its available funds, the last 10-15 students admitted "will be those who can be admitted without going outside the aid budget." Haverford already anticipates it will run out of money before admitting the entire class but students believe that "there will always be money for things [we] value." The college will maintain its commitment to low-income students, according to the Dean of Admissions.

Other changes in admissions include an increase in class size by roughly seven students yearly; without affecting the "prized" faculty-student ratio. Haverford's President Kimberly W. Benston wrote that the changes are due to "financial challenges created by shifts in the college's demographics and the growing financial need of students in recent years" as well as the “economic downturn that hit in 2008."

Haverford is considered a very well-heeled private institution, with competitive admissions and an endowment "just shy of a half a billion dollars." Do you think this is the best possible way to remain within budget while admitting the incoming class? Is there a better way? Leave us your thoughtful comments below.

And remember, there’s no need to rely on expensive student loan options to pay for your college education. For more information on finding free scholarship money for college, conduct a Scholarships.com free college scholarship search today, then apply and win! It’s that easy!

Comments (0)

by Susan Dutca

JetBlue is helping higher education dreams take flight by offering to pay their student-employees' entire tuition bill. College tuition reimbursement is a recent trend by employer-sponsored programs, but this company is allowing their employees to soar through college by paying it all up front.

Some other employer-sponsored college degree programs - like the Starbucks College Achievement Plan - offer to reimburse students once they've earned their degree, help cover a portion of courses costs, or other discounts. The JetBlue Scholars program is offering to pay for employees' associate's degrees. Students wishing to earn a bachelor's degree and who have earned at least 15 college credits will have to pay $3,500 for capstone courses on their own or through scholarships. JetBlue is partnering with Thomas Edison State University - an online, public university in New Jersey to offer the aforementioned degrees. Since its debut in August, 400 JetBlue employees have applied for the program and each student receives in-person coaching and mentorship from one of six JetBlue’s success coaches. Roughly 1,000 of its 18,000 employees are anticipated to participate in the program annually.

Students are able to use their job skills, knowledge, and experience and apply them as learning credits. Though it may not feel like the typical college experience, it is particularly convenient for adults, employees, and nontraditional students. To help those who have been out of school for a while, the coaches "apply to Thomas Edison Sate on behalf of the students" and monitor their credit transfers, provide the different degree options, and create a course schedule for the students. The online program runs through three platforms, including StraighterLine, Sophia Learning, and Study.com.

Is it too good to be true? One professor thinks this initiative is just a way to make the headlines and isn't so much about what's in the student's best interest but rather, it "is being set up on terms favorable for the company." Nonetheless, it's likely that more companies will follow in Starbucks' and JetBlue's footsteps. Other large corporations such as Pizza Hut, Anthem Insurance, and Fiat Chrysler have also jumped on this initiative.

You can pay for any college costs with scholarships. Whether you owe $3,500 or $35,000 there are easy to large dollar scholarships to help reduce your overall cost of attending college. Take JetBlue's advice (and ours) and help foot the rest of your bill with scholarships.

And remember, there’s no need to rely on expensive student loan options to pay for your college education. For more information on finding free scholarship money for college, conduct a Scholarships.com free college scholarship search today, then apply and win! It’s that easy!

Comments (25)

by Susan Dutca

What happens when half a million students are forced to take zero credit, remedial college courses? Parents and students must pay roughly $1.5 million and borrow $350 billion extra a year - even if 74 percent of those students end up delaying college or dropping out. Not only does it break the bank for low-income families, but yes, the affluent families as well. Who's to blame for college unpreparedness?

According to a new report by researchers at Education Reform Now, "American families across all income levels are spending billions each year in extra college costs." Though the common perception is that remedial courses are only available for low-income students or community colleges, it extends to middle, upper-middle, high-income, and many colleges of well. In particular, some of the most affluent students at private nonprofit four-year colleges (the top 20 percent) are taking more remedial courses than students from the bottom 20 percent of national family incomes. Statistics show that over $12,000 extra has been spent by unprepared students from the top income quintile (incomes over $113,440) attending private nonprofit institutions. On average, about $3,000 is paid extra, and $1,000 borrowed to complete remedial courses. Additionally, unprepared students are more likely to delay completing college - or simply drop out. The issue of college unpreparedness is not limited to minority or low-income students, but it penetrates all income levels.

But who's to blame? Researchers point to the "expansive failure of our K-12 education system" and recommend giving secondary assessment when accessing college readiness. Some believe that we are focusing on the wrong topics and should, for example, teach statistics and not algebra since it will be more practical and useful post-college. Others blame the way in which students are evaluated through the "traditional method of scoring." Proponents of the Common Core State Standards, including President Obama and even some conservative allies believe that the "common-sense logic" is premised on the skills necessary to successfully participate and compete in the 21st-century economy and global market. Some schools have already addressed the issue by implementing a "corequisite remediation" model which allows students to take for-credit courses while being enrolled in a "learning support class to help them master the material."

Should both high schools and students be held accountable for their college readiness? Remedial courses are depleting students' financial aid and savings, and have them asking professors whether they know of any scholarships that are intended to help students who have run out of financial aid. You can count on ample scholarship opportunities here at Scholarships.com to leave you financially prepared for college costs. From easy scholarships where you hardly have to do anything to essay scholarships, you have the chance to help fund your higher education dreams.

And remember, there’s no need to rely on expensive student loan options to pay for your college education. For more information on finding free scholarship money for college, conduct a Scholarships.com free college scholarship search today, then apply and win! It’s that easy!

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