Last Dollar Scholarship

Up until this point, you’ve done everything right – filled out your college applications early, applied for scholarships often, submitted your FAFSA as soon as possible – but still college is beyond your reach. Then a last dollar scholarship may be just what you need to cover those minor expenses. These "last dollars" are intended to fill the gap between students' financial aid and the real costs of college, such as computers, books and supplies, room and board and even graduation expenses. A last dollar scholarship is awarded to a student whose official Expected Family Contribution (EFC), located on your Student Aid Report, and financial aid packages totals are less than the cost of tuition and fees. Last dollar scholarships vary greatly from state to state and can be the determining factor, in some cases, as to whether a student will attend college or not.

If college is just an arm’s length away don’t panic, there are countless options available to fund your education. The College Opportunity Resources for Education (CORE) Philadelphia Last Dollar Scholarship offers up to $2,000 to Philadelphia high school seniors to help pay first-year college expenses. The Howard P. Rawlings Guaranteed Access Grant provides an award from the State of Maryland which, when combined with the Federal Pell Grant and the EFC, will help cover the cost of full-time study at a Maryland college or university. Below are just some of the last dollar scholarship awards available to high school and college students. You can find more information on these and other awards by completing a profile and conducting a free college scholarship search on

Last Edited: November 2015

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