Niche College Scholarship

Prestigious Scholarships

There are a few scholarships out there that ring a bell to most students because, not only do they offer big bucks, they also come with a fair amount of prestige. Although they tend to be more competitive than other scholarships, the work invested into lengthier applications can pay off significantly if won, as they come with impressive award amounts.

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Prestigious scholarships are known on a national, and, often, on an international level. Winning one of these could do more for you than help cover college costs. Recipients are able to boast that they were chosen among thousands of applicants and display their achievement on their resumes. These awards typically target the best and the brightest youth - grades, standardized test scores, extracurricular activities and community service will matter when it comes to competing. Less tangible criteria will matter as well; scholarship providers for these awards want to see leaders, go-getters, and motivated individuals. As long as you're eligible for one of these prestigious scholarships, you may as well apply and put the effort in to apply to the best of your ability. For more information on prestigious scholarships, check out examples of the kinds of awards available below, or conduct a free scholarship search. We'll match you instantly with prestigious scholarships you may be eligible for.

Academic and Merit Scholarships

Most of the prestigious scholarship providers want to see your academic record; paying attention to your GPA, the kinds of courses you took on in high school, and your level of college preparedness. You may need to be near the top of your class, or have impressive standardized test scores. Many of these awards will spell out in their official rules and requirements the caliber of applicant they'll consider for their scholarship. For example, the Coca-Cola Scholars Program awards 250 scholarships each year ranging up to $20,000. Applicants for that award must have at least a 3.0 GPA to compete. The Harry S. Truman Scholarship Program provides up to $30,000 to students in the upper quarter of their junior class. Applicants for this award and many others must also boast an interest in community service and leadership skills, so even if you have a stellar GPA, you may need to get yourself involved in more extracurricular activities to compete for the most prestigious academic and merit scholarships.

Fellowships and Grants

Many of the most prestigious awards come with more than checks sent to your intended college. For example, the more than 100-year-old Rhodes Scholarship offers recipients the opportunity to study at the University of Oxford. About 80 Rhodes Scholars are chosen from a pool of international applicants, with American students typically very well represented among those chosen for the honor. Scholars are chosen based on not only their achievements, but their ability to lead and be involved in a variety of activities. The National Science Foundation (NSF) offers a Graduate Research Fellowship Program for graduate students pursuing science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Recipients are expected to contribute to research in their field, as is the requirement for many of the fellowships from research organizations out there. If you’re interested in expanding your career opportunities and experiences in your chosen field of study, a fellowship or grant could help you do that.

Prestigious Scholarships for Minorities

Minority scholarships aren't only easy to find due to the large number of awards out there, many of them are also quite prestigious. Those chosen to become Ron Brown Scholars are given $10,000 for four years; at least 10 African-American high school seniors receive the honor annually. Those who do are involved in community service, excel academically, and exhibit leadership potential. As you can see, your funding concerns could be alleviated if you landed one of these scholarships, so make sure to consider minority scholarships when you're on the hunt for money for college.

Overseas Press Club Foundation Awards

  • Amount $4,000
  • Deadline December 1, 2023

Graduate and undergraduate students, studying at American colleges and universities or Americans studying abroad, who aspire to become foreign correspondents, are invited to apply for one of the scholarships or fellowships to be awarded by the Overseas Press Club Foundation. Students win either a grant or funding for their overseas experience. In many cases, winning a prestigious OPC Foundation ... Read more

MMUF Dissertation Grants

  • Amount $30,000
  • Deadline December 1, 2023

The MMUF Advancement Program Fellows bring diverse perspectives to their graduate studies and careers in the academy, ensuring their perspectives are shared within their disciplines and with their students. Fellows are alumni of the Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship (MMUF) program and gather to prepare graduate school applications, receive funding for additional research, and professional ... Read more

University of Louisville McConnell Scholars Program

  • Amount $50,528
  • Deadline December 15, 2023

The McConnell Scholars Program is a prestigious enrichment program aimed at Kentucky residents who have demonstrated outstanding leadership potential and are committed to the principles of scholarship, leadership and service. There are 10 awards given each year, and the program has produced more than 200 successful alumni. The program is open to Kentucky high school graduates with a minimum 3.5 ... Read more

Colorado Mesa University's Distinguished Scholar Award

  • Amount $36,824
  • Deadline December 31, 2023

Colorado Mesa University's Distinguished Scholar Award is the most prestigious academic award for incoming freshmen and is valued at full tuition and fees for Colorado Residents and $6,000 per academic year for out-of-state students. To qualify, applicants must satisfy two of the three following criteria: 3.75 GPA, top 5% of graduating class, or a 29 ACT/1340 combined SAT. The scholarship can be ... Read more

Boren Scholarships

  • Amount $25,000
  • Deadline January 31, 2024

Boren Scholarships, a prestigious initiative of the National Security Education Program, provide unique funding opportunities for U.S. undergraduate students to study less commonly taught languages in world regions critical to U.S. interests, and underrepresented in study abroad, including Africa, Asia, Central and Eastern Europe, Eurasia, Latin America, and the Middle East. In exchange for ... Read more

National Merit Scholarship Corporation Program

  • Amount $2,500
  • Deadline January 31, 2024

National Merit Scholarship Program: How to Qualify and Apply What is the National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC)? The National Merit Scholarship Corporation has a long-standing commitment to recognizing and celebrating the academic achievements of U.S. students. Founded in 1955, its primary mission is to highlight the brilliance of young minds and promote a deeper respect for ... Read more

Ernest F. Hollings Undergraduate Scholarship

  • Amount $19,000
  • Deadline January 31, 2024

The Ernest F. Hollings Undergraduate Scholarship Scholarship Program provides successful undergraduate applicants with awards that include academic assistance for two years of full-time study and a 10-week, full-time paid internship at an NOAA facility during the summer. Applicants must be U.S. citizens, currently enrolled or accepted as a full-time second-year student in a four-year academic ... Read more

Augustana University Distinguished Scholar Competition

  • Amount $92,000
  • Deadline February 1, 2024

To be considered for scholarships at Augustana, students must complete the free Application for Admission and Scholarship. Students must be full-time and in good academic standing to maintain these scholarships. Augustana University scholarships are awarded to assist with direct educational costs for tuition, fees, university-owned housing and board. Augustana Academic Scholarships are ... Read more

Kenneth Hugh MacDonald Sr., Broadcasting Scholarship

  • Amount Varies
  • Deadline February 9, 2024

Education is vital to the growth and future of every community. Because of this, the Saginaw Community Founda­tion administers a variety of scholarship programs for high school, community college, university and vocational stu­dents. Since awarding our first $500 scholarship in 1987, the Saginaw Community Foundation has awarded more than $8 million in scholarships. Learn more about all of our ... Read more

Shelton National Leadership Scholarship

  • Amount $20,000
  • Deadline February 9, 2024

The Shelton Leadership Center’s values-based leadership development programs now reach youth, college students, and professionals at NC State University and other higher education institutions, corporations, government entities, nonprofits, and youth development organizations. His values-based leadership approach is based on five values: honesty, integrity, diversity, compassion, and social ... Read more

Davidson Fellows Scholarship

  • Amount $50,000
  • Deadline February 14, 2024

The Davidson Fellows Scholarship awards scholarships to extraordinary young people, 18 and under, who have completed a significant piece of work. Application categories are Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics, Literature, Music, Philosophy and Outside the Box. Davidson Fellows are honored every year in Washington, D.C. with Congressional meetings and a special reception. Applicants must ... Read more

NDSGC Lillian Goettler Scholarship

  • Amount $2,500
  • Deadline February 15, 2024

The NDSGC has established the prestigious Lillian Goettler Space Grant Award for a female student at North Dakota State University. Applicants must be majoring in a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, or Mathematics) field, provide transcripts that demonstrate a 3.5 GPA, and be US citizens. Applicants will ideally be involved in a research project of NASA relevance. Undergraduate and graduate ... Read more

NDSGC Pearl I. Young Scholarship

  • Amount $2,500
  • Deadline February 15, 2024

The NDSGC has established the prestigious Pearl I. Young Space Grant Award for a student at the University of North Dakota. Applicants will ideally be involved in a research project of NASA relevance. Eligible applicants must have a female gender identity or outside the gender binary, be majoring in a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, or Mathematics) field, provide transcripts that ... Read more

Ripon College Knop Science Scholars Program

  • Amount Varies
  • Deadline March 1, 2024

The Knop Science Scholarship is a prestigious four-year, full tuition scholarship based on tuition figures for the year to which the award money will be applied. The Ripon College Knop Science Scholars Board convenes each year at the beginning of the second semester. The mission of the board is to identify high-achieving students who show the potential to contribute greatly to the science and ... Read more

Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program

  • Amount $5,000
  • Deadline March 8, 2024

The U.S. Department of State’s Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program enables students of limited financial means to study or intern abroad, providing them with skills critical to our national security and economic prosperity. To be eligible for the Gilman Program, applicants must be receiving a Federal Pell Grant during the time of application or provide proof that they will be ... Read more

MMUF Travel & Research Grants

  • Amount $5,000
  • Deadline March 10, 2024

The prestigious MMUF Travel & Research Grants are available to graduate students who participated in the Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship Program. The grants provide eligible graduate students with the financial means to complete their research prior to the start of dissertation writing. Funding is $5,000 for one summer or one semester of travel and/or research support. Applicants must be ... Read more

NIH Undergraduate Scholarship Program

  • Amount $80,000
  • Deadline April 3, 2024

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) Undergraduate Scholarship Program offers competitive, prestigious scholarships to students from disadvantaged backgrounds who are committed to careers in biomedical, behavioral, and social science health-related research. The program offers scholarship support, paid research training at the NIH during the summer, and paid employment and training at the NIH ... Read more

U.S. Stockholm Junior Water Prize

  • Amount $15,000
  • Deadline April 15, 2024

The U.S. Stockholm Junior Water Prize (SJWP) was founded in 1997 by the Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI) to complement the Stockholm Water Prize. The SJWP is the world's most prestigious award presented to a high school student for a water-research project. Since the prize's inception, WEF has conducted the U.S. SJWP to send a national winner to the international competition. The ... Read more

Oregon Music Hall of Fame Scholarship

  • Amount $2,500
  • Deadline May 15, 2024

In addition to interactive musical presentations, OMHOF awards yearly scholarships to selected graduating Oregon high school seniors who have exhibited serious pursuit and accomplishment in their personal musicianship – and who are college-bound music majors. Recipients are publicly recognized at an award presentation where each performs onstage, demonstrating mastery of his/her ... Read more

Marshall Scholarship

  • Amount $85,000
  • Deadline September 22, 2024

The Marshall Scholarship is intended for candidates who have the potential to excel as scholars, as leaders and as contributors to improved UK-US understanding. In doing so, we recognise the value of diversity among applicants and promote equality of opportunity. The selection criteria are divided into three equally weighted categories: Academic Merit; Leadership Potential; and Ambassadorial ... Read more

Coca-Cola Scholars Program Scholarship

  • Amount $20,000
  • Deadline October 2, 2024

Coca-Cola Scholars Program: Your Chance to Win a $20,000 Scholarship The Coca-Cola Scholars Program celebrates high school seniors for their outstanding leadership skills, commitment to service, and the positive impact they've made in their schools and communities. Celebrating its 35th class, the Coca-Cola Scholars Program has proudly supported over 6,750 scholars with a grand total of $81 ... Read more

Luce Scholars Program

  • Amount Varies
  • Deadline October 16, 2024

The intent of the Luce Scholars Program is to provide an in-depth experience in Asia to young Americans who would not otherwise have the opportunity to immerse themselves in the country where they are placed. Eligible applicants must: be U.S. citizens or permanent residents; and may be graduating seniors, recent graduates, or young professionals under the age of 32, or if older than 32, ... Read more

Hertz Foundation Graduate Fellowship

  • Amount $38,000
  • Deadline October 27, 2024

The Hertz Foundation's Graduate Fellowship award, which is based on merit (not need) consists of a cost of education allowance and a personal support stipend. Eligible applicants for prestigious Hertz Fellowships must be students of the applied physical and biological sciences, mathematics, and engineering who are citizens or permanent residents of the United States of America, and who are ... Read more

Catawba College Socratic Scholarship

  • Amount $133,600
  • Deadline November 15, 2024

The Socratic Scholarship is the most prestigious scholarship award at Catawba. Qualified students will be invited to compete for a full-tuition scholarship on the basis of their high school grade point average, the rigor of their coursework and standardized test scores. To be considered, students must have a weighted GPA of 4.0 or greater or an unweighted GPA of 3.5 or greater and the student ... Read more

Levine Scholars Program

  • Amount $155,000
  • Deadline November 15, 2024

The Levine Scholars Program is UNC Charlotte's most prestigious merit scholarship program. Levine Scholarships are awarded to extraordinary high school seniors based on scholarship, ethical leadership, and civic engagement. Students must be applicants for freshman enrollment at UNC Charlotte in a baccalaureate program for the fall term immediately following their high school graduation. Students ... Read more

Charlotte W. Newcombe Dissertation Fellowships

  • Amount $31,000
  • Deadline November 15, 2024

Throughout history and across diverse cultures, religious commitments and ethical ideals have played a significant role. The Newcombe Fellows program is designed for late-stage Ph.D. students specializing in the humanities and social sciences, with a particular focus on research related to these commitments and ideals. Their work aims to delve into the intricacies of communities, social ... Read more

Cooke College Scholarship Program

  • Amount $55,000
  • Deadline November 16, 2024

The Cooke Foundation College Scholarship Program is a substantial undergraduate scholarship for high-achieving high school seniors with financial need. It aims to support students attending top four-year colleges and universities in the nation. Beyond financial aid, Cooke Scholars receive comprehensive educational advising, cohort-based programming, graduate school funding, and access to a ... Read more

NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program

  • Amount $49,000
  • Deadline Varies

The National Science Foundation supports fellowships for outstanding graduate students who are pursuing full-time, research-based masters and doctoral degrees in science, technology, engineering or math or STEM education. NSF GRFP was established to recruit and support individuals who demonstrate the potential to make significant contributions in STEM. Thus, NSF especially encourages ... Read more

David Geffen Medical Scholarships

  • Amount Varies
  • Deadline Varies

The David Geffen Medical Scholarships provide financial support to outstanding students entering DGSOM, including in-state tuition (if applicable, out-of-state tuition is covered for year one only), and a living stipend to be put towards the other expenses of medical school, including room and board, required books and supplies, health insurance, and transportation. The David Geffen Medical ... Read more

Winston Churchill Foundation of the USA Scholarship Program

  • Amount Varies
  • Deadline Varies

The prestigious Churchill Scholarship offers American students the opportunity to attend, for one year of study, the University of Cambridge for one of two Master’s degrees: the MPhil (Master of Philosophy) or MASt (Master of Advanced Study). An applicant for the Churchill Scholarship must be a citizen of the United States, either native born or naturalized, and must be a senior who is enrolled ... Read more

The Fulbright Program

  • Amount Varies
  • Deadline Varies

The Fulbright U.S. Student Program is a prestigious initiative that fosters cross-cultural exchange and academic and professional development. Operating in collaboration with over 140 countries worldwide, this program offers unparalleled opportunities to passionate and accomplished individuals from diverse backgrounds, including graduating college seniors, graduate students, and young ... Read more

NDSGC American Indian Scholarship

  • Amount $2,500
  • Deadline Varies

The goals of the North Dakota Space Grant Consortium are: to identify, recruit, and retain students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics; to encourage women and underrepresented students to enter these fields of study; and to increase NASA activities and awareness in North Dakota. Undergraduate scholarships will be awarded each school year. The amount of money available for ... Read more

Last Reviewed: November 2023