Private Scholarships

About Private Scholarships

Sponsors of private scholarships are motivated to offer awards for a variety of reasons — to help students pay for college, to promote their industry or company, or to honor their heritage or a loved one.

How to apply

Most private scholarships have their own applications and may require documentation from you such as a copy of your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or your transcript. You may need to arrange for recommendation letters. They may also have a deadline that is different than college application deadlines.

Rules and conditions

Before you apply for any scholarship, read the rules and conditions carefully. You will need to follow the sponsor's rules to keep from having to pay back the award.

Your financial aid offer

In addition, these scholarships and awards may affect your UMKC financial aid package. Email us with the name and amount of any outside scholarships or awards you receive.

Search for Private Scholarships

There are thousands of private scholarships for students — and just as many ways to qualify. Most require that you do well academically and demonstrate a financial need. But not all awards use the same criteria.  Finding the right scholarships to apply to requires time, research, diligence and patience.

Popular searches

Popular scholarship searches include by major, year in school, sports or other activity and anything that makes you unique or sets you apart.

Scholarship search sites

We have provided links to independently run scholarship search sites. Inclusion in this list is not an endorsement by UMKC.

More outside scholarship resources

Avoid Scholarship Scams

If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Trust your instincts. If you’re suspicious about an offer, you might have a good reason.

An outside scholarship might be a scam if it offers any of these conditions.

  • You have to spend money to get money. Legitimate scholarship providers don’t charge application fees, redemption fees or up-front taxes. They do not ask students to make investments.
  • They want bank account or credit card information. Trustworthy donors won’t ask for a credit card number to hold your award.
  • It’s guaranteed. No one can guarantee that you’ll receive a scholarship, and any promise of a money-back guarantee is a red flag.
  • You can’t find the information anywhere else. Scholarship agencies don’t keep information secret  they want to award scholarships. If a service promises to provide funds no one else knows about, be suspicious.
  • You win a contest you don’t remember entering. If you receive a message saying you’ve been selected for an award or you’re a finalist in a competition you’ve never heard of, it might be a scam.