Scholarships for single parents reward mothers and fathers with free tuition money to afford returning to the college classroom.
The U.S. Census Bureau estimates that 13.7 million single parents are raising nearly 22 million children nationwide. Around one-quarter of these parents have incomes below the poverty level. Juggling parenthood, careers, and college coursework on one salary is overwhelming for most. Custodial parents often depend on government assistance to keep their children fed, sheltered, and thriving.
Many public and private agencies have also reserved scholarship money to empower single moms and dads with higher learning. The following are 20 scholarships for single parents to finish their degree, find better-paying jobs, and better their children’s lives.
Ranking the Great Scholarships for Single Dads and Single Moms
1. Arkansas Single Parent Scholarship Fund
Deadline: March 15th
Funded by the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation, the Arkansas Single Parent Scholarship Fund (ASPSF) grants several one-time scholarships of $500 to $1,750 for single mothers and fathers who have full custody of at least one dependent child under 18. Eligible applicants must reside in participating Arkansas counties, have completed a diploma or GED, take six or more credits at an accredited college, carry a minimum 2.5 GPA, and pursue their first bachelor’s or Master of Arts in Teaching degree.
Arkansas Single Parent Scholarship Fund
614 East Emma Avenue
Springdale, AR 72764
2. Bernice Murray Scholarship Award
Deadline: March 4th
Created by U.S. Senator James M. Jeffords in honor of his long-time aide, the Bernice Murray Scholarship Award is presented by the Vermont Student Assistance Corporation (VASC) for $2,000 annually. Qualified recipients must be single parents with primary custody of children under 13 years old and lack the monetary means for attending an accredited Vermont college approved for Title IV funding. Undergraduate finalists must complete a personal interview.
Bernice Murray Scholarship Award
10 East Allen Street
Winooski, VT 05404
3. Bethel Foundation Grace Scholarships
Deadline: October 15th or June 15th
The Bethel Foundation established the Grace Scholarships to award $1,500 each semester or $3,000 yearly to single female heads of household who have sole custody of one or more children under 18 years old. Eligible mothers must be U.S. citizens, have completed high school or a GED certificate, pursue career-oriented college study, live near the poverty level, qualify for the Federal Pell Grant, and show perseverance in bettering their children’s lives.
Bethel Foundation Grace Scholarships
13003 North Western Avenue
Oklahoma City, OK 73114
4. Bruce and Marjorie Sundlun Scholarships
Deadline: May 13th
Valued at $1,500 apiece, the Rhode Island Foundation grants the Bruce and Marjorie Sundlun Scholarships for single parents who are pursuing college-level study at an accredited two- or four-year institution for their first undergraduate degree. To apply, candidates must reside in Rhode Island, meet low-income poverty guidelines, and maintain at least half-time enrollment. Preference is given to single parents who’ve received state aid or been incarcerated.
Bruce and Marjorie Sundlun Scholarships
1 Union Station
Providence, RI 02903
5. Capture the Dream Single Parent Scholarship
Deadline: June 30th
Moms and dads living in California’s Bay Area, including Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano, and Sonoma counties, could cash in the Capture the Dream Single Parent Scholarship for $1,000. Interested low-income applicants must have significant financial need, faced delays in their higher education, attend accredited non-profit California colleges, maintain a minimum 2.0 GPA, and have community service records.
Capture the Dream Single Parent Scholarship
484 Lake Park Avenue Suite 15
Oakland, CA 94610
6. EscrowTech Scholarship for Single Parents
Deadline: November 15th
EscrowTech International Inc. sponsors a $1,000 Scholarship for Single Parents to lessen the financial strain of earning a college degree while raising at least one child alone. Eligibility criteria requires being at least 18 years old, showing exemplary dedication to one’s family, attending an accredited U.S. university, and attaining a cumulative “B” average. Applicants must upload a two-minute YouTube video discussing how technology will affect their field’s future.
EscrowTech Scholarship for Single Parents
3290 West Mayflower Way
Lehi, UT 84043
7. Financial Success for Single Mothers Scholarship
Deadline: October 1st
To honor his own courageous mother, the founder of Furzy Marketing Inc. started the $750 Financial Success for Single Mothers Scholarship. Qualified women over age 18 must be raising at least one child alone, have attained a minimum 2.3 college GPA, and take 6+ units per semester at an accredited post-secondary school. To apply, create an article or video addressing how single moms can use Roth IRAs to improve their financial position.
Financial Success for Single Mothers Scholarship
570 El Camino Real Suite 150
Redwood City, CA 94063
8. Ford Opportunity Scholarship Program
Deadline: March 1st
Offering up to $25,000 per year, the Ford Opportunity Scholarship Program provides 90 percent of unmet financial need for single parents living in Oregon and California’s Siskiyou County. Suitable applicants must have a diploma or GED of 2650, have at least one year remaining for a bachelor’s degree, attend a participating in-state college full-time, verify a minimum overall GPA of 3.0, have no felony convictions, and exhibit strong moral character.
Ford Opportunity Scholarship Program
440 East Broadway Suite 200
Eugene, OR 97401
9. Flying Solo Single Parent Scholarships
Deadline: May 31st
The T&R Fund awards 50 Flying Solo Single Parent Scholarships yearly for $5,000 to full-time undergraduates at the University of Colorado-Colorado Springs, University of Colorado Denver, and Pikes Peak Community College who are also single fathers or mothers. Eligible candidates must have primary responsibility for a child under 18 years old, attain sophomore or higher status, earn at least 24 credits per year, possess a 2.5 cumulative GPA, and qualify for financial aid.
Flying Solo Single Parent Scholarships
1420 Austin Bluffs Parkway
Colorado Springs, CO 80918
10. Health Record Services Endowed Scholarship
Deadline: September 30th
Recently, the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) began the Health Record Services Endowed Scholarship for awarding $1,000 to $2,000 to single working mothers who are pursuing associate, bachelor’s, or master’s degrees in health informatics. Interested women must attend a CAHIIM-accredited college, actively enroll in six credits per term, achieve a cumulative GPA of 3.5, exhibit financial need, and be committed to the HIM profession.
Health Record Services Endowed Scholarship
233 North Michigan Avenue
Chicago, IL 60601
11. Lodestar Single Parent Scholarship Fund
Deadline: June 6th
Noted as one of America’s most profitable scholarships for single parents, the Lodestar Single Parent Scholarship Fund awards $18,000 to $26,000 annually through the Arizona Community Foundation. Eligible single moms and dads must be responsible at least half-time for children under 14, legally reside in Arizona, enroll full-time for at least 27 college credits per year, attend an Arizona-based nonprofit institution, and demonstrate financial need on the FAFSA form.
Lodestar Single Parent Scholarship Fund
2201 East Camelback Road Suite 405B
Phoenix, AZ 85016
12. Michele L. McDonald Memorial Scholarship
Deadline: April 30th
The Educational Foundation for Women in Accounting (EFWA) prefers gifting its $1,000 Michele L. McDonald Memorial Scholarship to hard-working mothers who are returning to college after raising children. To be eligible, single moms must be citizens of the United States, attend an accredited four-year business school, pursue a bachelor’s degree in accounting, have unmet financial need, and maintain satisfactory academic progress. There’s also the Women in Need Scholarship.
Michele L. McDonald Memorial Scholarship
136 South Keowee Street
Dayton, Ohio 45402
13. New Hampshire Adult Student Aid Program
Deadline: May 15th, August 15th, or December 15th
Ranging from $500 to $1,500, the New Hampshire Adult Student Aid Program supports scholarships for single parents who are looking to upgrade their skills at an accredited college or vocational school in New Hampshire. Qualified applicants must be at least 24 years old, pursue undergraduate-level study, and have considerable financial need. The Medallion Fund is reserved for automotive technology, plumbing, construction, heating, and other trades.
New Hampshire Adult Student Aid Program
37 Pleasant Street
Concord, NH 03301
14. Patsy Takemoto Mink Education Awards
Deadline: August 1st
The Patsy Takemoto Mink Education Awards provide $5,000 over two installments to cover tuition and living expenses for single mothers who are attending a nonprofit U.S. college for a certificate, associate, bachelor’s, master’s, or even doctoral degree. There’s no residency requirement, but qualified women must have custody of minor children, be at least 17, display academic merit, serve as community activists, and meet the Foundation’s low-income levels.
Patsy Takemoto Mink Education Awards
P.O. Box 479
Honolulu, HI 96809
15. Roadway Worker Memorial Scholarship
Deadline: February 15th
The American Traffic Safety Services Association (ATSSA) offers a Roadway Worker Memorial Scholarship that could provide $5,000 to single parents whose spouses were killed while working in roadway construction zones. Eligible recipients must have custody of surviving children, hold at least a diploma or GED, attend any public or private U.S. college, demonstrate detrimental financial need, and submit two letters of recommendation.
Roadway Worker Memorial Scholarship
15 Riverside Parkway Suite 100
Fredericksburg, VA 22406
16. Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers’ Single Mother Scholarships
Deadline: December 5th
Located in Chicago, the Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers Office promotes two $1,000 Single Mother Scholarships each year to moms who are either pursuing an undergraduate degree or attending an ABA-accredited law school. Applicants must have sole custody for at least one child under 18, keep up a minimum “B” average, and lack finances for school-related expenses. Finalists are selected based on their 500-word essay describing how motherhood has prepared them for academic success.
Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers’ Single Mother Scholarships
33 N Dearborn Street Suite 1930
Chicago, IL 60602
17. Scholarships4Dads Scholarship Program
Deadline: December 31st
Annually, the Scholarships4Dads Scholarship Program is hosted to provide several $10,000 awards to married and single fathers across the United States who are pursuing post-secondary education to advance their career and enhance their children’s lives. Eligible entrants must be at least 18 years old, enroll at an accredited two or four-year college within three months, and need extra help balancing school with family life. Competition is high because recipients for these single father scholarships are chosen by random drawing quarterly.
Scholarships4Dads Scholarship Program
4104 24th Street Suite 947
San Francisco, CA 94114
18. Soroptimist Live Your Dream Scholarships
Deadline: November 15th
Since 1972, Soroptimist International has awarded over $30 million in Live Your Dream Scholarships to support women, especially single moms, who have overcome large obstacles, such as poverty, domestic abuse, or drug addiction. To receive up to $10,000, candidates must be the primary breadwinner for their children, pursue accredited higher education, need tuition assistance, and not hold a graduate degree. Applications are accepted from the United States and international nations from Venezuela to Canada and Korea.
Soroptimist Live Your Dream Scholarships
1709 Spruce Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103
19. United Way of Siouxland Single Parent Scholarship
Deadline: May 25th
Partnered with Women Aware, United Way of Siouxland funds a Single Parent Scholarship for $1,000 to $5,000 to support single mothers and fathers who are raising children under 18 while furthering their college education. Interested parents must have resided in Siouxland for two years, work at least part-time, take six or more college credits, and need financial assistance. Eligible schools are Briar Cliff University, Morningside College, St. Luke’s College, and Western Iowa Tech Community College.
United Way of Siouxland Single Parent Scholarship
701 Steuben Street
Sioux City, IA 51101
20. Wyoming Women’s Opportunity Scholarship
Deadline: March 15th
The Wyoming Women’s Foundation presents a need-based Opportunity Scholarship for at least $1,000 annually to single parents who are enrolling full-time or part-time at the University of Wyoming or its outreach schools. Selection criteria includes attaining at least junior status, pursuing a bachelor’s or master’s degree, qualifying for federal financial aid, maintaining an overall GPA of 2.0 or better, and supporting a positive family life.
Wyoming Women’s Opportunity Scholarship
1472 North 5th Street Suite 201
Laramie, WY 82072
Securing a bright future for your children often begins with college. The Center on Education and the Workforce reports that bachelor’s degree holders earn 74 percent more than high school grads. A bachelor’s degree has an average lifetime value of $2.3 million! Finding enough money to afford rising tuition while providing for youngsters is a big challenge though. Luckily, single moms and dads have access to special scholarship funds that can dramatically lower out-of-pocket expenses. Apply for some of these 20 great scholarships for single parents to overcome financial strife with a degree.
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This concludes our coverage of top scholarships for single dads and single moms to make the college experience more doable.