20 Physical Education Scholarships

Winning physical education scholarships will make it more affordable to reach your teaching goal of keeping youth healthy.

Physical education is a teacher certification major for fitness enthusiasts to gain the pedagogical skills for motivating K-12 students’ participation in physical activity. Former First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move campaign has sparked a greater focus on high-quality physical education. PE teachers are leading the way to help reverse inactivity trends that led to 20 percent of children ages 6-11 and 18 percent of children aged 12-19 becoming obese. Motivated teachers can work to relieve this epidemic in an education field poised for positive 10-year job growth at 8 percent.

Don’t sweat rising tuition because the following physical education scholarships can support your calling to boost students’ wellness.

Top Physical Education Scholarship Options Available

1. Alpha Delta Kappa Future Educator Scholarship

Deadline: March 1st

Alpha Delta Kappa, the international honor society for female teachers, offers a $1,000 Future Educator Scholarship to current members who are pursuing bachelor’s or master’s degrees in any teaching field, including physical education. Eligibility criteria requires attending an accredited U.S. teacher’s college, carrying a “B” academic average or higher, approaching their final two semesters, actively participating in volunteer activities, and attaching two university letters of recommendation.


Alpha Delta Kappa Future Educator Scholarship

1615 West 92nd. Street

Kansas City, MO 64114

(816) 363-5525


Scholarship Link

2. Bushaw-Redumis PLT Leadership Scholarships

Deadline: April 1st

Since 2010, Pi Lambda Theta has utilized a generous donation from William J. Bushaw, PhD, and his wife Irene to disburse several Bushaw-Redumis PLT Leadership Scholarships for $500 yearly. Eligible undergraduate members for this physical education scholarship must attend a regionally accredited college at least half-time, pursue a teaching major like physical education, excel academically with a major GPA of 3.5 or higher, and exhibit leadership capacity in PLT Chapter activities.


Bushaw-Redumis PLT Leadership Scholarships

320 W. Eighth Street Suite 216

Bloomington, IN 47404

(800) 766-1156


Scholarship Link

3. CANFIT Undergraduate Scholarships

Deadline: March 31st

Sponsored by the Tides Center, the California Adolescent Nutrition and Fitness (CANFIT) gifts two to five undergraduate physical education scholarships of up to $1,500 each. Funding is designed to support minority students of Black, Native American, Alaska Native, Asian, Pacific Islander, or Latino heritage who are earning bachelor’s degrees in nutrition or physical education. Having completed 50+ semester units at a WASC-accredited college in California with a minimum 2.5 GPA is required.


CANFIT Undergraduate Scholarships

P.O. Box 3989

Berkeley, CA 94703

(510) 644-1533


Scholarship Link

4. Carolyn D. Vanacore Athlete Scholarship

Deadline: June 15th

Worth $1,000 over two $500 installments, the Carolyn D. Vanacore Athlete Scholarship is granted by the Connecticut Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance (CTAHPERD) to support varsity athletes who are pursuing careers in fitness. Physical education majors must be female, attain junior or senior status, have lived in Connecticut, attend an accredited U.S. institution full-time, hold a 2.7 QPR or better, and write a 400-word essay about their athletic participation.


Carolyn D. Vanacore Athlete Scholarship

376 Buttonball Lane

Glastonbury, CT 06033

(860) 584-7812


Scholarship Link

5. Coach Kevin Ferguson Scholarship

Deadline: February 15th

Established in 1995, the John Randolph Foundation is one of Virginia’s 14 health legacy charities that’s provided over $16 million in tuition assistance, including the Coach Kevin Ferguson Scholarship. This $1,500, merit-based program selects seniors or graduates of Prince George County Public Schools who will pursue careers in physical education. Eligible applicants for this physical education scholarship must register for at least six credits per term, hold a cumulative GPA above 2.0, and display good sportsmanship.


Coach Kevin Ferguson Scholarship

112 North Main Street

P.O. Box 1606

Hopewell, VA 23860

(804) 458-2239


Scholarship Link

6. Dan Whitworth Memorial Scholarship

Deadline: March 31st

The Texas Amateur Athletic Federation (TAAF) bestows the Dan Whitworth Memorial Scholarship for $1,000 yearly upon college-bound seniors or current undergrads who are majoring in sports-related fields, such as physical education, kinesiology, movement science, or parks and recreation. Interested candidates must matriculate full-time at Texas universities, achieve a cumulative 2.5 GPA or greater, score at least 850 on the SAT or 21 on the ACT, and participate in athletic activities.


Dan Whitworth Memorial Scholarship

421 North IH 35

P.O. Box 1789

Georgetown, TX 78627

(512) 863-9400


Scholarship Link

7. Dorothea Deitz Endowed Scholarship

Deadline: March 31st

Created by 39-time Grand Slam tennis champion Billie Jean King in 1974, the Women’s Sport Foundation manages the Dorothea Deitz Endowed Scholarship to encourage female students to enroll in physical education programs for teacher certification. To earn $1,000, applicants to these physical education scholarships must have graduated from New York State high schools, participated in varsity athletics, attained a minimum “B” average overall, contributed to community service, and shown physical education competence.


Dorothea Deitz Endowed Scholarship

1899 Hempstead Turnpike Suite 400

East Meadow, NY 11554

(516) 307-3915


Scholarship Link

8. Dr. Alvin & Monica Saake Scholarship

Deadline: January 31st

Named after the late University of Hawai’i basketball team head coach and his wife, the Dr. Alvin & Monica Saake Scholarship is conferred by the Hawai’i Community Foundation (HCF) for $1,000 to $2,500 annually. Accepted majors include athletic training, sports medicine, physical education, leisure studies, and kinesiology. Interested applicants for this physical education scholarship must also be college juniors or higher, possess a minimum 2.7 GPA, legally reside in Hawai’i, attend four-year, nonprofit U.S. institutions, and need financial assistance.


Dr. Alvin & Monica Saake Scholarship

4139 Hardy Street Suite C

Lihue, Hawaii 96766

(808) 566-5570


Scholarship Link

9. Jane Maver & Ray Anne Shrader Scholarship

Deadline: March 1st

The Department of Health and Kinesiology at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana, gifts the Jane Maver & Ray Anne Shrader Scholarship for $1,000 to support juniors and seniors in the undergraduate curriculum for physical education. Following Dr. Joy Greenlee’s specifications, applicants must have completed 45+ credits in residence, show promise in student teaching, sustain a minimum overall GPA of 3.5, and participate in campus activities.


Jane Maver & Ray Anne Shrader Scholarship

800 West Stadium Avenue

West Lafayette, IN 47907

(765) 494-8482


Scholarship Link

10. JCC of North America Graduate Scholarship

Deadline: February 1st

Valued at $10,000 per year, the Jewish Community Center Association of North America provides a Graduate Scholarship program for students of any faith who agree to work at any JCC nationwide for two years post-graduation. Eligible recipients will be pursuing their first master’s degree full-time at accredited U.S. institutions in accepted fields, including physical education, health education, early childhood education, and recreation management.


JCC of North America Graduate Scholarship

520 Eighth Avenue

New York, NY 10018

(212) 786-5093


Scholarship Link

11. Karen J. Dowd Leadership Scholarship

Deadline: September 23rd

The Oklahoma Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (OAHPERD) awards the Karen J. Dowd Leadership Scholarship for up to $1,000 to current members in good standing who are studying relevant majors, including PE. Appropriate applicants for this physical education scholarship will be juniors or seniors with over 60 college-level credits, matriculate full-time at Oklahoma universities, present a grade point average over 3.0, and write a 500-word professional philosophy essay.


Karen J. Dowd Leadership Scholarship

7777 S. Lewis Avenue

Tulsa, OK 74171

(918) 495-6161


Scholarship Link

12. Mary Lampe Scholarship Program

Deadline: February 15th

The Minnesota Society of Health and Physical Educators started the Mary Lampe Scholarship Program to honor the UMN coach who testified before the U.S. Senate in Title IX hearings about female discrimination in sports. For the $500 award, nominees must be SHAPE America Central District members, pursue undergrad or post-grad study in physical education full-time, contribute to movements for healthy active lifestyles, and provide an itemized financial need statement.


Mary Lampe Scholarship Program

801 Hamilton Drive

Duluth, MN 55811

(218) 726-7120


Scholarship Link

13. Mildred Murray Scholarship Fund

Deadline: February 21st

At Towson University, the College of Health Professions (CHP) houses several scholarships for physical education, such as the Mildred Murray Scholarship Fund. This $2,400 program selects full-time juniors and seniors who are completing the physical education program for Maryland teacher licensure with a cumulative GPA of 2.5 or better. Preference for these physical education scholarships is given to students participating in inter-scholastic athletics. Also consider the Stephen C. Broy Memorial and Jennifer L. Thomas Memorial Scholarships.


Mildred Murray Scholarship Fund

8000 York Road

Towson, MD 21252

(410) 704-2376


Scholarship Link

14. Robert Hampton Student Scholarship

Deadline: May 22nd

The Robert Hampton Student Scholarship was opened by the South Carolina Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance (SCAHPERD) to distribute $1,000 to full-time juniors or seniors who are obtaining baccalaureate majors related to their mission. Physical education students should hold 75+ non-remedial credits, carry a minimum “B” average, participate in state or national organizations, serve as good role models to children, and have verifiable financial need.


Robert Hampton Student Scholarship

1301 Columbia College Drive

Columbia, SC 29203

(803) 786-3384


Scholarship Link

15. Ruby P. “Bela” Herlong Scholarship

Deadline: March 10th

At Winthrop University, the NCATE-accredited Richard W. Riley College of Education offers the Ruby P. “Bela” Herlong Scholarship for $500 to $1,000 to South Carolina residents who are majoring in elementary education or physical education with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or better. First preference is given to undergraduates from Saluda County, including Batesburg-Leesville and Monetta. Students must subject a three-page application, resume, 500-word personal statement, and two faculty references.


Ruby P. “Bela” Herlong Scholarship

701 Oakland Avenue

Rock Hill, SC 29733

(803) 323-2151


Scholarship Link

16. Ruth Abernathy Presidential Scholarship

Deadline: October 15th

Annually, the Ruth Abernathy Presidential Scholarship honors her 1954-56 SHAPE America leadership by presenting $1,250 to three bachelor’s and $1,750 to two master’s or doctoral students who are studying health education, physical education, dance, and recreation. Eligibility criteria requires having at least 12 months of college remaining, registering at accredited four-year U.S. institutions, excelling with a 3.5 GPA or better, being a current SHAPE member, and displaying strong character.


Ruth Abernathy Presidential Scholarship

1900 Association Drive

Reston, VA 20191

(703) 476-9527


Scholarship Link

17. Sam and Peggy Johnson PE Scholarship

Deadline: March 11th

The Sam and Peggy Johnson PE Scholarship stands out among Bemidji State University’s physical education scholarships for providing the largest amount at $3,000. The College of Health Sciences & Human Ecology seeks applicants who are working toward their bachelor’s degree full-time, have 30 or more credits, major in physical education for teacher certification, and show involvement in departmental activities. Other PE funds include the Otto Erickson Memorial and Hazel Leland Scholarships.


Sam and Peggy Johnson PE Scholarship

1500 Birchmont Drive NE #29

Bemidji, MN 56601

(218) 755-2940


Scholarship Link

18. Stacy Stover Memorial Scholarship

Deadline: February 1st

The Community Foundation of Findlay-Hancock County administers the Stacy Stover Memorial Scholarship to remember the Bluffton College alumna who worked for McComb Schools, played for Findlay City Coed Volleyball, and volunteered at Open Arms Shelter. Interested Ohioans must be graduating from Patrick Henry High School or Hancock County High School, enter teacher preparation programs like physical education full-time, be U.S. citizens, maintain a 2.0 GPA or better through high school, and have financial need.


Stacy Stover Memorial Scholarship

101 W. Sandusky Street Suite 207

Findlay, OH 45840

(419) 425-1100


Scholarship Link

19. Ted and Eloise Pfeiff Scholarship

Deadline: February 15th

Graduating high school seniors from Iowa’s Davenport, Bettendorf, and Pleasant Valley districts could qualify for the Ted and Eloise Pfeiff Scholarship from the Community Foundation of Great River Bend (CFGRB). This renewable fund worth $14,000 total offers $3,000 for the first two years and $4,000 for the last two years. Qualified candidates must be pursuing a bachelor’s degree in any education major, such as physical education, with academic excellence.


Ted and Eloise Pfeiff Scholarship

852 Middle Road Suite 100

Bettendorf, IA 52722

(563) 326-2840


Scholarship Link

20. William A. Crawford Minority Scholarship

Deadline: September 4th

The Indiana Commission for Higher Education publicly funds the William A. Crawford Minority Scholarship to grant up to $4,000 for Black and Hispanic students who are pursuing a course of study for teaching licensure, including physical education. Scholarship terms require teaching in Indiana public schools for at least three years post-graduation. Eligible applicants must be U.S. citizens, attend Indiana universities full-time, pursue their first bachelor’s degree, and complete a FAFSA form.


William A. Crawford Minority Scholarship

101 W. Ohio Street Suite 300

Indianapolis, IN 46204

(317) 464-4400


Scholarship Link

We aren’t playing games when we say college costs are at an all-time high. Over the past 20 years, tuition has risen steadily faster than inflation and wage increases. Bachelor’s and master’s degree expenses can be tough to swallow on the modest average salary of $48,468 for physical education teachers. Financial aid packages filled with free scholarships are vital to protect your teaching future from vast loan debt. Slim down your tuition bills and get your finances in shape with some of these 25 scholarships for physical education.

GCD Staff

See also:

This concludes our coverage of the top physical education scholarships available today.