You, yes you! You are scholarship material because you have a story to tell. A story about perseverance, giving back, learning something new - that’s what scholarship essays are made of - stories. Use those stories to earn money to pay for college. Scholarships are money for college that you don’t have to repay. Scholarships can go a long way toward making college more affordable for students who are willing to put in the work to apply.

Montana Scholarships

We've curated a list of state, local, and a few national scholarships for Montana students. Our experience working with students and scholarships for many years has shown that students are typically more successful earning local scholarships, as there are generally fewer students competing for these awards compared to national scholarships.

Check out our Montana Scholarships

Stick with Scholarships

Stick with Scholarships

November is National Scholarship Month and Reach Higher Montana has got you covered with Stick with Scholarships. High school students have a chance to win one of six $500 scholarships by uploading a picture of one of our stickers. Opens Nov. 1 and closes Nov. 30.

To enter, students need to:

  • Grab a sticker from the sticker sheet. Check with your counselor (MORE stickers sheet are on the way!)
  • Put it on something. (water bottle, notebook, laptop, etc.)
  • Take a picture.
  • Upload it here.
  • Bonus - More ways to get entries after you upload your picture!

Our sticker sheets will be mailed out to all Montana high school counseling departments in late October. If you did not receive or need more stickers, email us at or get in touch with your advisor. All stickers are designed by Montana high school students who participated in our Design A Sticker Scholarship contest.

The details: Students must be a Montana high school student in grades 9-12 and plan on attending an accredited institution after high school. 

The contest will run Nov. 1 - Nov. 30. Prizes will be awarded by a random drawing on the following week. Winners will be posted on our Instagram and Facebook pages.

Prizes include: six $500 scholarships

Six (6) scholarships of $500 each will be awarded to four students via random drawing from all eligible Montana students (those in grades 9-12 during the 2023-2024 academic year) who complete the challenge. Students will have one year from their high school graduation date to claim their scholarship. Unclaimed scholarships will be forfeited. Scholarship funds will be paid directly to the accredited institution of the student's choice upon receipt of enrollment verification from the institution. Scholarships cannot be transferred to other individuals. Scholarship can be used at any accredited US institution. Student Assistance Foundation, Workmosis, and Reach Higher Montana employees and their immediate family are not eligible.

Reach Higher Montana Scholarship Opportunities

Reach Higher Montana Scholarship Opportunities

NEW! $500 Monthly Scholarship
Drawing 1st of the month
Attend a Reach Higher Montana presentation and get a chance to win a $500 scholarship, reach out to an Advisor to set one up.

Stick with Scholarships
Opens Nov. 1, closes Nov. 30
High school students have a chance to win one of six $500 scholarships, by posting a picture or video of one of our stickers to Instagram, Facebook, or Tik Tok and tagging us. This opportunity is open to all Montana high school students.

Design a Sticker, Win a Scholarship
Opens Feb.1, closes Feb. 28
Design our next sticker for a chance to earn a $1,500, $1,000 or $500 scholarship. Nine scholarships will be awarded, this opportunity is open to all Montana high school students.

NEW! It's Scholarship Time!
Opens Jan. 1, closes Mar. 1
One Application, Multiple Scholarships.     

  • $2,000 Reach Higher Montana Scholarship (80) (Seniors-College)
  • $1,000  Bridging the Gap Scholarship (1+) (Seniors-College)
  • $2,000  Carl Valvoda Scholarship (1) (Seniors-College)
  • $1,250 Gilman Family Scholarship (2) (College)
  • $1,500 Horse Creek Scholarship (6) (Seniors-College)
  • $5,000 Judy Martz Scholarship (1+) (Seniors-Adults)
  • $2,000 Kelly Kuntz Scholarship (1) (College)
  • $1,500 Rotary of Helena Scholarship (2) (Seniors) 
  • $500 Mary McCue Pre-Dental Student Scholarship (3) (College)

Reach Higher Montana Scholarship
(80) $2,000 ScholarshipsHigh School Seniors or College Students who have/will graduate from a Montana High School, completed the FAFSA, and attend (at least half-time) an accredited Montana post-secondary institution/program.

Carl Valvoda Scholarship
(1) $2,000 Scholarship. Must complete the Reach Higher Montana Scholarship application and is serving or have served in the ROTC program or the U.S. Armed Forces

Bridging the Gap Scholarship
$1,000 for one or more recipients. Must complete the Reach Higher Montana Scholarship application and will or have aged out of the Foster Care system.

Kelly Kuntz Scholarship
$2,000 Scholarship. Montana high school graduate in their 2nd, 3rd, or 4th year of post-secondary education, working towards a business-related degree.

Judy Martz Scholarship
$5,000 for one or more recipients. Female residents of Montana, 18 years old or older, with demonstrated leadership potential, a vision for their future leadership, preferably in service to Montana.

Horse Creek Scholarship
(6) $1,500 Scholarships. High school seniors or college students who have/will graduate from a Montana High School, have/will complete the FAFSA by April 1, attend (at least half-time) ANY accredited post-secondary institution nationwide, pursuing a certificate/degree in a business-related field or has completed at least one Business/Finance related course in high school or college. Two scholarships given preference to graduates/residents of Beaverhead and Madison Counties.

Mary McCue Pre-Dental Student Scholarship
(3) $500 Scholarships. Montana college students pursuing a career in dentistry and planning on applying to dental school.

Gilman Family Scholarship
(2) $1,250 Scholarships. Post-secondary students in their 2nd or later years of schooling, attending full-time, and pursuing a major or degree in the Trades, Agriculture, or Natural Resources related program of study. Applicants must have attended Sheridan or Twin Bridges High Schools.

Rotary of Helena Scholarship
(2) $1,500 Scholarships. High School Seniors graduating from Helena area high schools (Capital HS, Helena HS, East Helena HS, & Project for Alternative Learning).

  1. When can I apply for scholarships using the “It’s Scholarship Time” application?
    • The “It’s Scholarship Time” application is open annually from January 1 thru March 1.
  2. How do I apply for a scholarship on the Reach Higher Montana ‘It’s Scholarship Time’ application?
  3. What if I have forgotten the password to my account?
  4. I completed the eligibility questions and did not get the scholarship(s) I thought I qualified for. What can I do?
  5. What do I do if, after submitting my initial eligibility responses, information submitted needs to be changed?
    • Please contact the Programs Manager, Steven Coop at or 406-880-1145 if you need to change any of the responses on the eligibility questions. Be aware, changes to any of the answers may change which applications you are eligible for.
  6. Can I submit a paper application?
    • No, we are only able to accept applications through our online scholarship program.
  7. Will I have to complete separate applications for each scholarship I am eligible to apply for?
    • Yes and no. Individual scholarships will have supplemental questions that you will need to complete before you can submit each application. Because some scholarships use the same questions, you will only have to answer the question once and that answer will show up on any scholarships that use that same question. You will only have to complete the eligibility questions once per scholarship year to determine which scholarships you are eligible to apply for.
  8. How will I be notified whether or not I have received a scholarship?
    • All applicants will receive an email in early May letting them know if they received a scholarship, have been selected as an alternate, or if they were not selected. These emails will come from an email. Check your email regularly.
  9. Do I have to submit an ‘official’ transcript for proof of grades/GPA?
    • No, we will accept unofficial transcripts as long as the date the report was pulled, your
      name, student ID number, and GPA are visible.
  10. Can I defer a scholarship to a later date?
    • We prefer recipients use their scholarships for the upcoming academic year. However, because we know that life happens, we will make deferment decisions on a case-by-case basis. To request a deferment, please contact the Programs Manager, Steven Coop at
  11. Can I still receive my scholarship if I am attending a school outside of Montana?
    • Eligibility for each scholarship varies. Many of the scholarships you will be eligible for do require you to attend a Montana post-secondary program of study but not all of them. If you indicate in the eligibility questions that you will be attending an out-of-state program of study, you will not be eligible to complete any applications that require the recipient to remain in Montana.
    • If after you submit your application you choose to change intended post-secondary programs, please notify the Programs Manager, Steven Coop at so he can reset your eligibility criteria and re-submit your eligibility responses.
  12. Can I reapply for a scholarship?
    • Yes! All of the scholarships available through the “It’s Scholarship Time” application are non-renewable meaning they are awarded on a year by year basis only. Applicants are encouraged to reapply each year if they remain eligible for the application whether or not they have previously won the scholarship. Every year, applicants must complete an application for any scholarships which they are eligible for and will be re-evaluated with the current year applications.
  13. If I have previously won a scholarship and then reapply, am I more likely to receive it again?
    • No. Every year an application is open, a new committee will evaluate submissions. They do not receive applicant names or information on any prior awards won. This ensures everyone has an equal opportunity each year they apply.
  14. How will I receive scholarship funds I am selected to receive?
    • All scholarship awards will be paid directly to the school you will be attending. You will receive an email with follow-up instructions that you must complete before funds will be sent; these include provision of your final prior semester grades or transcript and an enrollment verification form that your school will have to complete on your behalf.
  15. How will my award be paid out?
    • All scholarship awards are sent to your school for the full amount, the first term you are enrolled. Be aware, however, that each post-secondary institution reserves the right to determine how your award is applied to your student account. It is standard practice for schools to split the total award amount equally across two semesters or three trimesters depending on academic schedules.
  16. When is my scholarship awarded?
    • This depends on how quickly you, the applicant, return the required follow-up documents that will be requested from you. Once your grades and your enrollment verification are received, funds will be disbursed within two weeks.
    • Because checks are mailed, we cannot guarantee how long it will take for your funds to appear on your student account. Total time is dependent on many factors including the US Postal Service, how campus mail is handled, how big the financial aid staff is, how busy they are, and more. Remember, the sooner you complete your follow-up tasks, the sooner we can release your funds.
  17. Can my scholarship be transferred to another school?
    • Yes. You will need to talk to the financial aid office at both schools to see if they have an internal agreement on the transferring of unused scholarship funds between schools.

      You can also contact the Programs Manager, Steven Coop at or 406-880-1145 for assistance.

  18. What happens if new scholarships are added after I have submitted my eligibility responses?
    • In the event new scholarship opportunities are added to the ‘It’s Scholarship Time’ application, the Programs Manager, Steven Coop, will run a new eligibility check for that scholarship on any application previously submitted. If you come back as eligible, you will receive an email letting you know another scholarship is available for you to complete supplemental questions for.
  19. Can I still submit an application if I missed the deadline?
    • No. We have set a firm deadline of March 1 st at 11:59 PM MST. Applicants are encouraged to apply early so that they have time to complete the application on time.

Current Reach Higher Montana Scholarship Applicants

to upload additional documentation. Download the Photo Release.

Check out our recent and past scholarship recipients.

Video - The Scholarship Process  The Scholarship Process

Video - Applying for Scholarships  Applying for Scholarships

Video - Searching for Scholarships  Searching for Scholarships

Video - Local vs. National Scholarships  Local vs. National Scholarships

Scholarships Offered by Colleges and Universities

Scholarships Offered by Colleges and Universities

Campuses offer many scholarships to incoming freshmen, transfer students, and students in specific programs of study. Check out your institution's website or get in touch with the financial aid office. Apply early for scholarships offered by the college you plan to attend. 

Here are just a few of the scholarships available through the Montana University System Colleges and Universities: 

  • MUS Honor Scholarship: The MUS Honor Scholarship is a four-year renewable scholarship, which waives the recipient's tuition when used at an eligible campus. Its average value at a 4-year Montana campus is $5,000 a year or $20,000 for four years.
  • 2 + 2 Honor Scholarship: The 2 + 2 Honor Scholarship is awarded annually to students who graduate with an associate degree from a 2-year campus of the Montana University System or a Montana Community College.
  • Montana's STEM Scholarship: Montana's STEM Scholarship Program is designed to provide an incentive for Montana high school students to prepare for, enter into, and complete degrees in postsecondary fields related to science, technology, engineering, mathematics and healthcare.

Check out all the Scholarships and Tuition Waivers the Montana University System has to offer.

Pro Tip
Pro Tip

All students should complete the FAFSA annually, ideally by the December 1 priority deadline. Many sources of scholarship aid awarded by the college will only consider students who have completed the FAFSA.

Strategies for Scholarship Success

Strategies for Scholarship Success

Scholarships are available for all kinds of students. It's a myth that scholarships are only awarded to valedictorians and athletes. There are so many people who believe in education and support students through scholarships. We suggest the following strategies to maximize your scholarship success:

  • Get organized. Create a folder, set time aside every week to work on scholarships.
  • Start close to home. Most likely, there will be fewer applicants for local scholarships than national scholarships, which increases your odds of winning.
  • Check with your counselor. They receive several scholarship opportunities, check in weekly during scholarship season.
  • Apply early for scholarships offered by the campus you plan to attend. Campuses offer many scholarships to incoming freshmen, transfer students, and students in specific programs of study.
  • Do your homework. Research scholarships for which you're eligible to apply, and keep a folder with the scholarship information, sorted by due date. Keep the file up to date as new information becomes available. Check to see if the scholarships are renewable.
  • Help others help you. If you are asking someone to write a letter of reference for you, make it easy for them. Provide them with some background on the scholarship for which you are applying, outline your accomplishments and skills that demonstrate your eligibility, and give your references plenty of time to write you a letter of recommendation. You can use this form to organize your request.  Asking for a letter the day before the scholarship is due isn't a great idea, as your reference may not have time to write you a letter. When you are selected to receive a scholarship, be sure to thank your references for helping you out.
  • Say "Thanks". Send a written thank you note to anyone who awards you a scholarship.
  • Be careful. Unfortunately, you have to be aware that there are people who try to take advantage of scholarship applicants. Be wary if you are asked to pay a fee to apply for a scholarship, or if an application asks for personal information that isn't relevant to the scholarship.
Pro Tip
Pro Tip

Treat searching and applying for scholarships like a job and it will pay like one! Set aside some time every week to search for scholarships and to work on your applications. Keep track of deadlines using our handy tracking sheet so you don’t miss out on winning money for school!

Video - A Good Scholarship Candidate  A Good Scholarship Candidate

Video - Letters of Recommendation  Letters of Recommendation

Searching for Scholarships

Searching for Scholarships

When it comes to searching for scholarships, our website is a great place to start. There are lots of scholarship tools on the Internet. Be careful - you should never pay money to apply for a scholarship, and you'll want to make sure you understand how your personal information is collected and used by scholarship sites.

Scholarship Thursday

Every Thursday we post available scholarships and scholarship tips to our Reach Higher Montana Facebook and Instagram pages. That's right! Every Thursday we pack our Facebook and Instagram pages full of helpful information so you can maintain your scholarship hustle!

Scholarship Search Tools

Take advantage of the scholarship search tool on the Montana Career Information System (MCIS). The Montana Department of Labor and Industry provides a great way to search and apply for scholarships specific to your characteristics, interests, program of study, and more. Check out the video on our website to learn how to search for scholarships on MCIS.

In addition to MCIS, we recommend This search tool works similarly to MCIS and includes both state and national scholarships.

Here are some other sites we recommend:,,,, and

Video - Zoe Reviews Scholarship Search Websites  Zoe Reviews Scholarship Search Websites

Video - Searching for Scholarships in MCIS  Searching for Scholarships in MCIS

Scholarship Resources

What makes an essay stand out? What do scholarships require? What does it take to earn scholarship money? We have the resources for you!

Video - College & Scholarship Essay Writing Tips  College & Scholarship Essay Writing Tips

Video - Earning Scholarship Money  Earning Scholarship Money

Scholarships, How to Get That Money

There are two important things to keep in mind when it comes to scholarships: YOU are scholarship material and treat applying for scholarships like a job.

Video - Volunteering and Scholarships  Volunteering and Scholarships