Scholarships

Scholarships

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 and local 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.

Design a Sticker, Win a Scholarship

Design a Sticker, Win a Scholarship

Design our next sticker – and have your design inspire Montana high school students to find their path after high school!

Opens Feb. 1 and closes Mar. 15, 2021.

Prizes
The top two designers will each receive a $1,500 scholarship. The third and fourth place designers will each receive a $1,000 scholarship. The fifth and sixth place designers will each receive a $500 scholarship. All six winners will receive 100 stickers. The art program of the respective students will each receive $250 to purchase art supplies or equipment for their designated school or community art program.

Eligibility

The 2021 sticker design contest is open to all Montana students enrolled in grades 9-12.

Here’s what you need to know

  • Your original design should include art and/or words that inspire Montana students to find their path after high school. It should represent Reach Higher Montana’s messaging, and brand, including the colors (blue, green, yellow) Go to ReachHigherMontana.org for inspiration.
  • Include #ReachHigherMontana or ReachHigherMontana.org in your design.
  • Final stickers can be any shape and less than 3 x 3 inches, they will be printed on vinyl.
  • The design DOES NOT have to include the words "Find your path."
  • Submissions should be emailed in a high resolution format as either a .png, .jpg or .ai file to info@reachhighermontana.org.
  • You can submit as many designs as you like.
  • Contest runs Feb. 1 –  Mar. 15, 2021.
  • The designs will be narrowed down to the top 20 designs and then voted on by our followers.
  • The top 6 designs with the most votes will be chosen as our winners.
  • Designs become the property of Reach Higher Montana and can be used in print and digital marketing.

The Reach Higher Montana Scholarship

Every year, Reach Higher Montana awards up to 80 - $1,000 scholarships to Montana students through the Reach Higher Montana Scholarship program. We encourage students who wish to reach higher in education, career, and life to apply! The RHM Scholarship opens December 1, and is open to Montana high school seniors and current college students. See the full list of qualifications to apply.

To qualify, applicants must be:

  • Montana high school seniors, or
  • Montana residents who graduated from a Montana high school or approved home school program and are currently attending a Montana college or university, and
  • Attend or will attend at least half time, and
  • Have at least a 2.5 grade point average (GPA), and
  • Submitted the FAFSA for the 2021-22 academic year.

The Reach Higher Montana Scholarship closes on January 15.

Current Applicants: Log in to upload additional documentation.

Download the Enrollment Verification Form.

Check out our recent and past scholarship recipients.

Scholarships Offered by Colleges and Universities

Campuses offer many scholarships to incoming freshmen, transfer students, and students in specific programs of study. Check  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. 

Check out some 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.

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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:

  • Start close to home. Most likely, there will be fewer applicants for local scholarships than national scholarships, which increases your odds of winning.
  • 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.
Asking for a Reference Letter
Asking for a Reference Letter

Who should you ask for a reference letter and when do you ask? Watch this video to find out.

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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!

Scholarship Search Tools

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.

Follow us on Facebook and Instagram

Follow us on Facebook and Instagram

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!

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 mycollegeoptions.org. This search tool works similarly to MCIS and includes both state and national scholarships. Here are some other sites we recommend: bigfuture.collegeboard.orgcollegegreenlight.com, fastweb.com, mtcf.org, and scholarships.com.

Searching for Scholarships
Searching for Scholarships

Wondering where to start searching? Follow the advice of these students, they have it figured out.

Searching for Scholarships in MCIS
Searching for Scholarships in MCIS

MCIS has a lot of scholarships for Montana students, watch this quick video to help you find them.

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!

College & Scholarship Essay Writing Tips
College & Scholarship Essay Writing Tips

Virginia Reeves is a Montana author who can give your scholarship essays and college application a competitive edge.

Earning Scholarship Money
Earning Scholarship Money

Recent high school graduates, Norris Blossom and Isabelle Melton, share their experience and tips for applying for college scholarships.

Scholarships, How to Get That 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.

Volunteering and Scholarships
Volunteering and Scholarships

Recent high school graduates, Norris Blossom and Isabelle Melton, share how their volunteer experience helped them earn scholarships.