In today's society, it's expected that college scholarships-- even those that are need-based-- will be reserved for the highest academic achievers: the "A" students, the ones who have excelled in sports and other extra-curricular activities. These are the students most foundations support, as these are the students most likely to succeed. Right?
But what if a student is bright, talented and promising, but it's not reflected in his or her grades because of problems in the home? Or what if the student does not participate in sports and extra curricular activities because his or her school simply does not offer such options?
Unfortunately, this is the case for many young students of color who grow up poor or in under-resourced environments. In fact, if you look at some of society's highest achievers, they will tell you: They were not A or B students, and they did not participate in a wealth of socially normative activities.
It was the stamina, ingenuity and creativity (and talent) required to get past all of these deficits that help propel them to where they are today.
That is what the Shawn Carter Scholarship speaks to: The "Average Joe's" in society who have a dream and the determination to make something more-than-average of themselves.
The Shawn Carter Scholarship Foundation: Frequently Asked Questions
When can I begin the 2014 application? You can begin your application on April 1, 2014. To begin, please visit the APPLY page.
When is the deadline for the 2014 application? The deadline for the 2014 application is April 30, 2014 (11:59PM EST). Please note that if you do not submit your application before the deadline, all your information is lost.
Who is eligible to apply for the Shawn Carter scholarship? All high school seniors, students with GED diplomas, undergraduate (2yr or 4yr) college students, and students at vocational or trade schools who meet the requirements below are eligible.
- US citizen or Permanent Resident
- 25 years old or younger
- Minimum 2.0 GPA
Do I have to attend a vocational school to be eligible for this scholarship? NO, see eligibility requirements above.
Do I have to be currently enrolled in school to apply for this scholarship? You do not have to be currently enrolled in school to apply. If you graduated from high school, received your GED diploma, or took time off from college, you are still eligible.
My school does not use a 4.0 grade scale, how can I convert my grades to this scale? If your school uses number grades use the GPA conversion table here.
I don't have a very high GPA, do I have any chance of receiving this scholarship? Yes, we take many factors into consideration when determining your candidacy for the scholarship. Leadership, community service, socio-economic factors, the quality of your essay and other strengths are all taken into account in the decision making process.
Our typical scholarship recipients demonstrate resiliency in the face of hardship, give back to their communities, and have GPAs between 2.0 and 3.0. Students with GPAs above this range are still encouraged to apply.
How can I maximize my chances of receiving this scholarship? Here are some steps you can take:
- Start your application early and complete it on time. The earlier you start the application, the better chance you have to submit the application before the deadline. You also have more time to ask us questions in case any part of the process needs clarification.
- Tell us about yourself and use specific details when sharing your extracurricular activities. We do not know anything about you until you share it with us. Specific details can help us understand how great you are. The same can be said about your essay. We don't expect the essay to run too long but make sure your essay helps us learn more about you and your perspectives.
- Review your application for grammar and spelling errors.
- The photo is optional. If you decide to provide a photo, please send us a head shot from the shoulders up similar to an ID card.
If your question has not been answered above, please direct your inquiry to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
To apply for the scholarship, go here.