13 Worthwhile Scholarships for Students Who Volunteer in Their Communities

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If you volunteer in your community, you could be eligible for significant scholarship money for college. Many foundations are looking for student leaders with a record of service.

The 13 community service scholarships below are just a few of the opportunities for public-spirited students. Check out the list to see if any of these grants could help you pay for college.

1. Do Something Awards

If you’re between 13 and 25, you can win significant scholarship money from DoSomething.org. All you have to do is take part in one of Do Something’s campaigns. You might organize a drive for sports gear for the “Game-Winning Drive” or donate clothing to homeless youth as part of “Teens for Jeans.”

Most campaigns award $1,000 to each winner. If you completed all the campaigns, you could win up to $32,000 to pay tuition or school fees.

Plus, Do Something gives $10,000 to five finalists each year to continue their initiatives. The grand prize winner earns a $100,000 community service scholarship to expand their project.

2. AXA Achievement Award

The AXA Foundation awards over $1.4 million in community service scholarships to students throughout the country. AXA winners demonstrate outstanding achievement in their communities. Students can win scholarships in the amount of $2,500, $10,000, or $25,000.

3. Gloria Barron Prize for Young Heroes

The Gloria Barron Prize for Young Heroes goes to young leaders between eight and 18 who have made an impact in their communities. Past winners have raised money to protect orangutans, developed a cooling system to transport vaccines, and developed a project to educate people about climate change. Each year, 15 winners receive community service scholarships of $5,000.

4. Montage Memory Makers Scholarship

The Montage Memory Makers Scholarship supports students who are trying to make the world a better place. Winners are selected based on their community service or volunteering efforts and the impact they have made in their communities. Each year, five students win a $10,000 scholarship. Plus, they get a two-night stay at a Montage Hotels and Resorts location and a feature in Montage Magazine.

5. Spirit of Community Awards from Prudential

Since 1995, the Prudential Spirit of Community Awards Program has recognized more than 120,000 students for their community service. State honorees receive a $1,000 scholarship and an all-expense paid trip to Washington, D.C. National honorees receive $5,000, along with another $5,000 grant to donate to the charity of their choice.

The Spirit of Community Award is one of the rare community service scholarships available to international students. Prudential honors young volunteers in Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Ireland, India, China, Brazil, and Poland, as well as the U.S.

6. Bonner Scholars Program

The Bonner Scholars Program is an immersive four-year program that provides funding to students with financial need. Beyond scholarship money, you’ll gain access to trainings on leadership and social justice. To remain in this supportive community, Bonner Scholars are expected to commit 10 hours per week to community service each year, along with 280 hours during the summer.

7. Comcast Leaders and Achievers Scholarship

Since 2000, Comcast has awarded over $28 million in community service scholarships to about 27,000 students. Winners earn $1,000 to put toward college, plus a select few might win additional scholarships. When choosing its “leaders and achievers,” Comcast looks for “a strong commitment to and involvement in community service.”

8. Jesse Brown Memorial Youth Scholarship

The Jesse Brown Program honors students who have volunteered for 100 hours or more with veterans. Scholarships are awarded in the amount of $5,000, $7,500, $10,000, and $15,000 every year. One applicant also receives the top scholarship of $20,000, along with an all-expense paid trip to the Disabled American Veterans (DAV) National Convention.

9. Princeton Prize in Race Relations

The Princeton Prize in Race Relations recognizes students who had made a positive impact on race relations in their schools or communities. To be eligible for this $1,000 scholarship, you must live in a qualifying region and apply with a sponsor. In addition to the cash prize, recipients can attend a national symposium on race at Princeton University.

10. GE-Reagan Foundation Scholarship

The GE-Reagan Foundation honors students with college scholarships for volunteering and community service. It looks for students who demonstrate leadership, integrity, and citizenship. Winners receive $10,000 each year for four years, which they can put toward tuition, fees, books, supplies, or room and board.

11. Young Women in Public Affairs Award

The Zonta International Foundation has awarded 846 scholarships for volunteering to 724 women since its foundation in 1990. Young women across the world are eligible for these scholarships as long as they live in a district with an active Zonta club. Awards come in the amount of $1,000 or $4,000. Young Women in Public Affairs Awards go to young women with a record of leadership achievements.

12. Brower Youth awards

If you’re committed to protecting the environment, you could win a Brower Youth Award. These scholarships go to “youth environmental change leaders” between the ages of 13 and 22. Winners receive a $3,000 prize, along with a professionally produced short film about their work. Winners will also spend a week camping with mentors and peers in the San Francisco Bay Area.

13. Davis-Putter Scholarship

The Davis-Putter Scholarship Fund awards students who are actively working toward social justice. Winners are chosen for their social activism and demonstrated financial need. Davis-Putter Scholarships vary in amount, but the maximum award is $10,000.

Browse community service scholarships on the local and national level

This list of community service scholarships is a good start, but you can find even more grants on both the local and national level. Browse scholarship search engines for additional opportunities, and ask your school counselor or Rotary Club about local options.

If you’re willing to volunteer for a year or two in a federal program, you could also qualify for government-sponsored grants. Americorps, for instance, gives an education award of $5,920 to Corps members who serve full-time for a year.

Not only will your commitment to community service make the world a better place, but it could help you pay for college.

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LenderVariable APREligibility 
* The Sallie Mae partner referenced is not the creditor for these loans and is compensated by Sallie Mae for the referral of Smart Option Student Loan customers.

1 = Sallie Mae Disclaimer: Click here for important information. Terms, conditions and limitations apply.

2 Important Disclosures for Earnest.

Earnest Disclosures

  1. Rates include 0.25% Auto Pay Discount
  2. Explanation of Rates “With Autopay” (APD)
    Rates shown include 0.25% APR discount when client agrees to make monthly principal and interest payments by automatic electronic payment. Use of autopay is not required to receive an Earnest loan.

    Available Terms
    For Cosigned loans – 5, 7, 10, 12, 15 years. 
    Primary Only – 10, 12, 15 years

    In school deferred payment is not available in AL, AZ, CA, FL, MA, MD, MI, ND, NY, PA, and WA).


3 Important Disclosures for College Ave.

CollegeAve Disclosures

College Ave Student Loans products are made available through either Firstrust Bank, member FDIC or M.Y. Safra Bank, FSB, member FDIC. All loans are subject to individual approval and adherence to underwriting guidelines. Program restrictions, other terms, and conditions apply.

(1)All rates shown include the auto-pay discount. The 0.25% auto-pay interest rate reduction applies as long as a valid bank account is designated for required monthly payments. Variable rates may increase after consummation.

(2)This informational repayment example uses typical loan terms for a freshman borrower who selects the Deferred Repayment Option with a 10-year repayment term, has a $10,000 loan that is disbursed in one disbursement and a 8.35% fixed Annual Percentage Rate (“APR”): 120 monthly payments of $179.18 while in the repayment period, for a total amount of payments of $21,501.54. Loans will never have a full principal and interest monthly payment of less than $50. Your actual rates and repayment terms may vary.

(3)As certified by your school and less any other financial aid you might receive. Minimum $1,000.

Information advertised valid as of 7/1/2019. Variable interest rates may increase after consummation.


4 Important Disclosures for Discover.

Discover Disclosures

  1. Students who get at least a 3.0 GPA (or equivalent) qualify for a one-time cash reward on each new Discover undergraduate and graduate student loan. Reward redemption period is limited. Please visit DiscoverStudentLoans.com/Reward for any applicable reward terms and conditions.
  2. View Auto Reward Debit Reward Terms and Conditions at DiscoverStudentLoans.com/AutoDebitReward.
  3. Aggregate loan limits apply.
  4. The interest rate ranges represent the lowest and highest interest rates offered on Discover student loans, including Undergraduate, Graduate, Health Professions, Law and MBA Loans. The fixed interest rate is set at the time of application and does not change during the life of the loan. The variable interest rate is calculated based on the 3-Month LIBOR index plus the applicable Margin percentage. The margin is based on your credit evaluation at the time of application and does not change. For variable interest rate loans, the 3-Month LIBOR is 2.50% as of July 1, 2019. Discover Student Loans will adjust the rate quarterly on each January 1, April 1, July 1 and October 1 (the “interest rate change date”), based on the 3-Month LIBOR Index, published in the Money Rates section of the Wall Street Journal 15 days prior to the interest rate change date, rounded up to the nearest one-eighth of one percent (0.125% or 0.00125). This may cause the monthly payments to increase, the number of payments to increase or both. Please click https://www.discover.com/student-loans/interest-rates.html
    for more information about interest rates

5 Important Disclosures for CommonBond.

CommonBond Disclosures

A government loan is made according to rules set by the U.S. Department of Education. Government loans have fixed interest rates, meaning that the interest rate on a government loan will never go up or down.

Government loans also permit borrowers in financial trouble to use certain options, such as income-based repayment, which may help some borrowers. Depending on the type of loan that you have, the government may discharge your loan if you die or become permanently disabled.

Depending on what type of government loan that you have, you may be eligible for loan forgiveness in exchange for performing certain types of public service. If you are an active-duty service member and you obtained your government loan before you were called to active duty, you are entitled to interest rate and repayment benefits for your loan.
If you are unable to pay your government loan, the government can refer your loan to a collection agency or sue you for the unpaid amount. In addition, the government has special powers to collect the loan, such as taking your tax refund and applying it to your loan balance.

A private student loan is not a government loan and is not regulated by the Department of Education. A private student loan is instead regulated like other consumer loans under both state and federal law and by the terms of the promissory note with your lender.
If you refinance your government loan, your new lender will use the proceeds of your new loan to pay off your government loan. Private student loan lenders do not have to honor any of the benefits that apply to government loans. Because your government loan will be gone after refinancing, you will lose any benefits that apply to that loan. If you are an active-duty service member, your new loan will not be eligible for service member benefits. Most importantly, once you refinance your government loan, you will not able to reinstate your government loan if you become dissatisfied with the terms of your private student loan.

If your private student loan has a fixed interest rate, then that rate will never go up or down. If your private student loan has a variable interest rate, then that rate will vary depending on an index rate disclosed in your application. If the interest rate on the new private student loan is less than the interest rate on your government loans, your payments will be less if you refinance.
If you are a borrower with a secure job, emergency savings, strong credit and are unlikely to need any of the options available to distressed borrowers of government loans, a refinance of your government loans into a private student loan may be attractive to you. You should consider the costs and benefits of refinancing carefully before you refinance.

If you don’t pay a private student loan as agreed, the lender can refer your loan to a collection agency or sue you for the unpaid amount.

Remember also that like government loans, most private loans cannot be discharged if you file bankruptcy unless you can demonstrate that repayment of the loan would cause you an undue hardship. In most bankruptcy courts, proving undue hardship is very difficult for most borrowers.


6 Important Disclosures for PNC.

PNC Disclosures

  1. Annual Percentage Rates (APRs): APRs from 4.52% to 11.11% are for the fully deferred repayment option, include the 0.50% interest rate discount for automatic payment and encompass the full range of APRs for the three repayment term options (5, 10 and 15 year). APRs within this range may vary based on the repayment term chosen. See break down of APR ranges by repayment terms below.
  2. Fixed Annual Percentage Rates (APRs): APRs range from 4.52% to 9.58% for a 5-year term. APRs range from 5.05% to 10.26% for a 10-year term. APRs range from 5.55% to 10.84% for a 15-year term. Fixed rates are based on the creditworthiness of the borrower and co-signer, if any. Loan Payment Example: The monthly payment per $10,000 borrowed at a fixed rate range of 5.05% APR to 10.26% APR for 10 years means you would make 120 payments which may range from $131.94 to $207.24. For the fixed rate loan, the monthly payment will remain fixed for the term of the loan. Payments may vary for other repayment term options.

    Variable Annual Percentage Rates (APRs): APRs range from 4.90% to 9.92% for a 5-year term. APRs range from 5.38% to 10.57% for a 10-year term. APRs range from 5.85% to 11.11% for a 15-year term. Variable rates are based on the London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR) index plus a margin depending on the creditworthiness of the borrower and co-signer, if any. The LIBOR index, adjusted quarterly, is equal to the average of the one-month LIBOR rates as published in the “Money Rates” section of the Wall Street Journal on the first business day of each of the three (3) calendar months immediately preceding each quarterly adjustment date. The LIBOR index is currently 2.47%. If the index increases or decreases, your rate will increase or decrease accordingly. Loan Payment Example: The monthly payment per $10,000 borrowed at a variable rate range of 5.38% APR to 10.57% APR for 10 years means you would make 120 payments which may range from $135.93 to $212.65. For the variable rate loan, the monthly payment may increase or decrease if the interest rate increases or decreases. Payments may vary for other repayment term options.

    APRs and loan payment examples are for the fully deferred repayment option for the Undergraduate & Graduate loan programs and include the 0.50% interest rate discount for automatic payments. The lowest APR is available to well qualified applicants. Your actual APR will be based on your credit qualifications, selection of fixed or variable rate option, loan program, repayment term, repayment option and whether you elect the automatic payment feature. Loan payment examples assume 30 days to first payment after the deferment period (45 months in school and 6 month grace period). Payments vary for other rates, repayment terms and repayment options.

    In addition to Undergraduate and Graduate loans, PNC offers loans for Health & Medical Professions, Health Professions Residency and Bar Study. Rates may vary by loan program and are subject to change at any time. Visit pnconcampus.com for current rates, additional loan payment examples and more details about the Solution loan products.

  3. Automatic Payment Discount: During repayment, an interest rate discount of 0.50% is available for automatic payments. Borrower must be making scheduled payments that include both principal and interest. Interest only payments do not qualify for the 0.50% interest rate discount. Automatic payment can be established through the loan servicer American Education Services (AES). Advertised rates include the 0.50% automatic payment interest rate discount. The rate discount will be applied at the time automatic payment is established. If automatic payment is not established, the available rates will be 0.50% higher than the advertised rates. If automatic payment is established and discontinued at any time during repayment, the borrower will no longer receive an automatic payment discount and the rate will increase by 0.50%. Discount may also be suspended during periods of forbearance or deferment. Payments may be made from a checking or savings account. A federal regulation limits the number of transfers that may be made from a savings or money market account. Please contact your financial institution for more information on transfer limitations on savings accounts.
  4. Repayment Options: Immediate, interest only payments while in school and full deferment of principal and interest options available. Interest will continue to accrue during periods of deferment. You will receive quarterly interest statements during this deferment period. Paying the interest as it accrues each quarter will save you money over the repayment term of the loan because any accrued interest that you do not pay will be added to the principal balance at the end of the deferment.
  5. Co-Signer Release: A request to release a co-signer requires that, as of the date of the request, you have made at least forty-eight (48) consecutive timely payments of principal and interest with no periods of forbearance or deferment within the forty-eight (48) month timeframe. “Timely payment” means each payment is made no later than the 15th day after the scheduled due date of the payment. “Consecutive payment” means the minimum monthly payment must be made for the most recent forty-eight (48) months straight without any interruption. To qualify for a co-signer release, the borrower must submit a request, meet the consecutive, timely payment requirements, provide proof of income and pass a credit check.
  6. Tax Deductibility: Interest may be tax deductible. Consult a tax advisor.

Please note: PNC reserves the right to modify or discontinue the terms of these program at any time without notice. You are encouraged to explore all scholarship, grant and federal borrowing options before applying for a private loan. Private loans are subject to credit approval.

PNC is a registered service mark of The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc.
© 2019 The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. All rights reserved. PNC Bank, National Association.

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3.99% – 11.44%2Undergraduate and Graduate

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3
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4.72%
11.87%
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Our team at Student Loan Hero works hard to find and recommend products and services that we believe are of high quality. We sometimes earn a sales commission or advertising fee when recommending various products and services to you. Similar to when you are being sold any product or service, be sure to read the fine print to help you understand what you are buying. Be sure to consult with a licensed professional if you have any concerns. Student Loan Hero is not a lender or investment advisor. We are not involved in the loan approval or investment process, nor do we make credit or investment related decisions. The rates and terms listed on our website are estimates and are subject to change at any time.

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