When it comes to scholarships, STEM students seem to have the pick of the litter. But what if you’re not passionate about science, technology, engineering, or math? And what if you’ve spent your whole life painting, writing, or performing instead of learning to code?
You’re not alone. Five percent of the Class of 2015 took home bachelor’s degrees in the visual and performing arts. That might not sound like much, but it was enough to put arts degrees in seventh place among the 33 categories of study tracked by the National Center for Education Statistics.
If you hear the call to a life of creativity, here’s how you can find art scholarships that will help you pay for college.
Nationwide art scholarships you should know about
If you’re looking for money to help you study the arts, you might want to start with some of the larger, more broad-based scholarships. Here’s a list of a few to consider:
Art Renewal Center Scholarships
Based in New Jersey, the Art Renewal Center (ARC) has a mission of “promoting education in realistic art.” In pursuit of this mission, ARC offers scholarships for students to attend schools for visual art around the world.
Previous first-place winners of ARC scholarships receive $4,000 for their education, while second-place winners receive $2,000 and third-place winners $700. You can apply for an ARC scholarship between August and December if you plan on attending an ARC-approved school.
National Society of Arts and Letters Scholarship
The National Society of Arts and Letters has been around since 1944 and works in support of the performing, literary, and visual arts.
This organization sponsors several competitions and scholarships. Two examples are the Naomi Rabb Winston Scholarship in Two-Dimensional Art and the Shirley Rabb Winston Scholarship in Classical Voice, each of which offers $10,000 awards.
You can find applications and learn more about these scholarships here. Both are due in February.
National YoungArts Foundation
Another art scholarship offering up to $10,000 in awards comes from the National YoungArts Foundation (YoungArts).
But the foundation doesn’t stop there. Winners also have the opportunity to take a master class with artists in their field, they can be nominated for more awards, and they “receive a lifetime of mentoring and support.”
Here’s the list of disciplines YoungArts supports:
- Cinematic Arts
- Classical Music
- Design Arts
- Visual Arts
Scholastic Art and Writing Awards
Another chance for various types of artists to find scholarships is through Scholastic Art and Writing Awards. This organization gives out portfolio scholarships, scholarships for creative summer programs, and special awards offered in partnership with other organizations.
For example, the Gold Medal Portfolio gives 16 art or writing students scholarships of $10,000 each. The Silver Medal with Distinction Portfolio offers 30 students awards of $1,000 each.
The special awards are thematically based, and winners can receive from $500 to $1,000 for their education. You can find details on all of these scholarships via Scholastic Art and Writing Awards.
Discipline-specific art scholarships
The list above pertains to fairly general disciplines in art, but you can find money for college for your specific interests as well. Here‘s a list of more narrowly tailored scholarships open to students nationwide:
- 1st-Art-Gallery.com Art and Design Scholarship: Win $1,000 with this scholarship.
- American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) scholarships: The ASID Foundation offers scholarships from $4,000 to $27,500 for interior design students.
- Educational Theater Association Scholarships: Love the theater? You can earn from $500 to $1,500 in scholarships from this organization.
- The Glenn Miller Scholarship: Musical performers can win from $1,000 to $3,000 in Glenn Miller’s name for their education.
- International Furnishings and Design Association (IFDA) scholarships: IFDA awards $1,000 to $3,000 for students majoring in either interior design or other design/furnishings programs.
- International Interior Design Association scholarships: Interior design students can also earn $1,000 in scholarships for an essay contest and up to $5,000 for the Student of the Year Award.
- The Jack Kent Cooke Young Artist Award: This is a scholarship of up to $10,000 for 20 musicians, singers, and composers who are not yet in college.
- New York City Dance Alliance (NYCDA) Foundation Scholarship: Dance and musical theater majors can earn four-year college scholarships for $5,000 to $25,000 from the NYCDA.
- The Professional Association for Design: Students of fine art, graphic or visual design, illustration or animation, interaction design, and photography are eligible for this scholarship. The amount of the award varies, but typically winners can earn from $500 for an honorable mention up to $3,500 for first place.
- Whitaker Foundation Scholarship: Fine arts and art history majors are eligible for this scholarship, from which they can bring home $2,000 for college.
How to find even more art scholarships
Just as there are many ways to create art, there are many ways to find art scholarships. Here are a few more tips to help you find even more scholarships for college:
- Research the schools you’re interested in attending. Many have their own art department-sponsored awards for students. You can get a good idea of what’s out there with this school- and location-based scholarship listing from Fastweb.
- Join any relevant professional associations that accept students. Some sponsor scholarships specifically for their own members (such as the scholarship listed above by the International Interior Design Association).
- Finally, as with all scholarships, don’t forget to go local. You can find art scholarships specifically offered in your community in this listing from Scholarships.com. But it also helps to talk to your school administrators and prominent organizations where you live to see what they have. Work you do in your community might qualify you for a scholarship as well.
Art students already know there’s a lot of extra work that goes into perfecting a craft. But it’s also important to learn how to talk about and promote your work so more opportunities to create can arise.
Consider these scholarships as more than a chance to cut down the costs of your education. They’re also an opportunity to learn how to talk about and promote your art like a professional would, taking you one step closer to that creativity-filled life you’ve always dreamed of.
Need a student loan?Here are our top student loan lenders of 2019!
|1 Important Disclosures for Ascent.
Before taking out private student loans, you should explore and compare all financial aid alternatives, including grants, scholarships, and federal student loans and consider your future monthly payments and income. Applying with a cosigner may improve your chance of getting approved and could help you qualify for a lower interest rate. Ascent Student Loans may be funded by Richland State Bank (RSB). Ascent Student Loan products are subject to credit qualification, completion of a loan application, verification of application information and certification of loan amount by a participating school. Loan products may not be available in certain jurisdictions, and certain restrictions, limitations; and terms and conditions may apply. Ascent is a federally registered trademark of Turnstile Capital Management (TCM) and may be used by RSB under limited license. Richland State Bank is a federally registered service mark of Richland State Bank.
* Application times vary depending on the applicants ability to supply the necessary information for submission.
2 Important Disclosures for CollegeAve.
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.
Information advertised valid as of 2/1/2019. Variable interest rates may increase after consummation.
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5 Important Disclosures for SunTrust.
Before applying for a private student loan, SunTrust recommends comparing all financial aid alternatives including grants, scholarships, and both federal and private student loans. To view and compare the available features of SunTrust private student loans, visit https://www.suntrust.com/loans/student-loans/private.
Certain restrictions and limitations may apply. SunTrust Bank reserves the right to change or discontinue this loan program without notice. Availability of all loan programs is subject to approval under the SunTrust credit policy and other criteria and may not be available in certain jurisdictions.
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7 Important Disclosures for CommonBond.
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.
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 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 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.
8 Important Disclosures for Citizens Bank.
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|4.26% – 13.26%1||Undergraduate and Graduate|
|4.20% – 11.44%2||Undergraduate, Graduate, and Parents|
|4.84% – 13.49%3||Undergraduate and Graduate|
|4.62% – 11.47%*,4||Undergraduate and Graduate|
|4.38% – 13.38%5||Undergraduate and Graduate|
|5.85% – 6.99%6||Undergraduate and Graduate|
|3.95% – 9.81%7||Undergraduate, Graduate, and Parents|
|4.47% – 12.34%8||Undergraduate, Graduate, and Parents|