Back to School Women Scholarships

After being away from school for a few years, it can seem daunting to return to this environment. When you add the cost of higher education, some women wonder how they can make it happen. Scholarships for women returning to school are an excellent way to get back on track. Women might leave school for a career, marriage or to raise children. They still have certain goals in mind and want to pursue them. There are special scholarships to encourage these women to get back to school and make their dreams come true.

Society of Women Engineers Scholarships

Women who are returning to school to pursue a career in engineering might be able to receive a scholarship from the Society of Women Engineers (SWE). They offer various scholarships for women with two just for non-traditional students who are returning to college after at least two years of being out of school and the workforce. To qualify, women must be working toward a degree in engineering and demonstrate financial need. The awards are up to $2,500. Deadlines: Freshmen: March 1 to May15. Sophomores and up: Dec. 1 - Feb 17. Visit societyofwomenengineers.swe.org/index.php/scholarships#activePanels to find out more.

Emerge Scholarships

Women returning to school who are over the age of 25 could qualify for one of the Emerge Scholarships. The applicant must be committed to improving their lives and passionate about offering help to the community. Basically, Emerge Scholarships are geared toward women with big dreams who want to make a difference in the world. The awards vary from $2,000 to $5,000. Deadline is October 31st. To learn more, write to 3525 Piedmont Road, Building 5, Suite 300, Atlanta, GA 30305, call (404) 477-5808 or visit emergescholarships.org.

Possible Woman Foundation International

Sometimes women returning to school have been stay-at-home moms who are looking to get back into the workforce. These women could qualify for a Possible Woman Foundation Scholarship in the amount of $2,000 to $5,000. The application deadline is January with more information available at possiblewomanfoundationinternational.org.

American Association of University Women Career Development Grants

Many women manage to attain a bachelor's degree then wind up getting caught up in life. These women could qualify for the American Association of University Women Career Development Grants in amounts ranging from $2,000 to $12,000. These grants are geared toward women who are re-entering the workforce, looking to advance their careers or want to change careers. Special consideration is given to those who are going for their first advanced degree, pursuing credentials in non-traditional fields or women of color. The grant is used to pursue a second bachelor's degree, master's degree or special training in professional or technical fields and can also be used for distance learning program. The deadline to apply is December. To find out more, visit aauw.org/what-we-do/educational-funding-and-awards/career-development-grants/.

Loyola University Displaced Homemaker Scholarships

Loyola University in New Orleans encourages women to apply for financial aid and inquire about possible scholarships for displaced homemakers. Students planning to attend the university should contact the financial aid counselor to go over various options. A displaced homemaker is a person who provided unpaid family service, such as a stay-at-home mom. Typically the person is unemployed or underemployed, is no longer supported by a spouse and is having trouble finding better employment. To learn more, visit http://www.loyno.edu/financialaid/.

Adult Students in Scholastic Transition (ASIST)

Women who are returning to school might want to try to stake their claim to one of the ASIST 13 scholarships ranging from $2,000 - $10,000. Local Executive Women International chapters and corporate entities participate in ASIST to offer these scholarships to people who are facing physical, economic or social challenge and what to make their situations better through higher education. To get additional details, visit http://ewiconnect.com/?page_id=203.

The Non-Traditional Student Scholarship

If you are a member of the American Legion, Sons of the American Legion or the American Legion Auxiliary, you could qualify for the Non-Traditional Student Scholarship. The awards are available for students who are returning to the classroom after time elapsed. Formal schooling may have been interrupted to handle life circumstances. A student might also have at least one year or college and require financial assistance to go for an undergraduate degree. Deadline is March 1st. To find out more, visit https://www.alaforveterans.org/Scholarships/Non-Traditional-Student-Scholarship/.

P.E.O. Program for Continuing Education

Often women face interruptions on their way to achieving their educational goals. These women might qualify for the P.E.O. Program for Continuing Education. Grants of up to $3,000 are provided to women whose education was interrupted and who need to resume studies as a result of changing demands in their current lives. The grant can be used to pay for tuition, childcare, books and transportation. Get additional details at peointernational.org/sites/www.peointernational.org/files/pce-info-card-7-28-2010_WEB.pdf.

The Wal-Mart Higher Reach Scholarship

There are many women who return to work at mass merchants because of the flexible hours and potential career opportunities as they are able to expand their hours. Women who work at Wal-Mart as associates could qualify for the Wal-Mart Higher Reach Scholarship of up to $3,000. The applicants must be out of school for a minimum of one year. More information about the scholarships is found at foundation.walmart.com.

Business and Professional Women of Louisiana Scholarship Fund

Women 25 and older who are continuing their education may qualify for the Business and Professional Women of Louisiana scholarship. The fund was originally the Agnes Morris Education Loan fund sponsored and funded by BPW/LA and the scholarships are offer to members only. The funds can be used for a learning program from an accredited university or technical college. Scholarships can also be used to complete coursework for licensing or other career advancement. Recipients must complete six or more hours per semester. The check is issued to the school and student jointly. To find out more, go to lafbpw.wildapricot.org/Default.aspx?pageId=880660.

Verna Trushel Displaced Homemakers' Scholarship

The University of Akron in Ohio offers the Verna Trushel Displaced Homemakers' Scholarship, which was established in 1987. Their definition of a displaced homemaker is someone who has worked at home providing unpaid service but has not been in the labor force for years. The homemaker is dependent on the income of another family member or public assistance but no longer receives support from that income. Also the person could be unemployed or underemployed with few opportunities to upgrade their situation. Candidates for the scholarship must currently be enrolled at the University of Akron and complete 30 undergraduate career hours as well as earned at least a 2.2 grade point average. Applications are available at the UA Adult Focus office in Schrank Hall North, Room 260 starting in February with an application deadline of mid-March. Get additional info at uakron.edu/uaaf/verna-trushel-scholarship.dot.

NLAPW Shirley Holden Helberg Grants

Are you a woman who is returning to school and always wanted to pursue a creative career? Creativity is the core requirement to qualify for the National League of American Pen Women (NLAPW) grants for women who are at least 35 years of age. Three scholarships of $1,000 are awarded to women seeking to continue their creative education, one in each field including Art, Music and Letters. Get more information about this creative grant at nlapw.org/competitions/.

Ruth T. Kelley Cole Life Change Scholarship

Women seeking to make a career change to an engineering field may qualify for the Ruth T. Kelley Cole Life Change Scholarship at Oregon State University. The program is part of the Women and Minorities in Engineering Program at OSU. The $6,000 scholarship is intended to help relieve the financial burden minority women face when returning to school. To find out more, go to http://wme.engr.oregonstate.edu/ruth-t-kelley-cole-life-change-scholarship-0.

Talbots Scholarship Program

The Talbots Scholarship Program award women who were ready to go back to college later in life. Since its start in 1997, the program has awarded over $1.6 million in scholarships. The awards are meant to celebrate women at every stage of her life and encourage her aspirations to start a new chapter by pursuing a college degree. Nancy Talbot said, “Education fuels the imagination, gives you confidence and perspective...for life's colorful moments and extraordinary discoveries.” To learn more about these exciting scholarships for women returning to school, visit talbots.com/scholarship.

Scholarships Front Range Community College

For those looking to attend college in Colorado, consider the Scholarship for Displaced Homemakers or the PEO Program for Continuing Education at Front Range Community College. The application deadline is May 15th. The scholarship requires the candidate to write a double-spaced essay of no more than two pages outlining why the foundation should invest in you, career goals, and academic goals and how you intend to give back to your community after graduation. Applicants must also submit two letters of recommendation from a teacher, employer, professor or advisor. The Displaced Homemakers scholarship is offered in partnership with the Colorado Department of Labor. The PEO Program for continuing education is for women who have been non-students for at least 24 consecutive months at some point. For additional info, go to frontrange.edu/About-Us/Foundation/Scholarships.aspx or call (303) 404-5463.

Single, Displaced Homemaker and Non-Traditional Career and Special Populations Grant

For women who want to go to college in Michigan, check out the Single, Displaced Homemaker and Non-Traditional Career and Special Populations Grant at Lansing Community College. The grant helps cover the cost of tuition, books and transportation. The deadline to apply is June 15th. It is available to single pregnant women, single parents, homemakers who have been at home for a minimum of 5 years and displaced homemakers who are also unemployed or under-employed who face a divorce, death, loss of income from a spouse or who are on public assistance. Applicants must also have a certain income level to qualify for this program. Get additional facts at lcc.edu/wrc/grants/single_grant.aspx.

Displaced Homemaker Program at Cuyahoga Community College

Women who wish to attend college in Ohio may want to pursue the Displaced Homemaker program at Cuyahoga Community College. To qualify, women must be at least 27 years old and be a homemaker. Additionally, the candidate needs to have lost her main source of income through separation, divorce, death, disability or the long-term unemployment of her spouse. To get more details about this scholarship, call (800) 954-8742, email scholarships at tri.c.edu or visit tri-c.edu/payingforcollege/scholarships/pages/default.aspx.

Business and Professional Women's Foundation Scholarships

Update: Scholarships are not currently being offered.

The Business and Professional Women's Foundation maintains an ongoing list of scholarships and fellowships for women who are over 25 and looking to return to school to get back into the job market, upgrade their career skills or train for a new position. To find out about scholarship opportunities, visit BPW Foundation http://bpwfoundation.org

The Girlfriend Factor and the Go Girl Grant

If you are a West Coast woman over the age of 25, you might qualify for a scholarship from the Girlfriend Factor, a non-profit organization in Palm Desert, California. The Girlfriend Factor is dedicated to helping women advance their education and occupational development. Women must attend school in Coachella Valley, CA to be eligible to apply for the Go Girl Grant. Applicants need to show how their educational choice will lead to specific career advancement. To get additional details, visit girlfriendfactor.org.

Scholarships for women returning to school encourage them to finally pursue higher education. Women might be displaced homemakers or wish to make a career change. No matter what the reason, women of all ages can help fund their college degree by applying for an array of scholarship and grant opportunities. It is important to take notes, complete applications accurately and submit required essays and paperwork in a timely manner. The best way to keep track of submissions is to write them on a calendar to follow-up when the time comes. A well-organized applicant is sure to procure funding for higher education. Besides scholarships for women going back to school, there is also possible financial aid available from the government by completing a FAFSA. With a bit of effort, you are sure to score some or all of the funds you need to pursue your college degree for a successful career in the future.