Image from Pexels.

Image from Pexels.

Now that the college application season is coming to a close, it’s time to start researching scholarship opportunities. The process can seem daunting and frustrating at first, so here’s four scholarships you can apply for right now to help you jump start your search. Good luck, everyone!

Alliant Energy Community Service Scholarship

The Alliant Energy Foundation is offering up to 25 $1,000 scholarships to students who have demonstrated leadership in community service and volunteer work. Selection is also based on grade point average, standardized test scores, and a 300-word essay submission.

Deadline: February 15th

Eligibility: Applicants must have had a leadership role in a community service activity or volunteer work. Students must be age 24 or under, and they must be a current customer or a child of a current customer of one of Alliant’s Energy Subsidiaries (Interstate Power and Light or Wisconsin Power and Light). They must reside within the Alliant Energy service territory at the time of application. Applicants must have a grade point average of at least 2.5 on a 4.0 scale. They should plan to enroll for the first time in a two- or four-year college or university located within Iowa, Wisconsin, or Minnesota in the fall of 2014. Scholarship awards are limited to undergraduate studies only.

Criteria: As mentioned before, judges will review each application taking into consideration demonstrated participation and leadership experience in community service, grade point average, standardized test scores, and a 300-word essay. Class rank will not be considered.

Buick Achievers Scholarship Program

The Buick Achievers Scholarship is offering up to $25,000 per year to 100 first-time freshmen or college students. The award is renewable for four years, and one additional year for those students entering a five-year engineering program. The scholarship is open to high school seniors and undergraduate college students who plan to major in a course of study focused on Engineering, Technology, or select Design and Business programs.

Deadline: February 28th

Eligibility: Applicants must be high school seniors or graduates, or current college students. They must be planning to major on a course of study focused on Engineering, Technology, or select Design and Business programs. Applicants must be interested in a career in the automotive or related industries.

Criteria: Scholarship recipients are selected based on academic achievement, financial need, participation and leadership in community and school activities, work experience, and interest in the automotive industry. First-generation college, minority, female, military veteran, and dependents of military personnel students will receive special consideration.

ICMA-RC Vantagepoint Public Employee Memorial Scholarship Fund

The ICMA-RC Vantagepoint Public Employee Memorial Scholarship Fund was founded in 2001 to honor the lives of police officers, firefighters, and other local and state government employees. The fund provides financial assistance to the surviving children and spouses of employees who have died in the line of duty and are planning to attend a two-year community college, four-year college or university, or vocational school full-time.

Deadline: March 15th

Eligibility: High school seniors, undergraduates, and graduate students are all welcome to apply. Applicants must provide a letter from the deceased employee’s place of work verifying his or her employment at time of death, and supporting financial information.

Criteria: The scholarship will be determined by merit and financial need. Up to $10,000 are awarded to selected students.

James L. and Nellie M. Westlake Scholarship Program

The James L. and Nellie M. Westlake Scholarship Program was established in 1981 to assist Missouri residents in pursuing a college education. The award will cover the cost of tuition plus $2,000 to cover fees, books, and supplies. For freshmen, awards can be renewed up to three additional years, or until a bachelor’s degree is earned. For community college applicants, awards can be renewed for one or two years. For renewal, a 2.25 GPA or higher in a 4.0 scale is required for college freshmen, and a 2.5 GPA or higher in a 4.0 scale is required for college sophomores and juniors.

Deadline: February 1st

Eligibility: Applicants must be Missouri residents. Graduating seniors and students who have completed one or two years at a Missouri community college are welcome to apply. All students must plan to enroll in a four-year college or university. Students must demonstrate financial need with a family adjusted gross income of $50,000 or less. The expected family contribution toward college must be $7,000 or less. Students must have a grade point average of at least 2.5 in a 4.0 scale; except for students in a community college with one year transferable credits (these students must have at least 2.25 in a 4.0 scale).

Criteria: Applicants will be evaluated on the basis of academic record, demonstrated leadership and participation in school and community activities, honors, work experience, statement of goals and aspirations, unusual personal or family circumstances, and an outside appraisal.

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the author

Clarissa Gallardo is a sophomore at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. Originally from Panama City, Panama (only place in the world where you can see the sun rise in the Pacific and set on the Atlantic!), she is majoring in Mechanical Engineering and minoring in Mathematics and Ballet. A member of the Honors Program and dancer at heart, you can find her studying at the library, scrolling through her Tumblr feed , dancing, or reading. Clarissa has a really bad case of wanderlust and is obsessed with white chocolate mochas, The Big Bang Theory, and Doctor Reid from Criminal Minds. You can follow her on Twitter and on Tumblr.

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