Many four-year institutions offer scholarships in addition to financial aid to help ease costs. The key is planning ahead.
- File the FAFSA
- Maryland State Scholarships
- Scholarships Offered at the Universities of Shady Grove
- Scholarships Offered by Specific Transfer Institutions
- Scholarships for International Transfer Students
- Scholarships for DACA/Dream Act Students
- Using Scholarship Search Programs
- General Transfer Scholarships
- Tips for Applying for Scholarships
Eligible students should fill out a FAFSAnew window (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) each year. Even if you did not qualify for aid based on financial need at Montgomery College, many transfer scholarships require students to fill out a FAFSA. Forms become available October 1 each year. Most scholarship programs require filing a FAFSA by varying dates of January 1 through March 1. Keep a calendar of scholarship application deadlines and plan to file the FAFSA in early January or sooner.
Maryland State Regents Scholarshipsnew window: Full and partial scholarships offered by the University System of Maryland (USM) Board of Regents for use at specific Maryland public transfer four-year schools. Learn how MC students can apply for a Regents scholarship.
MHEC (Maryland Higher Education Commission) lists transfer scholarships for Maryland state residents. See sample awards listed below and check the MHEC pagenew window for updates. Most awards have a March 1 application deadline.
- Community College Promise Scholarship – for high school students entering Montgomery College or current MC students. Technically not a transfer scholarship but if you are finding this page as a student about to begin Montgomery College or as a current student who has financial need, this award can be applied to the first two years of a four-year degree. Deadline March 1; must have demonstrated financial need.
- The 2+2 Transfer Scholarship new windowis designed to assist and encourage transfer students from Maryland community colleges to attend a 4-year institution within the State. Students must be enrolled in an eligible accredited Maryland postsecondary institution. You must have demonstrated financial need, defined as a federally calculated expected family contribution (EFC) of $10,000 or less as reported on the student's FAFSA. Award is $1,000 for most majors; $2,000 per year for science, teaching, engineering, computer science, mathematics, or nursing majors. Priority Deadline is March 1; applications continue to be accepted until May 1 if funds are available.
The Universities at Shady Grove (USG) offers a wide range of scholarship fundsnew window covering everything from textbooks to full tuition in order to help students achieve their education goals. These scholarships are in addition to scholarships offered by the 9 different universities offering 39 majors at USG.
These scholarships are created with contributions from private donors including the USG Board of Advisors, local businesses, foundations, community organizations and individual donors. Students fill out one Scholarship Application and USG will match students with possible awards.
Most colleges offer scholarships for transfer students. Search each school’s main page for “Transfer Scholarships” – most will require completion of a specific number of credits (from 30 to 60 credits earned prior to transfer), some will require completion of an associate’s degree. Awards may be merit-based (primarily on GPA [grade point average] and leadership activities), others may be need-based. Most schools will require submission of a FAFSA to process both merit-based and need-based awards.
Sample Transfer Scholarships by Institutions:
- UM University of Maryland College Parknew window
- UMBCnew window
- UMGC University of Maryland Global Campusnew window: Completion Scholarship for Maryland Community College Graduates – an automatic award for associate degree holders.
- Morgan State Universitynew window: Transfer Incentive Program
- George Washington University, DCnew window
- Hood College, Frederick MDnew window
Awards for international transfer students are typically offered by private colleges and universities; fewer are available at state/public schools where the focus is offering aid to state residents. Search “International Scholarships” on each school’s website to see options.
Sample transfer schools offering international scholarships:
Review The Universities at Shady Grove (USG)'s webpage on Scholarships for Undocumented, DACA, TPS Studentsnew window for important general information.
Use free accounts that do not require a payment for the service. Most will require that you create an account but will not require credit card information.
These scholarships can be used at a variety of schools.
- Jack Kent Cooke Undergraduate Transfer Scholarshipnew window
- Udall Undergraduate Scholarshipnew window
- Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) Honor Society Scholarships for Four-Year Collegesnew window
- American Association for Women in Community Collegesnew window
- Coca-Cola Scholars Foundationnew window (scroll to Coca-Cola Leaders of Promise programs, administered by Phi Theta Kappa)
- Darrell Hess Community College Geography Scholarshipnew window
- Jeannette Rankin Foundationnew window
- Hispanic Scholarship Fundnew window
Make yourself a strong candidate
A strong GPA is important when applying for scholarships but it's not the only factor. Get involved, gain valuable experience by participating in MC Clubs and Organizations, Volunteer Activities, enroll in MC Honors Programs, or join the community college Honor Society Phi Theta Kappa.
Keep an eye out for opportunities
Apply for FAFSA early, visit the MC financial aid office, apply for MC Board of Trustee or MC Foundation Awards which may be for specific transfer majors during your years at MC, check MyMC for scholarship announcements, and search for transfer scholarships at specific schools. Additionally, perform a general web search such as “transfer scholarships psychology majors” to see what may come up.
Pay attention to eligibility criteria
Scholarships can be merit-based, need-based, or a combination of the two. Merit-based scholarships often require a specific GPA as well as leadership activities and honors courses. Need-based scholarships often ask for FAFSA or income information. Know what is required before applying for a scholarship you might not be eligible for.
Keep track of deadlines
As noted above, most Maryland State scholarships have a March 1 or earlier deadline. Create a calendar of application deadlines.
Research the sponsoring organization
Read about the organization, institution or scholarship you are applying to. If you know the sponsor has a passion for healthcare and you are interested in healthcare, then highlight that in your application to stand out.
Keep an updated resume
Scholarships often require a resume as part of the scholarship packet. A scholarship resume is different than one that you would use when applying for a job, it focuses more on academic activities. Get resume help from MC’s Student Career and Employment Services.
Letter of Recommendation
View a Student's Guide to Getting the Best Letters of Recommendation. (PDF, ) Make sure to ask faculty for a letter of recommendation with enough notice; they may need a few weeks to write the letter and send it.
Have supplemental materials ready
Most scholarships will require some if not all of these supporting materials:
- Official transcripts - request transcripts from Admissions and Enrollment Management
- Financial aid forms and tax information - accessible online through your FAFSA profile
- Essays - consult with the MC Writing Centers or an advisor to make sure your essay is polished and comprehensive
- Recommendation letters - ask in advance and make sure your references can meet the required deadline
Submit a complete application
The application form itself may seem like the simplest part, but this is often where scholarship readers find the most mistakes. Read over your application carefully before you submit it. Double check all required materials (sometimes applications require multiple copies of certain materials). Incomplete applications are often discarded.
Avoid scholarship scams
Read about red flags that may indicate a scam, including offers of scholarships that you did not apply for and programs that promise scholarships if you pay a fee. US News: How to Avoid Scholarship Scamsnew window