College Scholarships Hiding in Plain Sight

calculator and notepad placed over stack of usa dollars
Madeleine Karydes
Madeleine Karydes

Madeleine attended UC Berkeley and double-majored in English and Media Studies. She is now an integral part of the Empowerly team.

There are a few options that people think of when they think about paying for a college education. This includes savings, loans, and working (or work-study). If you’re lucky, you may qualify for financial aid, and maybe even merit scholarships.

Are you ready to explore something else? Consider corporate sponsored scholarships, or business-community partner scholarships. Another way to say this is: receiving money from a business to pay for your schooling. 

And guess what else? That doesn’t mean you have to become a walking billboard. It means that come companies are willing to allocate a portion of their profits to give away in support of causes they care about–and that is to your benefit! 

What do I need to know about corporate college scholarships?

As long as you meet the eligibility requirements, there’s usually no reason not to apply. You should still evaluate whether the scholarship holds adequate value for your time spent applying. But there’s little to lose and a lot to gain (especially for smaller company awards, which tend to draw fewer applicants). 

Here’s an example from the online marketplace, HireAHelper. They explain why they care about helping “the next generation of professionals,” and the amount ($2000) they can dedicate to each student. They started their college scholarships program to connect students with schooling and eventually, industry.

A message from Daniela at HireAHelper breaks it down for you:

“HireAHelper is very passionate about helping students achieve higher education.

The $2,000 scholarship occurs four times a year and is open to high school seniors and current college students.

Our application dates are as follows:

  • Spring Contest Cycle: April 17 – July 17 of each year.
  • Summer Contest Cycle: July 18 – October 14 of each year.
  • Fall Contest Cycle: October 15 – January 15 of the following year.
  • Winter Contest Cycle: January 16 – April 16 of each year

You can find all the information related to the scholarship on HireAHelper Scholarship.”

Our recommendations

As you can see, it’s relatively easy to apply for corporate college scholarships like this. While the odds are random, finding unique scholarships to apply to when you have the time will save you a lot of money later on.

Wondering if you’re even close to qualifying? You can try finding the list of past winners (if it’s offered) to read about them and what made the selection committee award them with a scholarship. If you think you can display similar qualities, then put your best foot forward. If you don’t think this group aligns with your credentials and/or interests, you can move on in peace.

Remember to read the terms and conditions. Being disqualified because of a small fix would be disappointing, wouldn’t it? Look through the paperwork before you sign off and send it in.

And of course, be cautious of internet scams. Sometimes bots will pose as a beneficial resource and instead, capture your information. Stick to credible sites, read the whole page, and don’t release sensitive information willy-nilly. We think that’s good life advice in general, not just for the scholarship hunt!

If you need help organizing your scholarship search, we’re here for you. We’re pros at this! The search should be individualized to maximize your talents, but it doesn’t need to be overwhelming. A college counselor can help you find the right applications and polish up your materials before you submit. Think about it as an investment in your future.

Questions? Let us know!