College money in the making

Alternative ways to get money for college without FAFSA


Photo by Peyton Sims

Photo Illustration by Peyton Sims

Story by Mikayla Zverina, staff writer

Your final year of high school is flying past you in a whirlwind of college applications and essays. Just when you thought the race to get your applications done was over, you realize you forgot to sign up for Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). FAFSA is a form completed by current and prospective college students in the United States to determine their eligibility for student financial aid. There’s no need to panic. Below are some ways to take care of some financial issues you may have, including fundraisers and scholarships available. 

Appeal to everyone’s sweet tooth

If you have a knack for baking, whip up some sweet treats to sell around school, church or anywhere that allows it. People have a hard time passing up the opportunity of a homemade dessert. If baking isn’t exactly your thing, there are fundraiser kits that stores, such as Sams, sell. You can buy a box of 52 candy bars that costs around $32, but you can make a profit by selling each candy bar for a dollar or more. 

Turn hobbies into dollar signs 

Many people have creative hobbies that they only think of doing for fun, but this doesn’t have to be the case. If you have a unique hobby, start making lots of your artistic creations that can be sold to earn some extra cash. Whether it’s painting, crocheting or crafting, turn something you already enjoy into a fun and easy way to make money for college. 

Employee Scholarships 

Many companies that are chains have scholarships or educational opportunities for their employees. If you work at a place like this, ask your manager for details about these potential scholarships. This can help you out with college and get even more benefits from your current job. Starbucks, Burger King, and McDonald’s are just a few of the chains that offer these scholarships for workers. 

For seniors: 

Doodle for Google

This one is for all my artsy and creative people out there. Google hosts a scholarship contest for everyone K-12. They have a different theme every year, but this year’s theme is kindness. Basically, you doodle something resembling kindness and submit it. You can make it out of any material from crayons to clay. They choose winners out of all age groups to win and it is a fun, creative way for artistic people out there to make some college money. 

Deadline: March 20, 2020

Duct Tape: Stuck at Prom Scholarship Contest 

This scholarship is for the creative students who are up for a challenge. One must design a tux or dress for prom completely out of Duck Brand Duct Tape. Submit a photo and the journey making your prom dress or tux in a documentary or written essay to the website attached. The best dress and tux get $10,000 each and runner-ups get $500. 

Deadline: July 21, 2020

Huntington’s College Scholarship Sweepstakes

If you are looking for an easy way to earn money, enter into any scholarship sweepstakes you can find because they require nothing but a few simple things like your name and email. Although the chances to win are solely based on luck, it is one of the easiest ways to get money for college. The Huntngton’s offers up to $4,000 so why not try your luck? 

Deadline: June 30, 2020

The scholarships below do not apply to the first semester of college for you seniors out there, but they can be used for the semesters to follow.  

Coca Cola Scholars Program Scholarship

Coca-Cola picks 150 students each year to receive a scholarship of $20,000. Students are chosen based on their capacity to lead and serve along with their commitment to making an impact on their communities and schools. This website also has a list of other scholarships available and websites to aid you in the search for college money. 

Deadline: October 31, 2020

Dr. Pepper Tuition Giveaway

Dr. Pepper founded a program that gives students up to $100,000 to help pay for college tuition. A profile is created where you briefly describe your goals of how you will change the world, and then you submit a video that helps the company get to know you and your goal. Once chosen, you will be invited to throw for your prize at a College Football Conference Championship game. Winning this scholarship would be a touchdown for your future. 

Deadline: Reopens mid-August 2020

GE-Reagan Foundation Scholarship Program

The GE- Reagan Foundation has awarded many high school graduates with a $10,000 scholarship that is renewable for up to three more years to honor the legacy and character of our nation’s 40th President. Students interested must demonstrate leadership, drive, integrity and citizenship. Scholars are invited to participate in a special awards program and receive ongoing leadership-development support.

Deadline: Reopens October 2020

Burger King Scholars Program

Burger King is looking for students to receive scholarships grants ranging from $1,000 to $50,000 to help students with the cost of attending college or post-secondary vocational or technical school. They select recipients based on their grade point average(GPA), work experience, extracurricular activities and community service, but you do not have to work there to receive this.

Deadline: Reopens October 2020 

As you can see, there are many other ways to make money for college, so don’t let the fact that you didn’t sign up for FAFSA get you down. Start applying for these scholarships and making the most out of the cool hobbies you do for fun.