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External Scholarships

External scholarships are funds that you apply for and receive from an outside or external source not affiliated with Columbia College Chicago. These scholarships can be from a source in your community, religious organization, professional organization, or even your high school. Take a look around, you’d be surprised by how many awards are available.

External scholarship funds can be submitted to Columbia at any time but if your external scholarship information is received, processed, and awarded by August 1, Columbia may match your external scholarship with the Third-Party Scholarship Award.

Finding an External Scholarship

Locating good scholarships and scholarship finders can be tricky, so we’ve put together a list of good places to check out during your scholarship search. We’ve divided our list into sites geared towards educating you on financial aid/scholarships and the sites that link you to the actual scholarship applications.

NOTE: Before beginning your search, please visit Ten Quick Tips When Searching for Scholarships

Scholarship Finders

General Info: Fastweb is one of the largest providers of scholarship application information on the web. It’s easy to use and very reliable.
Do you need a profile with this site? Yes
General Info: is a user friendly site that lists if an award is renewable, the deadline, how many awards are available and how many people applied last year vs. how many people got awards.
Do you need a profile with this site? No, but you can create one to help narrow your search.
General Info: is very user friendly and provides information about amounts, deadlines, how hard it is to complete the application and the general competition for each award.
Do you need a profile with this site? Yes. To get any access to the site you have to make a profile.
General Info: is a massive database for external scholarships. They advertise having over $11 billion in awards listed on their site. This is the parent site for
Do you need a profile with this site? Yes.
General Info: allows you to search for awards by city, major, extracurriculars, religious affiliation, ethnicity and many more.
Do you need a profile with this site? No, but in order to get full access to the site and help narrow your search you can make a profile.
General Info: has some unique scholarships like the Zombie Apocalypse Scholarship, the Superpower Scholarship and the Flavor of the Month Scholarship.
Do you need a profile with this site? Yes. You cannot access the site without first setting up a profile.
General Info: is run by the U.S. Department of Labor. It has links for quick access to information regarding budgeting for college, federal aid, how to avoid scholarship scams and also has a scholarship finder.
Do you need a profile with this site? No
General Info: has a lot of information on aid opportunities for minority students, students with disabilities and military veterans.
Do you need a profile with this site? No

Informational Sites
General Info: is the Department of Education’s site on federal financial aid. It has information on preparing for college, what types of aid are available, what you might be eligible for, how to apply for financial aid and information about repaying your loans after you graduate.
Do you need a profile with this site? No, but if you have used federal aid you can sign in with your SSN, FAFSA pin and birthdate to look at the status of any federal loans you have.
General Info: is a great site if you’re looking for general information on financial aid, loans, FAFSA and/or military benefits.
Do you need a profile with this site? No
General Info: focuses on helping students find external scholarships and doesn’t deal with FAFSA or federal aid.
Do you need a profile with this site? No
General Info: is largely an informational site. They have articles about budgeting for college, how to be money smart, comparing private loan lenders, scholarship application tips as well as information on how to avoid scholarship scams.
Do you need a profile with this site? Only if you want to use their scholarship finder. The information on the site is available without a profile.

External Scholarship Opportunities

Sometimes we find interesting scholarship opportunities and list them here and on our blog for your convenience.