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Scholarships for Overcoming Adversity

For many high school and college students, what happens in the classroom is the least stressful thing in their lives. The challenges that so many face outside of the classroom, be it personal tragedy, family issues or other unfortunate circumstances.

Many organizations have recognized that academics can often take a backseat to dealing with personal challenges. They have created a number of scholarship programs for students who have overcome adversity and plan to attend college and pursue a degree.

Some scholarship programs deal with specific issues.


The Families of Freedom Scholarship Fund was created to help children of victims of the September 11 terrorist attacks pay for college.

Other organizations ask students to describe what their lives have been like, and how events and obstacles have shaped the people they are, and how they have affected their chosen course of study. One such organization, The Horatio Alger Association, has granted more than $125 million in need-based scholarships since 1984. Students are encouraged to pursue degrees that will help them serve others in the community.

Horatio Alger is one of the largest college scholarship programs in the country, but small community and state organizations also offer college aid to students who have overcome obstacles. These organizations generally look to local high schools and colleges to nominate deserving students for scholarships and awards.

Please use the links to find out more about scholarships for students who have overcoming adversity.

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