What You Need To Know About Non-Traditional Scholarships

Many circumstances make a person delay their education. But when they get back to studying, they can still get a scholarship. Scholarships and grants for non-traditional students are more common than they may seem. And if you are a non-traditional student, don’t think that you don’t deserve a grant! Professionals of the WriteMyEssays team are happy to share the information you need on this matter. 

How To Define a Non-Traditional Student? 

There is no universal definition. Every higher education institution interprets this term in their way. 

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Most commonly, those are people who had to postpone their education for some reason. They might have decided to instantly go to work after finishing secondary school. Or they have chosen family above getting an education. Whatever the reason is, they had to leave college or never even enter it. And more specifically, the categories of non-traditional students are...

Students above a certain age 

Usually, if a person is 25+ years old and they want to go to college, you can call them a non-traditional student. They might have tried to get an education before but for some reason never went to the end of this path. Or they have never been to a college. These conditions are not essential. The main thing is that they do not have a complete higher education at their age.

People under 25 years old with a college experience 

If a person hasn’t reached the milestone of a concrete age but has tried to study in a college, you can also consider them a non-traditional student. 

Single parents of any age 

Usually, it’s people who have been parenting for many years. When they finally get an opportunity to get a higher education, they go for any form of educational progress. Typically, they do this to improve their skills to get better work and improve their financial state. 

Women who had to skip college 

The most common case in this category is a woman who had to raise a child or many children. These women spend eons of time on housewifery and often also work. Of course, it becomes difficult for them to combine this all with studying. But when they get the chance to go to college, they have all the opportunities to get a scholarship. 

Alternative non-trad student definitions 

As we said, some institutions may have extra definitions for non-traditional students. These categories are not that common. Yet, you can find colleges that will consider your situation non-traditional. 

First-generation education seekers 

Let’s turn to Rochelle Sharpe from The New York Times. According to her, you can say that this student is non-traditional if they are the first ones in their family to go to college. There are many reasons for that. Maybe, their family didn’t have enough money to send anyone to college. Or they had no privileges of other forms earlier. 

Students from families with low income 

There is nothing to grovel about. This situation is completely understandable. 

Commuter participants in the educational process

If you are a student who lives far away from college, you can consider yourself non-traditional too. 

Students who can’t stay on the campus during studying 

Some institutions consider these cases as non-traditional too. Whatever the reason is, there is a way to get this particular person a grant. But this interpretation is somewhat a rarity. 

Part-time education seekers 

Some people can be present at a college or university only part-time. And this is understandable. Again, there might be any reason for that. The most common is when a student has to work 35+ hours per week to maintain their financial situation. Even if they are financially independent, they can still get a grant. 

Other cases 

This list can go further but these cases are not common. You have to pay attention to a concrete policy of a higher education institution. 

Who To Turn to For a Non-Traditional Scholarship? 

There are multiple associations and organizations which help those special students get a grant. For instance, it can be ANTSHE — Association for Nontraditional Students in Higher Education. If you are a female non-traditional student, a better choice will be the Women’s Independence Scholarship Program. Other coalitions can help you to get a nontraditional student grant. 

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Also, pay attention to the policy of a particular higher education institution. If they have alternative interpretations of non-trad students and you fit in one, you can ask the administration directly. 

The “Volume” Of Non-Traditional Student Scholarships and Grants

It’s okay to ask how much money you will obtain if you get a non-traditional scholarship. There is no particular answer, unfortunately. That depends on who you turn to. 

If this is the educational institution you are going to, then the scholarship can be in the range of 500$ up to 2000$ per course. If it’s a charity company, which functions on donations, then it will be smaller. There are rare cases when some non-traditional students get a 10000$ scholarship. Their number is small, and they can get it only once a year. Usually, the standard payout is approximately 1000$ +/- 500$. 

Psychological Challenges Anyone May Face as a Non-Traditional Student 

Whoever a non-traditional student is, there are always challenges for them. The most unpleasant and significant one is the fear that they won’t manage. For instance, women had to raise children and attend to the household (sometimes men). They don’t have the confidence to even apply. 

Another case is people who survived domestic violence or had long-lasting diseases. They too doubt their abilities. Or it may be people who had to work extra instantly after school to help their family. Whatever the reason is, it’s important to support these participants in an educational process. 

Another common challenge is the financial state of a particular non-traditional student. They might be dependent on their family or, vice versa, work extra to manage a self-supporting life. 

All these and many more situations one can solve by getting a scholarship for non-trad students. This is why non-traditional scholarships and grants exist. And if you feel like you need one, don’t be shy to try! Everyone deserves it, and you are no exception.

Read more:

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