This article was last updated on Jan. 15, 2015.
Making the choice to go back to college after taking time off can be an exciting decision, but also a daunting one when it comes to figuring out how to pay for tuition, books and other costs. Luckily, there’s help available. Below are NerdScholar’s picks for scholarships that celebrate women returning to college—whether that’s finishing a degree or completely changing careers. Most of these scholarships are open only to women and have an age minimum requirement.
Want to see more scholarships? Check out our scholarship search.
The clothing retailer Talbots annually awards scholarships in honor of founder Nancy Talbot. This program celebrates women who demonstrate courage, conviction and an entrepreneurial spirit. Among other requirements, women must have earned their high school diploma or GED at least 10 years prior.
The P.E.O. (Philanthropic Educational Organization) has chapters all over the United States. The P.E.O. awards grants to outstanding women who find it necessary to return to school to support themselves and/or their families. Applicants must be sponsored by a P.E.O. chapter.
In honor of Jeannette Rankin, the first woman to be elected to the U.S. Congress, this scholarship celebrates women who have a vision of how their education will benefit themselves, their families and their communities. Applicants must be at least 35 years old as well as low income.
Emerge is an organization that prides itself on empowering women through education. Its mission is specifically to aid women whose education has been interrupted and who understand the power of giving back to their communities. Applicants must be at least 25 and meet other requirements.
Linda Lael Miller is a best-selling author who aims to encourage women to continue their education. She awards scholarships to women who are able to demonstrate how achieving their education goals will enhance their future and that of their family. Applicants must be at least 25 years old.
EWI (Executive Women International) is a global women’s organization with chapters across the country focusing on furthering women in their careers by upholding community values. It awards scholarships annually to nontraditional students who face economic, social or physical challenges. Students must apply first through a local EWI chapter and be at least 18 years old.
SWE (Society of Women Engineers) awards multiple scholarships to women who pursue an engineering degree, and two are for re-entry students. The Olive Lynn Salembier scholarship and the BK Krenzer Memorial scholarship each reward women re-entering school to complete their engineering degree.
Soroptimist is an international women’s organization for business professionals who work together to improve the lives of women and girls. Awards are given to female finalists who have overcome obstacles to get back on the road of achieving their dreams of higher education. Applicants must apply through a local branch.
Female students who are ages 23 and older and residents of Virginia Beach, Virginia, may apply. This scholarship is awarded to students who are returning to college after a gap. Applicants should have completed a minimum of two semesters at a U.S. college or university and be enrolled in a Hampton Roads undergraduate program. Students must have maintained a 3.0 GPA.
Graduation photo via Shutterstock.