The idea of the American Dream is a powerful one. It gives an impression of the freedom to succeed and prosper, of opportunity, and of the benefits and privileges of living in the USA. It is no surprise, therefore, that the American Dream has leant its name to a number of established scholarship programs, designed to help talented young people get the education they want and achieve great things. Some of them are for American citizens who need some extra financial backing to go to college, others for foreign nationals who want to study in the USA.
Here are some different scholarship programs for higher education, named for the American Dream:
The Sallie Mae Fund American Dream Scholarship
The Sallie Mae Fund has been helping Americans from all kinds of backgrounds on the route to a college education for over a decade. In that time, they have made a contribution of over $125 million in scholarships and programs to raise awareness about the importance of education.
The Sallie Mae Fund works with several other organizations to offer specific scholarship programs to young people in financial need from minority backgrounds. The Sallie Mae Fund American Dream Scholarship is one such program, and is provided in collaboration with the United Negro College Fund (UNCF).
The Sallie Mae American Dream Scholarship can give funding of between $500 and $5,000 to students who qualify and are accepted. Those eligible to apply are African-American students with a grade point average of over 2.5, who are enrolled on a full time course of study on an undergraduate basis at an eligible school. Students applying for the scholarship will also need to demonstrate financial need, and must be US citizens or permanent residents.
The aim of the fund is to remove barriers to a college education for intelligent and hard working young people, and this is why it has been named after the American Dream ideal.
Miami Dade College American Dream Scholarship
This is a special program designed to help keep talent in the local area, and to offer the chance of a college education to students who may not otherwise be able to consider it. It is only available to students who have graduated from a high school in Miami Dade County, Florida, but those who do, and meet the other eligibility criteria are awarded full tuition scholarships for two years of an undergraduate course at Miami Dade College, without having to submit any extra applications.
To qualify, as well as being resident in Miami Dade and having achieved their High School diploma there (home schooled students also qualify if they meet the other criteria), students must have a grade point average of 3.0 or higher, and have met the minimum course placement scores. Though students looking to get the Miami Dade College American Dream Scholarship do need to submit the FAFSA form, which is an application for federal financial aid for college students, they do not have to meet the criteria for federal financial aid to be eligible for this particular scholarship.
Other restrictions on the Miami Dade American Dream scholarship include that it only covers the portions of the student’s education that are undertaken in Florida state, and that it covers only the remaining portion of tuition fees after any other grants, scholarships or federal aid has been taken into account.
Because of its high value and ease of qualification for those who live in the right area, the Miami Dade American Dream Scholarship is a generous award which can allow students to access higher education close to home.
TD Bank American Dream Scholarship
The TD Bank American Dream Scholarship is awarded to students who meet the eligibility criteria and who also demonstrate an unusually high commitment to their community, through things like volunteer work or being involved with local charities.
The other criteria for this program are that the student must live in a county served by TD Bank, must have a 3.0 grade point average or better, and be planning to study on an eligible course at an eligible university or technical college.
TD bank has been running this program since 1995, and in that time has offered over $1.5 million to community spirited high school graduates in the bank’s market area, which covers a large portion of the United States.
Students can apply each year when the application period is open by filling out an online form.
This is an example of a corporation giving something back to the young people who, by living the American Dream, may later become its senior ranking employees or best customers.
The Rama Scholarship for the American Dream
The Rama Scholarship for the American Dream is issued by the JHM Hotel chain. This chain was started by five brothers who came to America from India to pursue the American Dream, and found success. Wanting to offer a similar opportunity to other talented people of Indian descent, as well as the relatives of their own employees, the company began offering its American Dream scholarship in 1998, and has since given away over half a million dollars to eligible students.
The Rama Scholarship for the American Dream is only available to students majoring in hospitality management at one of the 13 schools participating in the scholarship program. Students must also have a minimum 2.5 grade point average, and although anyone can apply if they meet these criteria, preference is given to those who are or are related to employees of JHM, and people from minority groups.
The value of the award is between $1000 and $3000, and how much a successful applicant gets depends on their enrolment and what their school recommends.
These are just some of the programs inspired by the idea of the American Dream that seek to offer more talented young people the chance to pursue the education and the career that they want. Opportunity and hard work are at the core of the American Dream, and scholarships like these reward hard working, determined young people with the opportunities they deserve.