Scholarships Overview

The Yampa Valley Community Foundation is proud to support students in northwest Colorado in their pursuit of higher education and attainment of academic, trade and life skills that translate into economic self-sufficiency.  We manage over 30 scholarships for a wide variety of students with diverse educational journeys.

HOW TO APPLY

YVCF’s 2021 scholarship cycle opens February 1 and closes Sunday, April 4.  Students are notified of awards by mid-May, prior to high school graduation.  Renewal scholarship applications are open February 1 to May 1.  A few other scholarships for specific programs and advertised elsewhere have alternative open and close dates; you may find these on our Find a Scholarship page.

To identify scholarships for which you’re eligible, review their descriptions at Find a Scholarship.  You may apply for multiple scholarships.  Plan ahead and don’t wait until the last minute to begin applying, as you will need time to compose essays and assemble supplementary materials such as your transcript, resume and letters of recommendation.  We strongly suggest asking for letters of recommendation at least two weeks in advance and supplying your recommenders with your resume and a description of the scholarship and its criteria.

ONLINE APPLICATION PROCEDURE

Once you’re identified the scholarships to which you’d like to apply, read the detailed instructions below and then proceed to the online application portal by clicking Apply Now here or at the bottom of any scholarship page on our website.

Within the online application you will proceed through the following steps:

  • Create an individual login – Be sure to remember your username and password so you can leave the website and return to your application later. You can Save each section of your application and return to work on it later.
  • Prequalifying Questions – Some applications begin with a question to determine your eligibility. If your answer disqualifies you from that particular application (e.g. you do not attend the specified high school), you will not be able to proceed.  Go back to the beginning and choose another scholarship.
  • General Information – All applications begin by filling out the “general information” section. Once that section is complete, proceed to the other application sections. If you plan to apply for multiple scholarships, you will be able to import responses from your first completed application to avoid having to fill out similar information multiple times. Be careful and be accurate.
  • Essays – Some scholarship have unique essay questions so don’t wait until the last minute to research our scholarships and write your essays. We recommend that you save your essays in a Word doc and then use the cut and paste function to place them into the online form. This will enable you to proof-read, do a word count and spell check your essays prior to submission.
  • Submit – Once you have completed all sections on the application dashboard you will be asked to provide an electronic signature and do a final review. Once you click “submit,” you will not be able to return to your application to edit.  After you “submit” you will be sent an email verifying your submission.

Most applications require the following attachments to be uploaded:

  • A recent transcript
  • A résumé including all employment history, extracurricular and school activities, community service, leadership roles, awards, etc.
  • One or two letters of recommendation from non-family members.

AFTER YOU’VE BEEN AWARDED A SCHOLARSHIP

Students are notified of scholarship awards prior to high school graduation.  Before funds are disbursed to your institution of higher education, you will need to complete a Scholarship Recipient Agreement for each scholarship you’re awarded.

If you do not attend your stated college or trade school, or if you withdraw or change schools at any point during the year, you must notify YVCF at scholarships@yvcf.org.  In many cases, you can defer to the following year or we can redirect a 2nd semester payment to your new school.

FOR DONORS

There are many ways to help YVCF’s vision of building a healthy and vital community and supporting our youth via our scholarships program.

To donate to an established scholarship fund, please visit OUR FUNDS at yvcf.org.

To learn about establishing a new scholarship or memorial fund, go to ESTABLISH A FUND at yvcf.org or contact Traci Hiatt at traci@yvcf.org or 970-879-8632.

Every application is reviewed by volunteer scholarship selection committees. Periodically, these committees require additional reviewers.  To volunteer on a scholarship review committee, please contact jenny@yvcf.org

ACCREDITATION

Scholarships may only be used at educational organizations. If you have any doubt about the school to which you’re applying, the U.S. Department of Education maintains a database of accredited schools and recognized accrediting agencies.

A warning about scholarship search services

There are many scholarship search services available. As a rule, we do not recommend paying a fee for any of them. Scholarship search services that offer a money-back guarantee typically require the student to prove they applied to each and every source given to them and were denied. Often this is impossible because some scholarships are no longer in existence. There are a number of scholarship search services on the Internet that a student can use free of charge. One is FastWeb. For information on scams, see http://www.finaid.org/scholarships/scams.phtml