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Phoenix Forward magazine

7 unusual scholarships to help you pay for college

Unusual scholarships

When it comes to financing your college education, look beyond the usual sources of funding by checking out the wide range of unusual scholarships available online.

“We’re seeing a lot more scholarships today that can be awarded to [applicants] just by being creative or having a specific hobby,” says Amanda Hendricks, external scholarships manager for University of Phoenix.

Here are seven unusual scholarships to consider:

Dr. Pepper Tuition Giveaway

If you know how to tell a compelling story via video, you may want to make a 60-seconds-or-under spot for this contest sponsored by the well-known soft drink maker. The video must answer the question: How do you plan to make a difference and impact the world?

Five awards: $10,000
Deadline: December 13, 2013

USDish Entertainment Blogging Scholarship

Do you fantasize about hanging out with TV characters? If so, you may want to go for this scholarship offered by satellite company USDish. Applicants must create a blog entry that answers, “Which TV character would you want as a college roommate?”

One award: $1,000
Deadline: December 21, 2013

Top Ten List Scholarship

For this scholarship offered by ScholarshipExperts.com, applicants are asked to write a short response to the prompt: “Create a Top Ten List of ten reasons you should get this scholarship.”

One award: $1,500
Deadline: December 31, 2013

Love Your Body Poster Contest

The National Organization for Women Foundation holds an annual contest to find the applicant who can create the best poster depicting positive images of women’s bodies in contrast to the picture-perfect images of how females often are portrayed in the media and by Hollywood.

One award: $200
Deadline: December 2, 2013

College HELP Scholarship

Got a knack for taking quizzes? Then you might want to try to win this scholarship from the Common Knowledge Scholarship Foundation, which awards money based on the ability to score highest on a series of quizzes that test basic, practical knowledge about finances and careers.

One award: $500
Deadline: December 15, 2013


Center for Alcohol Policy Essay Contest

If you’re keen on researching U.S. history and like to write, this scholarship contest offered by the Center for Alcohol Policy could be for you. Applicants are required to compose an essay addressing the question: Has the 21st Amendment to the Constitution achieved its intended purpose?

Hint: It’s about the 1933 amendment allowing alcohol to be bought and sold.

One award each: $5,000, $2,500 and $1,000
Deadline: December 5, 2013

America’s Pet Store Scholarship Contest

Are you a pet lover who also likes to raise money? Then check out this contest sponsored by online pet product retailer America’s Pet Store, in which college-bound entrants create and execute a fundraising effort for their local Humane Society. The scholarship goes to the person who raises the most cash.

One award: $1,000
Deadline: December 31, 2013