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A Comprehensive Financial Aid and Scholarship Guide for Disabled Students has compiled a financial aid and scholarship guide for students with disabilities, one of the few comprehensive and simple-to-use directories of its kind. You will find a listing of numerous scholarship options for students with disabilities that range from national financial aid opportunities to local opportunities within the United States and Canada. Each scholarship profile indicates whether online programs at accredited colleges or universities are eligible for the award.

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A Federal Pell Grant

A Federal Pell Grant, unlike a loan, does not have to be repaid. Pell Grants are awarded usually only to undergraduate students who have not earned a bachelor's or a professional degree. (In some cases, however, a student enrolled in a post-baccalaureate teacher certification program might receive a Pell Grant.) Pell Grants are considered a foundation of federal financial aid, to which aid from other federal and nonfederal sources might be added. The amount you get, though, will depend not only on your financial need, but also on your costs to attend school, your status as a full-time or part-time student, and your plans to attend school for a full academic year or less.

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American Foundation for the Blind Scholarships

The American Foundation for the Blind offers several scholarships ranging from $500.00 - $1,500.00. Interested individuals may use a single application form to apply for one or more scholarships. In addition to a completed scholarship application form, proof of US citizenship and legal blindness is required. Also required is a personal essay outlining goals, work experience, how the student proposes to use the funds, etc. Official transcripts, documentation showing proof of acceptance to a post-secondary institution, and two letters of recommendation complete the list of necessary supporting documentation.

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Association of Blind Citizens Scholarship Program

$10,000.00 in college scholarships is offered by the Association of Blind Citizens each school year. The breakdown of funding is as follows: seven scholarships valued at $1,000.00 each and one valued at $2,000.00. These funds can be used for tuition, accommodation, or expenses incurred as a result of the student's blindness. In addition to a completed application form, interested students must submit a transcript (high school or college), a letter or certificate confirming the diagnosis of blindness, and two letters of reference. A 300-500 word essay (submitted by e-mail and on disk) explaining how the receipt of these funds will help the applicant achieve his or her goal of attending a post-secondary institution is required.

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disABLEDperson, Inc.

disABLEDperson, Inc. is an organization founded in 2002 for the primary focus of being an employment/job search resource for people with disabilities. disABLEDperson Inc. also awards scholarships for college students with disabilities for both the fall and spring semesters. The awards are now up to $1000 per student.

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Kurzweil Educational Systems, Inc.

Kurzweil Educational Systems, Inc., innovator of reading technology for individuals with visual or learning disabilities, each year presents the Kurzweil 3000 Scholarship Program for excellence in the classroom. High school students with an identified disability, who have excelled in the classroom and plan to pursue a four-year undergraduate degree should apply.

For more information on how to apply for these Kurzweil 3000 scholarships, contact Kurzweil Educational Systems at 1-800-894-5374 or send email to

National Federation of the Blind

National Federation of the Blind annually offers blind college students in the United States and Puerto Rico the opportunity to win one of thirty national scholarships ranging from $3,000 to $12,000, and the 30 winners will be assisted to attend the 2011 NFB Annual Convention in Orlando, Florida. For further information, including eligibility requirements, the online application form, and the Scholarship Checklist detailing all required documents, go to

The American Council of the Blind Scholarship

Legally blind, full-time students at the post-secondary level (both academic and vocational programs) may be able to receive funds from the more than two dozen scholarships offered by the American Council of the Blind, or ACB.

To be eligible, applicants must be legally blind in both eyes and have achieved a GPA of 3.3 or higher. The John Hebner Memorial Scholarship is available to part-time students who are employed full-time.

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The Mary P. Oenslager Scholastic Achievement Awards

The Mary P. Oenslager Scholastic Achievement Awards are presented to RFB&D members who are blind or visually impaired and have received, or will be receiving their bachelor's, master's or doctoral degree. The awards are given in recognition of academic excellence, outstanding leadership and service to others. These awards are given to a total of nine students who are chosen by a selection committee. RFB&D presents three top winners $6,000 each; three special honors winners $3,000 each; and three honors winners $1,000 each. The three top winners will be presented with their awards at an event to be announced.

If you have or are graduating between July 1, 2010 and June 30, 2011 you are eligible to apply. Your application must be postmarked by March 1, 2011. Go to for further information or contact Melissa Greenwald at 609-243-7087 or

The National Science and Mathematics Access to Retain Talent Grant

The National Science and Mathematics Access to Retain Talent Grant, also known as the National Smart Grant is available during the third and fourth years of undergraduate study (or fifth year of a five-year program) to at least half-time students who are eligible for the Federal Pell Grant and who are majoring in physical, life, or computer sciences, mathematics, technology, engineering or a critical foreign language; or non-major single liberal arts programs. The student must also maintain a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of at least 3.0 in course work required for the major. The National SMART Grant award is in addition to the student's Pell Grant award. A National SMART Grant will provide up to $4,000 for each of the third and fourth years of undergraduate study.

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