Financial Aid and College Scholarship Information for the Blind and Visually Impaired
Written by: Daniel Gleich
Thanks to technological and societal advancements like audiobooks, widespread braille adaptation, and tactile campus navigation tools, life as a blind or visually impaired college student is becoming less difficult. However, financing a post-secondary education can still be a struggle for many. Colleges and universities can be extraordinarily expensive, and affording the cost on your own often seems impossible. Fortunately, there are many scholarship and financial aid programs available for students who are blind or visually impaired. These types of programs can significantly reduce the out-of-pocket cost that keeps so many from furthering their education.
- Jackson-Stricks Scholarship: The Jackson-Stricks Scholarship is run by the National Council of Jewish Women New York and provides financial aid to students with physical disabilities related to vision, mobility, or hearing. It can be used for either academic study or vocational training.
- National Federation of the Blind of Utah: NFB Utah awards up to five scholarships to graduating seniors and full-time college or graduate students who are legally blind in Utah. The scholarships are awarded based on academic excellence and community service.
- National Federation of the Blind Scholarship Program: The National Federation of the Blind awards more than $250,000 each year through its scholarship program. The scholarships are given out based on academics, community service, and leadership qualities. You must be legally blind in both eyes to qualify.
- Lighthouse Guild Scholarship: Every year, the Lighthouse Guild awards up to 20 merit-based scholarships to legally blind high school students across the country.
- Blind Service Association Scholarships: The Blind Service Association awards between 20 and 30 scholarships each year to high school students in Illinois. The scholarship amounts range between $750 and $3,000.
- Jack Scura Fund: The Jack Scura Fund awards financial aid to students with disabilities who are currently in or enrolling in an undergraduate program at a New Jersey college or university.
- California Council of the Blind Scholarships: These scholarships from the California Council of the Blind are awarded to legally blind students in California who either are in college now or plan to attend next semester.
- Team See Possibilities Scholarship Program: Team See Possibilities is an organization dedicated to helping blind citizens. Their program awards scholarships of up to $5,000 to blind students pursuing post-secondary education.
- American Council of the Blind Scholarship Program: The ACB awards scholarships of $2,000 to $7,500 to legally blind college students to assist with financial needs such as room and board, tuition, and fees.
- JSU Montgomery Scholarship: The Montgomery Scholarship is awarded by Jacksonville State University to students with a sensory impairment.
- Mary P. Oenslager Scholastic Achievement Awards: Mary P. Oenslager Scholastic Achievement Awards are given out each year to blind or visually impaired students pursuing undergraduate or graduate degrees. The awards are based on leadership, service, and academic performance.
- AIM Center for Independent Living Inc. Scholarship: This scholarship program from the Achieving Independence and Mobility Center awards up to $1,000 per student to those with a documented disability who are attending a college or trade school.
- National Federation of the Blind Texas Scholarship: This program awards financial assistance scholarships to blind students in Texas who have demonstrated excellence in both academics and community service.
- CSU Dale M. Schoettler Scholarship for Visually Impaired Students: This scholarship awards $6,500 to full-time CSU students who are visually impaired or legally blind.
- Wells Fargo Scholarship Program for People With Disabilities: The Wells Fargo Scholarship Program for People With Disabilities provides financial assistance to students living with a disability.
- The Al and Cora Camp Memorial Scholarship: The Al and Cora Camp Memorial Scholarship is awarded to students accepted to a post-secondary educational institute who are either legally blind or dependent on legally blind parents.
- Arthur E. and Helen Copeland Scholarships: This scholarship for $500 is for blind or visually impaired full-time college students. Applicants must be members of the U.S. Association of Blind Athletes.
- Association of Blind Citizens Assistive Technology Fund: The Association of Blind Citizens Assistive Technology Fund provides 50% of the cost of adaptive devices or software to legally blind individuals.
- George Washington University Disability Support Scholarships: Part-time or full-time GWU students with disabilities can apply for these awards to help with the cost of items like books, adaptive technology, and transportation.
- Anne Lowe Scholarship: Legally blind students with a 3.0 or higher GPA can apply for the Anne Lowe scholarship to help fund their college education.
- Dale M. Schoettler Scholarship: The Dale M. Schoettler Scholarship is awarded to San Francisco State and San Jose State University visually impaired students. Students must have a GPA of at least 2.8 to be eligible.
- American Council of the Blind Ohio Scholarships: ACBO offers multiple scholarships for blind or visually impaired students living in Ohio.
Additional Education and Accessibility Information for the Blind and Visually Impaired