Merit Based Scholarships & Grants | William Peace University (2023)

Scholarships and awards are one way to pay for college. Unlike loans, scholarships and awards do not have to be repaid.

There are two main types of scholarships: those offered to you from William Peace University (WPU) and outside scholarships (click to jump to that section).

WPU Scholarships

All first-year and transfer students who are accepted for admission at William Peace University will be considered for merit-based scholarships and grants — without further action required.* These scholarships are renewable each year if you maintain a designated minimum grade point average.

Qualified students are awarded grants or Merit Scholarships of $4,000 to $17,000 every year:

  • Presidential Scholarship – $17,000 — GPA 3.5+ or ACT 26+ or SAT 1230+
  • William Peace Scholarship – $16,000 — GPA 3.0-3.49 or ACT 20-25 or SAT 1030-1229
  • Pacer Scholarship – $10,000 — GPA 2.5-2.99 or ACT 18-19 or SAT 960-1029
  • Access Scholarship – $10,000 – GPA <2.5


Adult and professional students (School of Professional Studies) are not eligible for institutional aid.

*Except the Honors and Theatre Scholarships, which require additional application materials.

Merit Based Scholarships & Grants | William Peace University (1)

  • Wake Tech Transfer Scholarship

    The William Peace Pathways scholarship is specific to transfer students from Wake Tech Community College and who have earned their Associated degree from WTCC. Students must have maintained a GPA of 3.0 or higher to be eligible. This scholarship is renewable each year pending good academic standing. Nearly all graduates from WTCC who transfer to WPU receive some form of merit-based scholarship and are consistently high achievers during their Pacer experience. Students earning an AA/AS from Wake Tech Community College will be considered for this award after applying to WPU and upon completion of the FAFSA.

  • WPU Transfer Scholarship

    Students who transfer into William Peace University may also be eligible for merit-based scholarships. Students who meet the requirements of the WPU Transfer Scholarship can earn between $10,000 to $16,000. These scholarships are awarded on the basis of the number of transferable credits earned at an accredited college or university and on the cumulative grade point average earned at each institution attended. The scholarships are renewable for up to two additional years, provided recipients maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress with Financial Aid.

  • Community Service and Leadership Scholarships

    At William Peace University, our student body is filled with future leaders, community advocates, and world-changers. These students discover their passions and career paths on campus and contribute endlessly to the WPU community.

    WPU offers a scholarship to recognize Pacers who exemplify these qualities. There are a limited number of rewards for this competitive scholarship opportunity. Upon admittance, select students will be nominated by WPU Admissions Counselors and awarded the Community Service and Leadership Scholarships, from $250 – $1,500 per year. This scholarship is renewable each year pending strong academic standing.

    How to be considered?Contact yourAdmissions Counselor who can make the recommendation.

    What you’ll need to do:Your Admissions Counselor will work with you to upload a personal statement (video or written or both!) and/or resume that showcases your community service and/or leadership experience. Share with us information about the club you lead, the mission trip you went on, the local project you organized – we want to hear all about it!

  • Honors Scholarship

    Students accepted into the Honors Program are awarded a $1,000 scholarship. In order to qualify, students must be accepted into the University before April 1. All first-year students with 3.7+ Weighted GPA are eligible to apply. Honors Applications take a look at GPA, SAT/ACT, short answers and essays.

    (Video) HOW TO FIND SCHOLARSHIPS FOR COLLEGE Non Traditional Students // Scholarships To Apply For

    Note: Unlike other WPU scholarships, the honors scholarship may require additional information. Students may be required to interview with the honors committee. Honors scholarships are renewable for an additional three years of study at William Peace University provided recipients actively work toward completion of the Honors Program curriculum and maintain a “B” average (3.00).

  • Phi Theta Kappa Honor Scholarship

    WPU would like to congratulate and honor those students who have demonstrated high academic achievements at the two-year/community college level and who will continue their education at WPU. If you are or were a past member ofPhiThetaKappa, simply send in your proof of membership to your admissions counselor and WPU will grant an additional $2,000 PTK scholarship along with your merit scholarship.

  • Theater Scholarship

    Students who are interested in pursuing a degree in Fine Arts at William Peace University are eligible for an additional scholarship. Students must interview and audition with the respective department. Students must meet the minimum requirement for admission and must be a first year applicant to William Peace University. This scholarship is renewable at the discretion of the Department Chair of the B.F.A program.

  • Sibling Grant

    Siblings who are simultaneously enrolled in the day program at WPU, each receive a $500 per semester grant. Students may apply to have the grant renewed each year both siblings are enrolled at WPU. Students must alert the Office of Financial Aid of their eligibility.

  • COVID-19 Related Support | HEERF /CARES Act

    William Peace University is pleased to offer students the opportunity to receive financial assistance through the Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds, as part of the CARES Act. WPU is using an application for all emergency grants, found by clicking here. Students are receiving grants for COVID-19 related expenses incurred for Cost of Attendance items, which include transportation, technology, room, board, and personal expenses. William Peace University is sending correspondence to each recipient, via email, indicating that the funds will be available within 10 business days either by direct deposit or check. Instructions for direct deposit set up are included in the correspondence. Read Story related to HERF

Important Notice

There are limited funds for the above-listed scholarships. All awards cannot exceed tuition and are determined by the appointed committee. The Board of Trustees can change these limitations at any time. Students must maintain certain standards for renewability. It’s the student’s responsibility to know what those standards are and to maintain them at all times during the awarded time of the scholarship and/or grants.

Your financial aid award is subject to revision upon final verification of credits transferred into the program along with the number of hours enrolled and successfully completed each semester/term. Your award may be reduced based on final funding by the award agencies (NC General Assembly, US Department of Education, etc.). Students are required to make consistent progress toward the completion of their degree to remain eligible for certain financial aid programs. Students may also be required to submit additional documentation to verify the information submitted on the FAFSA.

(Video) HOW TO FIND COLLEGE SCHOLARSHIPS 2023|| Where To Get College Scholarships in 2023

How Do I Apply for Financial Aid?

A quality private education doesn’t have to break the bank. It doesn’t have to be difficult either. That’s why nearly 100% of our students are awarded some type of financial aid. We make it easy for you and your family.

(Video) ANSWERING COMMON SCHOLARSHIP ESSAY PROMPTS|Scholarship Essay Tips and Tricks|Scholarship Advice

Learn How to Apply for Financial Aid

Keep reading for more information on outside scholarships.

Outside Scholarships

Outside scholarships are funds awarded by entities outside of the federal, state, and institutional aid programs. Outside scholarships are one more option to pay for school without borrowing loans.

iGradMerit Based Scholarships & Grants | William Peace University (2)

William Peace University has launched a partnership with iGrad to curate a personalized scholarship list just for you! To set up your personalized scholarship search:

  • Login at with your WPU ID and password.
  • Answer questions that will match you to eligible, outside scholarship opportunities.
  • Get tips and tools to improve your scholarship search.

Where to Look for Scholarships

  • High school guidance counselors
  • Local businesses, churches, community service organizations
  • Employers and associations

How to Avoid Scholarship Scams

  • Watch closely anything that requires a fee
  • Avoid giving non-relevant personal information
  • Be wary of any “Guaranteed” scholarships or “Free” seminars with an up-sell
  • Never give out bank/credit card account numbers!
  • Avoid interviews in hotels or restaurants
  • If it’s too good to be true – it probably is
  • Outside Scholarship Opportunities

    Outside Scholarship Opportunities

    This is by no means an all-inclusive list of resources. You can find many more scholarship opportunities by using a scholarship search website, such as:

    Please Note: All scholarships were valid when posted. The Office of Financial Aid at William Peace University provides external scholarship information as a courtesy. The above lists are provided to you as a reference tool. They should not be construed as an endorsement by William Peace University of any of the organizations listed.

  • Important: If You Get an Outside Scholarship

    Federal regulations require that these scholarships be incorporated into a student’s financial aid award. That means if you receive an outside scholarship, you must report it to William Peace University so our team can factor it into your full financial aid package. An outside scholarship is first applied to the self-help portion of the student’s award (Federal Work-Study or need-based loans) prior to reducing WPU scholarships and grants.

    After all of the self-help portion of the award has been replaced, WPU scholarships and grants may be reduced, dollar for dollar, for any remaining amount.

    How to Report Outside Scholarships

    (Video) How to Get College Scholarships and Grants | How To Win a Scholarship! [update]

    Students must notify the Financial Aid office of all outside awards received, including awards paid directly to you. Please report your outside scholarships to our office using our online Scholarship Reporting Form and include a copy of any correspondence (e.g., letter or email) from the scholarship donor if available.

    How to Receive Outside Scholarship Funds
    Scholarship agencies should send students’ outside scholarship payments directly to WPU Student Accounts. The scholarship check should be made payable to William Peace University so that funds may be credited directly to the student’s university bill. The student’s full name and Student ID number should be included in the memo section of the check.

    Checks made payable to the student or co-payable to the student and WPU must be signed by the student prior to submitting the scholarship check to our office.

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Merit Based Scholarships & Grants | William Peace University? ›

Share this Article. Merit-based aid offers financial support based on a student's academic achievements. Need-based aid provides funds for students based on their level of financial need. Students may receive both types of aid to fund their postsecondary studies.

What is the difference between need-based grants and scholarships and merit-based grants and scholarships? ›

Share this Article. Merit-based aid offers financial support based on a student's academic achievements. Need-based aid provides funds for students based on their level of financial need. Students may receive both types of aid to fund their postsecondary studies.

What is the difference between merit scholarships and scholarships? ›

Need-based scholarships are awarded based on financial need. They are eligible for each year of college enrollment. By contrast, scholarships based on merit are granted to students who illustrate academic or athletic achievement, along with a range of other talents and criteria.

How rare are merit scholarships? ›

Merit-based financial awards can occasionally cover a substantial portion of four or more years of college, but full-ride scholarships are exceedingly rare.

Does FAFSA help with merit scholarships? ›

The FAFSA is a form that determines your financial need, allowing you to be eligible for federal financial aid. However, you may come across some merit-based scholarships—awards based on talent, academics, hobbies, ethnicity, etc—still require you to file the FAFSA.

Why merit-based scholarships are better? ›

Merit aid helps lower college costs.

Merit aid is a form of college financial aid that does not consider a student's financial need, but rather is awarded based on academic, athletic, artistic or special-interest merit.

Why merit-based scholarships are good? ›

A merit-based scholarship awards money for college to applicants who demonstrate high achievement and accolades. Merit awards may be available for students who rank highly in grade point average (GPA), standardized test scores, extracurricular recognition, athletic performance, leadership involvement or community work.

What is a good GPA for merit scholarship? ›

Minimum requirements range from around 2.0 on the lower end to 3.75 or higher for competitive academic scholarships. Generally speaking, a 3.0 GPA or higher will give you a decent shot at qualifying for a variety of scholarships.

Is a merit scholarship a big deal? ›

Gaining recognition as a National Merit Semifinalist is a prestigious achievement to include on college applications, and many colleges and corporate sponsors offer special scholarships to these students, even if they don't become finalists.

What ACT score is needed for full ride scholarships? ›

Overall, my research so far has been surprising in that there are a few schools that will offer full-tuition scholarships starting in the 22 – 25 ACT range, but most full-ride scholarships require a 28 ACT or higher.

How much does the average student get in scholarships? ›

The average institutional scholarship award is $6,335. About four in 10 scholarship recipients received funds from their state, with an average award of over $2,362.

Who is most likely to get a scholarship? ›

Characteristics of Scholarship Recipients
  • Grades: Students with a 3.5 to 4.0 unweighted GPA are twice as likely to win a private scholarship as students with less than a 3.0 GPA. ...
  • Test Scores: Students with above-average SAT and ACT test scores are more likely to win private scholarships.
Oct 23, 2019

How do I ask my college for more merit money? ›

How to Ask for More Merit Scholarship Money
  1. Review the School's Appeal Process. You can learn more about the financial aid appeal process by visiting your school's website. ...
  2. Put It in Writing. Contact your school's admissions office and complete the necessary paperwork. ...
  3. Provide Documentation. ...
  4. Follow Up.

Can you negotiate merit scholarships with colleges? ›

Don't be afraid to negotiate.

You can always negotiate your merit aid package. If you are accepted to multiple schools, and your first choice is more expensive than your second choice, call the school to negotiate.

What do merit scholarships look for applicants that have? ›

A merit scholarship is a scholarship awarded to students who have a record of achievement in academics (including grades and test scores), extracurricular activities, and leadership in their community. These scholarships can be awarded by specific colleges and universities, as well as private organizations.

What are the disadvantages of merit? ›

Merit pay plans may create problems in employee relationships, problems in morale related to jealousy, fear, favoritism, undesirable competition, and job insecurity. Merit programs tend to develop divisive and competitive attitudes rather than cooperation among employees.

What is a difference between a scholarship and a grant? ›

In general, grants are given based on financial-need, while scholarships are merit-based and awarded to students based on their academic achievements, extracurricular activities, field of study, and more.

Which type of aid is the least desirable? ›

Although the least desirable form of financial aid, student loan programs allow you to borrow money at interest rates that are lower than loans not intended for education.

Should I say yes for need based financial aid? ›

Please indicate “yes” to the question on the Common App regarding “need based aid” – there is no impact on your admissions- we refer to this as “need blind admissions”.

Which type of aid always requires that you fill out the FAFSA? ›

Students must submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA, to access federal financial aid — grants, scholarships, work-study and federal loans — as well as certain state and institutional aid each year they're in school.

What are merit based advantages? ›

One of the primary advantages of merit-based compensation is the fact that it can motivate employees to perform at an optimal level. Employees who have the potential to earn high salaries because of their performance are more likely to take all of the steps necessary to perform at the highest level possible.

What GPA do you need for a d1 scholarship? ›

To be academically eligible for a DI scholarship your student-athlete needs to have at least a 2.3 GPA on a 4.0 scale. However, it's not quite as simple as looking at their transcript and checking the overall GPA.

What GPA do you need to get a scholarship to Harvard? ›

Recipients are chosen on the basis of financial need and academic merit. Scholarship applicants must have a cumulative grade-point average of 3.33 or higher. See important information about enrollment status for Special Students in Enrollment Considerations.

Where is the best place to look for scholarships? ›

Try these free sources of information about scholarships:
  • the financial aid office at a college or career school.
  • a high school or TRIO counselor.
  • the U.S. Department of Labor's FREE scholarship search tool.
  • federal agencies.
  • your state grant agency.
  • your library's reference section.

What is the hardest scholarship to get? ›

Top 10 Hardest Scholarships to Get
  • Rhodes Scholarship.
  • Fullbright Scholarship.
  • Gates Cambridge Scholarship.
  • Princeton Scholarship.
  • Mitchell Scholarship.
  • Churchill Scholarship.
  • Marshall Scholarship.
  • Jardine Scholarship.
Sep 23, 2020

How many National Merit $2,500 scholarships? ›

The 2,500 National Merit $2500 Scholarship winners were chosen from a talent pool of some 16,000 Finalists in the 2021 National Merit Scholarship Program. The release is made available here to provide information about these awards.

What is the 5 strong scholarship? ›

The mission of the 5 Strong Scholarship Foundation is to increase the retention and graduation rates at partnering Historically Black Colleges and Universities by assisting in the enrollment and success of academically promising student leaders until graduation.

What SAT score do you need for National Merit Scholarship? ›

Practically speaking, this means that anyone who qualifies as a National Merit Scholarship semifinalist (PSAT scores of 1400/1520 and up, depending on the state of residence) should be able to easily achieve a confirming score (SAT scores as low as 1320/1600, and ACT scores as low as 26/36), especially given multiple ...

What index score qualifies for National Merit? ›

To determine who qualifies for National Merit, NMSC uses a scale called the Selection Index. To get this, NMSC adds your Math, Reading, and Writing section scores, which each fall between 8 and 38, and then multiplies that sum by 2. Thus, the PSAT NMSC Selection Index ranges from 48 to 228.

What does merit scholarship won mean? ›

Unlike need-based scholarships, merit scholarships are not restricted by a student's financial situation; rather, a merit scholarship is a monetary gift doled out by a private organization to students who excel in a certain area.

What GPA will get me a full ride? ›

A 4.0 Grade Point Average is not only a high GPA, it's an impressive GPA that's sure to catch the eyes of many scholarship providers. Since the minimum GPA for a full-ride scholarship is usually set at 3.5, a 4.0 is sure to always be above and beyond what's required.

Can I get a full ride with a 27 ACT score? ›

An ACT score of 27 makes you eligible for merit aid from both your potential institution and third-party scholarship providers.

Will a 27 on the ACT get you scholarships? ›

The short answer? In many cases, above 30 is a good ACT score for scholarships.

What percentage of college is paid for by parents? ›

Percentage of Parents That Pay For Their Kid's College

Recent studies show that 85%³ of parents pay at least a portion of their child's tuition.

What happens to a scholarship if you don't use it? ›

However, these funds must be used correctly. Failing to use scholarship funds for education-related expenses can result in a scholarship provider revoking your award, or forcing you to pay back what you spent. In extreme circumstances, providers could take legal action.

Can an average student get a full ride scholarship? ›

Yes, average high school seniors and college students can win scholarships. There are many types of scholarships and knowing which ones to apply to can greatly increase your chances of winning a college scholarship.

What are the two most common scholarships? ›

Common types of scholarships for college are merit-based scholarships, need-based scholarships, and athletic scholarships.

How do you get chosen for a scholarship? ›

10 Ways to Stand Out When Applying for Scholarships
  1. Organize and prepare your materials. ...
  2. Pay attention to detail. ...
  3. Write an original essay each time. ...
  4. Know your audience. ...
  5. Emphasize what makes you unique. ...
  6. Show your personality and passions. ...
  7. Present yourself professionally. ...
  8. Proofread each submission.
Mar 28, 2022

How are people selected for scholarships? ›

Once the judges have reviewed the applications, they'll take remaining contenders and compare them against one another. Down in the nitty gritty, judges will compare GPAs, test scores, experiences, essays, in order to see which candidate is most suited for their scholarship award.

How do I ask for a full ride scholarship? ›

Full-ride academic scholarship: Be at the top of your class with a great GPA, take AP/honors classes, and get perfect (or close to perfect) SAT or ACT scores. Along with academic merit, it also helps to also have leadership skills or community involvement, too (see below).

Can you convince a college to give you more money? ›

Yes, financial aid is negotiable. “There is very little downside to asking, so you might as well make the request,” says Shannon Vasconcelos, a college finance educator at College Coach. She estimates that negotiations are successful in about half of the cases she's seen, so it's worthwhile to put the effort in.

How do you answer merit scholarship questions? ›

Highlight your personality traits that are relevant to the scholarship. If you know what they're looking for, then mention those skills! This is great for students who might not have extracurricular activities related to the scholarship but instead have qualities that would make them an asset to the organization.

Does FAFSA affect merit scholarships? ›

The short answer is yes, you can get scholarships without the FAFSA. But, not filing the FAFSA may limit your scholarship opportunities.

What percentage of people get merit scholarships? ›

Over 1.7 million scholarships are awarded annually. However, only 7% of college students will receive a scholarship. The U.S. Department of Education awards an estimated $46 billion in scholarship money annually.

Who decides who gets a scholarship? ›

Here is how the award process often works. A student applies to a school, and the admission office decides whether to accept the applicant. If the school gives merit scholarships, the decision typically will be made during the acceptance process, usually based on the student's grades and test scores.

Can you ask for more merit scholarship money? ›

Answer: Yes, you can absolutely ask a college for more merit aid. In fact, many of your peers will do so. And since this type of aid is given on a first-come, first-served basis, you will want to submit your request as soon as possible.

What does it mean if a scholarship is need based? ›

The term “need-based” is a designation that is based on a student's financial need. For example, a need-based grant might be awarded based on a student's low income.

What are some differences between scholarships and grants? ›

In general, grants are given based on financial-need, while scholarships are merit-based and awarded to students based on their academic achievements, extracurricular activities, field of study, and more. Loans are the more commonly-used type of financial assistance.

What does a need based scholarship cover? ›

A need based scholarship is basically a financial aid provided for students who cannot afford to pay for tuition without regard to any other factor. A student can qualify for a need based scholarship when he or she meets the eligibility criteria which are solely based on assets and income.

What is the meaning of need based aid? ›

Need-based aid is financial aid that you can receive if you have financial need and meet other eligibility criteria. You can't receive more need-based aid than the amount of your financial need.

When should my child start applying for scholarships? ›

Some deadlines are as early as a year before college starts, so if you're in high school now, you should be researching and applying for scholarships during the summer between your junior and senior years.

Should I put need based scholarship on resume? ›

If you have received any scholarships, grants or bursaries, it is a good idea to mention them on your resume. When doing this, make sure that you list the awards and the reasons you received them.

Do you keep leftover grant money? ›

Grants are distributed similarly to scholarships

Grants are paid directly to your account at your school; any leftover money is then given to you directly for other expenses. Along with federal grants there are also grants issued by your state and by your university with conditions such as maintaining a specific GPA.

What are grants three drawbacks? ›

In reality, grants can often become a source of frustration and stress for a non-profit.
  • Grants Cannot Help You Start Off. ...
  • Grants Come with a Lot of Strings Attached. ...
  • Grants Take a Long Time to be Approved. ...
  • Grants Have Complex Reporting Requirements. ...
  • Grants are Short-Termed.

Do scholarships or grants count as income? ›

Scholarships that pay for qualified educational expenses at qualified educational institutions generally don't count as taxable income. Scholarship funds received in excess of your qualified educational expenses may be taxable and might need to be reported in your taxable income.

What do scholarships not cover? ›

Full tuition scholarships usually only cover the cost of education, which includes tuition, book fees and other education fees. However, these scholarships likely don't offer help with room and board, living costs or travel costs.

What is a merit based award? ›

Merit-based means that something is based on a student's skill or ability. For example, a merit-based scholarship might be awarded based on a student's high grades.

Is FAFSA a need based scholarship? ›

If you're looking to get money for school, you can qualify for need-based financial aid by first completing the FAFSA. The FAFSA is your first step in detailing your family's financial information. The Department of Education uses this application to determine your expected family contribution, or EFC.

What are the three forms of need-based aid? ›

The federal government awards three types of need-based aid:
  • Pell Grants.
  • Work-study.
  • Subsidized direct student loans.
Jun 15, 2022

What is the difference between FAFSA and need-based financial aid? ›

The FAFSA analyzes how much money is brought to the table from the student and family (the expected family contribution, EFC). The difference between your EFC and your tuition is your financial need. If your financial need is high, then you're more likely to qualify for need-based financial aid.

What does 100% need-based aid mean? ›

In other words, the total cost of attendance minus your expected family contribution equals your demonstrated financial need. At colleges that meet 100% of need, your financial aid package will cover the entirety of your demonstrated need.


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