Grants For Women Going Back To College

Returning to school as a grown woman can be difficult, especially without the proper funding. Women entering full-time education often leave jobs, which means the government will consider the previous year’s income when deciding financial need for financial aid. Fortunately, scholarships and grants are available to women who’ve made the decision to return to school.

Pell Grant

Prospective students can apply for Pell Grants through the government simply by filling out a FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid). The maximum Pell Grant award for the 2010-11 year is $5,550. In determining if an applicant qualifies, the student’s income and assets are considered as well as her cost of living and whether she has any dependents.

Federal Student Aid Programs

P.O. Box 4696

Mount Vernon, IL 62864


Jeannette Rankin Foundation

The Jeannette Rankin Women’s Scholarship fund awards scholarships to low-income women returning to school who are 35 years or older. Since its inception in 1978 with an original base fund of $16,000, the Rankin scholarship Fund has supported 500 women returning to school. Applicants must be U.S. citizens, enrolled in or accepted to an accredited school and working toward a first bachelor’s degree, an associate degree or a technical or vocational certificate. The foundation has a non-discrimination policy, and the applicant’s goals, financial situation and challenges faced are part of the process in choosing a recipient.

Jeannette Rankin Foundation

1 Huntington Road, Suite 701

Athens, GA 30606


AARP Foundation Women’s Scholarship Program

The AARP Foundation Women’s Scholarship Program provides scholarships to women 40 and over looking for educational opportunities for work advancement. Applicants must be U.S. citizens who can demonstrate financial need and be enrolled as full- or part-time students in an accredited university or vocational school within six months of the award date. They must answer a short essay question explaining their educational goals and any obstacles they’ve overcome. Scholarships are for $500 to $5,000 depending on the applicant’s financial need.

AARP Foundation

601 E St. NW

Washington, DC 20049