Q&A: Can Online Students Earn College Scholarships?

Answer: Virtual students typically have the same opportunities to earn college scholarships as students who attend traditional high schools. Online high school students are expected to take the same college entrance exams, such as the SAT or ACT, as students attending their neighborhood school. Many colleges will take into consideration both your college entrance exam scores and your high school GPA (grade point average) when accepting students for an academic scholarship.

Many online schools also have a guidance counselor on staff to assist students going through the college application process. Students can also contact college admissions offices for more information on entrance requirements and/or available scholarships. A school representative can answer any questions students may have about specific scholarships, as well as direct them towards other financial aid opportunities they may not be familiar with.

In addition to maintaining a high GPA and doing well on entrance exams, college bound students should consider becoming involved with high school clubs and activities. Online students have the option of joining clubs offered by either their local high school or organizations around the community. Participation in extracurricular activities demonstrates to colleges that a student is well-rounded, involved, and motivated.

Students may want to visit potential college campuses prior to applying for admission. Many colleges and universities offer tours to prospective students, giving applicants the opportunity to experience the school firsthand. Students considering an online college should also contact a school representative ahead of time to discuss available degree programs, the admissions process, and any scholarship opportunities.

Christi WilsonChristi Wilson is a credentialed teacher of highly-gifted students in Northern Nevada. She has 11 years of classroom teaching experience, a bachelor’s degree in elementary education, a master’s degree in education leadership, and has even taught K-12 education online. A mother of three busy boys, she knows how important it is to keep students engaged in the classroom and interested in a lifetime of learning.