The Most Interesting College Scholarship Statistics in 2022

Ever wondered how many people actually get the scholarships thousands of students apply for? Read on to learn about college scholarship statistics in 2022.

TCM Staff

15th February 2022

A college education is often necessary to secure high-paying jobs, but it’s expensive. Every year, more students need to rely on financial aid and scholarships to have a chance at covering costly tuition, exorbitant room and board, and incidentals like textbooks and fees. 

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Many students rely on scholarships, but how many scholarships are awarded? What percentage of students get scholarships? And what’s the average scholarship amount per student? We’ll answer all that with our article about college scholarship statistics. 

College Scholarship Statistics: Highlights

Here are some basic college scholarship statistics to keep in mind as you undergo the application process:

  • 1 in 8 students receives a scholarship. 
  • Less than 1% of students receive scholarships worth $25,000 or more. 
  • Only 7% of students receive enough scholarship money to cover 90% of their college costs.
  • 30% of scholarships go to students with 3.0-3.4 GPA averages.  

Most students don’t receive scholarships, and those that do don’t usually receive enough to cover all their costs. 

Odds of Winning a Scholarship

You might wonder how stacked your odds are to achieve a scholarship. Is it one in a million? Not quite, but higher scholarship amounts are rare, and full-ride scholarships; even rarer.

According to SavingForCollege, you have a 1 in 8 chance to achieve a scholarship while enrolled in an undergraduate program. Here are some scholarship statistics that cover the amount of cost of attendance coverage students received through scholarships. 

Coverage of Cost of Attendance

% of Recipients

100% (Full-ride scholarships)

1.5%

90%

2.7%

75%

5.9%

50%

18.8%

The odds are much more manageable (almost 1 in 5) at 50% cost of attendance coverage, so that’s a great goal to aim for. But what influences these odds? Here are a few factors:

Race

White students have a 14.2% chance of winning scholarships. The odds are slightly lower for all minority groups:

Black students: 11.4%

Hispanic students: 9.1%

Asian students: 10.5%

Field of Study

STEM fields tend to be more lucrative in starting salaries, but also in scholarship potential. 16.2% of students in STEM fields win private scholarships, while only 11.5% of students in non-STEM fields. 

In fact, over 33% of private scholarships are awarded to STEM students. 

How about GPA? We’ll cover that in our next section.

GPAs for College Scholarship Recipients

You might assume that a strong GPA is mandatory to receive any scholarship. You’d be right, for many scholarships but not all. Here are some GPA average statistics for scholarship recipients:

GPA

% of Scholarship Recipients

3.5 - 4

4%

3.0 - 3.4

30%

2.4 or lower

5%

As you can see, most scholarship recipients have GPAs between 3.0 - 3.4. Another interesting fact is that 66% of scholarship recipients have above-average SAT or ACT scores. 

Bottom line? Study hard for your SATs and try to apply to as many different scholarships as you’re eligible for.

How Many Academic Scholarships are Given Each Year?

There isn’t a lot of data to demonstrate the total number of scholarships given each year from 2019/20-2020/21 academic years. However, we do have some overarching comparative figures to look at for 2011/12 vs 2016/16, as well as some more specific figures (for certain types of scholarships, etc.) for more recent years. You might also wonder, “how much is the average scholarship?”

Here are some stats about scholarship numbers as well as corresponding average amounts for 2011/12 vs 2015/16.

2011/2012

2015/16

Number of Scholarships Awarded

Average Amount of Scholarship

Number of Scholarships Awarded

Average Amount of Scholarship

1,811,500

$3,341

1,581,000

$3,852

The above table may give you the impression that scholarship amounts and numbers are decreasing. However, if you look at trends before 2011, you’d see that quite the opposite is true. While the average number of scholarships dipped from 2011 to 2016, they increased by almost 700,000 from 2007 to 2011, and almost $1,000 in average scholarships amount.

Now, let’s take a look at some more specific stats for 2020. 

College Scholarship Statistics 2020

Here are some quick college stats for the year 2020. You’ll notice that the average scholarship amount is much larger in 2020 than in 2016, from the above section. 

Percentage of Families that Used Scholarships

58%

Average Scholarship Amount 

$7,923

Pell Grant Recipients

6.7 million students

Percentage of Tuition Covered by Scholarships

25%

The average scholarship amount was over $7,000 in 2020. That would be a substantial portion of tuition for an in-state, unspecialized program. However, it doesn’t really impact a graduate school specialized program tuition, which could be upward of $30,000. 

College Scholarship Stats: Types of Scholarships

How many scholarships are given based on merit? Group associations? Extracurricular or sports involvement? We’ll tell you with the chart below:

Type of Scholarship

Average Amount

Percentage of Students who Received One

Sports Scholarship

$14,270 for men; $15,162 for women (Division)

1.3% 

Need-based Scholarships

$4,000

37%

Merit-Based Scholarships

$4,700

22%

Conclusion

College scholarship statistics are tricky to collect consistently because of all the different types of scholarships and varying amounts out there. But, they’re important to gather so that institutions and students can learn more about the state of the education field in terms of accessibility and funding. 

In your search to cover your tuition, consider applying to The College Monk’s No-Essay $1,500 scholarship.

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