UMSL Scholarships Guide: Maximize Your Financial Aid Opportunities

The University of Missouri-St. Louis (UMSL) offers a variety of scholarships to help students finance their education while fostering academic growth and success. Understanding the types of scholarships available and the application process is crucial for prospective and current UMSL students to make the most of the financial aid opportunities. This guide aims to provide a comprehensive overview of UMSL scholarships, covering eligibility criteria, application procedures, and tips for success.


At UMSL, scholarships are designed to support the diverse student population, including incoming freshmen, transfer students, students from specific majors, and non-traditional students. These scholarships are awarded based on different factors such as academic achievements, extracurricular involvement, financial need, and more. By navigating through this guide, students can explore various scholarship opportunities and gain valuable insights into maximizing their chances of receiving financial aid.

Key Takeaways

  • Explore the diverse range of UMSL scholarships available for various student categories and understand the application process.
  • Stay aware of admission and scholarship deadlines and maintain scholarship eligibility by implementing key strategies.
  • Seek support from the UMSL community, and expand financial aid options by researching external scholarships and additional funding opportunities.

Understanding UMSL Scholarships

Types of Scholarships Available

The University of Missouri-St. Louis (UMSL) offers a variety of scholarships and grants to assist students in funding their education. Scholarships at UMSL can be broadly categorized into merit-based and need-based scholarships.

  • Merit-based scholarships: These scholarships are awarded to students based on their academic achievements, leadership qualities, and other accomplishments.
  • Need-based scholarships and grants: These are awarded to students who demonstrate financial need to help cover the cost of their education.

Merit Scholarships and Eligibility

UMSL offers several merit scholarships for incoming freshmen, such as Curators, Chancellors, Gold, Red, and UMSL scholarships. These scholarships are not stackable and are only available to first-time college students pursuing their first bachelor’s degree.

Eligibility for merit scholarships depends on various factors such as:

  • High school GPA
  • ACT or SAT scores
  • Extracurricular involvement

It is important to note that each scholarship may have additional individual requirements, and students must be degree-seeking at UMSL to qualify.

Need-Based Scholarships and Grants

UMSL recognizes that not all students have the financial means to fund their education. Therefore, the institution offers several need-based scholarships and grants to eligible students. These financial aid options typically require students to complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to determine their level of financial need.

Some need-based scholarships and grants available at UMSL include:

  • Federal Pell Grant
  • Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)
  • Access Missouri Financial Assistance Program
  • UMSL Opportunity Grant

To be considered for need-based scholarships and grants, students should ensure they meet all the eligibility requirements and submit any necessary supporting documents, such as tax returns and financial records, by the relevant deadlines.

Financial Aid Process at UMSL

Completing the FAFSA

The first step for students seeking financial aid at the University of Missouri-St. Louis (UMSL) is to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The FAFSA must be submitted every year to remain eligible for aid. The 2024-2025 FAFSA will be available in December 2023. Completing the FAFSA helps students access various forms of aid, such as federal grants and loans. For instance, eligibility for the Pell Grant, which assists undergraduate students, is determined through the FAFSA process.

Understanding Direct and Indirect Costs

When planning for college expenses, it is important to differentiate between direct and indirect costs. Direct costs are expenses billed by UMSL, including tuition fees, while indirect costs are external expenses like transportation and personal items. To help students manage these costs, UMSL offers competitive scholarships that consider financial need based on FAFSA results.

Award Disbursement

The disbursement of financial aid awards occurs at different stages of the academic year. Students must accept their financial aid offer through the MyView portal and ensure they meet the eligibility criteria for the specific award. Students should also accept any scholarship offers through the MyView portal and stay in contact with the Student Financial Services office for further guidance and assistance.

Admission and Scholarship Deadlines

Early Admission Benefits

Early Admission at UMSL offers several benefits for students looking to get a head start on their college education. By applying early, students have the opportunity to secure their place at the University and receive priority consideration for scholarships. Early applicants will also enjoy an expedited admissions process and have access to resources such as academic advising and course registration.

In order to be considered for Early Admission, students should submit their application by the recommended deadline of Fall 2024. This will ensure they have ample time to complete the necessary steps and secure financial assistance if needed.

Regular Admission and Scholarship Cycles

The regular admission cycle for UMSL is open to all students. While there is no specific deadline for regular admission, it is crucial to keep in mind the scholarship deadlines to maximize financial assistance opportunities. Although applying early has its benefits, students who apply during the regular cycle still have access to various scholarships and financial aid options.

When applying for regular admission, students must submit the following materials by the designated deadlines:

  • Application for Admission
  • Official High School Transcript
  • College Entrance Exam Scores (ACT or SAT)

For scholarships, UMSL encourages students to submit the Competitive Scholarship Application by the priority deadline. Keep in mind that deadlines vary for individual scholarships, so it’s important to research and apply for awards early.

In conclusion, students interested in attending UMSL should take note of the admission and scholarship deadlines to ensure they have the best opportunity for acceptance and financial support. Whether applying for early or regular admission, staying informed and submitting applications on time is key to a successful college experience.

Scholarship Opportunities for Specific Majors


UMSL offers various scholarships for students pursuing specific majors. It’s essential to explore the options available to find financial assistance that matches your interests and needs. In this section, we will go through scholarships provided for specific fields, including STEM and Business and Humanities.

STEM Scholarships

The University of Missouri-St. Louis encourages its students to pursue careers in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM). Several scholarships target STEM students, including the AT&T Foundation Endowed Scholarship Fund for Math, Engineering, Technology, and Science. This scholarship is awarded to first-time freshmen who participated in the Bridge Program and are pursuing majors in mathematics and science.

Further opportunities for STEM scholarships at UMSL can be found by visiting their Scholarship and Grants page. Here, you can discover awards tailored to your major and requirements that help finance your education at UMSL.

Business and Humanities Scholarships

UMSL believes in the power of humanistic thinking and the importance of business innovation. They provide various scholarships for students majoring in Business and Humanities. For those interested in business scholarships, the UMSL College of Business administers select scholarships on their website.

Those pursuing majors within the humanities should explore the different opportunities on the College of Arts and Sciences scholarship page. Here, students can find various merit-based scholarships that cater to interests in languages, history, and social sciences.

By exploring scholarships catered to your major, you increase your chances of obtaining financial assistance while pursuing your passions and academic goals at the University of Missouri-St. Louis.

Opportunities for Transfer and Non-traditional Students

Transfer Student Scholarships

At the University of Missouri-St. Louis (UMSL), transfer students have various scholarship opportunities to support their transition. One example is the Community College President’s Scholarship, targeted at students transferring from community colleges in the St. Louis Metropolitan Area.

Another option is the STL Rise Up Scholarship, specifically designed for Missouri resident transfer students with financial need who do not qualify for a Pell Grant. To be considered for this scholarship, students need to complete the STL Rise Up application.

In addition, UMSL offers competitive scholarships that are open to students regardless of their major, accomplishments, class level, or GPA. These scholarships come from various departments, colleges, and organizations, each with their own specific criteria.

Adult Learners and Continuing Education

To be updated

Writing Winning Scholarship Essays

A well-crafted scholarship essay can significantly increase your chances of securing funds for your college education. Through the essay, one can showcase their passion, skills, and plans for the future, making it an essential element of the application process, especially when applying for programs like the Opportunity Scholars Program.

To start, it is crucial to make a solid plan before writing. Begin with brainstorming ideas and creating a clear outline. Organize your thoughts into distinct paragraphs, each with a specific topic sentence. For instance, your essay can have three main points: your background, goals, and how the scholarship will help. This organizational structure ensures that your essay flows smoothly and remains coherent.

When writing your essay, always remember to:

  1. Address the prompt directly.
  2. Use clear and concise language.
  3. Showcase personal growth and adaptability.
  4. Incorporate specific examples to support your claims.
  5. Edit and proofread for grammar, spelling, and punctuation errors.

Moreover, empathize why the scholarship is particularly important for you, and how the Opportunity Scholars Program will play a role in your academic and professional journey. Demonstrate a strong alignment between your goals and the program’s objectives.

Formatting is also essential for a winning scholarship essay. Use techniques like bold and italic for emphasis and clarity. Make use of lists, tables, or quotes wherever appropriate to present information effectively and engage the reader.

Overall, time and effort spent on crafting a well-thought-out, compelling scholarship essay increases the likelihood of securing funds to support your education, be it through the Opportunity Scholars Program or any other scholarship initiative. Always remember to stay true to your voice and maintain a confident, knowledgeable, and clear tone throughout the essay.

External Scholarships and Researching Additional Funding

Although the University of Missouri-St. Louis (UMSL) offers numerous scholarships and grants, students should consider exploring external scholarships to maximize financial assistance. Many organizations, foundations, and businesses provide additional funding for eligible students pursuing higher education.

External scholarships can be substantial, and they may alleviate a significant portion of financial burdens. When researching these opportunities, it is essential to seek criteria-specific scholarships that align with your personal accomplishments, field of study, or ethnic background. By focusing on these scholarships, you can increase your chances of receiving financial aid.

UMSL provides helpful resources for students seeking external scholarships, such as their External Scholarships webpage. The page contains links to various scholarship search engines and a list of external scholarships available to UMSL students. Additionally, UMSL’s External Funding page within the Graduate School website offers a breakdown of external fellowships, scholarships, and funding for underrepresented groups.

Tips for researching external scholarships:

  • Start early to leave ample time for scholarship research, application preparation, and meeting deadlines.
  • Utilize online search engines, such as Fastweb,, or Cappex, to filter relevant scholarships based on your individual profile.
  • Reach out to your local community, foundations, professional organizations, or civic groups to uncover lesser-known funding opportunities.
  • Create a spreadsheet or dedicated document to track deadlines, requirements, and submission details.

In conclusion, pursuing external scholarships and researching additional funding can make higher education more accessible. The time and effort spent on applying for these opportunities can considerably lessen the financial burden of tuition, allowing students to focus on their academic goals.

UMSL’s Premier Scholarship Programs

Pierre Laclede Honors College Scholarships

The University of Missouri-St. Louis (UMSL) offers a variety of scholarships to its students, with the Pierre Laclede Honors College Scholarships being among the most prestigious. These merit-based scholarships are awarded to students admitted to the Honors College in good standing. Each student qualifies for an enhancement that is combined with their existing merit-based scholarship.

These scholarships have specific eligibility criteria, and recipients must maintain continuous enrollment as degree-seeking students at UMSL. Additionally, students must consistently demonstrate a high level of academic performance and meet any other requirements set by the college.

Opportunity Scholars Program

Another significant scholarship program at UMSL is the Opportunity Scholars Program, which aims to support academically talented students from diverse backgrounds. This university-wide program provides a comprehensive support system to help students succeed academically and professionally.

Eligibility for this program is based on a combination of academic merit and financial need. Students must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents and must maintain a minimum cumulative GPA to retain the scholarship. The Opportunity Scholars Program offers a variety of resources and support to ensure that students thrive in their academic journey.

In conclusion, both the Pierre Laclede Honors College Scholarships and the Opportunity Scholars Program at UMSL are excellent avenues for students seeking financial assistance to excel in their academic pursuits. UMSL is committed to supporting the education and success of its diverse student population.

Key Strategies for Maintaining Scholarships


At the University of Missouri-St. Louis (UMSL), students can be granted various scholarships and grants to support their pursuit of a college degree. To ensure that they can keep their scholarships throughout their studies, it’s crucial for students to employ key strategies to maintain eligibility.

First and foremost, students must focus on maintaining a strong GPA. For example, UMSL’s Merit Scholarships require students to uphold a cumulative GPA of at least 2.5. To achieve this, students should develop effective study habits, seek academic support when needed, and allocate sufficient time to complete assignments and prepare for exams.

Secondly, full-time enrollment is essential. Freshman Merit Scholarships at UMSL, as well as other merit-based awards, necessitate enrollees to register for a minimum of 12 credit hours per semester. Organizing a balanced course load and adhering to academic deadlines can help students in maintaining their full-time status.

In addition to academic performance, setting clear goals can bolster students’ determination and concentration. These objectives can comprise short-term and long-term aspirations, such as securing internships, earning a specific GPA, or obtaining a college degree in a particular field. Establishing benchmarks allows students to track progress and maintain their motivation.

Lastly, students should stay well-informed about scholarship requirements. Some grants or scholarships may have specific conditions, such as participation in related activities or community service. Staying updated on these obligations can ensure continuous eligibility for the scholarships.

In conclusion, implementing these strategies can aid in successfully maintaining scholarships at UMSL. By doing so, students not only secure financial assistance but also boost their prospects of achieving academic success and earning a college degree.

Engaging with the UMSL Community for Support


The University of Missouri-St. Louis (UMSL) provides various support systems for its students in their pursuit of higher education. To make the most out of these opportunities, students should actively engage with the UMSL community. In this section, we will discuss two key resources available to students: Alumni Networks and Mentorship and Student Financial Services.

Alumni Networks and Mentorship

UMSL has a strong alumni network that can prove to be an invaluable resource for current students. Alumni can provide mentorship, career advice, and networking opportunities. By engaging with alumni, students can gain insights into the various opportunities available in their field of study.

To connect with the UMSL alumni network, students can participate in events, join online forums, and utilize social media platforms. Additionally, the UMSL Community Engagement and Outreach offers various programs and events where students can connect with alumni and other community partners.

Student Financial Services

UMSL’s Student Financial Services department is responsible for providing scholarships, grants, and other financial assistance to degree-seeking students. Scholarships are available on the basis of both merit and need.

To apply for scholarships, students need to:

  1. Check their eligibility for merit-based scholarships, which are automatically considered upon admission.
  2. Explore various competitive scholarships and submit applications where required.
  3. Keep an eye on deadlines for applications, as some scholarships may have specific submission dates.

It is crucial for students to stay informed about the various financial aid opportunities available at UMSL and proactively engage with the UMSL community for support. By doing so, they can benefit from scholarships, mentorship, and other resources that can help with their academic and career growth.

Frequently Asked Questions


What are the eligibility criteria for the UMSL Red and Gold scholarships?

The UMSL Red and Gold scholarships are merit-based scholarships awarded to incoming freshmen. To be eligible, students must be admitted to UMSL on or before March 1 preceding the start of the academic year. Their Core GPA, which includes high school English, Math, Science, Social Studies, and World Language courses, is used to determine eligibility and award amounts for the Freshman Merit Scholarship.

How can international students at the University of Missouri apply for scholarships?

International students at the University of Missouri-St. Louis can apply for scholarships by considering eligibility requirements and scholarship deadlines. Some scholarships may be awarded automatically during the admission process, while others require a separate application. Explore the Scholarships and Grants page on the UMSL website to find out about specific scholarships and their application requirements.

What types of scholarships are available for transfer students to UMSL?

Transfer students at UMSL can benefit from various scholarships, including merit-based scholarships, which may be awarded automatically upon admission. Other scholarships might require a separate application. Please check the Competitive Scholarships page for more information on available scholarships and their respective application processes.

What steps must be taken to secure the UMSL Degree Completion Scholarship?

To secure the UMSL Degree Completion Scholarship, students must meet the eligibility requirements, such as being a Missouri resident, having at least 24 credit hours completed at UMSL, and maintaining a satisfactory academic progress. This scholarship is meant to assist students in their final two semesters of completing their bachelor’s degree. More information about this scholarship and its application requirements can be found at the Office of Student Financial Services.

What is the GPA requirement for maintaining scholarships at UMSL?

The GPA requirement for maintaining scholarships at UMSL may vary depending on individual scholarships. Generally, maintaining a certain GPA (e.g., 3.0 or higher) is essential for retaining merit or other academic scholarships. Be sure to review the specific requirements for each scholarship received, as the criteria may differ.

How does UMSL’s Presidents Scholarship program evaluate applicants?

The Presidents Scholarship program at UMSL evaluates applicants based on their academic performance, leadership experience, extracurricular activities, and community involvement. This prestigious scholarship requires a separate application and may include interviews with university staff or faculty. Please consult UMSL’s Presidents Scholarship webpage for more details on the application process and evaluation criteria.

Helpful Resources

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