Top 15+ Scholarships for Art Students – A Comprehensive Guide


Are you interested in knowing about scholarships for art students? In this article, you would find a wealth of scholarships made for aspiring art students. Explore opportunities, criteria, and application details to support your creative journey. 

Researching the world of art education often comes with financial considerations. Fortunately, numerous scholarships specifically designed for art students offer a helping hand. These scholarships recognize and support the creativity, passion, and dedication of aspiring artists, providing not just financial assistance but also validation for their artistic endeavors. Understanding the landscape of available scholarships can significantly alleviate the financial burden and empower budding artists to pursue their dreams with confidence.

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1. Adobe Design Circle Scholarships

The Adobe Design Circle Scholarships aim to empower future leaders in product and experience design by granting 10 scholarships valued at up to $25,000 each. Beyond financial support, this program places a strong emphasis on fostering diversity within the design realm. Encouraging applications from students representing various underrepresented communities such as people of color, LGBTQ+ individuals, those with disabilities, and more, the initiative seeks to create a more inclusive design landscape.

Winners of these scholarships not only receive invaluable tuition assistance but also gain access to internship opportunities, shadowing experiences, and networking prospects within the design industry. Partnering with the Institute of International Education, Adobe leverages its position as a tech industry frontrunner to offer scholarship recipients unparalleled pathways to fulfilling design careers.

Award Amount: $25,000

Deadline: January

Scholarships for Art Students
Scholarships for Art Students

2. The Against the Grain Artistic Scholarship

The Against the Grain Artistic Scholarship stands as a pillar of support for talented Asian American students pursuing artistic disciplines in college. To qualify, applicants must major in visual arts, journalism, mass communications, or performing arts, and be at least 50% Asian or Pacific Islander. Additionally, candidates must be US citizens or permanent residents, high school seniors, or enrolled college students in accredited institutions, including vocational schools. A minimum 3.0 GPA and a robust record of extracurricular activities or community service are prerequisites.

The selection process, overseen by a jury, employs a detailed rubric encompassing five key categories to evaluate candidates. These categories include the quality of content submission, assessing written essays and artistic portfolios, academic excellence, involvement in community service and leadership roles, and a committee interview. The recipient is determined based on accumulated points across these criteria. The scholarship funds are directly disbursed to the student’s educational institution to support their tuition expenses.

Award Amount: $1000

Deadline: May 15

3. The Antonio Cirino Memorial Fund

The Antonio Cirino Memorial Fund targets Rhode Island residents demonstrating financial need, aspiring towards a teaching career in the arts. Applicants must actively engage in their artistic pursuits and possess a strong foundation in the arts. Eligible students may be pursuing degrees in artistic disciplines, with grants potentially extending for up to two years and award amounts reaching a maximum of $12,000.

Candidates vying for the Antonio Cirino Memorial Fund must not have ties to the Rhode Island School of Design. They should be graduate students intending to pursue careers as arts educators. Application requirements encompass transcripts, a financial aid award letter copy, work samples, and completion of online application forms.

Award Amount: $2000-$12,000

Deadline: May 1

4. Art Renewal Center Scholarship Competition

The Art Renewal Center (ARC) places a strong emphasis on nurturing emerging artists, acknowledging their pivotal role in shaping cultural production. In line with this commitment, ARC offers a scholarship tailored for student sculptors and painters whose artistic creations resonate with humanistic values through visual arts.

The ARC Renewal Scholarship targets students adept in both traditional and contemporary realism. As part of the application process, applicants are required to submit work samples showcasing their prowess in paintings and sculptures, encompassing areas such as still life, portraiture, and representations of nature. Merit forms the primary criterion for selection, with need being a secondary consideration. Notably, there are no application fees involved. ARC allocates $30,000 in scholarship funds, distributed among 10 deserving recipients.

Award Amount: Varies

Deadline: May 31

5. Arts for Life! Scholarships

Arts for Life! is a Florida-based organization dedicated to bolstering high school students’ artistic pursuits as they venture into higher education. Beyond fostering the visual arts, this initiative bestows awards upon students specializing in dance, creative writing, drama, and music. Established in 1999 by Columba Bush, former first lady of Florida, this scholarship has supported nearly 450 talented high school seniors across the state.

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Eligible candidates must be graduating high school seniors within Florida for the current academic year. The application process involves a concise essay outlining the impact of the arts on the applicant’s life, along with a supplementary portfolio showcasing their discipline. The Arts for Life! Scholarship is granted to 25 graduating seniors, each receiving $1,000, with the opportunity for a matching in-kind scholarship if they continue their education at a Florida-based school listed under the College Matching Program.

Award Amount: $1,000 plus additional opportunities

Deadline: January 4

6. Betty Harlan Memorial Art Scholarship

The Betty Harlan Memorial Art Scholarship commemorates the legacy of Betty Harlan, a cherished figure and devoted artist deeply rooted in Northern Illinois throughout her life. Known for her unwavering passion for both the arts and community service, Betty dedicated herself fervently to these pursuits. This scholarship serves as a tribute to her aspirations, aiming to support one college student annually in fulfilling their educational journey in the arts, a dream that financial constraints might otherwise hinder.

This opportunity is open to graduating seniors residing in Boone, Ogle, or Winnebago counties in Illinois, whether from public or private schools. Applicants are required to demonstrate substantial engagement in the arts, showcasing involvement in local activities or community organizations. Additionally, they should maintain a GPA of 2.75 or higher and possess intentions to pursue an Arts degree in college.

Award Amount: Varies

Deadline: February 1

7. Cay Drachnik Minorities Scholarship Fund

The American Art Therapy Association presents a comprehensive selection of nearly 30 scholarships and grants accessible to registered members through their website, Among these, the Cay Drachnik scholarship stands out, honoring the remarkable watercolorist residing in Southern California. Drachnik’s commitment centers on aiding ethnic minority student artists who aspire to make meaningful contributions.

Specifically tailored for students belonging to ethnic minority groups pursuing studies in art therapy, the Cay Drachnik Minorities scholarship targets individuals aspiring to become art therapists. To qualify, applicants must submit an essay, two letters of recommendation, and demonstrate financial need. Additionally, membership in the Art Therapy Association is a prerequisite for consideration.

Awarded Amount: $900

Deadline: April 1

8. Charles M. Robertson Memorial Scholarship

The National Art Education Association (NAEA) administers the Charles M. Robertson Memorial Scholarship, a four-year supplementary award specifically designated for Pratt College of Art and Design in Brooklyn, New York. Honoring Charles M. Robertson’s significant contributions to both the NAEA and the Pratt Institute, this scholarship aims to support high school students displaying exceptional artistic talent and profound engagement.

To qualify for the Charles M. Robertson Memorial Scholarship, candidates must be high school seniors actively involved in a National Art Honor Association Chapter, committed to pursuing a major in Art Education. Maintaining a 3.0 GPA across all subjects is a requisite for ongoing eligibility. The application process entails submitting a complete Pratt Application, a letter of nomination, digital samples of the student’s artwork, and a comprehensive list detailing artistic extracurricular involvements.

Award Amount: Partial four-year scholarship

Deadline: December 15

9. CINTAS Knight Foundation Fellowship in Visual Art

The Cintas Foundation, established by former Cuban ambassador Oscar B. Cintas, remains dedicated to realizing his vision by extending artistic scholarships to individuals of Cuban heritage, regardless of their residency in Cuba or elsewhere. Since its inception in 1957, the foundation has provided funding to non-college students engaged in diverse creative fields such as visual arts, architecture, creative writing, design, and music composition. Notably, the foundation is thrilled to acknowledge artists living in exile, marking the first year of recognizing Cuban-based artists with its awards.

In the current cycle, the Cintas Foundation offers three awards, each valued at $20,000. The application process entails a narrative component encompassing an artist statement and a personal history statement. Applicants are required to submit work samples through CDs or DVDs via express mail, accompanied by a detailed itemized list of the submitted work. Additionally, two letters of recommendation form part of the application requirements. It’s important to note that this award is categorized as taxable income.

Award Amount: $20,000

Deadline; June 1

10. Concordia College – Visual Arts

Concordia College in Fargo-Moorhead, Minnesota, offers Visual Arts Scholarships tailored for incoming freshmen and transfer students. These scholarships extend from the freshman year through the sophomore year and are renewable for subsequent junior and senior years, contingent upon the recipient maintaining a 3.0 GPA. Additionally, many recipients may qualify for other financial aid opportunities on campus. This scholarship aims to commend outstanding artists actively involved in their collegiate pursuits.

To qualify for this Concordia-based scholarship, applicants must submit two letters of recommendation, a digital portfolio showcasing their artistic work, and a statement detailing their history and involvement in the arts. An artistic resume is also part of the required application materials. Finalists will undergo a comprehensive selection process involving a campus visit to engage with faculty, elucidate their artistic aspirations and practices, tour campus studios, and participate in local museum events. Moreover, finalists will have the chance to reside in dormitories alongside current Concordia students immersed in various artistic disciplines.

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Award Amount: $2,000-4,000

Deadline: January 4

11. Daring Young Artists to Dream Scholarships

The Worldstudio’s Daring Young Artists to Dream scholarships, facilitated by the Professional Association for Design, aim to promote diversity in the arts and advocate for heightened social and environmental consciousness through creative expression. These scholarships specifically target ethnic minorities and economically disadvantaged college students pursuing Art and Design education. Initiated as part of the AIGA Diversity and Inclusion Initiative, they have disbursed over one million dollars to support more than 650 ethnic minority students since 1995.

To be considered for the Daring Young Artists to Dream Scholarship, applicants must craft a concise statement of purpose, limited to 600 words. This statement holds significant weight in the application process, as it serves as a platform for candidates to articulate how their creative endeavors align with fostering substantial social change. Additionally, students are required to present an acceptance letter from their intended educational institution to finalize the scholarship award.

Award Amount: $2,000-$6,000

Deadline: May 1

Scholarships for Art Students
Scholarships for Art Students

12. David Barrett Memorial Scholarship

The David Barrett Memorial Scholarship aims to provide support to undergraduate and graduate students focusing on classical designs and traditional materials within textiles and furniture as their primary artistic pursuit. Administered by the American Society of Interior Designers Foundation (ASID), this scholarship is available bi-annually.

Prospective applicants for the David Barrett Memorial Scholarship must compile a comprehensive submission package. This includes a personal statement, limited to one thousand words, a recommendation letter from an employer, educator, or mentor, and a portfolio showcasing 8-10 design components. Additionally, applicants are required to provide an academic transcript, a biographical essay, and a headshot as part of their application materials.

Award Amount: $12,000

Deadline: March 1

13. F. Lammot Belin Arts Scholarship

The F. Lammot Belin Arts Scholarship, established in 1964 by Peter Belin in memory of his father, F. Lammot Belin, has since been generously supported by the Belin estate. Recognized as a prestigious annual award, this scholarship is dedicated to fostering the professional growth of artists in their respective disciplines. Specifically aimed at individuals who have a connection to Northeast Pennsylvania, the scholarship emphasizes how their artistic engagement shapes their vocational journey.

Valued at $12,000, this scholarship can be utilized for both formal and informal education, including arts-related travel. It is bestowed upon artists specializing in sculpture, photography, music, dance, drama, literature, or architecture. Decisions are made by a selection committee, assessing merit and artistic prowess through tangible examples. The application process is comprehensive and requires a proposal outlining the intended use of the funds.

Award Amount: $12,000

Deadline: December 15

14. Geoffrey Beene Design Masters Scholar Award

Geoffrey Beene, an influential figure in the fashion industry, established a foundation aimed at empowering emerging designers with the necessary tools to thrive in the fashion world. The Geoffrey Beene Design Masters Scholar Award, a highly selective scholarship, prioritizes merit and seeks out the most innovative talents poised to become leaders in their craft. Recipients of this scholarship benefit from mentorship opportunities, including valuable networking sessions with esteemed designers.

Eligible candidates for the Geoffrey Beene National Scholarship must be enrolled full-time in one of the fifty YMA FSA (Young Musicians & Artists Fashion Scholarship Fund) affiliated colleges. Seniors graduating in the Fall semester are not eligible for application. The initial application step involves contacting an educator listed on the member schools page to obtain login credentials and detailed instructions for subsequent stages, one of which entails completing a designated case study. Throughout the application process, the assigned educator offers guidance to ensure completion and addresses any queries that arise.

Award Amount: Up to $30,000

Deadline: November 17

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15. HEEF Arts Scholarship Program

The HEEF Arts Scholarship Program, facilitated by the Orange County Hispanic Educational Endowment Fund (HEEF), is specifically tailored for Dream Act/AB 540 students residing in Orange County, California for the past six years, including both US citizens and Permanent Residents. This scholarship targets students enrolled in four-year colleges, specializing in disciplines such as Visual Arts, Video, New Media, Performance Art, Dance, or Drama, with the possibility of renewal.

To be eligible, applicants must be first-generation college students (meaning neither parents nor grandparents possess college degrees) and come from families with an annual income limit of $45,000. The application process necessitates evidence confirming eligibility criteria, along with supplemental inquiries. Additionally, the website provides contacts for assistance regarding application requirements and necessary documentation.

Award Amount: $2000

Deadline: January 19

16. Honors GradU Multimedia Scholarship

Honors Graduation, a company specializing in graduation apparel like cords, tassels, and stoles, also manages a non-profit blog called Honors Grad U. Initially starting their scholarship program in 2013 as an essay-based contest, they later revamped it to encourage deeper creativity, realizing the significance of nurturing creative voices engaged in various artistic practices. By 2015, the Honors GradU Multimedia Scholarship emerged as a means to provide financial support to students focusing on art, creative writing, photography, music, and videography.

As the scholarship program has evolved and garnered more applicants, Honors Grad U has refined its selection process. Applicants are now required to choose a specific medium and respond to prompts associated with that discipline. Each medium has its own unique prompt; for instance, last year’s prompt revolved around expressing views on the concepts of education versus learning. Eligible students must be high school seniors preparing to embark on a four-year college program with a major in the arts.

Award Amount: $1000

Deadline: April 16

17. Iowa Scholarship for the Arts

The Iowa Scholarship for the Fine Arts caters specifically to high school students in Iowa who showcase exceptional artistic abilities and dedication. This scholarship targets individuals aspiring to pursue higher education focusing on folk & traditional arts, fine arts, theater, music, dance, or literature within the state of Iowa. Notably, dependents or immediate family members of the Iowa Arts Council staff and board are ineligible to apply.

To streamline the application process, the Iowa Scholarship for the Arts has established an online slide portal where candidates can submit their applications and additional materials. Alongside the application, two letters of recommendation and a range of supplementary documents are required. These materials undergo review by a panel comprising professional artists and educators.

Award Amount: $150

Deadline: February 2

18. John F. and Anna Lee Stacey Foundation

The John F. and Anna Lee Stacey Foundation was established through a trust following Anna Lee Stacey’s will, aiming to provide young individuals with the means to pursue an education conducive to thriving careers in the arts. Partnering with the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum, the scholarship committee seeks dedicated and talented artists committed to classical or conservative artistic traditions. This opportunity is available to students aged between 18 and 35, empowering the recipient to apply the scholarship to their chosen arts-focused education.

A crucial element of the John F. and Anna Lee Stacey Scholarship involves submitting work across various categories, encompassing nude figure painting, life drawing, landscapes, composition, alongside any relevant artistic pieces curated by the applicant. The selection committee evaluates submissions based on form, color, drawing, painting, design, and technique. While additional application requirements for the upcoming year are pending, details will be made available on the website soon.

Scholarships for Art Students
Scholarships for Art Students

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Award Amount: $5000

Deadline: February 1

Conclusion on scholarships for art students

Scholarships for art students serve as pivotal gateways to enable aspiring artists to pursue their creative passions without financial constraints. These opportunities not only alleviate the burden of educational expenses but also recognize and uplift the diverse talents and perspectives within the artistic community. 

By providing funding, mentorship, and platforms for growth, these scholarships play a vital role in nurturing the next generation of innovative, boundary-pushing artists. Embracing creativity and fostering talent, these scholarships pave the way for a vibrant, diverse, and enriched artistic landscape in the future.


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