Scholarships and Higher Education Support for LGBTQ+ Youth

Every year GSAFE awards up to four graduating Wisconsin high school seniors $1000 scholarships at our annual Celebration of Leadership event in May.  Scholarship applications are usually available online by January each year.  

In addition to GSAFE’s annual youth scholarship, a number of other foundations and organizations provide scholarships to LGBTQ youth and their allies.  Here is a list of scholarships that we know about:

Point Foundation – Applications due January 30th

Point Foundation (Point) is the nation’s largest higher education scholarship-granting organization for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) students. Point’s multifaceted support of its scholarship recipients (“scholars”) extends far beyond direct financial contribution toward the cost of their education. Each scholar is paired with a mentor and participates in leadership development programs and events.

GSAFE Youth Scholarship – Applications due February 20th

GSAFE will award $1,000 to up to four graduating high school seniors for their demonstrated commitment to creating safer, more just schools for LGBTQ youth.  Scholarship recipients will be honored at GSAFE’s annual Celebration of Leadership Scholarship Banquet, to be held on May 13th in Madison.

Colin Higgins Youth Courage Awards – Nominations due March 3rd

Each year, the Colin Higgins Foundation salutes and celebrates courage in the face of adversity and discrimination by awarding $10,000 individual grants to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, Two Spirit, queer and questioning youth activists (through age 20) who have transformed their experiences with bigotry and discrimination into opportunities to inspire others by taking action, rallying support, building community, and working to change the systems and institutions that impact their lives.

Cream City Foundation – Applications due March 31st

Cream City Foundation is pleased to offer up scholarships for students in Southeastern Wisconsin who exhibit exceptional commitment to the LGBTQ+ community.  The Scholarship Program supports LGBTQ+ and ally students pursuing their G.E.D and post-secondary education. Recipients may use funds to help cover educational expenses for G.E.D. programs; community college; four-year public or private colleges or universities; vocational, technical, and trade programs; or graduate-level education, professional schools or post-graduate.

PFLAG Scholarship Program – Applications not yet available

Every year PFLAG National awards multiple scholarships ranging from $1,000 to $5,000 to students all over the country.  Their national scholarship program is not yet open, but applications usually become available early in the year, with the deadline to apply in late April.

Accessing higher education can be especially challenging for LGBTQ+ youth who are experiencing homelessness.  The Center for Online Education has compiled resources and tips for youth experiencing homelessness, their families, and other adults who work with them to help navigate accessing higher education.  

BestColleges.com has additional resources for students who are entering their college search, including tips on how to find an LGBTQ+ inclusive campus.  They also maintain additional lists of scholarships for incoming students as well as returning students.  

 

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Testimonials

haruka-testimonial“The summer after my first year of high school I attended LTI, GSAFE’s camp for youth leaders. I hold those four days dear to my heart and firmly believe that they were instrumental in transforming my life.” – Haruka, Former GSAFE Youth Activist