5 Best Iowa Scholarships

Updated November 4, 2022 · 2 Min Read

Get started with your search for top-ranked schools in Iowa. Discover which colleges offer scholarships that fit your needs.

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Discover Scholarships for Iowa

Scholarships for Iowa can give "Hawkeye State" residents the financial wings to soar into higher education. Positioned in America's Heartland as the 26th largest state, Iowa inhabits over 3.12 million people. Affordable cost of living, low crime rates, fields of opportunities, and top-notch education are big benefits to living in Iowa. College students can select from 19 public and 35 private institutions holding HLC-NCA accreditation. Whether you're interested in studying liberal arts at Coe College, finding spiritual growth at Briar Cliff University, logging onto courses from Kaplan University, or conducting exciting research at Iowa State University, the learning landscape is diverse. The University of Iowa was applauded as the 33rd top public school nationally by the U.S. News. Let the following 5 best scholarships for Iowa Universities and Colleges online or in person nurture your career by providing free cash for class.

Studying in Iowa is cheaper than the U.S. average, but rising prices could still curtail some Hawkeyes' dreams. Iowa institutions charge a mean tuition of $5,052 in-state and $18,256 out-of-state. Certain schools, especially private nonprofits, tip the scales with considerably higher tuition though. For instance, Grinnell College's 2016-17 comprehensive fee was $60,736! Financial aid is an essential resource for earning a college degree with little debt. Apply for these 15 scholarships for Iowa to satisfy your program's costs.

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1. Brian Pearson Memorial Scholarship

Iowa Games established the Brian Pearson Memorial Scholarship in 1998 to honor the Iowa State University basketball player who lost his battle with brain cancer. Annually, one male and one female student-athlete will receive $1,000 to pursue post-secondary education. Past recipients have enrolled at Northwestern, Truman State, Creighton, and more. Winners chosen after the May 1st deadline will participate in the Summer Iowa Games Opening Ceremony.


  • Be high school juniors residing in Iowa
  • Play at least one varsity-level sport
  • Demonstrate respect, perseverance, and sportsmanship
  • Be good citizens involved in community service

Scholarship Website

2. Iowa Tuition Grant

Through the Iowa College Student Aid Commission (ICSAC), the Iowa Tuition Grant offers up to $6,000 per year based on financial need. Funding is renewable for four years to Iowans carrying a minimum 2.0 GPA in their private, nonprofit education. Applications must be received before July 1st before Fall enrollment. Students should also consider the GEAR UP Iowa Scholarship, Iowa Vocational-Technical Grant, and Iowa National Guard Educational Assistance Program.


  • Permanently reside in Iowa for 12+ months
  • Be accepted at participating in-state private colleges
  • Enroll as full-time undergraduates for a bachelor’s degree
  • Demonstrate unmet need on the FAFSA form

Scholarship Website

3. Herman Sani Tournament Scholarships

Since 1958, the Iowa Golf Association has given 170 Herman Sani Tournament Scholarships to honor the 50-year Hyperion member who was Chairman of the Greens Committee. Selected Iowans receive $2,000 each year for $8,000 total. College-bound high school seniors must apply before March 18th by sending an official transcript, self-statement, proof of financial need, and two recommendation letters. Recipients are honored at the Sani Awards Banquet in August.


  • Be residents of the State of Iowa
  • Enroll at any accredited U.S. college or university
  • Have experience or background in golf
  • Participate actively in extracurricular activities

Scholarship Website

4. Des Moines Women’s Club Scholarships

The Des Moines Women’s Club (DMWC) provides $33,500 yearly through 11 high school, eight college, and two graduate scholarships. Females can apply for one scholarship annually before the January 20th deadline. For example, the Marjorie O’Braza STEM Scholarships focus on college-bound seniors selecting science, technology, engineering, or math majors. The Helen McEwan Memorial Scholarship selects college undergraduates studying elementary education.


  • Live in Polk, Boone, Dallas, Jasper, Madison, Marion, Story, or Warren counties
  • Register full-time (12 credits) at accredited Iowa institutions
  • Have academic merit with a cumulative GPA above 2.75
  • Declare majors accepted by the different scholarship funds

Scholarship Website

5. Iowa’s Matthew Shepard Scholarships

The Eychaner Foundation grants Iowa’s Matthew Sherpard Scholarships to honor the American student beaten, tortured, and ultimately murdered in a tragic anti-gay hate crime in 1998. Gold scholarships provide up to $40,000 for attending Iowa State University, University of Iowa, or University of Northern Iowa. Silver scholarships offer up to $9,000 for any accredited U.S. college. Applications are due on March 1st, and finalists will be interviewed on March 25th.


  • Have graduated or earned a GED in Iowa
  • Matriculate full-time as first-time undergraduates
  • Exhibit academic aptitude for college
  • Be actively involved in serving the LGBTQ community

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