a couple of people that are standing in the grass

Community Foundation offers thousands in college scholarships

Susan MondayHeadlines

a couple of people that are standing in the grass

Barbara Kelly, left, heads the Kelly Family Scholarship Fund, which offers help to Caesar Rodney students, including Lena Berry, right.


As college kids decide where they’re going to school, their next focus is how they’re going to pay for it.

The Delaware Community Foundation may be able to help.

The foundation, a nonprofit that manages lots of small funds, is a clearinghouse for hundreds of scholarships in various amounts. Last year, it awarded about $400,000 in cash and expects to do the same this year.

Most of the scholarships are needs-based with a GPA requirement, and some are county-specific.  

Good news for applicants: The scholarships are not dependent on a recipient going to a Delaware school.  

While there are a number of scholarships for things like engineering, business or healthcare, there are some “quirky” scholarships. They include:

  • The MATRA Scholarship that requires the applicant to be a current member of the Manufacturers and Tent Renters Association.
  • The Achievement Scholarship for Students with a History of Chronic Illness. It says applicants must have experienced a health-related issue lasting at least six months that impaired the individual’s ability to pursue his or her education. 
  • The Dr. Jill Biden Scholarship, part of the First Lady’s Breast Health Initiative. It is open to applicants pursuing a career in healthcare or education.
  • The Ken Cicerale Memorial Music Scholarship. It’s aimed at applicants pursuing a major in music at an accredited four-year institution.

The deadline to apply is March 15. Find the complete list here.

Foundation CEO Stuart Comstock-Gay says the donor determines the individual scholarship amount and any special criteria. Last year, the amounts ranged from $500 to $26,000.

The foundation uses social media and high school counselors to advertise the scholarship program.  

Once a student applies, volunteers in each of Delaware’s three counties review the applications and select an appropriate recipient.

Comstock-Gay says the donors, some of whom are anonymous, just want to be generous. Many credit college for their success in life, or are organizations who want to encourage students to continue their education.

He says he’s proud that the foundation “has the honor of shepherding the money to those who need it.”




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