Scholarships 101

Published on Oct 18, 2016

The most important part of the scholarship process is to start researching and applying to opportunities internally and externally as early as possible.

There are over 70 Columbia College Chicago scholarship opportunities for continuing students. These opportunities include program and non-program specific scholarships and can be based on academic performance, portfolio submission and financial-need. 

To successfully apply for a Columbia College Scholarship, you’ll need to put together a body of work that reflects who you are as an artist and student. Such as:

  • Personal Artist Statement: A one-page statement about who you are as an artist studying at Columbia College.
  • Essays: The subject of these essays will vary depending on which scholarship you are applying too.
  • Samples of your Work: Some scholarships may require a portfolio of your work, so gather examples that will best reflect you as an artist.
  • Letters of Recommendation: Try to have at least two letters of recommendations from professors that can best speak of your academic performance. In order to receive these letters in time, ask early. These take a significant amount of time to write, so reach out to your contacts as soon as possible.

Remember,the requirements for certain scholarships vary, so double check the scholarships you are applying to and be prepared to schedule enough time to complete them all in the timeline given below. 


  • Fall Term 2016: Kick off Your Search! Start researching Columbia College’s scholarship opportunities at and attend one of three scholarship information sessions located in The Loft:

           Tuesday, October 18
           3:30-4:30 p.m.

           Wednesday, November 16
           10:30-11:30 p.m.

           Thursday, December 1
           3:30-4:30 p.m.

  • December and January: Take advantage of your winter break to commit to the scholarships you want to apply for, ask faculty for letters of recommendations, and to write your personal essays. Remember, the Career Center and Writing Center are available if you need help writing or putting together your personal essays. 
  • February 1 is the application deadline for all Columbia College Chicago scholarships and the FAFSA. Make sure everything is completed no less than a week before this date to avoid any mistakes. Once submitted, you can use the Scholarship Manager to track the status of your letters of recommendations and application. 
  • March: All scholarship recipients will be notified of their award in March so check your Loopmail and OASIS portal throughout the month!