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Rewarding hard work

Merit scholarships require students to submit an application for admission by December 15 and have a completed application file by February 1. Students will receive the highest scholarship for which they are eligible.

Merit Scholarships

Best of Class ScholarshipUp to $24,000 over 4 yearsMinnesota residents who rank #1 or #2 in their high school class
UMD ScholarshipUp to $24,000 over 4 years4.0+ GPA and 33+ ACT
Up to $15,000 over 4 years3.9+ GPA and 31+ ACT
Up to $10,000 over 4 years3.8+ GPA and 28+ ACT
Up to $6,000 over 4 years3.6+ GPA and 26+ ACT
Up to $6,000 over 4 yearsAwarded to diverse students based on academic achievement
Dependent upon RaiseMe portfolio3.2+ core GPA and completed RaiseMe portfolio by December 15

RaiseMe is a micro-scholarship platform rewarding 9-12th grade students for their high school achievements. UMD assigns a micro-scholarship for every achievement. For example, when you earn an A in a (core) course you'll earn $40, take an AP or IB class you'll earn $80, and visit campus you'll earn $200. The idea is to award scholarship dollars with the factors and habits we know will make you a more successful student. RaiseMe also benefits students in that we award scholarships based on a core GPA at a minimum of a 3.2 GPA and we won't consider your standardized test score.

To be eligible students must apply for admission and have a complete RaiseMe profile by December 15 of their senior year and is contingent on a student's acceptance and enrollment to UMD.

Alumni Scholarships

UMD Alumni ScholarshipUp to $24,000 over 4 yearsAwarded to non-resident, non-reciprocity, non MSEP students who have a parent or a grandparent who graduated from UMD

Renewal of admissions merit/alumni scholarships are contingent upon maintenance of a 3.0 University of Minnesota cumulative GPA, maintenance of full-time undergraduate status, and successful completion of 30 credits annually.

Information is current as of Fall 2020 and applies to the entering cohorts for Spring and Fall 2020

Q: Am I considered an incoming freshman or transfer student?
A: Incoming freshmen or first-year students have completed or will complete a high school diploma, or obtain a GED. Students must have no previous college work or have only completed college credits while enrolled in high school.

Transfer students have completed at least one college credit of baccalaureate-level coursework following high school graduation or equivalent.

Q: What scholarship am I eligible for?
A: Students must meet both the GPA and ACT criteria (with exception of RaiseMe which has no ACT requirement). Students must apply for admission by the priority application deadline of December 15 and have a completed application file by February 1 to be eligible for scholarship consideration. The student's GPA upon receipt of their transcript (generally at the end of their junior year) and the highest composite ACT prior to December 1 of their senior year is used for scholarship awarding.

Q: What if my high school doesn't rank? Am I still eligible to receive the Best of Class Scholarship?
A: Students who attend schools which do not rank, or that are unable to rank multiple students as #1 or #2 and wish to receive consideration for the Best of Class Scholarship are required to submit an Admissions Scholarship Appeal. Required documentation includes signature and verification from a high school official stating that the student would have been ranked #1 or #2 in the class if the school ranked or would have been ranked #1 or #2 if the ranking of multiple students was allowed. Please email our office to request a copy of the Scholarship Appeal Form.

Q: Are there any minimum requirements in place for the Best of Class Scholarship? 
A: Yes, students must have a minimum GPA of 3.9 in order to be eligible for the Best of Class Scholarship. In addition, students must apply by the priority application deadline of December 15 and have a completed admissions file by February 1 in order to qualify for the scholarship.

Q: What if I improve my high school rank my senior year? 
A: The Best of Class Scholarship is offered to Minnesota high school students who achieve a high school rank of 1 or 2 in their class. Rank is only considered at the time of application for admission. (Students who are homeschooled do not qualify for the Best of Class Scholarship).

Q: What exactly are the criteria for a RaiseMe portfolio and how does it work?
A: To be eligible for RaiseMe you must be a U.S. Citizen, complete 15 high school credits, have a 3.2 core GPA (RaiseMe defines core GPA as being in the core academic subjects of English, math, science, and social studies). Students must complete a RaiseMe portfolio before the UMD priority deadline of December 15.

RaiseMe fosters academic, extracurricular, and community excellence by incentivizing students as early as their freshman year in high school. Students see their scholarship award increase as they continue to meet academic criteria and as they become more involved in their high school experience. While some of the achievement marks may be modest, the full picture of a student's achievements is represented utilizing the RaiseMe portfolio. To create your RaiseMe portfolio, please click here.

Q: I already meet the criteria for a UMD scholarship. Is it worth my time to create a RaiseMe portfolio?
A: Generally, yes. Most students begin a RaiseMe portfolio while they are sophomores or juniors in high school. In addition to your GPA and classroom achievements, RaiseMe takes into account your extracurricular and community involvement.

The maximum annual scholarship through RaiseMe is $3,000 a year. If you qualify for an award above that (3.9 GPA and 31+ ACT), there may not be as much of a benefit to completing the RaiseMe portfolio.

Q: Do I have to meet both the GPA and ACT criteria?
A: Students must meet both the minimum GPA and ACT criteria to receive the corresponding scholarship award.

For example, a student who has a 3.9 GPA and a 26 composite ACT would qualify for the UMD Scholarship up to $6,000 over 4 years. Whereas a student with a 3.8 GPA and a 32 composite ACT would qualify for the UMD Scholarship up to $10,000 over 4 years.

Q: What if I exceed the minimum for either GPA or ACT but do not meet the minimum of both?
A: Students who do not meet the minimum awarding criteria for GPA and ACT are encouraged to complete a RaiseMe portfolio for scholarship consideration.

Q: What if I improve my test scores or GPA while a senior in high school?
A: The ACT or SAT Test must be taken before December 1 for consideration. GPA is considered at the time of application/receipt of the official high school transcript (generally at the end of your junior year).

Q: Does UMD combine multiple admissions scholarships?
A: Students may only qualify for one scholarship from the Office of Admissions including RaiseMe. If you are eligible for a UMD Scholarship worth more than what you have earned on RaiseMe, we will award you the larger scholarship. Scholarships from outside of the university may be combined with your admissions merit scholarship. (For scholarships that are awarded outside of the Office of Admissions, we encourage you to inquire how it may affect your merit award).

Q: Do you have any scholarships for students whose family are alumni?
A: Yes, the Office of Admissions offers an Alumni Scholarship to students who do not live in a reciprocity or MSEP state and whose parents or grandparents have graduated from UMD.

Q: I was planning to attend a different school, but my plans have changed (after Dec. 15). Can I still receive a scholarship?
A: If you submitted your application for admission prior to the December 15 deadline and met scholarship criteria, we will reinstate your award. This does not happen automatically, please contact the Office of Admissions to have your award reviewed for reinstatement.

Q: How do outside scholarships and financial aid affect my merit scholarships?
A: University scholarship awards disburse per the University's financial aid award policy. Consistent with University policy, the total annual aid amount awarded to a student, including all scholarship and grants, cannot exceed the cost of attendance at UMD. Financial aid awards (e.g., loans, work-study, scholarships, or grants) may be reduced for students whose total aid exceeds the cost of their program for the academic year, as determined by the Office of Financial Aid.

When you receive a scholarship from an organization outside of UMD, your existing financial aid award will be reviewed, and adjustments may be made based on the receipt of your scholarship(s). You may see a reduction in other types of aid, such as loans, work-study, or institutional aid. UMD will allow you to receive the maximum benefit of any scholarships within the US Department of Education guidelines.

More Scholarship Opportunities

For a list of scholarships, visit the One Stop Scholarships page.