Creating your own named scholarship is a great way to offer financial support for deserving college students. As a scholarship provider you want as many applicants possible to ensure your scholarship goes to someone who deserves it. To attract applicants you need an informative and memorable name! Think of your scholarship name as the headline to an ad. In general, when naming a scholarship, keep it short and to the point. This helps people understand the purpose of the scholarship right away. You may also find it easier for people to remember your scholarship if it has a shorter name.

That said, each scholarship program also has distinct eligibility terms. It could target those in financial need, minority students, or the high achiever. You can also use these elements to name your scholarship. Here are a few things to consider when naming a scholarship.

1. Describe What Kind of Award It Is

Including a descriptive word that describes the type of award it is may be useful. Terms like Scholarship, Fund, Fellowship, Endowment, or Award can all mean different things. These could help people know if they are eligible for entry. For example, a fellowship is almost always used to describe award dollars for PhD students. Examples for naming a scholarship including award type in the name:

  • Dolores Zohrab Liebmann Fund
  • Moelis Urban Law & Public Affairs Fellowship Program
  • AAUW Career Development Grant
  • Cyber Security Scholarship

2. Clarify Your Ideal Scholarship Recipient

Scholarships go to students who meet the criteria and stand out from their peers in some way shape or form. If you are looking for eligible students that meet certain criteria, you could name the scholarship to get the eye of those who might win. For example, a scholarship with the word ‘merit’ in the title tells the student that you likely need a strong GPA or other academic criteria to win. Examples of scholarships with specific criteria in the name:

3. Annual Scholarship

Is the scholarship available every year? If your scholarship is annual or renewable, students may plan out their budgets when they receive a multi year scholarship. Using the word annual or renewable also shows your commitment to keep the financial assistance going. Examples for naming a scholarship including annual in the name:

  • Mr. Digital Piano Innovative Annual Writing Scholarship
  • Annual Black Entrepreneurship Grant
  • Greg Baumgartner Annual Scholarship

4. Endowed Scholarship

If you make a sizable donation, you may be able to set up a scholarship as an endowment. An endowment would allow the bulk of your finds to grow within a fund, thus potentially funding a scholarship in perpetuity. In this case, you may want to name your scholarship after yourself or someone you want to honor. Examples:

  • Jodi Mister- Charlotte W. Newcombe Foundation Endowed Scholarship
  • Rutgers Honors College Study Abroad Endowed Scholarship
  • UNF Engineering Advisory Council Endowed Scholarship

5. Name Specific Majors

When awarding a scholarship for a certain major, you could use the title of the major in the scholarship’s name. For instance: ABC Company STEM Scholarship. This lets people know edibility criteria for the scholarship include the majors science, technology, engineering, and math. Here are some examples of scholarships with specific majors:

6. Use Your Location

Is your scholarship applicable to students in a certain location? Nothing is more frustrating for a student to see they may meet all the criteria except for location. So, be up front about it. Is the scholarship coming from a community foundation or community college for locals only? Is it for state residents? Students who live in a certain county? Let applicants know. Examples for naming a scholarship including location in the name:

  • New York World Trade Center Memorial Scholarship
  • Florida Bright Futures Scholarship
  • Texas Law Dog Animal Rescue Scholarship

7. List Candidate Qualities

For some scholarships, eligible applicants must show qualities beyond academic achievement. If that’s the case for the scholarship you are naming, you could use words such as:

  • Leadership
  • Community Service
  • Creative
  • Innovator

8. Make it Fun!

Don’t forget, you have to read all of these scholarships to pick a winner! Make it fun for the student as well as yourself. come up with a unique or fun themed scholarship name. Pick a topic that will make you smile, laugh or just feel darn good. Examples include:

9. Include Award Amount

At the end of the day, students need all the help they may get paying for college. So even if your scholarship award is not a huge amount of money, don’t worry. Including the award amount in the scholarship name can still help students keep organized and to help them prioritize.

Naming A Scholarship After Someone

Yes, you could name a scholarship after someone. Named scholarships often look for similar traits to the person being honored. These sometimes use the term Memorial Scholarship to let people know there’s a story behind the scholarship. For example you could name a scholarship in memory of someone who recently passed or a memorable person in one’s community, etc.