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Scholarships for Students with Disabilities

Updated: Feb 14


Are you considering continuing your education? Are you concerned that your disability will somehow cause you to be left behind? Well, consider the following statistic. In a 2015 study, The National Center for Education Statistics revealed that of the 20.2 million students enrolling in colleges that year, 2.42 million (or 11.1%) of the students had some kind of disability. These numbers indicate a growing trend in enrollment, as more and more schools develop the necessary resources to support disabled students. Education opens the door to everyone for a more satisfying and higher paying career, so you should not feel constrained in pursuit of your goals.


As with everything associated with the disability, there are a myriad of factors to take into account that able-bodied people don’t have to worry about. The list of such topics is too large to address here, this blog will confine itself to discussing scholarship opportunities in general – and one scholarship in particular.


Getting a scholarship to help pay for school is an absolute must, especially since there are a significant number of scholarships available for students with disabilities. Students with disabilities have an advantage when it comes to qualifying for education grants or scholarships. With the passing of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) in 1975, there has been a concerted effort to encourage disabled students to pursue their higher education at a traditional public or private institution. Many organizations, both public and private, sponsor grants for disabled students who would otherwise not have the financial resources to pursue their college education. There are foundations and associations throughout the country who are dedicated to funding grants and scholarships that address nearly every form of mental or physical disability. An Internet search for education grants dedicated to specific disabilities will return a large number of potential leads, and this would be a great place to start your search.


Locally, there is a scholarship from the Communities Foundation of Texas. This is specifically for students who are paraplegic or quadriplegic. The name of this grant is the "Kristoffer Robinson Scholarship." Awarded annually, the assistance provided is for tuition, books, and necessary appliances related to the particular needs of the student to pursue an education at any accredited school in the state of Texas, whether public or private. It is intended for students at any educational level – elementary, junior high, high school, college, technical, or graduate. This award (up to $5,000 per year) is renewable up to four years. Below is a link where you can apply for this scholarship. The application deadline is May 1, 2020. For more information, contact Katie Kuehl at kkuehl@cftexas.org.


Do you know of services available to help the spinal cord community? Please share them with us at info@unitedspinalusa.org.


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