Admissions & Aid

Don't Get Scammed On Your Way To College


"If you must pay money to get money, it might be a scam"

Look For These Six Signs A Scholarship May Be A Scam:

  1. "This scholarship is guaranteed or your money back."
  2. "You can't get this information anywhere else."
  3. "May I have your credit card or bank account number to hold this scholarship?"
  4. "We'll do all the work."
  5. "The scholarship will cost some money."
  6. "You've been selected by a 'national foundation' to receive a scholarship," or "You're a finalist in a contest" (that you never entered).

Stop! Look! Read This!

And - Ask for more information

Every year there are a few scams based on imitations of Legitimate foundations, scholarship sponsors, lenders, and scholarship search companies.  They may even have official-sounding names, using such words as "National", "Federal", "Federation", "Division", "Foundation", and "Administration", to fool unwary students and parents into thinking that they are federal agencies or grant-giving foundations.

Unfortunately, a college education costs a lot of money. While looking for creative ways to pay for school, students and their families often fall prey to such scams.  The lure of "FREE MONEY" can fool even skeptical people.  This page provides advice on identifying scams, and includes a list of suspicious scholarship opportunities.

FTC'S Project Scholar Scam

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has initiated a two-thruster offensive against scholarship scams.

The first step announced that the FTC had filed charges in federal district court against five companies that are alleged to have engaged in fraudulent or deceptive scholarship schemes.

The second step is an extensive consumer education campaign to tell students and their families how to identify scholarship scams and rip-off's. Administrators and counselors who are interested in receiving a consumer education information kit should write to:

The Federal Trade Commission
P.O. Box 996
Washington, DC 20580

or send e-mail to (government, not commercial )

If you wanted, direct access to the main handout is at , or the main web page is at:

Scholarship Scams: Helpful Links