40 Hot Scholarships: Scholarships Are One of the Best Types of Financial Aid Because They Provide Free Money-You Don't Have to Pay Them Back. the Trick Is Finding the Ones That Match Your Qualifications, Getting Yourself Organized, and Putting in the Time Needed to Complete the Applications and Essays That Many Programs Require

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To get you started on the scholarship hunt, we've put together this list of 40 diverse awards. Take a look and see which ones you qualify for. But don't end your search here. Look into all the online sources that are available, and use a scholarship search engine such as the one at www.careersandcolleges.com. Also, ask your guidance office, community groups, and parents if they know of other funding programs. And if you're interested in a specific career, contact national associations that represent that occupation--these groups often have educational awards. Colleges themselves offer scholarships and grants as well.

Admiral Grace Murray Hopper Scholarship

DETAILS: Women with a minimum 3.5 GPA studying in an accredited engineering program can apply for this scholarship offered by the Society of Women Engineers.

$$$: $1,000

DEADLINE: May 15, 2006

CONTACT/WEB: www.swe.org

All-ink.com Scholarship

DETAILS: Students applying are required to write both a 50- to 200-word essay on the person who has had the greatest impact on their life and a 50- to 200-word essay on what they hope to achieve in their personal and professional life after college.

$$$: Up to $10,000 in awards

DEADLINE: Dec. 31, 2005

CONTACT/WEB: www.all-ink.com/scholarship.aspx

Allogan Slagle Memorial Scholarship

DETAILS: The Association on American Indian Affairs offers funding to American Indian and Native Alaskan students who are members of tribes seeking federal recognition. The award is based on academic merit and financial need. The association offers many other scholarships for American Indians.

$$$:$1,500

DEADLINE: Aug. 1, 2006

CONTACT/WEB: www.indian-affairs.org

Billy D. Young Scholarship

DETAILS: Sponsored by the National Safety Council, this program recognizes students who are pursuing a degree in either safety or industrial hygiene and plan to go into the safety and/or health fields after graduation.

$$$: $1,000

DEADLINE: June 2006

CONTACT/WEB: www.nsc.org/news/BillyDYoung.htm

Careers and Colleges Scholarship

DETAILS: You're already on your way to entering this competition! Just request info about any of the colleges in this magazine or on the website and you've applied!

$$$: $10,000

DEADLINE: Jan. 30, 2006

CONTACT/WEB: www.careersandcolleges.com

Coca-Cola Two-Year College Scholarship

DETAILS: Every two-year, degree-granting institution in the United States can nominate two students each year, so if you're heading off to a community college or two-year program, work with your financial aid office to submit your application. A minimum of a 2.5 GPA and 100 hours of community service are required.

$$$: 400 awards of $1,000 each year

DEADLINE: May 31, 2006

CONTACT/WEB: www.coca-colascholars.org

College-Computers.net Scholarship

DETAILS: Your thoughts on what will happen with technology over the next 50 years could help you win this cash for your college education.

$$$: Two for $1,000 each

DEADLINE: Dec. 31, 2005

CONTACT/WEB: www.college-computers.net/scholarship/

Davidson Fellows

DETAILS: For students who have a passion for what they do and a desire to make a difference, submit an original piece of work that shows your potential to make a positive contribution to society.

$$$: $10,000 to $50,000 and a trip to the award ceremony

DEADLINE: March 31, 2006

CONTACT/WEB: www.ditd.org

DECA Scholarships

DETAILS: DECA partners with many companies to offer scholarships, including Kmart, Sears, American Express, and others. If you're a member of DECA, see your advisor for an application.

$$$: Many $1,000 awards

DEADLINE: Feb. 11, 2006

CONTACT/WEB: www. …