Back to top
Last updated:

City of Boston scholarship fund

Through the fund, we award new college-goers and continuing education students $2,500 per year to help pay for school.

The 2019 scholarship application has closed. The application will be posted in early 2020. 

For other scholarship opportunities, please visit our Higher Education Funding Resources page. 

More higher education funding

Interested in exploring higher education? If so, there are many programs in the City of Boston to make that dream possible.

Still have questions?

If you have questions about the fund, or are interested in making a donation, please contact us at 617-635-3063 or COBscholarship@boston.gov.

Donate online

Watch: Learn about the scholarship

Eligibility

CITY OF BOSTON RESIDENCY

To apply for the scholarship, you must be a Boston resident for at least two years at the date of application. 

WHO CAN APPLY

The scholarship is for new college students AND continuing education students who plan to attend a post-secondary school in Massachusetts. By the time scholarships are awarded, you must have either:

  • graduated from high school, or
  • completed a GED program.

Please note: this is a need-based scholarship.

NEW COLLEGE STUDENTS

You need to plan to enroll as a full-time student in a two-year or four-year university or college in Massachusetts.

Do you plan to go to community college? Our Tuition-Free Community College program is likely the best fit for you.

CONTINUING EDUCATION STUDENTS

You must plan to enroll in undergraduate classes at a two or four-year university, an accredited trade school, or a vocational school in Massachusetts.

You need to have a gap in education of two years or more as a non-student in your adult life. You also must be within two years of completing your educational goal.

How to apply

Complete THE APPLICATION

You must complete the application online. Your recommender must also fill out a separate recommendation form. 

PREPARE TO APPLY

Before applying, you should be prepared to give us:

  • a copy of your most recent transcript
  • answers to three short questions
  • one recommendation form from a teacher, guidance counselor, or community member (they will submit the form separately)
  • your Student Aid Report, and
  • your Student Award Letter from your college or university.
Recent CHANGES TO THE APPLICATION

We created a simple, one-page recommendation letter that tests for college and career readiness. This can be submitted separately from the rest of the application.

We replaced the essay with three short questions you need to answer on these topics:

  1. A question on financial circumstances
  2. A reflective question
  3. A question looking toward the future

We added an Expected Family Contribution (EFC) calculator for students not eligible for FAFSA.

We defined what a continuing education student looks like. There’s now a separate section of the application for those students.

Learn more about the process

NUMBER OF RECIPIENTS

Last year, we received more than 400 applications for the City of Boston Scholarship. We usually award about 30 students each year.

AWARD AMOUNT AND LENGTH

New college students receive $10,000 over the course of four years ($2,500 for each year). Continuing education students receive $5,000 over the course of two years ($2,500 for each year).

ELIGIBILITY

You will remain eligible as long as you remain in good academic standing with your school and still demonstrate financial need.

SELECTION PROCESS

After reviewing your application, we will invite a group of semi-finalists to an in-person interview in mid-May. This will take place at the Bolling Building, 2300 Washington Street, in Roxbury. We plan to notify selected applicants by the end of May.

CITY OF BOSTON SCHOLARSHIP COMMITTEE

The committee makes the final decision on who is awarded scholarships. Over the last 20 years, we’ve given more than 1,000 residents financial support to further their education.

Scholarship funding

The fund relies on generous donations from individuals, organizations, and corporations. Contact us at COBscholarship@boston.gov, or send a check for the "City of Boston Scholarship Fund" to the address below:

City of Boston Scholarship Fund
Attn: Casey Brock-Wilson
Boston City Hall, Mayor's Office
1 City Hall Square, 5th Floor
Boston MA 02201

We also accept online donations via credit card or e-check:

Donate ONLINE

Meet our 2019-2020 scholars

  • Mohamed Abanoor, Gallaudet University
  • Stanley Aneke, University of Massachusetts Amherst 
  • Jacqueline Arroyave Jimenez, University of Massachusetts Boston 
  • Dulce Bernal, University of Massachusetts Boston 
  • Quyen Bui, Clark University
  • Soukayna Chouman, Simmons University
  • Nasir DaCruz, University of Massachusetts Lowell
  • Samsam Dahir, Simmons University 
  • Jessica Flores, Lesley University 
  • Lisandra Francisco, University of Massachusetts Amherst 
  • Rebecca Francois, University of Massachusetts Boston 
  • Kendell French, Bridgewater State University
  • Joshua Gbedema, Regis College
  • Celine Gomes, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth
  • Ny Ho, Northeastern University
  • Henry Huynh, Northeastern University 
  • Florkenthia Jolibois, Worcester Polytechnic Institute
  • Tyissha Jones, University of Massachusetts Lowell 
  • Mame Khadi Toure, Cambridge College
  • Sarah Lawton, Suffolk University
  • Denise Lewis, Northeastern University
     
  • Rebecca MacLean, University of Massachusetts Amherst 
  • Michael McKinney, University of Massachusetts Amherst 
  • Jose Mendoza, Lesley University 
  • Meliak Oldjira, Boston University
  • Amairis Perez Mejia ​​​Stonehill College
  • Ilannysh Rodriguez, Brandeis University 
  • Justin Seymour-Welch, University of Massachusetts Amherst 
  • Rakiya Sheikh Ali, University of Massachusetts Boston 
  • Mark Walsh, Northeastern University 
  • Mercedez Washington, Framingham State University
  • Minting Zeng, University of Massachusetts Amherst 

 

By the numbers
  • Twenty-five percent of our scholars were born outside of the United States.
  • Seventy-two percent are the first in their family to attend college.
  • Ninety-four percent of our students identified as people of color.
  • Seventy-five percent of our scholars also went to Boston Public Schools

Image for 1235 scholarship stats 2019 large