Drawing & Art Scholarships

Artists can earn scholarships for college.
Artists can earn scholarships for college. (Image: Jupiterimages/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images)

Students who are talented artists and wish to pursue a degree in drawing or another area of the arts can apply for a variety of scholarships. Scholarships are awarded based on academic merit and artistic talent, although the exact criteria differ for each scholarship. The scholarships are awarded by art organizations and specific schools of art, and can also be won through art and drawing contests.

Art Organization Scholarships

There is a variety of organizations dedicated to promoting youth and their involvement in the arts that offer scholarships for students. The National Foundation for the Advancement of the Arts offers the Young Arts program. Students apply to participate in Young Arts Week. Selected applicants are added to a scholarship list, which is provided to colleges and universities looking for talented artists deserving of a scholarship offer. NAMTA, the International Art Materials TradeAssociation, offers a Visual Arts-major scholarship. To apply, applicants must submit two to three pieces of art. The number of scholarships awarded and the amount of the scholarships varies each year. Other organizations such as the National Society of Arts and Letters and the Lubbock Area Foundation also offer scholarships.

Art Contests

Teens and young adult artists can enter contests that award college scholarships. For example, the Alliance for Young Artists and Writers sponsors an annual contest for students in grades seven through 12 as part of the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards program. The Art Institutes and Americans for the Arts sponsor a poster design competition where students create a poster based on the year's theme and compete to win college scholarships.

Art School Scholarships

Art-specific schools and art departments at colleges and universities often offer their own scholarships for potential and currently enrolled students. Academy of Art University in San Francisco offers full-tuition scholarships for high school students to attend the university's precollege art experience, and over 300 portfolio grants to help incoming freshmen cover the cost of tuition. The art department at St. Olaf College in Minnesota offers merit-based scholarships to incoming freshmen.

Minority Scholarships

Organizations occasionally offer scholarships to encourage participation in the arts by a certain minority group. For example, the Geneseo Migrant Center in New York State offers scholarships for migrant farm workers interested in studying creative arts in college. Worldstudio AIGA, also in New York, offers scholarships to students of any minority group and those from disadvantaged backgrounds who are pursuing a degree in an art-related field.

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