Who Can Apply

Eligibility Criteria

To be eligible for a Bright Scholars of Iowa Award, a student must be accepted by one of the three state universities (Iowa State, Iowa, UNI) or these community colleges (Indian Hills, Southwestern Iowa), as well as meeting the following criteria:

  1. Current senior attending an Iowa high school.
  2. Outstanding academic achievement (top 10% or equivalent of high school graduating class, or ACT of 28 and above, or for regent university applicants 299 and higher RAI---Regents Admission Index).
  3. Demonstrate a commitment to learning and community service, as well as success in the face of adversity.
  4. Qualify for a Pell Grant as determined by filing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
  5. Maintain full-time enrollment.

Preference is given to students whose parents have not graduated from an accredited four-year college or university.

As a part of the application process, the student must submit an essay describing his or her success in the face of adversity. A summary of high school and community service activities, including leadership roles, is also required.

Students who have a familial or otherwise close personal relationship with any member of the Bright Foundation Board of Directors or its employees are not eligible for the award.