Fall 2021 Automatic Freshman Merit Awards

As Iowa State is test-optional for the Fall 2021 term, students will not be penalized due to lack of an ACT or SAT score, but will undergo an individual review for automatic freshman merit awards offered through the Office of Admissions. Start by applying for admission and you will be considered for our special awards!

For qualified students, the Generations Award requires an application. Homeschool students are reviewed individually for scholarships. Students who receive a full tuition scholarship are not eligible for these merit awards from the Office of Admissions.

We have an exceptional adventure in store for high-achieving and highly motivated students like you! Explore your scholarship opportunities now.

Select your state below to review all of the awards available to you through the Office of Admissions.


IOWA RESIDENT NATIONAL MERIT FULL TUITION SCHOLARSHIP

Iowa residents who are named National Merit Scholars by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation will qualify for a full tuition scholarship available for four years (eight semesters) of undergraduate coursework at Iowa State University. To renew this award, the student must remain continuously enrolled at Iowa State University on a full-time basis as an Iowa resident in good academic standing and maintain a minimum 3.00 cumulative grade point average. This award is available during fall and spring semesters only, not during the summer session. Students who receive the full tuition scholarship are not eligible for other merit awards from the Office of Admissions including the Cardinal & Gold Scholar and the Loyal Forever True Scholarships for Iowa students.

Requirements

  • Complete the Preliminary SAT®/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test.
  • Apply and be offered admission to Iowa State University as an incoming freshman.
  • Complete the Preliminary SAT®/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test.
  • Notify the National Merit Scholarship Corporation that Iowa State University is your "first choice college."
  • Submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
  • Be named a National Merit Finalist and Scholar.


AWARDS FOR IOWA STUDENTS

LOYAL SCHOLAR: GPA 3.80, ACT/SAT 32/1450, Amount $12,000 ($3,000/year for 4 years);
FOREVER SCHOLAR Award: GPA 3.60, ACT/SAT 28/1300, Amount $8,000 ($2,000/year for 4 years)

Note: Understanding the current barriers to testing and retesting, students who do not meet the minimum test score requirements will automatically undergo an individual review for automatic freshman merit awards offered through the Office of Admissions. Students will not be penalized due to lack of an ACT or SAT score. Students with a test score below the minimum scholarship requirements will also be individually reviewed.

Important Scholarship Information

Iowa State offers recognition awards to Iowa students who fulfill specific academic requirements. The awards are automatically awarded to Iowa students who have been offered admission to Iowa State.

  • Grade Point Average (GPA): Minimum cumulative high school GPA (4-point scale). We accept weighted GPA, provided the school’s weighted grading system does not award more than one additional quality point to the grade earned in weighted courses.
  • Test score: Minimum ACT composite or Minimum SAT Total (Reading and Writing+Math) is required. We use a student's best score. As Iowa State is test-optional for the Fall 2021 term, students will not be penalized due to lack of an ACT or SAT score, but will undergo an individual review for automatic freshman merit awards offered through the Office of Admissions.
  • Deadline: March 1, 2021 as a freshman entering directly from high school. Scholarships are reviewed annually and are subject to change for future enrolling classes.
  • Final Transcript and Test Score: Awards are offered based on preliminary or self-reported academic information, but all awards are contingent upon receipt of the official, final high school transcript and test score verifying the requirements have been met. The award will be withdrawn if all requirements have not been fulfilled. Students will not receive more than one award. Students will be offered the highest award value they qualify to receive and awards can be updated during the year if their GPA or test score improves.
  • Freshman Status: A student must enroll at Iowa State University for the fall semester immediately following high school graduation to qualify for a freshman award; a student who has attempted college coursework following high school graduation (with the exception of the summer term) is not eligible for freshman awards. A student must be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident, refugee, or asylee to qualify.
  • Eligibility for other awards: These awards are not tuition specific. They can be used toward a student’s total University bill and be combined with scholarships offered by an undergraduate college, department, or the Office of Student Financial Aid. Students who receive a full tuition scholarship like the National Merit Tuition Scholarship, George Washington Carver Tuition Scholarship, Multicultural Vision Program Tuition Scholarship, or Science Bound Tuition Scholarship are not eligible for other merit awards from the Office of Admissions including the Automatic Freshman Merit Awards.
  • Home school students: When calculating a home school applicant's high school GPA for scholarship purposes, only those grades which have been assigned by an independent entity (e.g., the local high school, a college, or an accredited online curriculum) are factored into the cumulative GPA. Home school applicants must have earned independently assigned grades in at least 12 semester credits of college-level coursework or at least 5 Carnegie units of high school-level coursework (or a combination of both) before their independently assigned grades can be used to establish their high school GPA. Home school applicants who do not have enough independently assigned grades to establish their high school GPA will be awarded Admissions automatic scholarships if they meet the minimum ACT/SAT score requirements for those awards.

Renewal Requirements:

To renew these awards the student must remain continuously enrolled at Iowa State University on a full-time basis in good academic standing with a minimum of 12 credits per semester, be assessed resident tuition and maintain a minimum 2.50 cumulative grade point average. These awards are available during fall and spring semesters only, not during the summer term.

Other Resources:

Office of Student Financial Aid   financialaid.iastate.edu
Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) fafsa.gov
Additional Scholarship Opportunities financialaid.iastate.edu/scholarships