Author Topic: Scholarships for Undergraduate LGBTQAI People?  (Read 3543 times)

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Offline Tristyn

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Scholarships for Undergraduate LGBTQAI People?
« on: February 19, 2016, 06:33:42 am »
So I completed my FAFSA a week ago and am well on my way to being enrolled into an online university (Kaplan). I figure, during this time, it would be wise to get as much extra help with loans as possible before I start getting charged for my classes and books and stuff. My first financial advisor suggested for me to do a Google search for scholarships. I found a few good ones that really do apply to me.

And since there seems to be a scholarship for everything, I wonder which ones are out there for LGBTQAI people. I found two so far. One of them, I think, has already reached the deadline for this year, unfortunately. But on the bright side, there is another from the Parents, Families and Friends, of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) that is open until April. I've been working on that for some time.

The only thing I am waiting on for that is my reference requests to be answered (which may not happen and totally disqualify me) and for my college transcript. I'm all ears if you know of any other ones. And they don't all have to be for LGBTQAI people either. I found some for people with Lupus and people on dialysis too.



-Phoenix



ftmax

Re: Scholarships for Undergraduate LGBTQAI People?
« Reply #1 on: February 19, 2016, 10:49:31 am »
www.fastweb.com is a directory for all kinds of scholarship opportunities. I can't think of any off the top of my head that are specifically targeted towards LGBTQ people and furthering education. A lot of our "scholarships" are related to obtaining surgery. My advice would be instead of trying to blanket cover every scholarship you qualify for, to spend some extra time on the ones that would be most relevant to you and really make your applications shine.

You'll also probably find that you'll have more financial aid options available after you've been in school for a semester. After that I was eligible for academic competitiveness grants, Dean's list scholarships, department grants, etc. My first year I had to take out loans for about 80% of the cost of school, every year after that was dropped down to around 30%. My graduate school was 100% paid for by the school I went to. So get good grades!

The issue you may run into is that you're choosing a for-profit college. I have heard (not sure if this is 100% accurate or not) that some of them have had their federal and state financial aid pools cut due to the amount of profits they're making.

Offline Tristyn

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Re: Scholarships for Undergraduate LGBTQAI People?
« Reply #2 on: February 19, 2016, 11:41:33 am »
I tried that before. I mean, fastweb.com. But I quickly deleted my account because I saw them advertising surveys and I have bad memories about surveys. If I ever see something with the word "survey" in it, I run like the wind.

You are definitely right about having to get good grades and make progress in school before getting significantly qualified for them. I suppose I was only following some sound advice from my first admissions advisor. I think I might be able to win the lupus and dialysis scholarships. Maybe. Until then, I'm just gonna concentrate mostly on my schoolwork. Right now I'm trying to stay positive even after being called "ma'am" moments ago by some Fed Ex delivery guy. >:( I get misgendered so much I know, I shouldn't care, right? But it hurts every time and is a validation that something is 'wrong' with me.

Sorry. That last bit was kinda off topic.



-Phoenix

Offline Tristyn

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Re: Scholarships for Undergraduate LGBTQAI People?
« Reply #3 on: February 20, 2016, 02:40:14 am »
The issue you may run into is that you're choosing a for-profit college. I have heard (not sure if this is 100% accurate or not) that some of them have had their federal and state financial aid pools cut due to the amount of profits they're making.

I heard Kaplan University is a pretty good online school. And its been around for quite some time now, so its gotta be pretty accredited or have a good reputation to be around for as long as it has. I sure hope I do not run into this issue. All the more reason to earn scholarships and other types of funding like grants or something.

Going online is very useful and convenient for me because lupus and dialysis would surely get in the way. I know, because I attended an on-campus college a few years ago and it was no walk in the park....and I am not talking about the schoolwork either. Getting there was the hard part. I became too physically exhausted to really attend school, walking through the Detroit ice and snow at night to catch the bus with strange men wondering all about, so I tried online and loved it but did not have the right amount of funds for this one.

Now, I am trying again but with a different one. I like how this school has a no-commitment trial period before they begin charging you for classes. Not sure if that's all that unique right now. But I'm gonna make this work. I'm going to school for Medical Office Administration. Once I get my certificate in that I will get a job and use the income to help pay off all my loans. Then I wanna go back to school and earn a bachelor's in either Psychology, Vet Assistant or Pharmacy Tech and work my way up to a master's degree in either one of those fields. I will buy a car and go to driver's ed to learn how to drive, without my dad's intervention. I will move into regular housing that won't have to be low income based or with a roommate. I will be free! :D




-Phoenix

ftmax

Re: Scholarships for Undergraduate LGBTQAI People?
« Reply #4 on: February 20, 2016, 08:59:33 am »
The issue of accreditation is that often people don't ask the right question. It's definitely important to ask if a school is accredited, but equally important to ask who accredited it. Just like the schools themselves, different accreditors have very different reputations and levels of importance. Kaplan is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, which has been approved as an accreditor by the USDE and CHEA. So that is good news at least.

The difficulty you may run into is when you try to transfer to other institutions, or interview for positions with employers. Students who go to for-profit, online based schools often have a lot of issues getting an acceptable amount of their credits to transfer as they move up to a BA because of course content and academic rigor. A course credit cannot transfer to another school if they do not have a comparable course to match it to. So while you may be fine if you do an AS and then BA at Kaplan, you may find that only half of your AS credits would transfer from Kaplan to Florida State. Or none of your credits would transfer. That would be the extreme end, but it's better to find out before you commit. As for employers, many do not recognize schools like Kaplan as academically competitive.

My recommendation would be not to pigeonhole yourself by only looking for "online schools". Look for online programs instead. Most community colleges now offer online classes, and many (like the ones in my area) have entire AS/AA degrees that can be completed without ever setting foot on a campus. Same for certificate programs. Unless what you want to learn is extremely hands on, it should not be difficult to find an online program for it at a low cost.

Not knocking your decision if you do end up attending Kaplan, I would just hate for you to do a bunch of work towards a degree and then find that none of the credit transfers or employers aren't interested.

Offline Tristyn

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Re: Scholarships for Undergraduate LGBTQAI People?
« Reply #5 on: February 21, 2016, 07:50:14 am »
The issue of accreditation is that often people don't ask the right question. It's definitely important to ask if a school is accredited, but equally important to ask who accredited it. Just like the schools themselves, different accreditors have very different reputations and levels of importance. Kaplan is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, which has been approved as an accreditor by the USDE and CHEA. So that is good news at least.

The difficulty you may run into is when you try to transfer to other institutions, or interview for positions with employers. Students who go to for-profit, online based schools often have a lot of issues getting an acceptable amount of their credits to transfer as they move up to a BA because of course content and academic rigor. A course credit cannot transfer to another school if they do not have a comparable course to match it to. So while you may be fine if you do an AS and then BA at Kaplan, you may find that only half of your AS credits would transfer from Kaplan to Florida State. Or none of your credits would transfer. That would be the extreme end, but it's better to find out before you commit. As for employers, many do not recognize schools like Kaplan as academically competitive.

My recommendation would be not to pigeonhole yourself by only looking for "online schools". Look for online programs instead. Most community colleges now offer online classes, and many (like the ones in my area) have entire AS/AA degrees that can be completed without ever setting foot on a campus. Same for certificate programs. Unless what you want to learn is extremely hands on, it should not be difficult to find an online program for it at a low cost.

Not knocking your decision if you do end up attending Kaplan, I would just hate for you to do a bunch of work towards a degree and then find that none of the credit transfers or employers aren't interested.

Actually, you bring up a very, very good point. I really wished I had looked into this more. But I think its too late. I am set to begin classes next month. But this is part of the trial period. Is it too late to switch to another campus and do their online program? How should I go about this? I felt very pressured by the admissions advisors to enroll in this school. I had to pick a school for the FAFSA and wasn't really sure which one to go with.

I remember my first admissions advisor said that I would have a hard time transferring credits from Kaplan also, but I wasn't exactly sure why other than because its not hands-on. What colleges would you recommend that do online in my state (Florida)? Do you know of any? Not to sound prejudice and whiny, but I even heard its sometimes harder for African American college graduates to get jobs with a master's.

 I hope that's not true anymore. Anyway, I need as much help as I can get to be able to get myself to a point of independence. I hope you don't mind me asking you so many questions, Max. I ask you alot because you are one of the only FTMs I know who's been there and done that. And I know if you can do it, anyone of us can.

I will take your advice and use the time I have to seriously look into online programs instead of online schools. What you say is true. As I said, I now remember my first advisor did tell me that. I don't know why I kept going. I should have thanked her and looked else where. What's upsetting too is that I will have to do this whole admissions process again but with a different school altogether.

But in the long run, I know you mean well and its for my own good. I don't want to be one of those graduates who have awesome credentials but cannot find work for nothin'. *Sigh* I don't like to complain, but I always seem like I can't do anything right. Just when I thought I made the right decision, I actually made the wrong decision. :( I appreciate you telling me though. I was headed towards a dead end and I didn't even know it. I'm about to email my advisor and tell her to cancel my enrollment. If I can't move up to BA and master's from Kaplan, or have a hard time finding work than what's the freakin' point? All that preparation and $50.00 for a background check gone to absolute waste. -.- I really could have bought dumbbells instead. Oh well.....The Story of My Life.



-Phoenix

ftmax

Re: Scholarships for Undergraduate LGBTQAI People?
« Reply #6 on: February 21, 2016, 09:25:00 am »
Oh, absolutely not too late! Especially if you're just in a trial period. It is tough to just jump back into school. I would say, do the trial period and use it to acclimate you back into schooling. You can go back and add schools to your FAFSA now and resubmit it. Then at the end of the trial just say it's not for you.

The thing to remember about admissions folks is that they are actually salesmen. With for-profit schools, there are quotas and they need to be enrolling a certain number of people per month in order to keep their jobs. I turned down a position working in admissions at The Art Institutes for that reason.

I don't know of any community colleges in Florida, but this site lists all of them. I would click through and see if any of them have online programs in what you're interested in. If you see anything that remotely matches, give them a call on Monday and talk about your options. If it's purely online, it shouldn't matter what part of the state it is in. You could also consider other states, but the tuition will be higher (it might be on par with what you would've paid for Kaplan though).
http://www.stateofflorida.com/community-colleges.aspx

If you don't find anything in Florida that works for you, post here and tell me exactly what you're looking to do and I'll see what options I can find in other states that are completely online.

As far as moving up to additional degrees, I would take things one step at a time. As I completed my BA, I completely changed the route I wanted to go down several times and actually ended up applying to 3 completely different Master's programs at the conclusion. I'm probably going to go back to school this year and do another BS. So while you may want a Master's, you may find that you can find a job with a BA that has enough upward mobility potential without a graduate degree that you don't have to worry about going straight into it.

The good thing about admissions at community colleges is that it's basically guaranteed. I need to take a math course to be admitted into the BS program I want, and all I had to do was basically tell my local community college my address, SSN, and send them my unofficial transcripts from school. Because I already have degrees, I don't even have to take placement tests. So I wouldn't stress too much about completing another admissions process (or multiple ones).

Offline Tristyn

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Re: Scholarships for Undergraduate LGBTQAI People?
« Reply #7 on: February 21, 2016, 11:37:32 am »
Hey Max.

Thanks, man, for the quick reply. And sorry about how I ended my post. That was actually very unnecessary. I'm trying to be positive and adult about this so I can get things accomplished. The best things in life are a process, as they say. So this is only expected.

I want to take a good look at that list you generously provided me with. Thanks for that. I need to be more serious about this and stop listening to my dad about me not being able to do anything right. Its really getting in the way of any progress. I will do just as you're recommending. I will call tomorrow and find out about all the options available to me and take notes. I need to write down good questions to ask. Definitely one of the things on my mind now is "what is the employment rate for graduates at (insert name of school here)?"

I really should have known better because even my dad warns me about this stuff and it takes me forever to remember it (lupus kinda has a hold on my mind). My dad does have a good head on his shoulders but he continues to dog me around but I have to put up with it cause I live with (depend on) him. :(

I'm not interested in the trial because what is the point in going through it get a certificate and then look for work only to run into the same problem I run into now with just a highschool diploma? ???

I will definitely ask for your help in finding a school if I can't find one on the list. And thanks for offering to help, man. I know people be busy, but I thought I could go to my bro for help. I mean we were so close...A-Anyways, enough about that, but I will look into this tonight. I can indeed add more schools to my FAFSA now that its all processed. :)



-Phoenix

Offline autumn08

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Re: Scholarships for Undergraduate LGBTQAI People?
« Reply #8 on: February 21, 2016, 04:27:13 pm »
Hi Phoenix,


I found two community colleges in Florida, with online programs;

http://www.easternflorida.edu/academics/elearning/

http://www.fscj.edu/academics/online-learning/online-degrees-and-certificates

If you are interested in either, call them to learn how transferable their online programs' credits are.

Offline Tristyn

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Re: Scholarships for Undergraduate LGBTQAI People?
« Reply #9 on: February 22, 2016, 07:26:04 am »
Thank you for those Autumn.

I will bookmark them and the link Max posted earlier too.

Thanks guys.


Also, Max, I decided to stick with Kaplan. :)

I have misinformed you. My advisor explained to me earlier today that Kaplan has a physical campus. This isn't even an online-only school like I mistakenly told you at first. Its campus is located in Davenport, Iowa. You can look that up when you have time if you want to. What I am doing is an online program. They even offer master's and doctorate's degrees and as you probably already know, those are a big deal to people. She said Kaplan would never offer those types of degrees if students weren't ever guaranteed to find employment. That would be really crazy.

Also, my certificate will not say on it whether or not I earned my degree online or on campus, so the employer would have no way of knowing anyhow. I can go back to Kaplan as a returning student, transfer my credits from my certificate and do what is called a fast-track program to earn my B.A. and my master's at the same time in Psychology online in something like Behavioral Sciences or Addiction as a Case Manager or something.

I told ya, I'm gonna make this work. ;) Although I do have three weeks to back out of this. But I got this far and Imma stick with it. My orientation starts Sunday and my first class starts next Wednesday. I am looking forward to learning again and making something out of myself even though my dad says I can't.



-Phoenix


« Last Edit: February 22, 2016, 10:35:33 am by King Phoenix »

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