When somebody decides to go to college, or return to college, there are many hoops to go through. For most colleges, potential students need to bring in past school transcripts, and tax or Federal Student Assistance (FAFSA) information.

The learner still must take the Texas Success Initiative Assessment, which normally takes four hours. Then, they must sit for some time to speak to an advisor and pick classes.

On top of the steps to begin college, the potential student might worry about finances. College tuition is not always covered by Financial Aid and Pell Grants, this is where scholarships come in.

Guild Mortgage has a way to help ease the cost of college tuition by announcing a scholarship opportunity. “Guild Mortgage proudly supports the communities in which we serve,” the website reads. “Our Guild Giving Foundation now offers up to 10 college scholarships annually, renewable for up to three years. The funds may be applied to any accredited college or trade school in any field of study.”

The University of Hawaii reported scholarships can be helpful to college students — either traditional or non-traditional — by easing the cost of tuition. “Scholarships help to lessen the impact of rising tuition costs,” the website reads. “Tuition is on the rise nation-wide and scholarships give access to higher education for students of all income levels.”

Scholarships can also help students have more time to focus on their studies. “Research shows that work can take up more than 15 hours per week and becomes an impediment to academic success,” the University of Hawaii reports online. “For many students, the stresses of working make it difficult for them to graduate on time, or graduate with the high grades they have the potential to achieve. For other students, the work/study life is unsustainable, and they discontinue their studies all together.”

Scholarships can help decrease the number and amount of loans students need to take to complete higher education, the UH website reported. “Two-thirds of college students now graduate with loans, and their average college debt is nearly $20,000 — an increase of more than 50% since the early 90’s. People involved in shaping public policy and allocating funds often view loans and grants on the same level as aid.”

Scholarships can add to federal and state financial assistance, and fill the financial gap. “Many students do not qualify for federal aid as federal policy has long been focused on access for low-income students. States and colleges have become increasingly focused on getting high-income, high-achieving students to attend their institutions or to remain in-state,” the website states.

“Scholarship assistance can support students who fall in the gap between high and low-income levels — students who may not qualify for a need based scholarship and who do not meet the criteria for a merit based scholarship,” it reads.

Scholarships can also be worth more than just monetary assistance, the University of Hawaii reports. “Scholarships teach philanthropy. By being the student recipient of a scholarship, it is hoped that the students will become philanthropic themselves and ‘give back’ when they are financially able.”

For more information on the guidelines, and to apply for the scholarship, visit guildgiving.org/guildgiving.html.