Apply for a Scholarship


General Scholarship Program for Undergraduate, Vocational, Graduate, and Medical (MD) Students

2017-2018 Application Cycle will be open from October 1, 2016 until January 15, 2017.

We highly recommend that you submit your application at least one week before the date given above to ensure that you do not miss the deadline as a result of technical difficulties with your equipment/network or as a result of heavy traffic on the application website.

  1. Read eligibility, requirements, and important information below.
  2. Review the Online Application Guide and checklists for each program/applicant type to find required application information.
  3. Then click here to APPLY ONLINE for the 2017-2018 academic year.  The application is open between October 1, 2016 through January 15, 2017.
  • The 2016-17 scholarship application accounts can be accessed at
  • You can use the same email/password to sign in if you have registered in more than one year

General Eligibility:

  • Applicant must have attended at least four* of the six years between grades 7-12 AND graduate or receive a GED from Santa Barbara County high school** by June 2017.
  • Applicant must be planning to attend full-time as an undergraduate, medical (M.D.), or graduate student at a Title IV-approved school.
  • Applicant must be a U.S citizen, permanent resident, or AB 540 eligible
  • Applicants eligible for the Santa Barbara City College Promise who indicate that they will be attending SBCC will not be funded. If you are not eligible and/or are not sure you’ll attend Santa Barbara City College, you will need to fill out our application to be eligible for our funding. We WILL fund third or fourth year SBCC students and transfer students after they have received the SBCC Promise.

*If you are or have been a ward of the Santa Barbara County Court (youth in foster care after the age of 13), please call our office to check your eligibility status.
**Homeschooled students and boarding school students:  you and your family must have resided at least four of the six years the student attended school in Santa Barbara County between grades 7-12.  Homeschooled students must have a private school (homeschooled) affidavit of approval on file with the Santa Barbara County Education Office.  They must include an affidavit for each 7-12 grade they were homeschooled with their high school transcript by the application deadline.

Requirements and Selection:

    • 2017-2018 Application available online: October 1, 2016
    • 2017-2018 Application deadline: January 15, 2017
  • No late submissions will be accepted.
  • The application for the 2016-2017 academic year is closed.

You must meet the eligibility requirements listed above and complete all parts of the online application as well as submit the required supplementary documents on time to be eligible. All eligible and qualified new applicants are required to have a personal interview during the month of March following the January application deadline.

• New Undergraduate/Vocational Applicant: Click here for an application checklist
• New Medical (MD)/Graduate Applicant: Click here for an application checklist
• Re-Applicants-Undergraduate/Vocational: Click here for an application checklist
• Re-Applicants-Medical (MD)/Graduate: Click here for an application checklist

The primary criteria for award selection are financial need, potential, and motivation. Financial need is evaluated based on the student’s submission of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Completion of the FAFSA is required for all scholarship/loan applicants – even those applying for merit-based scholarships.

Scholarship awards mostly range from $500 to $5,000 per academic year, with average award amounts of $2,500 at a four-year college and $1,500 at a two-year college. Recipients must maintain full-time status and a minimum 2.0 GPA to remain eligible. Recipients are eligible for 4 years of undergraduate funding and 4 years of medical/graduate level funding.  Awards in subsequent years are not guaranteed; applicants must submit a complete reapplication each year to be considered for future funding.


Interviews are generally conducted in the month of March following the January application deadline.

High School Seniors: Interviews are generally conducted at the school site, and our interviewers will coordinate the interviews through the school counseling office. The counseling office will contact you when your interview is scheduled. (Note: applicants from high schools with very small enrollments will have their interview at the Scholarship Foundation office.)

College and Medical/Graduate students: Interviews are conducted at the Scholarship Foundation office during normal business hours (Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm). The Foundation will contact these students by email to schedule an interview, so please be sure to keep us updated if your contact information changes. Students currently attending college outside Santa Barbara County should email the Foundation at to indicate several days when they will be available in the Santa Barbara area for a personal interview during the month of March. A limited number of out-of-state students may request an early interview during the December 2016 holiday season, if necessary, only if their application is already complete. Skype interviews are generally limited to out-of-state applicants.  Please call the Foundation office at (805) 687-6065 or email with any questions.

Interview Tips:

      1. Confirm the date, time, and location of your interview when it is scheduled, and be certain to write down this important information.
      2. Plan for plenty of time in your schedule to allow for parking or other delays. Be on time for your interview or even a few minutes early. Dress neatly.
      3. Be prepared to talk about yourself including your background, motivation, academic history, activities, interests, and goals. Be able to discuss what plans you have made for financing your college education.

Important Information

Undergraduate and Medical/Graduate general programs assist students studying in standard academic programs on a traditional academic calendar from August – June. Colleges, universities, and vocational schools must have achieved Title IV approval from the U.S. Department of Education for federal student aid. The Foundation does not offer student aid for summer sessions, research, special projects, part-time studies, distance learning or executive MBA-type programs (please note, online courses will be accepted as long as they are taken from the same approved institution and do not exceed more than half of the required minimum full-time units).  Do not apply if you do not meet all of the eligibility requirements – no exceptions are considered.

Please note: There are two foundations offering student aid funds in Santa Barbara County: the Scholarship Foundation of Santa Barbara and the Santa Barbara Foundation. The Scholarship Foundation of Santa Barbara administers most of the student aid programs funded by the Santa Barbara Foundation.

For more information on other specialty student aid programs for high school seniors, please click here.

For more information, call our office at (805) 687-6065 or email

Fast Facts

Did you know....

  • In 2016, we provided 3,016 scholarships totaling $8.74 million.


  • In 2016, we provided financial aid advising services to more than 45,000 students and families in our County.


  • The Scholarship Foundation does not charge an administrative fee to scholarship fund donors. 100% of contributions to support scholarships goes directly to deserving students.