Scholarships for Diabetics and People with Diabetes

Diabetes is a disease which affects the health of its sufferers in so many ways. With the state of the US healthcare system, diabetes patients cope with staggering financial hardships that most members of the population couldn’t imagine. So it makes sense to have scholarships for diabetics, to help offset the immense costs of fighting this awful disease while attending post-secondary school.

Diabetic Scholarship Programs

Finding diabetes-related scholarships to help offset the costs of a university education isn’t easy. The programs exist, but you won’t find as many sources of money as many other causes do. Money for college financial aid has dried up to a certain degree in the past few years. For example, one prominent donor to the diabetic student scholarships has cut their donations to one-third of what they could give just 4 short years ago.

Scholarship Programs for Diabetics

Scholarship Programs for Diabetics

This makes scholarships for diabetics rarer, and therefore all the more important to procure early. Fill out applications in plenty of time to be considered for all of these. Find out which applications apply to you and which ones are certain to turn you down. In my survey, I’ve found financial aid for diabetics that required people attend a certain university, play a certain sport, or suffer from a specific form of diabetes. Read through the information various foundations offer and make certain their charity applies to your case.

Financial Aid for Diabetics

That being said, you can find the financial help you need if you search enough. A number of the scholarship programs I found are offered by memorial foundations of those who died young from the effects of diabetes. Others included successful athletes and companies which have been touched by diabetes in one way or the other. Below are some of the best programs I found.

Lilly Diabetes – Diabetes Scholars Foundation

Eli Lilly and Company is a global pharmaceutical company located in Indianapolis, Indiana, but the firm has offered hundreds of thousands of dollars to diabetic college students through the Lilly Diabetes Fund in partnership with the Diabetes Scholars Foundation. One year recently, the Lilly Diabetes effort provided over $300,000 in financial aid. In 2012, the amount was $100,000. Eli Lilly & Company has been a global leader in the fight against diabetes for 80 decades, since it released the first commercial insulin in 1923.

Novo Nordisk Donnelly Awards

The Novo Nordisk Donnelly Awards grant $25,000 a year for scholarships to students who are athletes and have diabetes. The Novo Nordick Donnelly program was founded in 1998 by former WTA tennis star, Billie Jean King, through the WTT Charities. Ms. King wants youths who have diabetes to continue to lead an active life, so these scholarships are for 8 special diabetics between the ages of 12 and 21 who continue to play tennis in organized tournaments or on a school team. Both boys and girls may apply and their scholarships are received at a World Team Tennis Pro League event sometime in July. The top two awards are for $5,000 in national scholarships, while the six regional scholarships are worth $5,000. All school aid is a one-time award.

Aimee Melissa Davis Memorial Scholarship – Austin Community Foundation

The Aimee Melissa Davis Memorial Scholarship was given out each year to a deserving student who has been diagnosed with diabetes. This scholarship is set up through the American Diabetes Association’s Texas Affiliate. Aimee Davis died in 1993 at the age of 18 from complications of diabetes. Over the next several years, her memorial foundation gave out eight scholarships to diabetic students. Since 1999, the remaining principal in her foundation was transferred to the Austin Community Foundation, which administers the aid fund in a permanent endowment. To ask about this scholarship, contact the Austin Community Foundation at PO Box 5159 in Austin, Texas 78763. The phone number if 512-472-4483 and their email address is at  An advisory committee, including a member of Aimee Davis’s family, meets annually with the recipients of the scholarship every year.

Julie Sargent Memorial Scholarship

The Julie Sargent Memorial Scholarship is given every year to a student with juvenile diabetes and is an undergraduation. As I read the application, recipients must attend Arizona State University to qualify.

Diabetes Scholar Foundation

Perhaps the single most important provider of scholarships to diabetics is the Diabetes Scholar Foundation, which I mention when talking about Lilly Diabetes. Besides working with groups like Lilly Diabetes, the Diabetes Scholars award five scholarships to incoming freshmen with Type 1 diabetes. I’ll put these in a list to make it easier to read about these.

  • Jay Franke Scholarship – $5,000 – Special Qualification: Students pursuing arts degrees: dance, music, theater.
  • Nicky Randazzo Memorial Scholarship - $3,200 – Special Qualification: Must major in business.
  • Megaw Family Scholarship - $2,500 – Special Qualification: Must major in Science.
  • Bradley D. Gendron Memorial Scholarship - $1,000 – Special Qualification: Students must reside in Colorado.
  • Josh Smith Memorial Scholarship - $1,000 – Special Qualification: Student must reside in Ohio.
  • JDRF Medical Research Scholarship - $1,000 – Special Qualification: Must major in healthcare. There are two of these scholarships given.
  • JDRF Outreach Scholarship - $1,000 – Special Qualification: Must major in political science.
  • JDRF Rising Star Scholarship - $1,000 – Special Qualification: Any incoming freshman with Type 1 diabetes.
  • Spibelt Athletic Scholarship - $1,000 – Special Qualification: Given to a student athlete.
  • Phil Sutherland Scholarship - $1,000 – Special Qualification: Given to a student athlete.

Diabetes Scholar Foundation – Family Scholarships

The Family Scholarships handed out by the Diabetes Scholar Foundation are for families which attend the Children with Diabetes Friends for Life Annual International Conference. Keep in mind the money is awarded to the family so they can attend this important conference, not to attend college. Families will get invaluable information that can help them in many aspects of their life with diabetes, including getting college aid.

This year, the conference takes place in Orlando, Florida between July 3 and July 8 (2012). At the conference will be physicians, researchers, and clinicians to give their expertise to the families. Family groups consists of children who have diabetes, their parents, and siblings, who get information to help their lives moving forward. The money offered provides for a family of 4 to attend the conference.

The Diabetes Scholar Foundation also gives singular scholarships for young adults who attend in person. Though it’s hard to qualify for a student with diabetes to qualify for a scholarship, fill out an application for any financial aid you might be awarded. Also, don’t forget to focus too much on scholarships for diabetics, because private and government scholarship funds for general students also could help you pay for college. On certain campuses, having diabetes might be considered a disability, so certain disability waivers might apply. You may not find one solution to your college financial problems, but when you start searching for financial aid for diabetics, you’ll find what you need.

by John Clifton

1 comment for “Scholarships for Diabetics and People with Diabetes

  1. mitchie d. urbe
    May 7, 2013 at 5:00 am

    have a good day. my two children is type 1 insulin dependent. please help me to find a schorlarship for my two children

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