Fastweb Highlights Scholarships for African Americans for Black History Month

To commemorate Black History Month, Fastweb, a website directory for scholarship and financial aid information, is promoting its scholarships specifically for African American or minority students and urging black students to apply.

Unfortunately, student loan debt is a greater burden on black students than students of other races. Black students borrow more money and more often than students of other races, often beginning adult life with a difficult debt burden.

Although loans can be paid off (and here’s an inspiring story about one young couple that sacrificed to do just that), wouldn’t it be better to go to college using other people’s money?

Fastweb Is Free

Fastweb is a free resource that provides information on jobs and internships as well as scholarships. There is a specific portal for African American students here.

“Fastweb is committed to helping provide access to scholarships, specifically for African American students, to help them achieve their academic goals,” Mark Nelson, Fastweb’s vice president, operations, is quoted as saying in a statement.

“There are approximately 1,000 scholarship opportunities with a focus on African American students in our scholarship database, in areas such as engineering, public policy, business and financial services, legal studies, marketing fields and many other career disciplines.”

Students create an online profile and Fastweb matches them with appropriate scholarships. You can search for awards using a range of criteria: race, ethnicity, school year, and much more. In other words, don’t just limit yourself to searching by race.

The site is busy, however; there are tons of distracting ads, so train yourself to focus so you don’t get sidetracked.

Debt Is Costly

I’ve written before how nearly half of all black student borrowers end up defaulting on their loans 12 years after leaving school—that includes college graduates.

Defaulting on your loans damages your credit—which can lead to significant problems, since prospective employers, auto insurers, and even landlords can and do examine credit reports. Damaged credit can take years to repair.

It’s better to proactively reduce or eliminate your debt load by taking advantage of scholarships.

“Award amounts vary,” Fastweb says in a statement, “and can range from a few hundred dollars to several thousand dollars—or even full tuition.” Shouldn’t you apply?

Learn more at Fastweb.