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Announcing Special Scholarships for 2021

2021 Special ScholarshipsIn addition to our General Scholarships Fund, and a number of Named Funds, we are proud to highlight these upcoming Special Scholarships. The application deadline for many of these is April 20, 2021, but can vary based on start of course and whether they are in-person or online. See individual workshop or scholarship for details. Most 2021 courses will be listed by March 1.

The kidlitwomen* Scholarship provides full tuition plus up to $500 in travel for a woman of color with a passion for illustration to attend a Highlights Foundation workshop in illustration (applicable to in-person or online courses).

The Wheeler Whole Novel 50+ Scholarship provides a $500 scholarship to an unpublished middle grade writer 50 or over, to be used towards tuition to attend the Whole Novel workshop or Writing the Unreal: The Whole Novel in Fantasy and Speculative Fiction. The scholarship is intended to support a writer coming to writing later in their career.

The annual Christine & Kenneth Taylor-Butler Scholarship is intended for a person of color (male or female) to attend a Highlights Foundation workshop of their choice, either in-person or online. Two scholarships of half tuition will be awarded annually for a middle grade or picture book author or illustrator.

The PJ Library Scholarship is for authors pursing works with themes related to Jewish culture and themes. Applicants can choose their workshop or unworkshop and describe their interest and project in the application process. Full and partial scholarships are available.

Two Jewish Writers/Illustrators of Color Scholarships will be awarded in 2021, providing up to $1,500 toward tuition plus up to $300 in travel for a writer or illustrator identifying as a Jewish person of color to attend an in-person or online workshop. A second scholarship will be available for a writer or illustrator identifying as a Jewish person of color to attend a three-night Unworkshop writing retreat at the Highlights Foundation Retreat Center.

The KidLit Pride Scholarship provides full tuition for a member of the LGBTQ+ community to attend any workshop.

The Overlook Estate Foundation Scholarship is available for students pursuing a writing or illustration project in the natural sciences and environment to attend either Summer Camp in Nonfiction or the Nuts and Bolts of Science.

The Floyd Cooper Scholarship provides tuition for an illustrator of color, or an Indigenous illustrator, to attend a Highlights Foundation online or in-person course of their choice, either in-person or online.

Community Connection Scholarship provides a scholarship of up to $800 to an applicant with a passion for making meaningful progress on their longer work of fiction (young adult or middle grade). This scholarship is meant for a pre-published author wishing to attend a Highlights Foundation workshop of their choice, either online or in-person. Applications will be reviewed for seriousness of purpose, talent, and financial need.

The Patricia Lee Gauch Scholarship provides a scholarship of up to $1,300 to an applicant working on a novel to attend a workshop that will truly engage the writer in the craft of writing, in characters that are unforgettable, and in an idea with power. All to create the heart of the story. This scholarship honors Patti Gauch for her many wonderful years of teaching at the Highlights Foundation, and looks to support a novelist with a serious commitment to the craft of writing.

The Diversify Science Scholarship for Illustrators is designed to encourage the artistic growth of Indigenous, Black, and people of color who are interested in pursuing science and nature illustration within the children’s publishing industry. This scholarship provides full tuition for an illustration workshop, either in-person or online.

The Anti-bias Book Bearer Scholarship Fund helps support our Essential Conversations programs and to award scholarships to attend them. The series was created to help students learn, reflect, question, and work to create a more equitable and inclusive society.

The I, Too Arts Collective Scholarship provides full tuition to an in-person or online workshop for a Black writer, identifying as a woman. Assistance toward traveling expenses will be offered if available.


To apply for any of these scholarships, click here. The 2021 Application Deadline for Most Special Scholarships is April 20, 2021.

In addition to these scholarships, the Highlights Foundation General Scholarship fund is open on a rolling basis to applicants to apply to the program of their choice. One full tuition scholarship and one partial tuition scholarship is provided to most workshops. See individual workshops for scholarship deadlines.

Posted on: January 21, 2021

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