At a miniscule 1,982 sq. miles, Delaware is the second smallest state in America. In fact, it’s around 96 miles long and varies in width between 9 to 35 miles.

Just because it’s a small state doesn’t mean it isn’t powerful though.

The First State, as its affectionately known since it was the first state to ratify the U.S. Constitution in 1787, offers some very lucrative scholarships to its residents who are looking to attend college.

The Delaware Department of Education and the Delaware Higher Education Office (DHEO) are in charge of awarding and distributing Delaware financial aid from the B. Bradford Barnes Memorial Scholarship, the Charles L. Hebner Memorial Scholarship, the Diamond State Scholarship, the Herman M. Holloway, Sr. Memorial Scholarship and the Educational Benefits for Children of Deceased Veterans and Others program.

Delaware Financial Aid Application Process

For each of these financial aid programs, the application process is the same. A student who wishes to apply for any of these programs must complete a program’s respective online application from the DHEO’s Secure Student Account Access website.

During the application process, a student should detail any interests and activities in which they are involved during high school as well as any awards and/or honors they have received. These do not have to be academically related; they can be out-of-school awards and/or honors as well.

In the application, a student will also submit critical academic information, if applicable. If the student attends a public or charter high school, the DHEO will access the student’s high school records via eSchool and the student will not have to worry about submitting additional information.

A student wishing to apply for any of these Delaware financial aid programs must complete and file their Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) before the FAFSA application deadline and the deadline for each program application as well.

Bradford Barnes Memorial Scholarship

The B. Bradford Barnes Memorial Scholarship (BBBMS) is a scholarship dedicated to the former speaker of the Delaware House of Representatives. As a result, it’s a very competitive and lucrative scholarship.

To be eligible for the BBBMS, a student must:

  • Be a legal Delaware resident,
  • Be a high school senior with a minimum, unweighted, cumulative 3.00 GPA,
  • Score a minimum of 1290 on the SAT (or receive an equivalent score on the ACT),
  • Be enrolled as a full-time student at the University of Delaware, and
  • Complete all requirements of the BBBMS application via the Secure Student Account Access website.

Generally, a student can apply for the BBBMS from the beginning of December until the end of February, though the exact dates may change annually. Be sure to keep an eye on the Delaware Department of Education’s website for updated deadlines.

Each year, there is only one recipient chosen for the BBBMS. If a student is selected, they will receive funding to cover their full tuition, all required fees, room and board and a full book allowance at the University of Delaware.

BBBMS recipients can also receive this funding for up to three additional years as long as they maintain a minimum, cumulative 3.00 GPA in college.

Charles L. Hebner Memorial Scholarship

The Charles L. Hebner Memorial Scholarship (CLHMS) is also a scholarship dedicated to another former Speaker of the Delaware House of Representatives. This program is geared towards political science majors, but other majors can also apply for the program.

To be eligible for the CLHMS, a student must:

  • Be a legal Delaware resident,
  • Be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen,
  • Be a high school senior with a minimum, unweighted, cumulative 3.00 GPA,
  • Score a minimum of 1000 on the SAT (or receive an equivalent score on the ACT),
  • Be enrolled as a full-time student at the University of Delaware OR Delaware State University,
  • Be a political science major or major in the humanities or social science, and
  • Complete all requirements of the CLHMS application via the Secure Student Account Access website.

Typically, a student can submit the CLHMS application from the beginning of December until the end of February, though the dates are subject to change annually, just like the BBBMS.

The list of eligible majors for the scholarship differ at the University of Delaware and Delaware State University, but the eligible majors the two colleges have in common are art, criminal justice, English, foreign languages, history, music, political science and sociology.

At the University of Delaware, students majoring in anthropology, art conservation, art history, Black American studies, communications, comparative literature, Continental European studies, East Asian studies, economics, human services, international relations, languages, Latin American studies, philosophy, psychology and women’s studies can also apply.

At Delaware State University, students majoring in mass communications and social work can also apply.

Each year, only one recipient from the University of Delaware and one recipient from Delaware State University are chosen to receive the scholarship for a grand total of two scholarships being awarded.

If a student is chosen as a recipient though, they will receive funding to cover their full tuition, all required fees, room and board and a full book allowance at either state college.

CLHMS recipients can also receive this funding for up to three additional years as long as they maintain a minimum, cumulative 3.00 GPA in college.

Diamond State Scholarship

The Diamond State Scholarship (DSS) is a scholarship that more students have access to earning than the previous two scholarships.

To be eligible for the DSS, a student must:

  • Be a legal Delaware resident,
  • Be a high school senior with a minimum, unweighted, cumulative 3.00 GPA,
  • Score a minimum of 1290 on the SAT (or receive an equivalent score on the ACT),
  • Be enrolled as a full-time student in an undergraduate degree program at a non-profit, regionally accredited postsecondary institution, and
  • Complete all requirements of the DSS application via the Secure Student Account Access website.

Usually, a student can submit the DSS application from the beginning of December until the end of February, though the dates are subject to change annually, just like the BBBMS and CLHMS.

50 recipients will be selected to receive DSS funding each year. This funding can be up to $1,250. Recipients can receive the award for three additional years as long as they maintain a minimum, cumulative 3.00 GPA in college.

Herman M. Holloway, Sr. Memorial Scholarship

The Herman M. Holloway, Sr. Memorial Scholarship (HMHSMS) was established in honor of the scholarship’s namesake, who was the first African American Delaware senator.

To be eligible for the HMHSMS, a student must:

  • Be a legal Delaware resident,
  • Be a U.S. citizen or an eligible non-citizen,
  • Be a high school senior with a minimum, unweighted, cumulative 3.00 GPA,
  • Score a minimum of 1000 on the SAT (or receive an equivalent score on the ACT),
  • Be enrolled as a full-time student at Delaware State University, and
  • Complete all requirements of the HMHSMS application via the Secure Student Account Access website.

Normally, a student can submit the HMHSMS application from the beginning of December until the end of February, though the dates are subject to change annually, just like the other scholarships.

Only one student is chosen to be the recipient of the HMHSMS each year. The HMHSMS funding will cover the full tuition cost, all required fees, room and board, and a full book allowance at Delaware State University.

As long as a recipient maintains a minimum 3.00 GPA in college, the scholarship can be renewed for up to three additional years.

Educational Benefits for Children of Deceased Veterans and Others Program

No one wants to be eligible to be a part of the Educational Benefits for Children of Deceased Veterans and Others Program (EBCDV), but sometimes life throws curveballs. This is a program designed to help children of fallen military heroes afford to attend college.

To be eligible for the program, a student must:

  • Be a Delaware resident for three or more consecutive years before applying,
  • Be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen,
  • Be between 16 to 24 years old,
  • Have a parent in the armed forces who is/was a Delaware resident at the time of the parent’s:
    • Armed forces service-related cause of death,
    • Declaration of being held as a prisoner of war,
    • Declaration of officially being missing in action,
    • State police officer service-related cause of death, or
    • Delaware Department of Transportation service-related cause of death if the parent typically performed job-related duties along the state highway system, and
  • Complete all requirements of the EBCDV application via the Secure Student Account Access website.

The EBCDV application must be submitted six to eight weeks before classes are set to begin. A student does not necessarily have to attend an in-state Delaware postsecondary institution to receive the award.

The funding breakdown for the EBCDV is as follows:

  • If a student attends a public Delaware college, they can receive funding for:
    • The full cost of tuition and all required fees.
  • If a student attends a private Delaware college, they can receive funding for:
    • The full cost of tuition and all required fees IF the student’s program of study is not offered at a public Delaware college.
  • If a student attends a public or private out-of-state college, they can receive funding for:
    • The full cost of tuition and all required fees IF there is no Delaware postsecondary institution that offers the student’s program of study.
  • If a student attends a postsecondary institution that is not included in this list, their award will be prorated.

A student can receive EBCDV funding for up to four years.

Major Colleges in Delaware

Despite being such a small state land-wise, Delaware does have 23 postsecondary institutions within its borders. Some of the major colleges in the state include:

  • Delaware State University in Dover (public college),
  • Goldey-Beacom College in Wilmington (private college),
  • University of Delaware in Newark (public college),
  • Wesley College in Dover (private college), and
  • Wilmington University in New Castle (private college).

Delaware provides great opportunities for its residents to afford to attend college as there are many extremely lucrative scholarships being offered for which students can apply.