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Career Resources for Low-Income or Pell-Eligible Students

The Center for Career Exploration and Success values your identities and experiences. Thinking about your career puts you in a position to make a change in your life. As a Miami University student, you have access to a variety of resources and equitable opportunities that can set you up for professional success.

Career Resources

Ohio/Regional Resources

Ohio Department of Job and Family Services: This department offers assistance in the following areas: job services, cash, food, and refugee assistance, child and adoption protection, and more. 

Grants and Scholarships for Ohio College Students: To help make a college education affordable its citizens, Ohio offers a range of financial aid packages including grants and scholarships to Ohio public institutions.

Rise First: Rise First’s mission is to empower first-generation and/or low-income (FGLI) students and professionals nationwide to achieve their full potential by providing life and career advice and lists of support resources and mentorship opportunities through a technology platform with online tools. This platform is built for and by FGLI students, providing a real-life business and professional experience.

College Fair Guide: College Fair Guide’s Ohio Financial Aid page lists scholarships, grants, work-study opportunities, loans, and loan forgiveness offered through the state of Ohio.

National Resources

National College Attainment Network: The National College Attainment Network’s mission is to support members and influence leaders, organizations, policies, and systems across the country to increase equity and excellence in postsecondary degree access and attainment.

OneGoal: Need money for books, school fees, or other college and postsecondary program expenses? Fellows could be eligible for the OneGoal Enrollment Grant, which covers qualifying financial expenses toward enrollment and persistence in college or other postsecondary programs.

Steps’ Resources and Support for Low-Income College Students: Low-income college students face challenges that other learners don’t, but that doesn’t mean they can’t overcome these obstacles and earn their degree. Steps’ offers a list of resources that can set low-income students up for success, covering everything from financial aid to affordable housing. 

Federal TRIO Programs: The Federal TRIO Programs are national outreach and student services programs designed to identify and provide services for individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds. TRIO includes eight programs targeted to serve and assist low-income individuals, first-generation college students, and individuals with disabilities to progress through the academic pipeline from middle school to postbaccalaureate programs. TRIO also includes a training program for directors and staff of TRIO projects.

Additional Resources

Grants, Scholarships, and Assistance Programs

Grants and Assistance Programs

Federal Pell Grants: Federal Pell Grants are awarded to undergraduate students who display exceptional financial need and have not earned a bachelors, graduate, or professional degree.

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)SNAP provides food benefits to low-income families to supplement their grocery budget so they can afford the nutritious food essential to health and well-being.

211 Hotline: United Way’s 211 service can be a great resource for low-income students. It offers housing and shelter assistance, food assistance, employment opportunities, health information, and support groups. It’s free and help is available across America. The Greater Cincinnati branch is the closet to Miami’s campuses.


Patrick Charnon Memorial Scholarship: Program for full-time undergraduate students enrolled in a four-year college in the United States. Each scholarship carries a stipend of $1,500 per academic year. Recipients may reapply each year for up to four years if they continue to meet the award requirements.

All-USA College Academic Team: Recognition program for exceptional full-time undergraduates at four-year institutions in the United States and its territories.

Amelia Earhart Fellowships (Zonta International Foundation): Program for women of any nationality with a superior academic record and a bachelor’s degree in science or engineering. Fellowships carry a stipend of $6,000; approximately 35 are awarded annually.

Association for Women in Science Educational Foundation: Program for women enrolled in a behavioral, life, physical, social science, or engineering program leading to a Ph.D. degree. Graduate fellowships in the amount of $1,000 are awarded each year.

Bibliographical Society of America Fellowship Program: Short-term fellowship program supporting bibliographical inquiry and research in the history of the book trades and in publishing history.

Carnegie Endowment for International Peace Junior Fellow Program: Year-long paid internship for graduating seniors interested in careers in international affairs. Internship is at the Carnegie Endowment for World Peace in Washington, DC.

Christine Mirzayan Science and Technology Policy Graduate Fellowship ProgramDesigned to engage graduate science, engineering, medical, veterinary, business, and law students in the analysis that informs the creation of science and technology policy and to familiarize them with the interactions of science, technology, and government.

DAAD Annual Grants: Undergraduate scholarships to study in the Federal Republic of Germany. Foreign nationals are eligible if they are attending a United States institution for their undergraduate degree. Applications in all fields are accepted, with the exception of dentistry, medicine, pharmacy, and veterinary medicine.

Davis-Putter Scholarships: Need-based grants (up to $6,000) for undergraduate or graduate students actively working for peace and justice on campus and/or in the community.

Echoing Green Public Service Fellowships: Funding to conduct public service projects anywhere in the world. For up to two years of support.

Elie Wiesel Prize in Ethics: Essay contest for full-time juniors or seniors. Prizes range from $500 to $5,000.

Environmental Research and Education Foundation: This scholarship recognizes excellence in Ph.D. or post-doctoral environmental research and education.

Fellows for Peace: The Vision of Kathryn W. Davis Scholarships to Support Language Training at Middlebury College: The fellowships are competitive, merit-based award open to all Language School applicants. This fellowship is available to U.S. citizens and international students and professionals.

The Fortis FellowshipThe Fortis Fellowship selects top first-generation college students to take part in a three-year program to become top world leaders and eventually become inducted in the Fortis Society. Their goal is to create a network of diverse people committing to creating a better world and helping each other succeed.

Gates Cambridge Scholarships: One to three years of study in any discipline at Cambridge University. Candidates apply directly through Cambridge.

Goldman Sachs Global Leaders Program: $3,000 award for 100 outstanding second year college students in any field of study.

Humane Studies Fellowships: For undergraduate and graduate students interested in the classical liberal/libertarian tradition of individual rights and market economies. More than 100 fellowships of up to $12,000 are awarded annually.

I’m First! believes the opportunity for college exists for students who do not have a family history of higher education. I’m First! is an online community providing first-generation college students—and those who advise them—with inspiration, information, and support on the road to and through college.

International Dissertation Field Research Fellowships: Up to 50 fellowships to support social scientists and humanists conducting dissertation field research in all areas and regions of the world.

Job Opportunities for Low-Income Individuals (JOLI): A federal grant program funding nonprofit organizations that address the economic needs of low-income individuals and families through the creation of sustainable business development and employment opportunities.

Josephine de Karman Scholarships: $16,000 scholarship to support either the final year of study for juniors or for PhD candidates with ABD status.

Kate Neal Kinley Memorial Fellowship: Annual fellowship for advanced study of Fine Arts in the U.S. or abroad, to enhance professional standing or to finance a special project. Preference for candidates under 25 years. There are three fellowships of $7,500 each in art, architecture or music; an additional music fellowship for $15,000; and up to three alternate awards of up to $1,000 each.

Organization of American States (OAS) Fellowships: For graduate study or research in any field except medical sciences or introductory language study.

Peace Scholar Dissertation Fellowship: Supports doctoral dissertations that explore the sources and nature of international conflict and strategies to prevent or end conflict and to sustain peace. Citizens of all countries are eligible, but must be enrolled in an accredited college or university in the United States.

Rotary International Peace Scholarships: Funding to support two-year master’s-level degree program at one of the Rotary Centers for International Studies. Each year the Rotary Foundation awards up to 50 fellowships for master’s degrees and 80 for certificate studies at premier universities.

Samuel Huntington Public Service Fellowship Award: Annual stipend of $15,000 for a graduating college senior to pursue public service anywhere in the world.

Smithsonian Fellowships: Unless noted otherwise, all Smithsonian fellowships (graduate, pre-doctoral, post-doctoral, senior) opportunities are open to domestic and international students.

Worldstudio AIGA Scholarships: Undergraduate or graduate students pursuing degrees in the fine or commercial arts, design or architecture.

Campus Resources

Affordable Miami: Miami University understands that college is one of the biggest investments a family can make. That is why it provides a high-quality education at a reasonable cost, making it a wise investment in a student’s future.

Career Advising: When you are admitted to Miami University, you are assigned a Career Advisor. This decision is based on your major and/or chosen Career Cluster. Your advisor offers individualized information and guidance during your career exploration and management.

Career Grants and Scholarships: The Center for Career Exploration and Success offers a variety of grants and scholarships to support students’ career growth, including the Internship and Research Grant, the Professional Attire Grant, and more. Note that availability of these grants can depend on campus. 

Miami Alumni AssociationAlumni networks organize networking events, publish newsletters about what graduates are doing, and connect graduates with each other for jobs. They’re great for current students, too, if you want information on graduate life or access to an older mentor who was once where you are. At Miami, you can connect with alumni through Miami Alumni Connect.


Student Success Center: The Student Success Center can provide assistance to a number of special student populations in solving complex problems. This center is the home for first-generation students on the Oxford campus, providing holistic support and connecting them to resources such as the Miami Cares program, mentoring, career exploration, and financial aid. 


TRIO Student Support ServicesTRIO Student Support Services (SSS) is an educational support program funded by the United States Department of Education, whose goal is to help eligible students graduate on schedule with the lowest amount of financial debt.

Study Abroad Resources

AllAbroad.usThis website offers funding advice, outreach materials, and study abroad tips specifically written with first-generation students in mind.

Diversity AbroadThe Diversity Abroad community inspires, connects, and assists students in reaching their academic and career potential in our increasingly interconnected world.

Further Reading

Students walk to class through the quad.

45 Must-Have Resources for Low-Income Students

Nearly a third of college students are low-income, and most don’t know the resources and programs that can help them. If you’re a college student in need, use these key resources to get help both inside and outside of the classroom.
Students walk to class through the quad with the sun shining overhead.

20 Years Since Welfare 'Reform'

Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) was a bill passed to “replace” Aid to Families With Dependent Children (AFDC). The Atlantic discusses this bill’s impact on the United State’s welfare system. 


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Center for Career Exploration and Success

45 Armstrong Center
550 E. Spring Street
Oxford, OH 45056