Please note that Gateway does not have a department dedicated to researching scholarships and financial assistance. This is considered the responsibility of the parents and the student. Gateway would like, however, to be of assistance whenever possible. The following is a list of resources for scholarship information. We recommend that students start researching, preparing, and applying for scholarships as early as the beginning of their junior year. Many scholarships have early deadlines. (For example, FAFSA’s deadline for state grants is February 15 of the senior year. The Sam Walton Scholarship usually has a January deadline. The Tennessee Hope Lottery Scholarship has a FAFSA deadline of September 1 of the senior year. Keep in mind that, in order to be eligible for the Hope Lottery Scholarship, home-educated students must be enrolled in the same home education program for one full year immediately preceding graduation.)
Online Scholarship & College Information:
Free Application for Federal Student Aid
(Automatically enters student for the TN Hope
March 1 Deadline
Tennessee Student Assistance Corporation (TSAC)
(Hope Scholarship Information)
Tennessee Promise Scholarship — deadline Nov. 2
1) An Instruction Book for the Parents of College-Bound Students
by Linda O’Brien
2) The Guidance Manual for the Christian Home School
by David and Laurie Callihan
3) Cash for College
by Cynthia Ruiz McKee & Philip C. McKee, Jr.
4) Free Money for College
by Laurie Blum
5) How to Go to College Almost for Free
by Ben Kaplan
How to Get Scholarships:
1) Take a practice ACT/SAT or the PSAT to prepare for the ACT/SAT. See our ACT/SAT page here.
2) Take the ACT or SAT and make a score acceptable for the scholarship/financial aid you seek.
(The ACT/SAT often determines college entrance as well.)
3) Participate in community service and/or volunteer opportunities. This can be used as part of the student’s portfolio and is looked upon favorably by scholarship committees.
4) Research available scholarships, paying particular attention to their requirements and deadlines. Remember that Gateway requires two weeks to prepare transcripts and other paperwork. Turn your requests in early to make sure you meet scholarship deadlines.
5) If the scholarship requires an essay, make sure yours represents your best writing and includes real-life experiences (if appropriate).
6) Include portfolio information. This requires planning early in the student’s high school career. It is helpful for extra-curricular work reflected in the portfolio to show an interest and aptitude for the major the student will pursue or the field related to a specific scholarship.
Recommended Books to Prepare for the ACT/SAT:
1) SAT Strategies for Super Busy Students**
(ACT) ISBN: 978-1-4195-5160-4
2) ACT Premier Program (2008 Ed.)**
(SAT) ISBN: 978-1-4195-5138-3
**These books have a “Higher Score Guarantee.”
See also information under "ACT/SAT/PSAT" on our High School page.
The purpose of a portfolio:
Colleges and scholarship committees want students who are well-rounded, successful and show potential for making a difference in the world. A high-school transcript reflects the student’s well-rounded academic work, while a portfolio showcases the student’s involvement in the community, character qualities, skills, talents, hobbies, accomplishments and honors. The portfolio should include volunteer work, club/organization participation, leadership skills, performance awards, mission work, etc. Most scholarship and college applications include space for this information. A portfolio may also accompany a transcript when it is submitted to the college.
1) The Homeschooler’s Guide to Portfolios and Transcripts
by Loretta Heuer, M.Ed.
2) Homeschooling High School: Planning Ahead for College Admission
by Jeanne Gowen Dennis
3) Home School, High School, and Beyond
by Beverly Adams-Gordon