College scholarships for bodybuilding and weightlifting are very uncommon. However, a few programs do exist, mostly awarded to bodybuilders who compete in certain competitions. In addition to the few scholarship programs that may be used to attend any school, a few colleges in the United States also offer scholarships to attending students who are bodybuilders.
USA Power Lifting
The organization USA Power Lifting awards two annual scholarships to high school seniors who compete at the USAPL High School Nationals. Each year, a $500 scholarship is awarded to one male competitor and one female competitor. To be eligible, an applicant must have a cumulative high school GPA of 2.5 or higher. In addition to a completed application, you must also submit two letters of recommendation and a short essay. Scholarship applications are available on the USAPL website (usapowerlifting.com) and must be submitted by the annual deadline of February 15.
Arnold Sports Festival
Beginning in 2006, the Columbus Rotary has provided scholarships to participants at the annual Arnold Sports Festival. Each year, one college scholarship in the amount of $2,000 is awarded to a participant in the weightlifting category. The Arnold Sports Festival is held in early March each year in Columbus, Ohio. You must attend the festival in order to be eligible for the Columbus Rotary Scholarship in weightlifting. Tickets to the festival are available for purchase on the festival website (arnoldsportsfestival.com).
Bigger Faster Stronger
Founded in 1976, the company Bigger Faster Stronger sells weightlifting equipment and nutritional supplements, and also provides aspiring athletes with weight training programs. In addition, Bigger Faster Stronger began awarding the BFS Weightlifting Scholarship in 2011. This scholarship is worth $15,000 over the course of a recipient's undergraduate career. In addition to tuition assistance, the BFS Scholarship also provides the recipient with free nutritional supplements for weight training and assistance paying for medical care.
In addition to national bodybuilding and weightlifting scholarship programs, a handful of universities offer scholarships specifically to students active in the sport. For example, students attending Louisiana State University in Shreveport may be eligible to receive the Bossier Optimists Weightlifting Scholarships and the USA Weightlifting Scholarship. Students at Northern Michigan University may be eligible for tuition assistance and help with room and board through the B.J. Stupak Scholarship or the Developmental Elite out-of-state tuition waiver.
- Arnold Sports Festival: Columbus Rotary Scholarships
- Google Docs: USA Powerlifting Collegiate Committee Scholarship Application
- Bigger Faster Stronger: Chloe Van Tussenbroek BFS Weightlifting Scholarship Winner
- Powerlifting Watch; USAPL Awards Two College Scholarships; April 2007
- LSU Shreveport: Annual Scholarships
- League Lineup: Northern Michigan University Scholarships