students walking

Scholarships and Grants

Institutional Scholarships and Grants

Gardner-Webb University offers the following Institutional Scholarships and Grants for our Traditional Undergraduate Students:

Trustee ScholarshipDean’s Scholarship
Presidential ScholarshipAchievement Scholarship
Provost ScholarshipOpportunity Grant


Scholarship and Grant award amounts range from $5,000 to $18,000 depending on the student’s academic profile and whether the student is an on campus resident or off campus commuter. In order to determine the amount of institutional scholarship or grant you are eligible to receive, you must first apply and be accepted to Gardner-Webb. Your award amount will be included in your acceptance letter from the Undergraduate Admissions Office. Institutional scholarships require a student to be enrolled full time (12 hours or more) and maintain a grade point average in accordance with the institution’s Scholarship Maintenance Policy.

Tucker Heart, Soul, Mind, and Strength Scholarship

The Tucker Heart, Soul, Mind, and Strength Scholarship will be awarded to a deserving traditional undergraduate student who exemplifies the attributes highlighted in Mark 12:30. Each year, a full-ride scholarship will be awarded to one student who stands apart from other applicants by the depth of his/her character, faith, and service-driven life. The recipient will be required to demonstrate how he/she can thrive in the challenges of Gardner-Webb’s academic environment and graduate prepared to live out the university’s motto making a difference for God and humanity.

Ignite Excellence Scholarships

The Ignite Excellence Scholarship interviews serve as an opportunity for qualified students to compete for our most competitive academic scholarships. Held in February, these interviews are comprised of three parts designed to help the selection committee determine the candidates that exemplify academic excellence. After being accepted to the university, selected accepted students will be invited to participate in Ignite Excellence by Nov 13th and the deadline to register will be December 4th. After all applications have been received, candidates will be notified of their interview date.

Below is a list of scholarships that students will compete for during the interview process:

  • Ignite Excellence Full Tuition Scholarships (named Academic Fellows) – Value full tuition $31,220 (8 recipients)
  • Ignite Excellence Participation Award– $2,000

Applicant must reside on campus, be enrolled full time and maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.5. Scholarships are awarded for a maximum of eight semesters. Scholarships do not cover costs for additional credits taken or summer school charges.

*Outside sources of federal and state aid such as Pell, NC Need Based Scholarship, could reduce the value of the Academic Fellows.

Performance-based Scholarships

Athletic Scholarships are awarded by each individual coach and shared with the Financial Planning Office. Gardner-Webb University (GWU) offers scholarships for the following sports: Baseball, Basketball, Cross Country, Football, Golf, Lacrosse, Soccer, Softball, Swimming, Tennis, Track and Field, Volleyball, and Wrestling. Any questions concerning eligibility for a scholarship should be directed to the coach of the sport of interest.

Honors Music Scholarships are awarded based on a student’s performance from an on campus audition. The Music faculty selects recipients and shares them with the Financial Planning Office. Scholarships are renewed based on performance throughout the academic year.

Marching Band Scholarships are awarded by the band director and shared with the Financial Planning Office. The award amount is $1000 and is based on participation in the band.

The Foothills Commitment

Gardner-Webb Introduces The Foothills Commitment. This funding commitment for residents of Cleveland, Gaston, Lincoln and Rutherford counties is our commitment to new freshmen students set to enroll in a full-time residential undergraduate program at GWU. It’s a guaranteed $15,600 or more in institutional gift aid, which is a minimum of 50 percent of tuition.

The reduced rate is renewable, and Cleveland, Gaston , Lincoln and Rutherford county residents who apply to GWU and meet the qualifications will automatically be a part of the program. Students will also need to file the (FAFSA) form. The “Foothills Commitment” will be inclusive of all institutional, federal and state grant programs.

Church Matching and Minister’s Dependent Scholarships

Gardner-Webb University values its partnerships with churches to prepare graduates for lives of service to God and humanity. To enhance this relationship, GWU expanded its Church-Matching and Minister’s Dependent scholarship programs.

Matching scholarships will now be offered to traditional undergraduate students, who receive a scholarship from any Christian church. To those traditional undergraduate students submitting the application on or before May 1, Gardner-Webb will match a scholarship from a Christian church—dollar for dollar—up to the cost of tuition. The Church-Matching Scholarship will stack on top of other institutional aid.

Minister’s Dependent Scholarship is awarded to a dependent student of a full time minister of a church or an ordained, full time employee of a church-related agency. The application deadline is May 1, and the award amount is $5,500.

Other Scholarships

The scholarships mentioned below have a separate application process are awarded based on specific criteria but can be on top of other academic scholarships. If you have further questions regarding these scholarships, please contact your admissions counselor.

The Luther Butler Scholarship for NC Baptist Students
This scholarship is awarded to selected students who are members of North Carolina Baptist churches cooperating with the NC Baptist State Convention. The funds are awarded and approved through the NC Baptist Foundation. A separate  opens in a new windowonline application must be completed prior to February 15th. (Must reapply each year).

Ministers Advisory Council Scholarship
This scholarship is awarded by a member of the Board of Ministers. The  opens in a new windowapplicationopens PDF file  must be submitted by May 1 to the Financial Planning Office. The award amount is $250 per year.

Christian Service Organization
This award is available to those students preparing for full-time Christian vocational service. The application must be completed as well as the Free Application for Federal Student Aid  opens in a new window(FAFSA). Award amounts vary from $500 – up to 30% of tuition depending upon the student’s demonstrated financial need as determined by the results of the  opens in a new window(FAFSA).

GWU Legacy Scholarship
Gardner-Webb is pleased to provide a $500 Legacy Grant to students who have a Parent, Grandparent, or Sibling that graduated from Gardner-Webb University. This scholarship is for full-time, traditional undergraduate students. Click here for more information from our Alumni Office about Legacy Students.

First Responders Grant
Gardner-Webb University is dedicated to the educational success of our public servants, and through the First Responders Grant, eligible students can receive a 15% tuition grant renewable through the completion of a GOAL-DCP bachelor’s program. Click here for more information from our Alumni Office about Legacy Students.

R.W. Andrews Scholarship
This scholarship awards an African American male from Cleveland County, N.C. full tuition, room, and board, and $800 per year for books for one of the traditional on-campus undergraduate programs at Gardner-Webb University.

This award was created to give access to GWU for a student who is not a recruited athlete or included on a team roster. Renewable for up to 8 semesters provided the student maintains satisfactory academic performance and good standing in the community.

A scholarship application is required to be reviewed by The Andrews Scholarship selection committed. The opens in a new windowapplication must be submitted by March 1, 2021.

Raise.me Micro-Scholarships Gardner-Webb University partners with Raise.me, a program supported by the  opens in a new windowGates Foundation to offer micro-scholarships that recognize your individual academic and extracurricular achievement, beginning in the 9th grade. You can accumulate up to $12,000 in micro-scholarships per year, which will already be included in your GWU financial aid award.

To help make a high-quality college education financially accessible to more families, Gardner-Webb University is an active participant and member in the “Tuition Rewards” scholarship program, sponsored by SAGE Scholars. The unique program operates like a frequent flyer rewards program – but for college tuition!

By investing or saving with participating banks, credit unions, 529 Plans and other financial institutions, family members can earn “points” (similar to frequent flyer miles) to provide family members with guaranteed minimum scholarships at a national consortium of participating independent colleges, including Gardner-Webb University. The points can be redeemed for up to $29,145, spread evenly over four undergraduate years, starting with the freshman year.

The Tuition Rewards program is coordinated nationally by the independent organization, SAGE Scholars. SAGE stands for Savings And Growth for Education (SAGE). The Tuition Rewards scholarships are provided regardless of the income or assets of the Student or the Student’s family.

The Sponsors of participating students must transfer Tuition Rewards Points to their students at any time prior to the August 31st of the year that 12th grade starts. After that date, a student’s Tuition Rewards point value cannot be changed.

The Sponsor must submit the Student’s Tuition Rewards statement to Gardner-Webb University at the time the Student  opens in a new windowapplies for admission. This is done by the Sponsor by logging onto the “Account Statement” page at www.tuitionrewards.com and forwarding the information to Gardner-Webb University roughly concurrent with the Student’s application to Gardner-Webb. Statements submitted after Gardner-Webb has prepared a financial aid package for the student may invalidate use of Tuition Rewards.

If the prospective Student does not attend Gardner-Webb University or another Tuition Rewards participating college, the Sponsor may recover and re-use assigned Reward Points if done within three years of the student’s high school graduation.