Scholarship Application Checklist

Thank you for your interest in the National Federation of the Blind's annual scholarship program.

A complete application, submitted before the deadline, consists of the following items.

Please review the frequently asked questions for more information on each item. 


Completed Application Form

One completed scholarship application form, online or in print, is required. Non-applicable questions should be marked N/A. Until the deadline, you may return to your application as often as you wish to edit or change it, or to delete or replace any attached documents (see FAQ #11).


One essay, personally written by you, is required. You must limit your essay to 700 words or less (see FAQ #12).

Letter of Recommendation

At least one letter of recommendation is required. You may send more than one letter if you wish. The author may send his/her letter directly to us (via email or to the address at the bottom) or, if the author permits, you may forward the letter to us (see FAQ #15).


Transcript(s) are required. Provide a transcript (original or copy) from the institution you are currently attending and from all other postsecondary institutions you’ve attended. If you have attended less than one year of higher education, provide your high school transcript. We accept transcripts sent by your institution, by a forwarding service, or by you (see FAQ #14).

College Entrance Exam Reports (High School Seniors Only)

Report(s) on college entrance examinations should be submitted, if available. Send a copy of your report summary from the ACT, SAT, or other such standardized tests (high school seniors only; see FAQ #14).

Proof of Legal Blindness

Proof of legal blindness is required. Do not send actual medical records. Provide a clear statement from a qualified professional that certifies you are legally blind in both eyes according to the federal definition. You may use our confirmation of legal blindness form (PDF) or a signed statement on business/agency letterhead. You may scan and upload a signed statement, or send a copy of the original document. The statement must be completed by a trained certifying authority, such as an optician, optometrist, ophthalmologist, physician; rehabilitation counselor, itinerant teacher, or other professional in work with the blind; or the president of an NFB state affiliate (see FAQ #3 through #6).


One affiliate president's interview is required. Before the deadline, applicants must request AND accomplish an interview (usually by telephone) with the NFB affiliate president (or the president's appointee) located in the student's home state or college state, unless the president chooses to schedule the interview after the deadline. Phone/email information for state presidents is available at Contact the scholarship office if your request for an interview is not answered within a week (see FAQ #16).


The deadline for the 2018 awards was March 31, 2018 at midnight, Eastern Time (online date or postmarked mail).

The deadline for the 2019 awards will be posted here soon.

Accepted File Formats

Documents submitted via uploading to your online application form or sent via attachment to an email must be in DOC, DOCX, RTF, or PDF file format. We do not accept faxed documents.

Contact Information

Phone: 410-659-9314, extension 2415

NFB Scholarship Program
National Federation of the Blind
200 East Wells Street at Jernigan Place
Baltimore, MD 21230