Tools to Inform and Guide

Often, the students for whom a scholarship would make the greatest impact are the least likely to know the resources available to them.

To help fill this need, we equip those with direct access to students with the tools to inform and guide.

Every year, the Common Scholarship Application attracts students from more than 150 high schools and colleges in San Diego County, largely due to the guidance of counselors, teachers, administrators and mentors like you.

Below you will find a step-by-step walkthrough for the application, tips for a strong application and links to other useful materials. Please spread the word to your college-bound students.


2024-2025 Common Scholarship Application Counselor Convening


  • January 17, 2024: Common Scholarship Application Opens
  • March 6, 2024 at 2:00 p.m.: Common Scholarship Application Closes
  • March-April 2024: Foundation staff qualifies applications
  • April 2024: Scholarship Application Evaluator training and assignments begin
  • April-May 2024: Application Evaluators read and score applications online
  • June 2024: All students are notified of awards

FAFSA Changes

This year the Department of Education shortened the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form and changed the SAI (formerly EFC) tables to more accurately reflect need, especially for low-income students. However, the application has significant issues that are preventing families from applying successfully. To ensure that we continue to help students with the most need, we are allowing students to fill out a FAFSA estimator form in lieu of a full FAFSA or CA Dream Act this year. For more information, please visit our FAQs page.

If you are actively working with students on our Common Application and have any issues with their FAFSA, please remind them to explain their financial situation in the narrative portion of the finances section. This will allow evaluators to get the fullest picture possible of a student’s need.

Connect with Our Team

If you have questions about joining the Community Scholarship Program, please contact or submit a contact form.

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