Frequently Asked Questions

AcademicWorks is replacing the ScholarshipFinder

Our new online scholarship application, AcademicWorks, will be available in December 2016 for scholarships for the 2017-18 academic year.


    1. What scholarships does NIU offer?
    2. How do I apply for scholarships?
    3. When do I apply for NIU scholarships?
    4. Do I only have to fill out one application?
    5. How do I send a recommendation letter?
    6. Who decides if I receive a scholarship?
    7. How will I know if I get a scholarship?
    8. If I am awarded a scholarship, how do I get my money?
    9. What if I have more questions?

1. What scholarships does NIU offer?

Northern Illinois University offers several types of scholarships. Merit scholarships are awarded to new students at the time of admission, and are based upon high school or transfer academic credentials. Merit scholarships are automatic and do not require a separate application. Other institutional or donor-funded scholarship opportunities are available from various academic and student service departments; those scholarships require an application through AcademicWorks.


2. How do I apply for scholarships?

Whether you are a prospective or current NIU student, you will need to use your student Z-ID and password to log into the AcademicWorks scholarship system and complete an online general scholarship application in order to be considered for scholarships.


3. When do I apply for NIU scholarships?

Our new online scholarship application, AcademicWorks, will be available in December 2016 for scholarships for the 2017-18 academic year.


4. Do I only have to fill out one application?

When logged into AcademicWorks, you will be prompted to fill out the General Application. When you complete the General Application, you will be considered for dozens of awards! Based upon your major and other identifying criteria, you may be prompted to submit additional information. You will be able to save your application to continue working on it, before actually submitting it. However, you will need to apply for scholarships every year, as the available opportunities change from year to year.


5. How do I send a recommendation letter?

Good news! Not all scholarships require recommendation letters. If you need a recommendation or reference letter, you will be notified during the application process. You will be asked to enter the name of your reference, along with their email address. AcademicWorks will then generate and send a request directly to the individual. We highly suggest notifying your reference prior to listing them on your application.


6. Who decides if I receive a scholarship?

Each program area has their own processes, timelines and review committees.


7. How will I know if I get a scholarship?

You can log into AcademicWorks to check on the status of your application(s). You will also receive an email communication with further instructions if you are offered a scholarship.


8. If I am awarded a scholarship, how do I get my money?

All scholarship awards will be posted on your MyNIU student account and applied directly to your educational expenses for the term indicated.


9. What if I have more questions?

Contact the Financial Aid & Scholarship Office at scholarships@niu.edu or 815-753-4829.

Scholarship Office
Swen Parson Hall 245K
Northern Illinois University
815-753-4829
Fax: 815-753-4145
scholarships@niu.edu

Business Hours:
M-F 8:00 a.m.-4:30 p.m.

myNIU