In 2011, the Shoals community, headed by the Florence and Sheffield Rotary Clubs, decided that education was the most important gift we could give our children. Because education is the underpinning for success in every endeavor, the community banded together to give every student in the Shoals the opportunity to continue education beyond high school. The rules are simple. If you are a Shoals-area (Colbert and Lauderdale County) student who has maintained a C average in high school, have a good attendance record, have no behavioral incidents, and are a U.S. citizen, you will have earned a two year scholarship to Northwest Shoals Community College. To make this possible, the community is raising almost $800,000 a year to fund the community scholarship fund. It’s a challenge to the community and a challenge to the student, but it’s a challenge that has great rewards.

Visit the Official Shoals Scholar Dollars Website

How does Shoals Scholar Dollars work?

The Shoals Scholar Dollars program is designed to assist students who have limited or no financial assistance to pay for a college education. The Shoals Scholar Dollars scholarship is considered the “scholarship of last resort.” All federal Pell grant money along with institutional and other scholarships are applied to the student’s account before the Shoals Scholar Dollars scholarship is enacted. This scholarship fulfills the difference of the Pell Grant and other scholarships up to the cost of 30 credit hours of tuition per academic year. If the student’s Pell grant and scholarships exceed the allotted amount, Shoals Scholar Dollars scholarship cannot be used.

What does Shoals Scholar Dollars cover at NWSCC?

The Shoals Scholar Dollars scholarship allows up to 30 credit hours of tuition only per academic year. Students are responsible for all fees, additional credit hours, and books. Costs of books vary by course. Please visit the NWSCC Bookstore to determine prices.

Who can apply for Shoals Scholar Dollars?

Initial High School Eligibility Requirements (verified by high school counselor)

High school senior from one of the 17 high schools in Colbert and Lauderdale counties

2.5 GPA or higher

98% high school attendance

No major disciplinary issues

U.S. Citizen

Successfully pass the mandatory drug screening

Completed Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

Demonstrate financial need determined by FAFSA 


Application Deadlines

The 2023-2024 scholarship application must be submitted online with all necessary documentation.

Complete updated FAFSA Application (based on 2021 taxes). 

Successful Completion of NWSCC Student Success (ORI 107) course at NWSCC during the summer semester. Please contact the high school counselor to determine which class option is best for the student.

Renewal Criteria

Complete 30 credit hours in an academic year

2.5 GPA

No legal or College disciplinary actions

Successfully pass random drug screening (if selected)

Meet community service requirement

Contact Information:

Dr. Crystal Reed, Dean of Students

Brittany Jones, Executive Director of Student Success

Burt Helton, Executive Director of Shoals Scholar Dollars