Scholarships and Awards

As a student studying Native American and Indigenous Studies, you have access to several awards and scholarships that will provide financial support as you pursue your career.

Larry J. Zimmerman Fund for Student Research Support

Undergraduate or graduate students who are studying Anthropology, Museum Studies, or Native American Indigenous Studies within the IU School of Liberal Arts in Indianapolis and are conducting research in anthropology, museum studies, indigenous studies, and cultural heritage studies are eligible.

Read more on how to apply

School of Liberal Arts Scholarships

Native American Indigenous Studies students may also be eligible for school and campus scholarships and awards. See the School of Liberal Arts Scholarships and Awards for more information.

For Enrolled Tribal Members

The NAIS Program also provides services to Native American students seeking tribal scholarships as well as information about additional funding resources. Many tribes offer scholarships to their enrolled members who are in college. Other scholarship opportunities are available from sources such as the Bureau of Indian Affairs, American Indian Education Fund, American Indian Graduate Center, professional and academic organizations and many more.

It is important to note that the majority of funding available known as Native American “scholarships” are tribally specific and exist as a result of sovereign treaties signed by those tribes and the US government. Each federally recognized tribe, as a sovereign nation, dictates who is considered a tribal citizen or member. Contact your tribe or tribes to determine your eligibility for scholarship, the tribal requirements for documentation, and parameters for applicable degree programs.

Tribal Scholarship Checklist

Carefully read through the following steps that are typically required each year for tribal scholarship funding:

  • Contact your tribe to learn about specific deadlines and application requirements.
  • Complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) prior to your tribe’s scholarship application deadline.
  • Enroll in full or part-time classes
  • Monitor your online Student Center for the To Do List and complete any outstanding items as quickly as possible.
  • Ensure your tribal scholarship application is complete and submitted to your tribal scholarship office on time.
  • Send a copy of your tribal enrollment verification (i.e., Certificate of Indian Blood, tribal ID card, etc.) with your student ID number on it to the area that matches your status

Important Information

Some tribes may require letters of intent or contracts which identify reciprocal responsibilities. Often this means that you will be responsible to provide some service to your tribe. It is important that you are aware of these requirements before you accept tribal funding! To be eligible for many Native American scholarships, such as Bureau of Indian Affairs scholarships, you should be an enrolled member of a federally recognized tribe. A Certificate of Indian Blood (CIB) card or document is generally accepted proof of membership in a federally recognized tribe.

If you do NOT have a tribal identification card or CIB card and have questions about you may contact the NAIS Program office and we can discuss scholarships, grants, learning assistantships, student loans, and work-study.