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PG&E Bright Minds Scholarship Program

PG &E Bright Minds Scholarship Program Questions and Answers

1.       Who may apply for scholarships?

Applicants must meet all of the following criteria:

  • Be a minimum of 16 years of age and be a high school senior or graduate, have received GED certification or be a current postsecondary undergraduate student.
  • Live within the PG&E service territory in California (county based) at the time of application. (eligible counties area available on website)
  • Plan to enroll in full-time undergraduate study at an accredited two-year or four-year college, university or vocational-technical school for the entire 2014 – 2015 academic year pursing their first postsecondary degree.

2.       What if I graduated from high school years ago and now want to go to college?

Nontraditional student who are returning to school or planning to pursue a postsecondary education for the first time are eligible and encouraged to apply.

3.       Can I apply for a scholarship if I am going to graduate school?

Awards are for undergraduate study only.

4.       Do I need a specific major to apply?

Recipients for the scholarship program will represent a wide variety of majors.  Students with all majors are encouraged to apply but preference will be given to students majoring in Engineering, Information Services and technical fields. An even stronger preference will be specifically for Civil, Mechanical and Electrical Engineering majors.

5.       How do I apply?

The only mode of application will be a web-based e-application. Applications are available at  starting on January 27, 2014.  IF selected as a finalist, students will have to provide additional documents. 

6.       What is the deadline for applications?

Applications may be submitted until 11:59pm, PST on February 28, 2014.

7.       How many scholarships are awarded and how will the money be distributed  for the             2014 – 2015 school year?

Approximately 100 awards will be given out. Scholarship Management Services processes scholarship payments on behalf of PG&E. Checks are sent to the student’s home address and made payable to the institution for the student. One check will be issued August 15 for $2,000 recipients. Renewable awards will be issued with 1/2 on August 15, 2014 and the other 1/2 on December 30, 2014.

8.       Are these scholarships for only one year?

Ninety scholarships are awarded for $2,000 each and are for one year only. Students may reapply to the program each year that they meet eligibility requirements. Ten awards are awarded for up to $20,000 and are renewable for up to four additional years or until a certificate, associate’s degree or bachelor’s degree is earned, whichever occurs first, on the basis of satisfactory academic performance. Students receiving a certificate or associate’s degree who immediately go on to pursue a bachelor’s degree without interruption in study are eligible to continue to renew their scholarship up to four years or until a bachelor’s degree is earned, whichever occurs first.  Renewable award recipients must attend school within the state of California.

9.       What type of expenses can the award be used for?

The awards can be used onlyin the fall and spring terms for educational expenses including tuition and fees, room and meals and certain other allowable expenses.

10.   Who will determine the scholarship recipients?

A committee of highly trained individuals from Scholarship Management Services, a division of Scholarship America, will select a pool of finalists for review by PG&E’s selection committee.

11.   How are recipients selected?

Scholarship recipients are selected on the basis of academic information, leadership and participation in school and community activities, work experience and financial need. A statement of goals and unusual personal or family circumstances will also be considered in the final selection of recipients. Preference in selection will be given to students who are first in their family to attend a postsecondary institution and those with Engineering, Information Services and technical fields.

12.   How are the award amounts determined for the renewable awards?

The award amount will be based on submission of a financial aid award letter and Student Aid Report (SAR). Scholarship Management Services will determine the award amount based on the comprehensive school cost minus other gift aid (scholarships and grants) that each recipient is receiving.

13.   When will the scholarship recipients be notified?

Both recipients and non-recipients will be notified the week of May 19.

14.   What is Scholarship Management Services?

The PG&E Bright Minds Scholarship Program is administered by Scholarship Management Services, a division of Scholarship America.  Scholarship Management Services is the nation’s largest designer and manager of scholarships and tuition reimbursement programs for corporations, foundations, associations and individuals.

15.   What are the scholarship recipient’s responsibilities?

The recipients have no obligations to PG&E. They are however required to notify Scholarship Management Services of any changes in address, school enrollment or other relevant information and to send complete transcripts and other supporting documents when requested.

16.   Whom can I contact for additional information?


PG&E Bright Minds Scholarship Program

Scholarship Management Services

One Scholarship Way

Saint Peter, MN 56082

Telephone: (507) 931-1682

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