I was skimming through a list of local scholarships when I came across one with fascinating albeit bizarrely narrow criteria. This award required applicants to have a C-average and plan to major in agricultural management. 

When people think of the word “scholar,” most people imagine something like a straight-A, top athlete student. What they don’t realize is that anyone can give away a scholarship. Therefore, an increasing number of people and organizations have developed scholarships with non-traditional criteria. Some scholarships work hard to break stereotypes and molds.

Here are eight out-of-the-box scholarships you can apply for today!

Zombie Apocalypse Scholarship

 “Did binge-re-watching “The Walking Dead” get you thinking about what you’d do if the streets filled with flesh-eating zombies? Maybe you’ve envisioned your post-apocalyptic world overrun with the living dead, forcing you to come up with a zombie survival plan — and quick! Hone your survival tactics and imagine what your school or college campus might be like in a zombie apocalypse. The Zombie Apocalypse Scholarship committee wants to know your plan to avoid the zombies, where you’d hide, and the top-five things you’d bring to stay alive.” This program gives one “successful survivor” $2,000 towards college costs.

STARFLEET Scholarship

Attention Star Trek superfans! STARFLEET seeks to award that enthusiasm, proving that you’ve been a member for at least a year. Applicants are required to share what STARFLEET activities they’re involved in and submit a recommendation letter from “a member of STARFLEET in good standing that has achieved the rank of Captain or above.” These Trekkies aren’t joking about their fandom. 

Five scholarships of up to $1,000 awarded annually

United Federation of Doll Clubs Scholarships

Dust off your old Barbie collection, because if you love dolls, here’s your scholarship! This fund was developed “to promote original research leading to better knowledge, understanding, and appreciation of dolls.” Four scholarships of up to $1,000 each awarded annually

American Fire Sprinkler Association Scholarship

Do you know about the life-saving properties of automatic fire sprinklers? Well, this organization is hoping you will learn. Their goal is to help educate and train students and the public-at-large about fire sprinklers. The winners are randomly selected at the end of the contest by a computer-generated drawing. 

Ten $2,000 scholarships awarded annually 

Tall Club Scholarships

The founder of this club had a dream of creating an organization that would benefit tall people, including in their educational pursuits. So if you’re a female over 5’10” or male over 6’2”, this one is for you! 

Each year, multiple scholarships awarded of up to $1,000 each 

Chick and Sophie Major Memorial Duck Calling Contest

Have you been honing your duck calling skills? Well quack quack, you might be eligible for this scholarship. With four awards given annually, totaling $4,250, this organization rewards students who have honed their skills. Joking aside, I’ve worked in marketing at a Duck Calling convention, and people take this craft VERY seriously! 

Evans Golf Caddie Scholarship

Are you aware of the competitive world of golf caddies? If so, tune in. You may be eligible for significant scholarship dollars. For the 2019-2020 school year, 280 four year, full tuition and housing scholarships were awarded. That’s a lot of money for a niche scholarship!  

Zolp Scholarship

Are you a Catholic student who plans to attend Loyola University Chicago with the last name Zolp? Yea.. us either. Talk about specific criteria. This goes to show that you should make sure to dig into the scholarships at your university to see if there are any niche scholarships with your unique qualifications.  

 The amount of the scholarship isn’t specified and varies depending on the amount available each year