Frequently Asked Questions
About Our Scholarships


What makes a L.I.F.E Scholarship winner?

The applicants that are selected to be awarded a L.I.F.E Scholarship demonstrate exceptional merit and an extraordinary drive to succeed while overcoming the struggles that come with lupus. They do not allow their illness to stand in the way of their dreams and career aspirations. They are leaders and they care about people and their community. L.I.F.E Scholarship applicants demonstrate their potential to thrive in college and eventual career by providing a letter of recommendation, transcripts, extracurricular involvement, and an essay about their journey with lupus.

Who can apply for a L.I.F.E Scholarship?

In general, both undergraduate and graduate students may apply for the L.I.F.E Scholarship. However, there are specific requirements. Please carefully review the eligibility requirements before sending an application.

I have discoid lupus; can I apply for a L.I.F.E. Scholarship?

No. Although discoid lupus is considered a chronic disease, the L.I.F.E. Scholarship is only awarded to college students with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE).

Can I apply if I am not a full-time student?

Yes, part-time students with a minimum of 6 credits may apply.

What is the deadline for applying?

All applications must be postmarked by July 1st of each year to be considered for the L.I.F.E. Scholarship for the following academic year.

Are L.I.F.E Scholarships awarded in both January and August?

No. The Foundation no longer awards L.I.F.E. Scholarships in January. However, this means that more scholarships are awarded in August.

I am a high school senior; can I still apply for a L.I.F.E Scholarship and use the money for next fall semester?

Yes. However, the applicant must provide evidence that s/he will meet all the qualifications before the deadline. A letter of acceptance to a college or preregistration for classes with a minimum of 6 units/credits would be sufficient evidence. In either case, the student would also have to meet the other eligibility requirements.

Can I email or fax my application?

No. All applications must be sent by mail to L.I.F.E.’s Scholarship Committee. No emails or faxed applications will be accepted. This format guarantees that your application is official and properly reviewed.

Do I have to send all the application requirements at once?

Yes. All applicants should send all application requirements in ONE envelope (please refer to "Apply to our Scholarship" for the address). Applicants who send requirements separately could be considered incomplete and not eligible. The only exception that has been made is for letters of recommendation.

Will I receive notification when my application is received?

Due to limited resources, L.I.F.E. is unable to notify all applicants who are not awarded a scholarship. Only winners will be notified. All winners are announced on our website.

How is a L.I.F.E. Scholarship winner notified?

All L.I.F.E. Scholarship winners will be contacted first via phone in July or August and an official congratulatory letter will be sent to the address listed on the winner’s application form as well. The Foundation also congratulates all winners on the website.

Will I receive notification even if I am not awarded a L.I.F.E Scholarship?

Due to limited resources, L.I.F.E. is unable to notify all applicants who are not awarded a scholarship. Only winners will be notified. All winners are announced on our website.

When should I expect notification if I am a L.I.F.E Scholarship winner?

L.I.F.E Scholarship winners should expect notification in August. Every effort is made to notify winners early in August so students can plan their academic year.

I applied for the L.I.F.E Scholarship but was not selected as a winner. Can I reapply?

Yes! We encourage all applicants not awarded a scholarship to reapply as many times as possible.

Are L.I.F.E. Scholarships competitive?

Yes, L.I.F.E. Scholarships are merit-based and highly competitive.

How many L.I.F.E Scholarships are awarded each year?

One or more L.I.F.E. Scholarships are awarded each year. The number of scholarships depends on the quality of the applicants and the funds available for that year. Since 2001, 75 L.I.F.E. Scholarships have been awarded throughout the United States.

I decided to attend a different school after my application was submitted. Am I still eligible for a L.I.F.E Scholarship?

It is important the L.I.F.E receives proof of enrollment at your College or University. If you are unsure which school you will attend when applying, please write more than one school on your application. If in the event that the school changes after the application is submitted, you will have 7 days to submit proof of enrollment after your are notified (by phone) that you are a winner.

Do online classes count toward the 6-credit requirement? What about hybrid classes?

No. L.I.F.E does not accept credits for online or hybrid classes.

Do I qualify for the L.I.F.E Scholarship if I already have at least one graduate degree?

No. You may only qualify if you are currently pursuing your first graduate degree (this includes masters, doctorate, medical, law or equivalent).

I am a first year PhD student. Am I eligible to receive a L.I.F.E Scholarship?

No. PhD students do not qualify for a scholarship. Only undergraduate and first-year graduate students pursuing medicine, law, or a masters degree are eligible to receive a L.I.F.E Scholarship.

There are many grants available to graduate students doing novel lupus research. For instance, the Lupus Research Institute (LRI).

I failed a class in the past, but still meet the minimum GPA requirements. Am I still eligible for a L.I.F.E Scholarship?

Yes. As long as you meet the minimum GPA requirements, you will be eligible for a L.I.F.E Scholarship. If you fail a course after recieving the scholarship, you will not lose the funds.

Can I submit a copy of my medical record instead of a doctor's note?

No. We ask that you not submit any copies of your medical record and instead submit a doctor's note. All your doctor needs to do is say that you have a diagnosis of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and this can either be tyoed on letterhead or hand written from a prescription pad. Both methods require your doctor's signature.

If my doctor is unable to sign the note stating I have lupus, can my nurse sign off on it?

Unfortunately nurses are not qualified by law to diagnose lupus unless it is a nurse practitioner (but only in some states). Therefore it has to be a licensed physician providing treatment to the applicant applying for our scholarship. Any physician, including your primary care physician would be qualified to do this.

For any other questions, please email us at