Not all students will choose to attend college after high school, but for those who do, it can be a very expensive path. That being said, college certainly has some great benefits and advantages, and those who earn their degree may find that they have better job opportunities than those who don't.

Before deciding to go to college, however, it's important to think about how you're going to pay for tuition and all the other costs. In addition to taking out loans, you should also consider applying for grants and scholarships to help you bring down some of these costs, with one of these scholarships being the Subway scholarship.

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The Subway scholarship is a scholarship that employees of Subway in North Carolina and/or their children can apply for to help earn money to pay for college tuition.

What Is the Subway Scholarship?

There are many organizations and programs that offer scholarship programs to help students across the United States pay for the high cost of a college education. These include government organizations, nonprofit organizations and even corporations like Starbucks, Burger King, McDonald's or Subway.

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Subway, a fast-food restaurant where you can get a quick sandwich, has scholarships available for their employees working in North Carolina and their children. If you work at Subway and want to go to school, or you want to send your children to school, the Subway scholarship can help you do that by taking away some of the financial stresses associated with paying for college.

Who Funds the Subway Scholarship?

The Subway scholarship is part of the Subway Scholarship Program, or the Subway Scholarship Fund, which is part of the North Carolina Community Foundation, or the NCCF. The NCCF falls under a larger organization called the NC Subway Group, or the NCSGI. The Subway scholarship has also been referred to as the "Peter S. Slomianyj Scholarship," as Peter S. Slomianyj is the president of Subway.

All of these groups are part of a larger initiative under NCSGI to make a difference in the lives of hardworking students and their families. The Subway Scholarship Fund has been around for more than 20 years, but the NCCF has been around even longer, since 1988. Both parties have worked together to provide students of North Carolina an opportunity to go to school.

When Did the Subway Scholarship Fund Start?

The Subway Scholarship Fund began in 1996 to honor president Peter S. Slomianyj and his 20-year commitment to the company. Peter wanted to give back to college students who reminded him of himself, as he also had to work his way through school and used scholarship money to help pay for it. This is why he started the scholarship – to help employees of Subway in North Carolina and their children to get some assistance in paying for their education.

Who Is Eligible for the Subway Scholarship?

Unlike other organizations that offer scholarships to all students, even those who may not have any connection with the organization or corporation (for instance, the McDonald's scholarship), the Subway scholarship is only for employees of Subway and/or their children in the state of North Carolina. Therefore, if you do not work at Subway, if your parent or guardian does not work at Subway and if you don't live in the Tar Heel State, then you are not eligible.

Once you've met these basic requirements, you'll have to check whether or not you've met the other eligibility requirements. Students or soon-to-be students applying for the Subway scholarship must meet the following requirements:

  • High school students must have a GPA of 2.0 or 80 percent
  • Current college students must have a GPA of 2.5 or a C average
  • You or your parent must have worked at Subway for a minimum of 1,000 hours in the last 12 months

How Much Is Subway Tuition Assistance?

In general, taking the time to apply for scholarships or financial assistance of any kind can take a lot of effort. Because of this, most applicants would probably want to know how much money they can potentially get from a scholarship before taking the time away from their already busy schedule to apply. If you're eligible, knowing how much money you can potentially earn from the Subway scholarship can help you decide if it's worth it for you to apply.

While there is no specific information dictating exactly how much money in scholarships a person can get through the Subway scholarship, by looking at past winners, you can get an idea of what may be in store. Based on the results of the Subway scholarship winners from 2018, one student was awarded $5,000, one student was awarded $2,500 and the rest were awarded $1,250. While this may not necessarily seem like a lot of money to some students, any amount helps.

Filling Out the Subway Scholarship Application

If you decide that you're interested in applying for the Subway scholarship, then take a look at the application to understand what you'll need to do next. The first thing you should do is check the deadline for the Subway scholarship application. The deadlines may change from one year to the next, but to get an idea, the application for the Subway scholarship for 2019 was due April 10, 2019. Once you know the due date, fill out the application and gather your materials ahead of time:

  • The application questionnaire
  • Letter of acceptance for admission from the college/university
  • Official transcripts
  • A letter of recommendation from your Subway franchisee, your general manager or your immediate supervisor

    (or your parent's) and your work log showing a minimum of 1,000 hours. 

Subway Scholarship Application Essay

Although many aspects of the Subway scholarship application may be rather easy and not exceptionally time consuming, the essay portion will take a little bit more of your time. Unfortunately, like many aspects of applying to college, an essay is not only required but is a chance to demonstrate to the decision makers why they should choose you over other applicants or why they should award you more scholarship money than others. Therefore, you should take this part very seriously.

The Subway scholarship application essay prompt may change from year to year, but in 2019, the essay topic according to the application was: "Attending college, whether for the first time or as a returning student, is an exciting and challenging time in any student’s life. During your years at school, you will look back on your experiences and apply the lessons learned in the past to your present situation. With this in mind, please describe how working at SUBWAY® will prepare you for your future."

The application has some additional details regarding what to write for the essay. It must also be 500 words and be creative and original. Avoid using any identifying information such as names of people with whom you work or the Subway's location.

Tips on Asking for the Letter of Recommendation

In order to apply for the Subway scholarship, you'll need a letter of recommendation from your franchisee, general manager or immediate supervisor (or your parent's). If you've been through the college application process, then you're likely already familiar with what it takes to ask for a letter of recommendation. That being said, asking for a letter of recommendation for something like the Subway scholarship may be a little more difficult than asking a teacher or coach.

Don't be afraid to ask for this recommendation letter. Chances are that if you're already eligible to apply for this scholarship, then you've been working at Subway for a long time. Even though you may have wavered in and out of relationships with your higher-ups throughout this time, they still likely have your best interest at heart. If you're feeling nervous about asking, though, here are some tips:

  • When deciding whom to ask, don't necessarily pick the person with whom you have the best relationship. Choose the person who is going to write you a professional, sincere and unbiased recommendation.

  • Mention to your higher-ups that you're thinking of applying for the scholarship and you're wondering if they have any information or materials to help.

  • When you decide whom you are going to ask, ask him if he'd have some time to set aside to have a conversation that's important to you (of course, let him know that it's nothing serious).

  • Consider writing an email if asking in person is not realistic.

  • When asking the person, tell her why you chose her to write it for you. This will likely make her feel honored to write it.

  • Present the person with all the materials he'll need to write you the appropriate recommendation, including any information about yourself that he may not already know.

  • Whomever you choose, make sure you give her plenty of notice to write it for you. It wouldn't be fair to ask her too close to the deadline.

Why Consider the Subway Scholarship?

The North Carolina Community Foundation has awarded over $130,000 in scholarships. Even though the Subway scholarship is just a small component of this foundation, the founders have taken pride in helping as many students as possible have a little less of a financial burden when it comes to earning a higher education.

If you're a Subway employee in North Carolina, you meet the other eligibility requirements and you'd like some help paying for school, then there's absolutely no reason not to apply for the Subway scholarship. While you certainly shouldn't base whether or not you go to school on the chance that you may be awarded the scholarship – especially because it's not necessarily enough to cover your tuition – it's worth getting as much money as you can.

College in the United States is expensive, and student loans have high interest rates. Because scholarships do not need to be paid back, and there are not many conditions tied to them, you may as well take your chances as long as the application won't cause you too much stress to complete.

Can I Start Working at Subway to Earn the Scholarship?

If you live in North Carolina, you might be wondering if you can get a job at Subway in order to have a chance at earning this scholarship. The first thing to keep in mind is that the scholarship is rather competitive, as there are many employees and children of employees who may have already been working at Subway for a long time and are trying their hand at earning a well-deserved scholarship.

Also, it's important to consider the fact that you must put in a minimum of 1,000 hours at Subway over a period of 12 months in order to be eligible for the scholarship. Therefore, this is not just a casual job that you can do in the meantime. It's something to which you actually have to be committed. Of course, those in charge of awarding the scholarship will be looking for this type of commitment in their applicants as well. Though the scholarship itself is definitely enticing, you should not apply to work at Subway just for this reason.

About the Author

Hana LaRock is a freelance content writer from New York, currently living in Mexico. She has spent the last 5 years traveling the world and living abroad and has lived in South Korea and Israel. Before becoming a writer, Hana worked as a teacher for several years in the U.S. and around the world. She has her teaching certification in Elementary Education and Special Education, as well as a TESOL certification. Hana spent a semester studying abroad at Tel Aviv University during her undergraduate years at the University of Hartford. She hopes to use her experience to help inform others. Please visit her website, www.hanalarockwriting.com, to learn more.