Coca-Cola Scholars (www.coca-colascholars.org). Winners excel in academics, community service, employment, and leadership in school activities. Fifty recipients earn $20,000 scholarships, while 200 others earn $4,000.
Sam Walton Community Scholarship (www.walmartfoundation.org). Wal-Mart rewards students with financial need, strong academics, community or extracurricular involvement, and work experience. There's one $25,000 award, 50 awards of $5,000, and 6,000 awards of $1,000.
National Merit Scholarship Awards (www.nationalmerit.org). About 8,200 finalists are selected from top-scorers on the PSAT. All earn a $2,500 scholarship, and some are awarded additional scholarship money from their schools or from corporate foundations.
The arts and writing
Arts Recognition and Talent Search (www.artsawards.org). Awards ranging from $100 to $10,000 are offered for excellence in dance, music, theater, visual arts, film, photography, and writing.
Scholastic Art and Writing Awards (www.scholastic.com/artandwriting). This competition leads to 900 awards of up to $10,000 in numerous art and writing categories.
Ayn Rand Institute Essay Competition (www.aynrand.org/contests). Students write an essay on Rand's The Fountainhead. Top prizes are $1,000 to $10,000; semifinalists and finalists earn $50 to $100.
American Legion National High School Oratorical Contest (www.legion.org). Students deliver local speeches on topics related to the U.S. Constitution. Three national winners earn $15,500 to $19,500. Numerous state and regional winners earn smaller awards.
Voice of Democracy Audio Essay Contest, sponsored by the Veterans of Foreign Wars (www.vfw.org). Students tape a short essay they've written on a patriotic topic. Sixty prizes range from $1,000 to $25,000.
Prudential Spirit of Community Awards (www.prudential.com). Prudential looks for students who have performed exemplary community service. More than 100 state winners earn $1,000. Ten national winners are awarded an additional $5,000.
Target All-Around Scholarship Awards (www.target.com). The retailer rewards students with a record of outstanding community service. There's one $25,000 award and 600 awards of $1,000.
Intel Science Talent Search (www.sciserv.org/sts). This prestigious competition recognizes original scientific research. Top prizes are $20,000 to $100,000. The 330 semifinalists and finalists earn $1,000 to $5,000.
Morris K. Udall Undergraduate Scholarship (www.udall.gov). College sophomores and juniors must have a significant record of service for environmental causes or, for Native Americans and Alaska Natives, a commitment to tribal public policy or healthcare. Scholarships of up to $5,000 go to 80 winners.
Discover Card Tribute Awards (www.aasa.org). Discover recognizes students who have faced a significant roadblock or challenge in their lives. Judging is also based on community service, leadership, and special talents. There are up to nine national awards of $25,000 and up to nine awards of $2,500 in each state.
Burger King Scholars Program (www.burgerking.com/bkscholars). This scholarship is awarded to students with GPAs of 2.5 and above who must work during high school out of financial need. Candidates submit recommendations from their schools and their employers. The 1,600 winners earn $1,000 each.
The winning edge
To get a leg up on the competition, scholarship applicants should strive to become junior movers and shakers. Judges aren't expecting a long list of extracurriculars. Instead, they're looking for accomplishments that rise above the crowd: a community service project that has real impact, for instance, or participation in activities that show a true commitment to music, art, or a particular area of study.