Ruby Sue Clifton Scholarship

Smart Financial Credit Union is committed to improving the financial lives of its members.  Our Scholarship Program and other financial resources for young adults were created to help members with early financial milestones, such as going to college. Scholarship awards are based on academic achievement and submission of an essay on a topic selected by the Credit Union.

Three $5,000 scholarships will be awarded for the upcoming academic year. The application deadline is March 31st, 2023. Scholarship recipients will be notified by May 2023 and will be announced on the Smart Financial website and social media platforms.  A check will be mailed directly to the attending college for the benefit of the scholarship winner/student. 

Eligibility

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SMART FINANCIAL MEMBER

Applicant (or applicant's parent/guardian) must be a member in good standing.

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HIGH SCHOOL SENIOR

Applicant must be a current high school senior.

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COLLEGE BOUND

Applicant must be able to provide a written letter of acceptance to an university, college, or vocational school.

Required Documents

Before you start, make sure you have the following documents saved on your computer. You will be required to upload them to complete the application!

  • Unofficial Transcript
  • Most Recent Report Card
  • Essay
  • Copy of SAT and/or ACT Scores
  • (*pre-SAT scores will be accepted if student was unable to take the SAT and/or ACT due to COVID-19 restrictions) Documents must be submitted as a Microsoft Word document or a PDF.

Before You Start

You cannot save your application and go back at a later time, so make sure you have all the necessary information before you start!

  • Smart Financial Account (or Member Number)
  • Class Rank & Class Size
  • GPA
  • SAT and/or ACT Score
  • List of Any Extra Curriculars, Jobs, and Awards
  • Required Documents (See Above)

Essay

Please choose one of the three questions below for your essay. Be sure to follow the essay guidelines outlined in the Scholarship Application Guideline page.

  • Credit Unions have a philosophy of “People Helping People” Community Enrichment. How will your college education and experience help make you a better member of your community?
  • “As a credit union member, explain why someone should choose a credit union as their primary financial institution over alternative service providers, such as for-profit banks.
  • Credit unions are not-for-profit financial institutions whose purpose is to serve its members. How can Smart Financial better appeal to and serve its Gen Z (born between 1981 and 1996) existing and potential members?

Scholarship FAQs

Local high school seniors must apply online by Friday, March 31st, 2023 at 11:59pm.

Winners will be notified May, 31st 2023.

If you have any questions, please email Shana Scott at sscott@smartcu.org or call her at 713-407-1934.

In order to apply, you OR your parent/guardian must be an active Smart Financial member in good standing.

Academic performance, community involvement, and the applicant's essay are all taken into consideration.

For cardholders that have their mobile service through Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, or Sprint, Smart Financial Credit Union will send text messages using “Free To End User” texting. As the name implies, there is no costs to the cardholder to receive text messages from these carriers. All other mobile carriers do not support Free To End User texting. Smart Financial Credit Union will send an automated voice message to these mobile devices.

Applications are evaluated by a scholarship committee comprised of five Smart Financial Foundation board members.

The easiest way to find your member and/or account number is to look at your statement. To view your statement online, log in to online banking, click "Accounts", then click "Statements".