Scholarships & SMART Aid

SMART Aid – Tuition Assistance 

Deadline December 1, 2017

Please note that the scholarships listed require you to submit a SMART Aid Application, which can by completed online at  (Please make sure that you enter the West Catholic identifying code when submitting).  Please save a copy of your SMART Aid application and supporting documents for your records.  We encourage families to fill out the SMART Aid forms by clicking the link below, if you however need help in this process please contact Mr. Peters at 233-5920 / toddpeters@grwestcatholic.org.

SMART Aid Application – Click Here

SMART Aid 2018-2019 Online Instructions

SMART Aid 2018-2019 Online Instructions_SPANISH

SMART Aid – Step-by-Step Parent Application Guide

West Catholic School Code – 13306

Smart Aid Application Fee: $30

Required Supporting Documentation:

Applications submitted without documentation will not be processed.

  • Most recent paystubs
  • 2016 W-2 forms for all jobs.
  • 2016 filed tax return: 1040, 1040A, 1040EZ with all schedules
  • 2016 filed business tax return (if applicable only): 1120, 1120S, 1065 (if applicable only)
  • Supplemental income documentation (if applicable only): Social Security income, Welfare, Food Stamps, Child Support, 1099-M Forms, Worker’s Compensation, Unemployment, Veterans Benefits, Housing Allowance, etc.
  • If you are unable to provide any of the aforementioned items, please submit a Special Circumstance Letter indicating which document(s) you are unable to provide and why. This information will be shared with your school for consideration.

Submitting Documentation

Documentation should be submitted at the time the application is completed. Once you have submitted the application you will be able to enter the top item label “Documents” where it will prompt you will all items needed for submission.

  • Direct Upload: www.smartaidforparents.com (login with your username and password)

Phone Support: (800)-360-8027 • Email Support: support@smartaidforparents.com

DO NOT SEND SMART AID APPLICATIONS TO CATHOLIC SECONDARY SCHOOLS.
 
 General Tuition Grant (SMART Aid)
  • Passing cumulative GPA based on financial need.
  • Student must have a satisfactory discipline record.
  • All active/registered parishioners who apply for SMART Aid will be automatically considered for the Bishop’s Scholarship Fund.  (Please be sure to indicate your Parish Code and School Code on the SMART Aid form.)

Diocesan Scholarships

Welcome Scholarship
The Welcome Scholarship is for new families who are registered parishioners in a Diocese of Grand Rapids parish, but whose children were not enrolled in a Diocese of Grand Rapids Catholic school for any period of time during the 2016-2017 school year. Eligible candidates are incoming preschool through 11th graders who fit the above criteria and do not have a sibling currently enrolled in a Diocese of Grand Rapids Catholic school. Prior to applying for the scholarship, applicants must have completed the necessary student enrollment paperwork for the school they wish to attend. Scholarships are limited in quantity and will be given on a first-come, first-serve basis according to the following award levels: preschool: $250, K-8th: $750, 9th -11th: $1,000. If awards are available, mid-year transfer students will be eligible for a prorated award based on the quarter of entry. Separate forms must be completed for each student (as opposed to per family). Recipients are also eligible to receive additional need-based assistance through the Bishop’s Scholarship Fund and local school scholarship programs

Welcome Scholarship Application

West Catholic has an offering of scholarships that students can apply for in addition to our tuition assistance through SMART Aid.  All scholarship applications are due by Wednesday January 3, 2018.

The scholarship and tuition grant opportunities listed below allow students to aspire, advance and achieve in the classroom and beyond. Please review the criteria for each scholarship and choose the scholarship(s) for which you would like to apply.

Scholarship and grant award notifications will be mailed the beginning of February.

You may download an application for these scholarships by clicking on the coordinating scholarship application for each section. You may also contact the West Catholic High School Office at 616-233-5900 to receive a copy by mail.

General Criteria for Scholarships

  • All families must complete the SMART Aid form provided by West Catholic to be eligible for a name-endowed scholarship.
  • Student essays must be 250-500 words, typed and double spaced.
  • The scholarship selection committee shall be comprised of the Principal of West Catholic high school and the Director of the Business Office of the Catholic Secondary Schools.
  • All scholarships are awarded directly to the student’s tuition account.
You may complete a Letter of Special Circumstances if applicable and send directly to the CSS Business office along with the scholarship application. These may be sent in for consideration of SMART Aid awards even if you are not applying for a scholarship.

West Catholic Scholarships

To Apply for Scholarships 

  • Complete and submit the Smart Aid form by December 1, 2017 to be considered for any scholarship.  (See instructions above.)
  • Print off the Scholarship application with the link below or pick up an application in the main office.
  • After completing the General Scholarship Application for the 2018-2019 school year, turn each one into the West Catholic High School main office no later than January 3, 2018.
  • *An individual scholarship application must be completed for each scholarship*

2018 – 2019 West Catholic Scholarship Application – Click Here

Scholarship Listing

Frank Diehl Legacy Scholarship

  • Must be a diligent student and maintain a GPA of 3.0 or higher
  • Must demonstrate a strong work ethic and commitment to others through community service and parish activities
  • A letter of recommendation from a teacher, mentor, pastor or advisor must accompany the application
  • Must submit an essay on what receiving this scholarship would mean to you
  • This is a one year scholarship – students must reapply each year
  • Must be a member of Holy Spirit Parish
  • Financial need will be considered
  • Open to freshman, sophomore, junior and senior students

Ronnell and Linda Denhof Scholarship Fund 

  • Open to one incoming high school freshman at West Catholic or Catholic Central
  • Financial Need is the primary consideration in awarding this scholarship.
  • Must be a registered member of Our Lady of Consolation Parish, Rockford, MI.
  • Must have demonstrated acceptable character and behavior
  • This is a one year scholarship

Tom Regan Memorial Scholarship 

This scholarship was set up in Memory of Thomas Regan, who was a senior at West Catholic (’89) when he passed away.
The scholarship will be  awarded to a current freshman at West Catholic who is dedicated to continue his/her education and can exhibit the same “free spirit” that Tom Regan had during his life.

  • A current West Catholic Freshman student who will be a Sophomore in the  2018-2019 school  year.
  • Academically good standing.
  • Exhibits a free-spirit and “coachable” attitude with a willingness to help others.
  • Write a one (1) page essay describing your qualifications for this scholarship.
  • Scholarship will be awarded at the end of the school year.

Thomas J. & Lois J. Kurdelski Ryan Family Scholarship

  • Awarded to incoming sophomore, junior, and senior West Catholic students each year who demonstrate financial need, leadership and a strong interest in science.
  • Students interested in applying to and attending Michigan State University will receive special consideration.
  • Students awarded the Ryan Scholarship will need to reapply each year they attend West Catholic and must meet the criteria in order to carry the scholarship into the following year.
  • Financial need will be a primary consideration.
  • Students must demonstrate leadership/talent and interest in science.
  • Student must hold a set cumulative GPA that increases each school year.
    • Start of Sophomore Year            3.0
    • Start of Junior Year                 3.2
    • Start of Senior Year                       3.4 
  • Student must apply for scholarships through the guidance office by January 2, 2018 of their Freshman, sophomore and junior year and complete the following:

Grace (Bono) Slott Endowed Scholarship

  • Freshman student(s) enrolling at West Catholic High School
    • Good standing at present school; an applicant must be of good character, and have demonstrated consistent respect for authority.
    • Outstanding attendance record.
    • Must have maintained a 3.0 (B) grade point average in grade school.
  • Sophomore, Junior and Senior student(s) currently enrolled at West Catholic High School:
    • The applicant must be of good character and have demonstrated consistent respect for authority.
    • Outstanding attendance record.
    • Must maintain a 3.0 (B) grade point average at time of application.
    • All applicants must write a two (2) page essay explaining why you feel you qualify for financial assistance.
    • Financial need will be of primary consideration.

The Kluting Family Scholarship

  • Financial need is a primary consideration to apply for this scholarship.
  • This scholarship is open to 9th, 10th, 11th and 12th grade students.
  • It is a one-year scholarship. Recipients may re-apply each year, however.
  • The applicant must be a member of Holy Spirit Parish
  • The applicants must show a strong educational interest and dedication to learning.
  • Applicant must have acceptable character and behavior.
  • Applicants must demonstrate leadership through academic achievements at Holy Spirit and West Catholic and by volunteering in community activities in the greater Grand Rapids area.
    • Please list all academic achievements received at Holy Spirit and West Catholic High School.
    • Please list activities that you have been associated with in grade school and high school (seminars, workshops, books read).
    • Please list all volunteering experiences in the greater Grand Rapids area.
    • A One (1) page letter of recommendation from a teacher, mentor, administrator, pastor or advisor must accompany the application.
    • The applicants must have a cumulative 3.0 or higher GPA in order to apply for this scholarship.
    • The scholarship will be awarded directly to the student’s tuition account. No money will be given to the student or their family.

Bertram Family Scholarship

Description and Criteria of Gift:

  • Financial need is a primary consideration to apply for this scholarship.
  • This scholarship is open to 9th, 10th, 11th and 12th grade students.
  • It is a one-year scholarship. Recipients may re-apply each year however.
  • The applicant must be a member of Holy Spirit Parish
  • The applicants must show a strong educational interest and dedication to learning.
  • Applicant must have acceptable character and behavior.
  • Applicants must demonstrate leadership through academic achievements at Holy Spirit and West Catholic by volunteering in community activities in the great Grand Rapids area.
    • Please list all academic achievements received at Holy Spirit and West Catholic High School.
    • Please list activities that you have been associated with in grade school and high school (seminars, workshops, books read.)
    • Please list all volunteering experiences in the Greater Grand Rapids area.
    • A one (1) page letter of recommendation from a  teacher, mentor, administrator, pastor or advisor must accompany the application.
    • The applicants must have a cumulative 3.0 or higher GPA in order to apply for this scholarship.
    • The scholarship will be awarded directly to the student’s tuition account.  No money will be given to the student or their families.

Joanne Harwood Angel Scholarship Fund

Description and Criteria of Gift:

  • Eligible candidates are incoming 9th through 12th grade West Catholic High School students.
  • Based on financial need.
  • Must write an essay that answers: “Why is it important that you continue your education at West Catholic High School?”
  • Must have consistently demonstrated the effort and desire to reach their full educational potential.
  • Must have demonstrated to be of good character and with consistent respect for authority.
  • Must be willing to reimburse the scholarship funds if and when the student reaches the financial capabilities to do so.

Msgr. Charles D. Brophy Scholarship

Description and Criteria of gift:

  • The scholarship is available to enrolled students at West Catholic and Catholic Central with preference going to students from St. Jude parish.
  • Financial need will be a primary consideration.
  • A minimum of one scholarship should be awarded each year.
  • All applicants must write a minimum of a two (2) page essay describing why the scholarship will make a positive difference in your educational endeavors.

Rev. James C. Kowalski Scholarship Fund

Description and Criteria of Gift:

  • The scholarship is available to enrolled students at West Catholic and Catholic Central.
  • Financial need will be a primary consideration.
  • A minimum of one scholarship should be awarded each year per high school.
  • All applicants must write a minimum of a two (2) page essay describing why the scholarship will make a positive difference in your  educational endeavors.

St. Peter Claver Scholarship

Description and Criteria of Gift:

  • For Freshman student(s) enrolling at West Catholic High School:
    • Must be in good standing at present school; the applicant must have a good character and has shown consistent respect for authority.
    • Outstanding attendance record.
    • Must have maintained a 3.0 (B) grade point average in grade school.
  • Sophomore, Junior and Senior student(s) currently enrolled at West Catholic High School:
    • The applicant must have a good character and has shown consistent respect for authority
    • Outstanding attendance record.
    • Must maintain a 3.0 (B) grade point average at time of application.
  • All applicants must write a two (2) page essay explaining what you see as interesting and important about the life of St. Peter Claver.
  • The scholarship is designed to provide for students of Spanish or African American descent who can demonstrate financial need and meet the above academic standards. In the event that students of these descents are not available or cannot meet these standards, then the award can be made to any student of any other descent who would otherwise qualify for the scholarship.

Reynolds-Elderkin Family Scholarship

  • Scholarship will be awarded to one incoming freshman student at West Catholic and one at Catholic Central each year
  • Financial need is a primary consideration
  • Applicant must have maintained a 2.0 GPA /C average in 8th grade
  • Applicant must have completed a minimum of 20 hours of community service in the 8th grade.
  • Must have two letters of reference  (from teachers, church leaders, etc.)

Czerney Szoka Scholarship Fund

Freshman student(s) enrolling at West Catholic High School:

  • Good standing at present school; the applicant must have a good character and has shown consistent respect for authority.
  • Outstanding attendance record.
  • Must have maintained a 3.0 GPA (B) in grade school.
  • An essay not to exceed three (3) pages explaining how you and your  family have followed the values promoted by St. Thomas Aquinas:
    • Prayer
    • Study
    • Community
    • Service
  • Financial need will be a primary consideration.
  • Must have completed 20 hours of community or church service in the eighth grade.

Douglas and Arlene Lillis Scholarship

  • West Catholic and Catholic Central incoming Freshmen.
  • Not financially based.
  • Interest in Fine Arts, especially Choir and/or Band.
  • Participates in Christian service activities.
  • Involved in extracurricular activities.
  • Minimum GPA of 3.0.
  • Write a two (2) page essay to answer: “How can Catholic Central/West Catholic High School stimulate my faith?”

Ed Wagner Tuition Assistance Fund

  • Awarded to incoming Freshman at West Catholic High School.
  • Financial need will be of primary consideration.
  • 60% of scholarship money is to be awarded to C students; 40% of scholarship money is to be awarded to A-B students.
  • Must complete two (2) page (250 word minimum) essay describing how you have overcome or are overcoming obstacles or challenges in your personal life. Explain why this scholarship will make a positive difference in the quality of your life.
  • If no applicant meets the criteria in the given year, then the allowed spendable dollars may be used for the General Tuition Assistance Fund.

Patrick and Jacqueline Murphy Endowed Scholarship

  • This scholarship is to provide needs-based tuition assistance to incoming freshman, sophomore, and juniors students attending West Catholic High School.
  • Financial need is of primary consideration. This scholarship may be used to assist the same student with tuition assistance for all four (4) years he/she attends West Catholic if a financial need persists and the family states its financial case in the annual scholarship application process.
  • The scholarship will be awarded to one (1) student attending West Catholic High School on an annual basis.
  • The student must have a cumulative 2.5 GPA – C+ average in order to apply for this scholarship. The student must provide a letter showing proof of this 2.5 – C+ average by sending in a copy of their report card from the previous year or a letter from their school.
  • Two (2) letters (from teachers, parish priest, neighbors, etc.) explaining why they feel the student should be considered for this scholarship must accompany the application.
  • All students applying for the Patrick and Jacqueline Murphy Endowed Scholarship must complete fifteen (15) hours of community or church service on an annual basis. Documentation from the agency that you performed your community/church service with must be attached to the application.
  • All applications must be of good character and have demonstrated a consistent respect for authority.
  • Scholarships will be awarded directly to the student’s tuition account. No money will be given to the student or their families.

The Reilly Family Scholarship

  • This scholarship is to provide needs-based tuition assistance to incoming freshman, sophomore, and junior students attending Grand Rapids Catholic Central or West Catholic High
  • Financial need is of primary consideration. This scholarship may be used to assist the same student with tuition assistance for all four (4) years he/she attends Grand Rapids Catholic Central/West Catholic if a financial need persists and the family states it financial case in the annual scholarship application process.
  • The scholarship will be awarded to one (1) student attending Grand Rapids Catholic Central and one student attending West Catholic High School on an annual basis.
  • The student must have a cumulative 2.5 GPA – C+ average in order to apply for this scholarship. The student must provide a letter showing proof of this 2.5 C+ average by sending in a copy of their report card from the previous year or a letter from their school.
  • Two letters (from teachers, parish priest, neighbors, etc.) explaining why they feel the student should be considered for a scholarship must accompany the application.
  • All students applying for the Reilly Family Scholarship must have completed fifteen (15) hours of community or church service on an annual basis. Documentation for the agency that you performed your community/church service with must be attached to the scholarship application.
  • All applicants must be of good character and have demonstrated a consistent respect for authority.
  • Scholarships will be awarded directly to the student’s tuition account. No money will be given to the students or their families.

The Robert and Larita Stephanak Scholarship

This scholarship is to provide needs-based tuition assistance to incoming freshman, sophomore, and junior students attending West Catholic High School.

  • Financial need is of primary consideration. If a financial need persists and the family states its financial case in the annual application process, this scholarship can be used by the same student for tuition assistance for all four years.
  • The family/student must be a registered member of a parish within the diocese of Grand Rapids. Proof of registration must accompany the scholarship application.
  • The student must have a cumulative 2.5 GPA in order to apply for this scholarship. Proof of this GPA, in the form of their previous year’s report card or a letter from the school, must accompany the scholarship application.
  • Two (2) letters (from teachers, parish priest, neighbors, etc.) explaining why they feel the student should be considered for a scholarship must accompany the application.
  • All students applying for The Robert and Larita Stephanak Scholarship must have completed fifteen (15) hours of community service on an annual basis. Documentation from the agency where the community/church service was performed must be included with the scholarship application.
  • All applicants must be of good character and have demonstrated a consistent respect for authority

Michael G. Cherrette Memorial Scholarship

  • This scholarship is to provide needs-based tuition assistance to incoming 9th, 10th & 11th graders attending West Catholic High School. A scholarship with a minimum value of $1,000 will be awarded to at least one (1) student annually. Additional scholarships and/or higher value scholarships may be awarded dependent upon the amount of funds available for scholarships and the applications submitted.
  • Financial need is of primary consideration. If a financial need persists and the family states its financial case in the annual application process, this scholarship can be used by the same student for tuition assistance for all four years.
  • The student must have a cumulative 2.5 GPA. Proof of GPA must be, in the form of the previous year’s report card or a letter from the school, must accompany the scholarship application.
  • Two (2) letters (from teachers, parish priests, neighbors, etc…) explaining why they feel the student should be considered for this scholarship.
  • Must have completed 15 hours of community service as a 9th grader, 20 hours of community service as a 10th grader and 30 hours of community service as a 11th Documentation from the agency where the community / church service was performed must be included.
  • All applicants must be of good character and have demonstrated a consistent respect for authority
  • Mr. Cherrette was the boys & girls golf coach at West Catholic for many years and he taught the benefits and value of sportsmanship to his teams. The candidates for this scholarship must write a two (2) page essay not to exceed 500 words, explaining their understanding of the word Sportsmanship and how it has impacted your life. Sportsmanship transcends athletics – the benefit of being a “good sport” can be used on a day-to-day basis.
  • Elements of Sportsmanship
  1. Integrity
  2. Humility
  3. Cooperation
  4. Fairness
  5. Kindness
  6. Honor

Please incorporate these six (6) topics in your essay

Think carefully about this statement as it is a critical part of the selection process.

Bob & Pat Misner Tuition Scholarship

  • Awardees must have an accumulative 2.5 GPA, or a recommendation from the counseling department.
  • Student must be going into 10th, 11th, or 12th grade at West Catholic
  • Awardees need to submit a letter from a responsible adult explaining why they feel they should be considered for the scholarship.
  • Scholarship applicants must have fulfilled their high school required community service requirements for the year.
  • Applicants must be respected by the teachers, students and administration of West Catholic High School in the opinion of the principal.
  • Awardees should be involved in school activities outside of the classroom and should be a loyal supporter of West Catholic.
  • Applicants must write an essay (not to exceed 400 words) on how West Catholic has helped make them a better person academically, socially and religiously.


Kathleen (Rasch) Pavlovic Scholarship, Future Educators, ESTABLISHED 2014

  • A West Catholic student who will be a Junior or Senior in the 2018-2019 school  year.
  • Students must have a desire to study and work in education.
  • Students must qualify for financial need.
  • Must have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 at the time of application.
  • Must complete a 1 page essay to include the following:Understanding that plans and college majors may change as you advance through college, in one page, explain why you are interested in the educational field.  Who or what inspired you to want to be a teacher?

West Catholic Band Boosters Scholarship

  • Incoming Juniors at West Catholic High School.
  • Letter of recommendation from Band Director.
  • Must maintain a minimum of a 2.8 GPA.
  • Financial need is a strong consideration.
  • Must complete current academic year in band.
  • Must write a two (2) page essay describing:
    • What being involved in music means to you (in general, and at West Catholic High School).
    • How the West Catholic music program has impacted your family.

David M. Seamon “Leadership” Scholarship

  • Non-endowed; managed by the Foundation for Catholic Secondary Education for West Catholic and Catholic Central.
  • Current Juniors entering their Senior year.
  • Must demonstrate leadership in school and in the community.
  • Based on financial need.
  • Write a two (2) page essay describing your interest in Catholic education and your qualifications for this scholarship.

Francis J. Geary Scholarship

  • Non-endowed; managed by the Foundation for Catholic Secondary Education for West Catholic and Catholic Central.
  • Current Juniors entering their Senior year.
  • Financial need is a consideration.
  • Write a two (2) page essay reflecting on the nature of the “whole person”.
  • Not exclusively an academic award. It is an award that recognizes a blend of academic effort; loyalty to family and friends; service to the school and the community; and respect for other people and their views.

Scholarships for Graduating Seniors

Frank and Mary Hernes Memorial Scholarship for Graduating Seniors

For Graduating Seniors from Catholic Central or West Catholic who will be attending a two (2) year or four (4) year college

  • Minimum of 3.0 GPA
  • NOT BASED ON FINANCIAL NEED
  • Minimum hours required for community service according to Student Handbook.
  • Must respect authority, obey school rules and maintain a high attendance record.
  • Be involved in an extracurricular school activity
  • Write a 250 word essay explaining how the Catholic education you have received at Catholic Central or West Catholic high school has prepared you for college and the secular world you will encounter.

Scholarships Through Additional Sources

Alan & Margaret Ryan Scholarship for Catholic High School Education

  •     Student is an 8th grader at a Catholic school located in Kent County and will be entering 9th grade at West Catholic.
  •     Applicant must have a minimum academic average of B or above and have financial need.
  •    Applicant demonstrates interest in attending Aquinas College for post-secondary education.
  •     Application will be linked to CSS and GRCF website in January  and due April 1.
  •     Click here for the application:  Alan R. Ryan Scholarship Application