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12 wacky and unusual scholarships

If you're worried your C student will never win a scholarship, it may be time to learn a little duck calling. Here are 12 unusual scholarships being offered this year -- no 4.0 required.

By MSN Money Partner Apr 24, 2014 12:45PM

This post comes from Maryalene LaPonsie at partner site Money Talks News.

Money Talks News on MSN MoneyNot every college scholarship is intended for the high school valedictorian.

In fact, there are a whole slew of scholarships out there with specific and strange requirements that have nothing to do with great grades or financial need. If your name is Edna and you can ride a unicycle while singing "The Star-Spangled Banner," chances are there is a scholarship program custom-made for you.

OK, that may be an exaggeration. But here are 12 scholarships that run off the beaten path.

Zombies and Zolp with a side of sheep
Intrigued? If you think you have the right stuff, we've even included a link so you'll know where to apply.

Scholarship sponsor: Tall Clubs International.

Amount: $1,000.
Who's eligible: Score one for the vertically endowed in the audience. This scholarship is available only to men at least 6 foot 2 inches tall and women at least 5 foot 10 inches in height who are younger than 21 and entering their first year in college.

Scholarship sponsor: Little People of America.
Amount: $250 to $1,000.
Who's eligible: Who says you have to be tall? Sometimes, it pays to be short. The Little People of America offers annual scholarships to its members who are diagnosed with dwarfism, as well as to their immediate family members.

Scholarship sponsor:
Amount: $1,500.
Who's eligible: Anyone age 13 or older can submit an essay for this scholarship. The deep and meaningful subject? What flavor ice cream would you be and why.

Scholarship sponsor: American Fire Sprinkler Association.
Amount: $2,000.
Who's eligible: The American Fire Sprinkler Association has happened upon a novel way to educate the masses about fire sprinkler systems. Its scholarship program asks high school seniors to read an essay exploring the (always riveting) world of fire sprinklers. Then students take an open-book test about the essay for a chance to win a scholarship.

Scholarship sponsor: Chick and Sophie Major Memorial Duck Calling Contest.
Amount: $2,000.
Who's eligible: High school students who are in touch with their inner duck can enter this calling contest. The four with the best quack waddle away with money for college.

Graduation cap © Brand X Pictures, PhotolibraryScholarship sponsor: Duck Tape.
Amount: $10,000.
Who’s eligible: If duck calling isn't your thing, maybe you'd like a scholarship involving a different type of duck. High school students with the best prom attire -- made from Duck brand duct tape, of course -- can win up to $10,000 in scholarship money.

Scholarship sponsor: National Wild Turkey Association.
Amount: Up to $10,000.
Who's eligible: If you're hunting for bigger game, you might want to move up to the National Wild Turkey Association's scholarship program. Members of the association who have an active hunting license can apply for local and state scholarships as well as the national prize.

Scholarship sponsor: American Sheep Industry Association.
Amount: $1,500.
Who's eligible: We didn't know the field of study even existed, but sheep-related studies have their own scholarship program too. The Sheep Heritage Foundation Memorial Scholarship is open to graduate students keen to explore the world of sheep and their water-resistant wool.

Scholarship sponsor:
Amount: $2,000.
Who's eligible: You only have to be 13 years old to submit your essay on how you would ride out the zombie apocalypse and avoid the lunch lady who wants to eat your braaaaaiiiiins.

Scholarship sponsor: Vegetarian Resource Group.
Amount: $5,000.
Who's eligible: Graduating high school students who have promoted vegetarianism in their school and/or community are eligible for this award. Among other things, the applicants are asked who they know in the vegetarianism movement.

Scholarship sponsor: Gatling Grant.
Amount: Varies.
Who’s eligible: Is your last name Gatlin or Gatling? Boy, oh boy, does North Carolina State University have a scholarship for you. Only students with those last names can apply for the Gatling Grant.

Scholarship sponsor: Loyola University.
Amount: Varies.
Who’s eligible: Did your last name mean you were always the last one called in elementary school? That Z name might come in handy if it's Zolp, you're Catholic and planning to attend Loyola University. In that case, you can apply for the Zolp Scholarship.

Those are a few of the offbeat scholarships available. If you know of another one, share it in the comments below.

More from Money Talks News

Apr 24, 2014 1:44PM
How about a scholarship fund for being a simple middle class or lower middle class American who paid their taxes? No non tax paying illegal's or lazy welfare recipients, included.
Apr 24, 2014 5:32PM
Don't forget the little-known Al-Mansour Scholarship, that helps foreign born muslims become U.S. politicians.
Apr 24, 2014 5:00PM
Dixieland - although I agree with having scholarships for the rest of us - we have to be mindful that in this screwed up economy we're in - we are ALL a few checks away from being welfare recipients.  Never knock those in need. :)
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