Can I lose my scholarship because I got pregnant?
Scholarship policies can vary widely depending on the organization offering them, so it’s important to consult the terms and conditions of your specific scholarship.
Many scholarships are awarded based on academic performance or other criteria unrelated to personal life events, so becoming pregnant may not impact your scholarship. Becoming pregnant does not erase your excellent grades, compelling essays, athletic achievements, or any other qualifications that may have earned you a scholarship!
Many institutions also have provisions for medical circumstances. Since Title IX protects students from discrimination based on sex, pregnancy-related medical conditions must be treated the same as any other illness, injury, or temporary disability.
In regard to athletic scholarships, the NCAA states, “Once an athletics award has been made (typically for one-year) it cannot be withdrawn due to pregnancy, suspected pregnancy, parenthood or termination of pregnancy. As long as a student athlete remains in good standing academically and does not withdraw voluntarily, a pregnant student-athlete’s scholarship is protected from being reduced or withdrawn in a number of ways.” In addition, “Consistent with non-discrimination principles, a pregnant student-athlete is entitled to keep her scholarship under the same NCAA bylaws that allow an injured or ill student-athlete to keep receiving his or her award.”*
Title IX and NCAA laws ensure that pregnant students have the same educational opportunities as any other student, including scholarship and financial aid opportunities. If a scholarship was revoked solely due to pregnancy, it would likely constitute unlawful discrimination. If you believe your scholarship is being unfairly impacted by your pregnancy, it’s important to speak with your college’s financial aid office or scholarship provider. As a pregnant student, you have many legal protections!
If you’re a pregnant college student who’s worried about keeping your scholarship, staying in school, or navigating the uncharted journey ahead, we designed a program just for you. The Avi Project provides resources and support throughout this difficult time, and helps you create the bright future you deserve. Please call or text us at (720) 386-6009 to speak with one of our team members - we’re available 24/7.
*From: A Review of Federal Law and NCAA Rules Impacting Treatment of Pregnant and Parenting Student-Athletes