2020 Ruby’s Rainbow Scholarship Applications are now open!

~The 2020 Application Window Is Now Open!~

Submission Deadline: April 19, 2020

Scroll down to apply!

Welcome to our Scholarship Application Page!

Our goal for 2020 is to help as many people rockin’ that extra chromosome as we possibly can to go for their dreams of higher education and independence!

Please be sure to read the instructions carefully before filling out the application, and don’t hesitate to contact us through our website or email Liz@rubysrainbow.org with any questions. Note that Ruby’s Rainbow Scholarships range between $1,000 and $10,000 and must be utilized in full within one academic year.

We are excited to continue offering our online application option again this year, along with our PDF version! You can also print out the PDF version to use for reference or a rough draft, and then use the online version to type in your final answers, upload your supporting documents and submit.

We absolutely love learning about all the incredible things people with Down syndrome across the country are doing!! We look forward to hearing from and learning more about you!!

Application Instructions

(Please read carefully before starting the application process)

Please check out our Scoring Rubrics to learn more about what we are seeking in a strong 2020 Ruby’s Rainbow Scholarship Application!

Ruby’s Rainbow Scholarship and RE-APPLY Application Scoring Rubrics

These rubrics reflect the criteria that our Scoring Committee will use to evaluate all 2020 Ruby’s Rainbow Scholarship and RE-APPLY Applications.

We have also added videos to the Rubrics page that explain more about the scoring criteria our Scholarship Selection Committee will use to evaluate all 2020 scholarship applications!

Eligibility Requirements for Ruby’s Rainbow Scholarship

Filling out this application indicates that the applicant meets the following criteria:

  • This grant is for individuals with Down syndrome who are at least 18 years old, or who will turn 18 by July 1 of the application year.
  • The applicant has the desire and intent to enroll or continue enrollment in a post-secondary class or program that will enhance their life through employment, independent living or life skills, or interests in any other areas. (See qualifying programs, expenses and courses under “Scholarship Expense Criteria” below.)
  • Applicant will provide copies of high school diploma or equivalent (e.g., certificate of completion), high school transcript if graduating in the spring of this year, or acceptance to or current enrollment in a post-secondary program. Please see “Application Checklist” for other acceptable documents.
  • Individuals who have previously been awarded a Ruby’s Rainbow scholarship may now apply for another scholarship via the RE-APPLY Application. Please be sure you download or click the correct RE-APPLY Application form at the bottom of this page. DO NOT fill out the original application if you have previously been awarded a Ruby’s Rainbow Scholarship!

Scholarship Expense Criteria

  • Ruby’s Rainbow Scholarship funds must be applied toward tuition at a university, community college or post-secondary institution, including institutes of technology and vocational and trade schools; this includes certificate, degree and non-degree programs. Note that program must be located within the United States.
  • Scholarship funds can be used for housing, food or transportation ONLY if these costs are already included as part of the tuition fee. Separate payments will not be made for these accommodations.
  • Up to 10% of scholarship funds awarded may be used for textbooks and other coursework-related supplies if needed. In this case, a paid receipt must be provided to Ruby’s Rainbow for reimbursement.
  • Enrichment classes in the arts qualify for funding if they are certified programs. Examples of qualifying enrichment classes include painting or film production classes or workshops. Please email Liz@rubysrainbow.org with any questions regarding qualifying enrichment classes. At this time, classes based on physical activities do not qualify for funding (such as swimming, horseback riding and dance classes).

How to Apply

Scroll down to access the Scholarship Application or RE-APPLY Application below. (If you have never before been awarded a Ruby’s Rainbow Scholarship, please use the Scholarship Application. If you have been awarded a Ruby’s Rainbow Scholarship in the past, please use the RE-APPLY version of the application.)

You can apply online or download the PDF version of the application and submit it to Ruby’s Rainbow via email or USPS. Please be sure to read through all instructions carefully to ensure that you submit all required materials and that we receive everything on time and in the correct format!

Please don’t hesitate to reach out to Liz@rubysrainbow.org with any questions you may have after reviewing the application. We are so excited to learn more about you and your journey toward higher education, and we look forward to hearing from you!!


Once we receive your application, you will receive an email confirmation of receipt. If you do not receive a confirmation, please email Liz@rubysrainbow.org to make sure your application was received.

Once the application period has closed and scholarship determinations have been made, you will receive an email or letter notification to let you know whether we were able to award you a scholarship for this year. We intend to notify all applicants by early June.

Application Checklist

Please read this checklist carefully to be sure you have provided the required materials for a complete application. Anything received after the deadline will not be considered for review.

  • Completed and signed application (if using Application PDF, see pp. 5–12; online applications must be signed digitally within the online form)
  • Two letters of recommendation (ONLY TWO, please)
  • Parent/Guardian Information sheet, if applicable (initialed and signed in correct places)
  • High school diploma, transcript, certificate of completion, or other acceptable proof of enrollment/graduation status (see below for more info)
    • If applicant is still in high school, a current transcript or letter from an administrator to show enrollment and projected graduation date can be accepted. Applicants can apply while still in high school, but must be planning to graduate in the spring of the application year.
    • If applicant has graduated high school and already enrolled in a college or other post-secondary program, a college transcript, program acceptance letter or letter from program director is acceptable in lieu of high school diploma. These DO NOT have to be official documents; copies are acceptable.
  • Applicant Essay, no less than 100 words (required)
  • One or more photos of you (required)
  • Anything you feel will help us get to know you better! (optional) Examples include: Pictures, video, artwork, poetry, etc. (Please see acceptable forms of submissions under “Video and Extra Submissions,” Application PDF, p. 4, for more information.)
  • Parent Essay (optional) – We welcome ONE family member or assisting individual to submit their own essay about the applicant and their journey (in addition to the applicant’s own essay).
  • If applying for the Maudie’s, Warriors for Walt or Sully Family and Friends Scholarship Award, you must provide the estimated cost for tuition for one academic year. (This is not needed if applying for $5,000 or less.)

Application Guidelines

NOTE TO APPLICANTS: Please fill out the following form to the best of your abilities. We understand that you may need assistance from a parent, guardian or friend, but we want to read your own, individual responses to the following questions, so we can get a full picture of your accomplishments, goals and personality. Note that written responses are preferred, but audio-recorded responses are also acceptable.

NOTE TO PARENTS/GUARDIANS: We understand that some applicants need assistance with filling out this form. We do prefer to read applicants’ own, individual responses to the following questions, so we can get a full picture of their accomplishments, goals and personalities. Once the applicant has filled out as much as possible on their own, please feel free to add information where needed, and make a note in the space provided that the applicant received assistance with that section.

Although it is not required, we highly encourage applicants to send in “Something to Help Us Get to Know You Better” in addition to their completed application. You can always refer to our “Frequently Asked Questions” for ideas…or be creative!!

Again, we ask that each applicant fill out their application as independently as possible and to the best of their ability. We love to read applicants’ own, individual responses to the application questions so we can get a full picture of their accomplishments, goals and personality. Any individual assisting the applicant with the application process is encouraged to add additional information if they feel more is needed for the committee to gain a clearer vision of their loved one.

Applicant Essay Instructions (see Application PDF p. 10 for guidelines)

An Applicant Essay is required for your application to be complete. This should be no less than 100 words, should address the application questions on page 10 of the Application PDF, and can be typed or handwritten (or sent digitally in an audio file if needed).

NOTE: This essay should be written by the applicant, to the best of his/her abilities. If applicant is unable to address all of the above on his/her own, two essays may be submitted — one written by the applicant to the best of his/her abilities, and one by the parent/guardian.

Video and Extra Submissions

All videos and files submitted with the application should be less than five minutes in length. YouTube, Vimeo links or Movie files are preferred when sharing video submissions.

Please do not send disks or CDs, as all items submitted need to be shared electronically with the scholarship committee for review. Items in binders, books, etc., are difficult to scan and download, and we want to make sure we can share all application materials with our scholarship committee!! Furthermore, any application materials mailed to Ruby’s Rainbow will not be returned.

Thus, please do not send any physical materials, as they cannot be included in your application.

How to Submit Application


Once you have completed your online application and clicked “SUBMIT MY APPLICATION,” it will be sent automatically to the Ruby’s Rainbow Scholarship Committee for review, along with any extra application materials you provided during the online application process (e.g., uploaded photos, videos, essays, etc.).

Please note that you can save an unfinished application and complete it within a 30-day window.


Once your application PDF is complete, you can email the application and all supporting materials to Liz@rubysrainbow.org. Please enter applicant’s name in the email’s Subject line.

Applications can be sent in the following forms:

  1. Dropbox link (preferred)
  2. Shared via Google Drive (if you use this method, be sure whoever clicks the link will have access!!!)
  3. As a PDF/JPG attachment (or multiple attachments) in an email

Please review the above “Video and Extra Submissions” for guidelines on sending items other than the application.

Note: If sent via email, your application must be received by midnight (CST) on the deadline date.


Items received in the mail are scanned and downloaded into a Dropbox file for electronic review by our scholarship committee. As stated above, PLEASE DO NOT send anything through the mail in binders, books or CDs, as they cannot be included in your application!! You can provide links within the application to picture files, YouTube or Vimeo videos, etc., but please do not send any physical items. Also, please note that any items submitted will not be returned. If you need assistance with the application process, please do not hesitate to email Liz@rubysrainbow.org or call 512-879-7801.

Mail application to:

Ruby’s Rainbow
P.O. BOX 153095
Austin, TX 78715

Note: If application is sent via mail, it must be postmarked on or before the application deadline.

Apply Now!

If you have never before received a Ruby’s Rainbow Scholarship, start here!

Complete & Submit Online Application
Complete the Ruby’s Rainbow Scholarship Application online and automatically submit it to us when you’re done!

Complete Online Application

Print & Mail / Email
Download a printable PDF, complete the Scholarship Application document offline, and mail or email it to us.

Download Application PDF

Previous Rockin’ Recipients – Re-Apply Here!

If you have received a Ruby’s Rainbow Scholarship in the past and would like to apply for another scholarship, please use one of the options below!

RE-APPLY Online Application
Apply for a new Ruby’s Rainbow Scholarship using our online application.

Complete Re-apply Application

Print & Mail / Email
Download a printable PDF, complete the RE-APPLY Scholarship Application document offline, and mail or email it to us.

Download Re-apply Application PDF