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The 2018 Children's Defense Fund-Texas Beat the Odds® Scholarship Application
Submission Deadline: 5:00 p.m. on Thursday, November 30, 2017.

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If you have questions about your application, please contact


For consideration in the CDF-Texas Beat the Odds scholarship, an applicant must:

  • Be a current high school senior in a Houston area (also includes: Dayton/Liberty county) public, charter, or alternative school;
  • Have overcome significant adversity such as, but not limited to, poverty, disability, homelessness or abuse;
  • Demonstrate participation in school activities, community organizations, employment, and/or service leadership;
  • Have a current G.P.A. of 3.0 or higher;
  • Graduate by July 2018; and
  • Plan to attend college, university, or vocational school post graduation.

Beat the Odds scholarship applications are reviewed by CDF-Texas staff and a selection committee that reflects the professional and ethnic diversity of our community. We consider each applicant holistically and within the context of their academic achievement, personal circumstances, available support network, and commitment to service.


Winners will be interviewed and videotaped subjects of mini-documentaries to raise awareness about the challenges young people face. These mini-documentaries will be aired at the Beat the Odds Awards Luncheon in the Spring and posted online as part of CDF's YouTube library. Applicants must feel comfortable with sharing their stories publicly. 


Applicants for the Beat the Odds scholarship will be evaluated based upon:

  • An application form, which should tell the applicant's story, and include sufficient details to describe significant hardships/challenges faced, volunteer and service leadership experiences, and academics
  • An educator recommendation from a teacher who knows the applicant well
  • A community member recommendation from a mentor, employer, or counselor who knows the applicant well
  • A high school transcript

Notifications will be made January - March. Recipients will be honored at the spring CDF-Texas Beat the Odds Awards Luncheon. 

Questions: Please email