always a Bowen Scholar.
Supporting students in Indiana for over 20 years
The Bowen Family Foundation envisions a day when educational opportunities are available equally, to all people, regardless of gender, race, creed or ability to pay. With the right education, people are empowered to secure good jobs, reach their potential, and improve their socioeconomic standing.
The Foundation was the brainchild of Robert and Terry Bowen in the early 1990s, with a mission to give back and pay it forward, and a purpose to improve the lives of others. Specifically, the focus was to empower underserved populations in Indianapolis, Indiana, by providing scholarships to traditional and non-traditional students, to include older candidates wishing to return to college. Today the Foundation is proud of its year over year growth in scholarships granted, positively impacting the possibilities, livelihoods and outcomes of many.
In the program’s infancy, the Foundation partnered with a variety of institutions including vocational high school programs, and barber colleges, all in the metropolitan Indianapolis area. As time progressed, it moved into partnerships with higher education, to aid underserved students in earning an Associate degree of their choosing.
According to Founder Bob Bowen, “The decision to establish the Bowen Family Foundation has been one of the finest decisions we have made in our entire lives. The relationships we have established, all the engagements we have helped along the way, and the excitement we have created has been so rewarding. Giving back is life’s greatest gift.”
The first higher ed partnership was with Ivy Tech of Central Indiana, which marked the beginning of the largest partnership success story to date. This was an intentionally designed partnership where Bowen Scholars are part of a consort where team work, tutoring, life and academic mentoring and computer labs are included in the program. Partnerships have grown over time, to include Associate and Bachelor degree programs at: Ivy Tech Terre Haute, Indiana University, Purdue University, Marian University, University of Indianapolis, University of Evansville, and Tuskegee in Alabama, all with similar mentoring programs in place.
Our wraparound services
The challenge of succeeding through college does not end by providing tuition assistance. We provide wraparound services inside and outside of the classroom, enabling our Bowen Scholars to thrive.
We provide financial support to enable students to achieve better work / school balance.
One on one meetings are held with each student three times per semester. Topics of discussion include academic status, personal finance management, accessing helpful resources and overall life balance.
The program is more than just funding. With a goal of building a small community within the larger university or college, Scholars identify and feel connected as a closer group.
At the end of each academic year, a celebration dinner will be held and attended by the Bowen Family. Recognition will be given to successful scholars as is appropriate.
Building brighter futures since 1994
We’ve fostered incredible success by providing more than 600 students with various scholarships. Here’s what some of them have to say.
Apply for scholarships directly through one of our college partners
Bowen Family Foundation, Inc. FAQ
Have questions about the Bowen Family Foundation, Inc.? Click the topics and tabs below to read through our Frequently Asked Questions. Please reference contact information for the institution of your interest for further questions.
What is the Bowen Family Foundation?
- The Bowen Family Foundation, Inc. was established in 1993 as a non-profit 501c3 organization.
What does the BFF Scholarship cover?
- The Bowen Family Foundation, Inc. provides scholarships to underrepresented individuals living in Marion County, Indiana and its surrounding counties. The scholarships are augmented with wrap around services to enhance the student’s experience and encourage retention. Participation in these wrap around services is a requirement of each student.
What are the requirements to be a BFF Scholar?
- Be a member of an underrepresented community
- Resident of Marion County and surrounding counties
- High School graduate or GED equivalent
- Maintain a 2.3 Cum GPA
- Completed FAFSA
- Preference given to financial need
- Any additional requirements set by partners
Who should I contact for more information?
- Contact our partners for further information on how to apply for a scholarship. Each partner has slightly different deadlines and requirements.
Am I eligible for Bowen Family Foundation Scholarships?
- Yes, if you are a member of an underrepresented community and meet the basic requirements of the foundation. Age is not a requirement. The Foundation has recipients of all ages.
How do I enroll in the Bowen Family Foundation?
- Contact our partners. They are your first line of information.