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Negro Spiritual Scholarship Foundation

Assisting high school students make a successful transition from high school to a college campus is one of The “Negro Spiritual” Scholarship Foundation’s central missions. The Foundation not only sponsors annual competitions, but they also assist Grady-Rayam Prize and Carl Maultsby Prize participants in their college selection and offer mentorship to help them gain admission.

The Foundation keeps track of the progress of their Grady-Rayam winners since it requires the winners to be enrolled at an accredited college or university within two (2) years after graduating high school before the tuition grants can be awarded.

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Award Information:

Amount: $100 to $3,000
Number of Scholarship Awards: up to 22 awards are given each year
Start of Application Process: August 30
Deadline: December 6
GPA: Check official website for more information
Major: The Foundation does not require its applicants and members to pursue a specific major/course
Eligible Students: High school juniors and seniors who are of Afro-ethnic descent

Additional Requirement:

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– Must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents
– Must currently be attending an accredited educational institution in the state of Florida
– Must be permanently residing in the state of Florida
Previous winners or award recipients may not re-apply for the competition Negro Spiritual Scholarship Foundation


• Carl Maultsby Prize – is an annual competition done to assess skill in playing keyboard (classical, jazz, or organ piano) among Florida Students.
• Upper Division – for high school juniors and seniors
• Lower Division – for college freshmen, sophomores, and juniors. This competition includes composition skills.
• Grady-Rayam Prize – a vocal competition in sacred music that’s performed by high school seniors and juniors.

Application Process:

1. Visit
2. Go to the “Competitions” page and click on the competition you wish to enter
3. Find and click on the link for the online application form
4. Complete your form and click on “Submit”

Note: Students who are applying for the Carl Maultsby Prize may download and print the application form and mail them to The “Negro Spiritual” Scholarship Foundation before the deadline.

Additional application requirements for Carl Maultsby Prize competition:

Applicants are required to submit a DVD recording with audio on which they themselves must play any set of Prelude and Fugue from The Well-Tempered Clavichord of J.S. Bach with a difficulty rating equivalent to Intermediate level 6 for high school students and Level 8 for college students. In addition, they must also play one other annotated piano composition. Total playing time must not exceed 14 minutes.

Aside from the DVD recording, upper division applicants must submit both written and audio transcripts of original music that is based on an assigned American Negro spiritual tune in a setting for solo wind or string instrument with a piano or organ accompaniment.

Performance Criteria for Grady-Rayam Prize competition:

• Technique based upon tone quality, intonation, and vocal production
• Musicianship/Artistry based on inflection, diction, rhythm, energy, authenticity, and memorization
• Stage Presence based upon posture, sincerity of delivery, and demeanor

Contact Information:

The “Negro Spiritual” Scholarship Foundation
P.O. Box 547728
Orlando, FL 32854-7728
Phone: (407) 481-6773
Email: [email protected]

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