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Taco Bell Foundation helps put aspiring scholars through college every year with the Taco Bell Live Más Scholarship. 

With this scholarship, Taco Bell gives away millions of dollars every year to the most deserving students who wish to attend college. 

The best part about this college scholarship? It’s not like other more traditional ones you may find when searching for scholarships! 

Winners of the Live Más Scholarship don’t need perfect SAT scores or well-written essays. Instead, applicants submit a video describing what drives them and how higher education can help them pursue their passion. 

The Live Más Scholarship is a fun way to show off what you love through your creativity and earn a chance at winning some college funds along the way. 

Read on to learn more about the Taco Bell Live Más Scholarship, how to apply, and tips on perfecting your application. 

What Is the Taco Bell Live Más Scholarship?

The Live Más Scholarship is a financial award that the Taco Bell Foundation offers to approximately 100 students every year. 

The Live Más Scholarship falls into three different categories:

  • Restaurant Employees Program (only for Taco Bell employees)
  • For Non-Employees
  • Renewal Program (for previous scholarship winners)

Students may only enter under one Live Más Scholarship category per year. As an applicant, you will only be competing against individuals in your submission pool. 

No matter which program you enter, the Live Más Scholarship forgoes the traditional scholarship application process. The Taco Bell Foundation doesn’t consider your GPA, SAT scores, or written essays. Instead, it encourages students in different educational programs to send in a video essay.

The video essay should describe your passion. That’s the only requirement! While you must meet some technical qualifications, talking about your passion is the only creative obligation. 

How your video turns out is entirely up to you. The possibilities are endless, but here are a few ideas you can use for inspiration:

  • Act out an original monologue or recite a spoken word poem.
  • Showcase your latest invention or artistic creation.
  • Document a miniature tour of your community and highlight your service or involvement.

The Live Más Scholarship is free to apply. To register for your chance to win, you won’t have to dig any money out of your pocket. All it will take is a little time and effort to showcase your passion. 

Even if you don’t win on your first try, keep applying and demonstrating your passion every year you’re eligible. It won’t cost anything, so there’s nothing to lose. 

One of the nice things about the Live Más Scholarship is that winners receive ongoing support from the Taco Bell Foundation. This organization won’t just write you a check and send you on your way. It creates an ongoing collaboration and partner. 

The Taco Bell Foundation offers many opportunities and connections that students can use to pursue their passion. 

What Does the Taco Bell Live Más Scholarship Provide?

The total amount that the Taco Bell Foundation provides varies every year. For 2021, the organization gave away $7 million. The individual awards typically range from $5,000 to $25,000. 

If you win the Live Más Scholarship, you may use the funds at any accredited two- or four-year:

  • University
  • College
  • Vocational-technical school
  • Trade school program

You may use the scholarship funds to cover your program’s tuition. You can also use the money to pay for qualified college education expenses like required fees, course-specific textbooks, and other supplies. 

How to Know If You’re Eligible for the Taco Bell Live Más Scholarship

When you think of a scholarship provided by Taco Bell Corp, you may think it’s only open to employees. It isn’t true! You don’t need to work at Taco Bell to be eligible to apply. This scholarship is open to both employees and non-employees.

To further determine your eligibility for the Live Más Scholarship, here are some requirements you must meet:

  • Age: You must be between the ages of 16 and 26. If you are a minor in your state, you must acquire a parent or guardian’s consent. 
  • Residency: You must live in the United States or the District of Columbia (D.C.) as of the last day of the scholarship application period for the program to which you’re applying. 
  • Educational program: You must be enrolled in or on-track to apply for a post-secondary educational program. These programs include a two- or four-year college, university, or vocational program. If you’re currently in high school, you can defer your Live Más Scholarship for up to one year before you go to college. 
  • Compliancy: All student applicants must comply with the Taco Bell Foundation during the application and award process. 
  • Winner status: If you won a Live Más Scholarship in the past, you cannot apply for any other Live Más Scholarship program besides the Renewal program. 

Application Steps for the Taco Bell Live Más Scholarship

If you meet the eligibility requirements, it’s time to apply for the Live Más Scholarship! 

During the specific program period you want to apply for, visit www.livemasscholarship.com. This website is where you will submit your video. 

Before you submit your video, you will follow the on-screen instructions on the site. These instructions will require you to fill out a form with your:

  • First and last name
  • Email address
  • Date of birth
  • Street address, city, state, and ZIP code
  • Phone number
  • Passion
  • Class status 
  • College/institution name (or the name of your intended institution)

If you are a minor, you will need to provide your parent or guardian’s email address and their written consent allowing you to apply for a Live Más Scholarship. 

After providing all this information, you will submit your video creation. In this video, you should talk about your passion. The Taco Bell Foundation states that you need to address these three questions in some way:

  1. What is your passion, and how are you currently chasing it?
  2. How will you use your passion to make a productive and unique change in the world?
  3. How will a college education help you pursue your passion and make a change?

According to the Taco Bell Foundation, the judges will consider passion, social impact, dedication & action, personal presentation, and educational goals when reviewing an eligible video. For the best chance at winning the Live Más Scholarship, keep these criteria in mind as you film and edit your submission. 

Your video needs to be at least 30 seconds long and cannot exceed two minutes. You can film it on a computer, tablet, phone, or any other MP4 camera capable of video production. To ensure you don’t have any issues uploading the final video, it should be no larger than 100 MB. 

You must submit your own application for the Live Más Scholarship. You may not collaborate with a friend or classmate. Even if they’re interested in the same passion or college program as you are, they must apply for a Live Más Scholarship separately. 

The Taco Bell Live Más Scholarship Annual Timeline

The Live Más Scholarship application period opens every year in the fall. The deadline to apply usually ends sometime between late January and early February. A student has about two months to create their video detailing their passion. 

For the 2021 scholarship, the scholarship application portal opened on November 17, 2020, and closed on January 20, 2021.

Based on former application cycles, here are the timeframes you can expect for the Live Más Scholarship:

  • November: The Live Más Scholarship application opens.
  • January: The Live Más Scholarship application closes.
  • January-May: The Taco Bell Foundation reviews each passion video it receives to narrow down the winners.
  • Mid-May: The Taco Bell Foundation announces the winners.
  • August-September: The Taco Bell Foundation disperses the scholarship funds (you may experience a slight delay based on the Live Más Scholarship amount and when you start your educational program).

To be fair to all applicants, the Taco Bell Foundation does not accept late applications. So, make sure to turn your video submission detailing your passion in on time. 

Tips and Strategies to Help You Win the Taco Bell Live Más Scholarship

The Live Más Scholarship is open to applications between 16 – 26 years living in the U.S. or District of Columbia. How will you set yourself apart from other students?

Follow these tips and strategies that will help you and your passion stand out among the rest! 

Start Recording & Editing Your Video Clips Early

The application portal for the Live Más Scholarship may open in November of every year, but you don’t have to wait until then to start gathering footage. The earlier you start filming, the more content you’ll have. 

Don’t settle for a video that consists of last-minute clips thrown together. The more footage you gather, the more accurately you can portray your passion. 

Give yourself time to play around with different video ideas. Some students create an animation or short film, while others submit a simple testimonial. All of these ideas can be effective depending on how you execute them. 

Once you send in your final product for the Live Más Scholarship, you can’t delete or edit your submission. Make sure you’re 100% satisfied before you hit the “Submit” button. 

Don’t Let Nerves Stop You from Applying

Showcasing your passion can be vulnerable. Some doubts may go through your head: What if the judges don’t agree with or believe in me? What if they think my goals are short-lived or insignificant?

Don’t assume you have to excel at your passion. Some hopeful applicants shy away from applying because they aren’t experts in their respective fields. As long as you fully believe in yourself, the judges will see the potential in your passion and what you strive to achieve. 

Don’t Stress Over Your Video Production

The Taco Bell Foundation isn’t expecting a Hollywood-quality video submission. Don’t worry if you don’t have an advanced editing program or Tom Hanks’ camera presence. A submission can even be an all-in-one take if you execute it right. As long as you portray confidence and passion, you will have a good chance at securing a Live Más Scholarship.

With this said, you should still follow videography basics. Shoot your footage in bright lighting and a quiet environment. This way, the judges can focus on what you have to say. Articulate your message with intonation and expressiveness and avoid sounding like you’re reading from a script. 

Discuss Future Projects

The Taco Bell Foundation wants to hear about what you have in store. Talk about future projects that excite you. Your energy and enthusiasm will make you glow in the face of the judges and increase your chances of winning a Live Más Scholarship. 

Understand the Legal & Copyright Requirements

When you’re applying for the Live Más Scholarship, you don’t want to get disqualified on a technicality. 

You cannot include any personal identification information like an email address, street address, or license plate number. 

Make sure you have full permission to upload your content. For example, you cannot include the following elements without explicit permission:

  • Music
  • Logos
  • Products
  • Brands
  • Artwork

Even something as innocent as a t-shirt with the Nike swoosh can disqualify you from securing a Live Más Scholarship, so be aware of what you’re filming.

Planning to film your video and include some of your friends as actors? That’s acceptable, but you need to have their approval first. 

Be Mindful When Making Your Video

Whatever your passion is, we’re sure you have a lot to say. While you should speak freely, you need to keep it professional. 

Here are some general guidelines to follow that will keep you in the running for a Live Más Scholarship:

  • Don’t defame or misrepresent any companies, products, or people.
  • Don’t promote alcohol, tobacco, illegal drugs, firearms, or any unsafe activities.
  • Don’t make suggestive or sexually explicit remarks.
  • Don’t be derogatory or hateful towards any race, religion, ethnicity, gender, age group, college, or profession.

Study Up

Your application to the Taco Bell Live Más Scholarship should be wholly unique. It should reflect who you are, your passion, and what you want to achieve by going to college. However, this doesn’t mean you can’t look to past applicants for inspiration. 

Visit the Taco Bell Foundation’s blog to read about past winners and their passion. Learn what other students did to wow the Live Más Scholarship judge panel. 

Conclusion

The Live Más Scholarship is fun to apply for, and it lets you show off your passion. All winners will receive scholarship funds to pursue their college education and ongoing support from an organization that wants to see students succeed.

No matter what time of year it is, you can start working on your video submission for this scholarship. Get filming for a chance to fund your college education!