A scholarship is a financial grant or payment provided to support education, given by a school or other funding entity or institution to a student on the basis of academic excellence or any other achievement metrics.
Many still believe in the merits of education as a way to improve life. Unfortunately, the financial barriers that lie between motivation and goal is costly. Currently, student loan debt in the US has skyrocketed to a $1.4 trillion disaster, spread among 44 million borrowers.
The wiser way
That is why for the wiser, obtaining a scholarship or a grant could be the best way to go to get their much-needed education while not financially pressured by student debts.
If obtaining one is your aim, here are some handy tips you can learn from to prepare well for your scholarship application:
- Look for the availability of community scholarships in your area. To be eligible, you need to be an active volunteer or participant in community services.
- Celebrate your small successes. Take note of your accomplishments, and use this as leverage to get grants or scholarships by the time you apply for college.
- Talk to your guidance counselor or scholarship coordinator about the scholarship options that might be available for you. Obtain the necessary information and work on getting the requirements done.
- Ace your scholarship essay. Write with an active voice. Articulate your vision, and make sure what you put forward is your best self.
- Apply early. Ideally, you can start forwarding your applications during the fall of your high school senior year. This helps you get at the best opportunities first, before the bulk of applications flood in at the end of the school year.
- Be sure to keep track of the deadlines after you’ve collated the scholarship opportunities or options that you are interested in. You can use a spreadsheet tracker to monitor cutoff dates for applications. You can also make use of monitoring apps to make sure you don’t miss any of your deadlines.
- Scholarship requirements and forms differ. See to it that you have read the instructions and requirements before filling out the form, or forwarding any of the requested documents. A lot of these factors can make or break your qualifications for the slot. Always look at the details and make sure you get them right.
- Don’t be discouraged if you get denied by one. Keep applying and be confident that you can make it through. A positive attitude towards your goal always helps, even if it only serves in keeping your morale up. A major part of success is a forward, affirmative energy.
- Curate your social image. Trim your social media accounts of what could be red flags to your character. Although this may be unlikely basis of assessment, some institutions might go as far as peak into your social media life to know if you’re a good fit for their opportunity. If there is a required interview, show up in your best light, dress, act, and speak professionally.
- And remember that scholarships are not only for freshmen students; there are also those available to qualified students in the higher levels.
Prepare early. A good preparation might take a lot of your time and effort but getting that much-needed scholarship would be worth all the hard work.