Everyone is after those coveted scholarships when college begins to approach. So, how do you get chosen for them?
Give ample time for letters of recommendation to be written – No one wants a rushed letter! The typical time frame is up to 4 weeks, so make sure you notify your teachers or counselors in time.
Start early – Like with college applications, leaving scholarships for the night before the deadline is detrimental. Make sure you block out chunks of time for working on applications.
Don’t overthink it – Any essay or short-answer question you respond to should be reflective of you and your immediate answer. Think carefully about your response, but don’t try too hard to sound “smart” or unique. It can come off as forced.
Save copies – Many applications or scholarship programs ask similar questions, so save a copy of your application! This way, you can reuse essays when applicable.
Choose carefully – Make sure you qualify for the scholarship you are applying for. Also, broaden your view with smaller, local scholarships as well as national ones. This diversifies your pool of scholarships.
Be detailed – Don’t skimp on your personal experiences, anecdotes, etc. Those details are what make you, YOU!
Spell it out – When noting organizations and societies, refrain from using acronyms, even for the most well-known groups. (Ex. Write Future Business Leaders of America, not FBLA)
Look high and low – Scholarships can be found in a multitude of places, from counseling offices and teachers to websites and local businesses. Ask around and keep your eyes peeled for new opportunities.
- Be truthful – Maybe saying you were in the honor society for an extra year can make your application stronger, but there are severe consequences should it be found out that it was not true. Everyone has something unique about them, there’s no need to lie!