Applying for a fancy or top-ranked college for modern education often comes at a huge cost and you have to resort to taking student loans from federal and private sources. These loans are granted at an interest rate and you have to pay those study loans back eventually. On the contrary, if you apply for scholarships, you don’t need to pay anything back. Scholarships are a great way to fund your studies which are funded by colleges, welfare organizations, governments, non-profit organizations, etc.
Contrary to popular belief, scholarships are not just awarded to pupils who have straight As in their academic record or who are world-class athletes. Before applying for scholarships, there are some questions that need addressing. In this article, we have covered everything there is to know about applying for grants.
- How to apply for Scholarships:
There are many kinds of scholarships available. You can use our Open Scholarships page to find all the latest scholarships that are open globally and then check their eligibility criteria. Prepare your documents for scholarship application submission, and apply for it accordingly.
The scholarships have many types such as government-funded scholarships, ministry or municipal government scholarships, organization funded scholarships, merit-based scholarships that are awarded to high standing students who meet or exceed certain criteria for academic achievement set by the scholarships committee. Financial need-based scholarships are given to those who don’t have the financial means to fund their studies. Sports and contest based scholarships are also provided to the students at the University or College level.
Other than that a number of scholarships are awarded to people with a certain trait, interest, athletic achievement, background, etc. For example, some scholarships are only awarded to students who possess a military background or who have taken part in some volunteer work.
- Finding Scholarships:
Now, the main dilemma is, where should I look for scholarships? There are many ways of getting a scholarship. Some of them are listed below:
- Watch Your hobbies:
Believe it or not, if you closely observe your hobbies, there might be one that can land you a scholarship offer. Scholarships are geared towards people with varying interests, such as being vegan, knowing some craftsmanship, or being a gamer.
- Get Guidance from your School Counselor:
School counselors guide students every year with their college applications so they have a fair idea about the scholarships available out there. Talk to them and apply to the ones which are right for you. Moreover, be mindful of your surroundings. You are likely to hear of a scholarship from your local church, your parents’ workplace, or your own job.
- Sign Up For Scholarship Alerts:
There are several websites and portals devoted to scholarships and grants. Sign up for them and get daily alerts of potential scholarships. Furthermore, there are a number of scholarships available for minority students. So, if you, yourself are a minority student you can get one.
- How to submit a scholarship application:
Different kinds of scholarships have different requirements. The scholarship websites can tell you the eligibility and selection criteria. You can then decide whether or not you are eligible. Fill out the application form, upload the required documents, and submit before the deadline. Some scholarships are on a first-come-first-served basis. So, if you want to be selected in the first round, be sure to apply well before the application deadline.
- When to Apply for a Scholarship?:
You should start applying for scholarships as early as possible. Some scholarships require you to apply a year before you are due to start your college. So, you may have to apply to them before you have even shortlisted the colleges you are going to apply to.
In case, you have missed the deadline for one, don’t lose hope and apply for others. You should apply for scholarships each year of your college. A number of scholarships are also for the students currently enrolled in colleges.
4 Tips that May Aid in Your Scholarship Application:
There are certain things that you should keep in mind while you are filling out your scholarship application. These tips can make a huge difference when it comes to getting selected for the scholarships.
- Be Authentic:
Believe it or not, the scholarship committees are able to see through the lies. If you are going to exaggerate your grades, activities, or interests, the selection committee will (most likely) catch it. Instead, apply for the scholarships that you are best suited for and be truthful in your application.
- Do your Due Diligence:
Smallest things make the biggest difference. Be thorough and pay attention to every detail. Some scholarships require statements of purpose and some require recommendation letters. These documents are of utmost importance. Proofread for sentence structuring, typos, and grammar. Be efficient and to the point as it may just be the thing that can land you a scholarship.
- Always be on the Lookout:
Around 50% of scholarships are awarded to students who are currently in college. So you should apply for scholarships every year of your college. Start looking for scholarships more than a year before your college is about to start. Don’t undermine smaller scholarships as a few hundred bucks can cover your academic supplies and textbooks’ costs.
- Meet the Deadlines:
Some scholarship applications are very simple and some are complicated. The latter takes more time to fill out. Keep in mind the deadlines and start working on your application way before the deadline. You can be disqualified if you fail to meet the deadlines and all your hard work can go to waste.
- How to get the Scholarship Money:
When you succeed in getting a scholarship, the scholarship money can go into your college directly to pay your tuition or other costs that you owe. The rest (if any) can be handed over to you. Or, all the money can be given to you through a check. The scholarship giver will clear these details for you. If they don’t, make sure to ask them.