The cost of attending college continues to skyrocket, and the number of students graduating with crippling debt has become a national crisis. One of the ways to combat that financial burden is receiving scholarship money to help offset the tuition cost. But how exactly can students win a college scholarship?
Here are a few key points to remember as you begin applying for scholarships to help fund your college education.
- Be ready to do some work. You can significantly reduce your competition by going after scholarships that require a longer essay or ask you to provide personal and verifiable letters of reference. Those that are a simple form to complete and submit will have the greatest number of applicants, so stand out by being one of fewer students willing to do the work.
- Read and follow directions. Every scholarship is different and has different rules - some even have a very narrow list of requirements. It would be a shame to be disqualified for a scholarship simply because you failed to follow the instructions. Pay attention to the details and take time to prepare your best work.
- Hedge your bets by applying broadly. You have no way to know how many applicants there are competing for a particular scholarship. By applying to several (or many!) different scholarships, you'll stand a better chance of winning some.
- Don't go it alone. Choose a few people you trust to read your essays and look over your applications. Ask them to give you honest feedback and then do your best to follow their advice. A scholarship application is not the place to tell jokes or make grammar mistakes, but you also want to stand out from the crowd. If you have a hard time writing, try speaking your essay to a trusted friend to help get your thoughts into words.
One of the best ways to help offset the high cost of your education is to apply for college scholarships. You can increase your chances of winning one or several of those scholarships by getting college admissions advice from independent counselors - where you pay for qualified advice over the phone. Get your list of questions ready and pick up the phone for more ideas on how you can win a college scholarship.