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How To Win A Scholarship: The 5 Most Important Things

Written by patriciawilson

Scholarship applications are challenging. First, you have to search for opportunities and you need to be very diligent during that process. Then, the application process starts. You’ll be writing one essay after another, while waiting for the results of programs you previously applied to.

It’s a time-consuming challenge, and that’s often the factor that makes students give up. But be honest: you’d rather spend hours and days applying for scholarships than years paying off student debt. Right? With a proper approach, you can make the scholarship application process less challenging and more effective. We’ll give you the 5 important tips that will guide you in the right direction.

1. Target Local Scholarships

Your community is home to many companies, organizations, clubs, and individuals who are willing to sponsor students on their way to higher education. You have greater chances of winning such a local scholarship, simply because the competition is way less challenging.

  • First, conduct an online research for local scholarships. You can use keywords such as “student scholarship Ryerson University,” for example.
  • Don’t stop there! Some opportunities are not being advertised online. Talk to your guidance counsellor or some of your teachers. They may give you valuable advice.
  • Connect with people who graduated from the college you intend to go to. Are there any alumni who managed to achieve success on a local level? You can connect with them and ask if they can suggest a scholarship program for you.
  • Ask around! Many people you know are members of local clubs. Don’t be shy; just ask if their club has a program, so you can apply for it.

2. Become An Active Member Of Your Community

Local organizations and people are not going to sponsor you just because you asked. They want to give their money to a great cause, and the cause is greater when the person going to school is valuable for the community.

Marianne Ragins, who managed to win $400K in scholarships, is now a motivational speaker. One of her most important tips for students who want scholarships is to volunteer. Help the people, animals, and environment! Not because you want to win money to go to school, but because it will make you feel more worthy as a person.

3. Apply For Several Smaller Awards

Many people are willing to give money to future college students, but they don’t have a lot to give. So they will offer $1000 or $2000. That’s okay. If you aim for the largest programs, you’ll most likely face greater competition. Smaller awards attract fewer applicants.

If you apply to several smaller programs, you can still accumulate enough money to go through a year of post-secondary. Even if these awards don’t cover your tuition, they will help you get books and manage with living expenses. So if you’re getting a loan to cover the tuition, at least you’ll have the other things sorted out.

4. Master The Art Of Personal Writing

How do you apply for a scholarship? Well each program comes with its own requirements. Most, however, will ask for a similar thing: a personal essay. Sometimes they will give you a specific prompt, such as “Describe a situation where you demonstrated leadership skills.” What these requirements have in common is this: all scholarship providers want to see how you deserve this award more than other applicants.

No; you cannot send the same personal statement to accompany every application. The requirements are unique specifically because the providers want the applicants to make an effort.

So you’ll need to go through those requirements and write brilliant personal essays. If you’re not that good at writing, no worries! It doesn’t mean that you don’t deserve a scholarship. A service like AssignmentMasters can help you handle this part of the applications.

5. Show Some Character

If you’re determined to get a scholarship and you know you deserve it, you’ll get it. But it won’t fall out of the blue. You have to work for this money, and it won’t be an easy process.

But you know what? The thought that it’s possible to finance your own studies by showing some persistency should keep you going. Keep discovering different programs. Keep writing those personal essays. When you focus on this issue and you do your best to find a solution, you’ll be closer to the goal you set.

6. Scholarships Are Out There; Just Go For Them!

All those programs are available because people and organizations want to give money to bright and prospective students. Through the application process, you’ll have to show just how bright and prospective you are.

This brings us to a conclusion: in addition to committing to the application process, you should also commit to your personal growth. Become a volunteer, learn, and progress!

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*Opinions expressed are those of the author, and not necessarily those of Student Life Network or their partners.