How to Search for Scholarships the Right Way

By Kylie Exline on October 17, 2016

Applying for scholarships can be a tough process. There are literally thousands of scholarships out there waiting to be given out. I know, hard to believe. We just have to always be on the lookout. This means never giving up and continuing your searching efforts.

With the copious amounts that exist, we need to know a few things: are we qualified, can it apply to our institution, and can we apply again for it?

To discover the methods of scholarship hunting, read below and take notes. It may help you win scholarship money, folks.

Where to look

Looking for scholarships is half the battle. There are a variety of websites out there that categorize and list them (like Uloop!). You can simply search fast and easy scholarships, or choose to dig deeper so that you are given ones that many are unaware of (like these weird scholarships). This way, you have a better shot at actually being awarded the money. And that is always a good thing.

Your university will usually have a special section on their site that links them to your particular major and/or minor. This also helps you out because you should already be qualified for most of them. You can always visit your adviser or college office to see in-person what there is available for you. In-person is always a pro because you can see the scholarships as soon as they are posted and have a sort of heads-up in the application process.

Some sites make you create a profile so that you can easily be matched for scholarships that would work for you. Make sure you are honest with your answers too because then you can automatically be applied to other ones. Plus, they save your answers so that you do not have to fill out the same facts every single time. For example, where you were born, your interests, and if you wear contacts. Trust me, these questions really do exist.

How to apply

Applying for scholarships is another strenuous process solely due to the fact that it takes so much time. Most scholarships require an essay and vital information about you, and then you have to wait to hear back from them. It is quite a lot.

Add the fact that you are still in college, so there is homework, other assignments, and everything else you  currently have going on. That leaves little to no time for navigating scholarship applications. However, you can sometimes reuse your essay, which is great, and then apply to as many out there that your heart so desires, which should be all of them because it is free money, peeps.

If you visit the scholarship’s personal website, then it should outline the specific rules and regulations, and provide an email in case you have any questions. Use what you have to your benefit because you would not be happy if you wasted all of your time applying for something you are ineligible for.

How to maintain

When you hit “submit” on a scholarship essay, you may think that your job here is finished and that you can move on without ever looking back. Well, not exactly. It is vital that you keep up with what you applied for because you need to be aware of your status.

Various scholarships will follow up with you and potentially ask further questions, want to interview you, and sometimes see an updated resume and what you have been up to academically. It does not end when you send in your application. This is good because if you have a stronger personality through speaking rather than in your writing, this can be used for your benefit.

You can help maintain your scholarship finds by creating a list of what you have already applied for, what you wish to apply for, and what you are unsuitable for. Also, this helps you organize your deadlines, requirements, and necessary information that you will have to send them. It is all about the organization, guys.

Although searching and properly discovering scholarships can prove to be a lot of work, it is worth it in the end if you are awarded the scholarship. To effectively look for scholarships that specifically relate to you, there are websites, apps, and other means of finding them. Basically, there are no good excuses to not find those that work for your qualifications.

Knowing a few key things can make the entire process easier. For instance, you need to know where to look in the first place, how to apply for them, and how to maintain what you have applied for. Organization is key here. So go out there and apply your heart away. You will be happy when you are selected as the winner.

Editing, Writing & Media. FSU// Go Noles! Class of 2016.

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