Financial aid can make a college education possible when families can’t cover the entire cost on their own. Scholarships are often viewed as one of the best forms of financial aid because they don’t have to be repaid.
Unfortunately, scholarships can also be very competitive. College-bound students often wonder how they can increase their chances of being awarded a scholarship, but Mark Mariani provides you with the right solution.
Here are eight tips for improving your odds of being awarded a scholarship:
Start your search early
The earlier you start looking for scholarships, the better. Begin your search during your junior year of high school, if not sooner. That way, you’ll have plenty of time to find opportunities and get your application materials in order.
Write a great essay
Most scholarship applications will require you to submit an essay along with other supporting documentation like transcripts and letters of recommendation. A well-written essay that highlights your unique accomplishments, talents, and experiences can go a long way in helping you stand out from the competition.
Apply for as many scholarships as possible
Don’t put all your eggs in one basket. Applying for multiple scholarships gives you a better chance of being awarded at least some funding for college.
Check the eligibility requirements carefully
Every scholarship has different eligibility requirements, so it’s important that you read through each opportunity carefully before you apply. Applying for scholarships that you’re not actually eligible for is a waste of time and effort.
Follow the instructions to the letter
Again, every scholarship is different, so make sure you’re following all of the required steps for each application correctly. Oftentimes, failing to follow directions is one of the quickest ways to get your application thrown out entirely.
Ask for help if you need it
If you’re having trouble understanding any part of the application process or requirements, don’t hesitate to reach out and ask for clarification from the scholarship provider directly.
Polish your application until it’s perfect
Before hitting “submit,” take some time to review your application carefully to make sure there are no errors or typos. Pay close attention to detail here—a small mistake could cost you an otherwise guaranteed scholarship award.
Wait patiently for the results
The selection process for most scholarships can take weeks or even months, so it’s important to be patient as you wait to hear back about whether or not you’ve been selected.
As you can see, there are a number of things you can do to improve your chances of being awarded a scholarship. By following these tips, you’ll be well on your way to securing the funding you need to make your college education a reality.
By following these eight tips, you’ll be well on your way to increasing your chances of being awarded a scholarship to help fund your college education! However, remember that even if you don’t receive any scholarships this time around, there are plenty of other ways to finance your education (such as student loans and grants).
Don’t give up—keep searching and eventually you’ll find the money you need to achieve your educational goals!