“Christmas times a’coming, Christmas times a’coming, Christmas times a’coming and I know I will be staying home!” It is almost here and only a few short weeks away! Christmas and WINTER BREAK! This is a time to relax and to spend quality time with family. A time to catch up on sleep and prepare for the upcoming school semester. This also would be a Merry and bRIGHT time to apply for scholarships! Sure, scholarships do take some time and it is your Christmas Break after all but would you rather spend hours applying for scholarships or years paying off student loan debt?
So how do I find these scholarships? The World Wide Web is a great place to begin your search for scholarships, www.fastweb.com and www.unigo.com are two great websites for your scholarship searches. When looking online, search for scholarships with smaller awards. Many students look for scholarships that offer a significant amount, but these are the scholarships that are very competitive. Scholarships with smaller awards usually have fewer applicants, so your chances of winning can become higher. Also, scholarships that involve more work usually steer most students away which results in a greater chance of winning. In fact, scholarships with essays over 1,000 words often have fewer than 500 applications.
Another great place to look for scholarships are in your town! Local scholarships are often the easiest to get because there is less competition and the scholarship judges may already be familiar with you or your family. Your high school counselor or Upward Bound Adviser will have local scholarship information.
So, chances are if you are applying for a scholarship, you will need to write some sort of essay. Very few scholarships are based solely on the application. The essay is often the most important part of your application; it gives the scholarship committee a sense of who you are and your dedication to your goals. You’ll want to make sure that your scholarship essay is the best it can possibly be. Some important scholarships tips are listed below!
Read the instructions thoroughly and make sure you completely understand them before you start writing.
Think about what you are going to write and organize your thoughts into an outline.
Write your essay by elaborating on each point you included in your outline.
Use clear, concise, and simple language throughout your essay.
When you are finished, read the question again and then read your essay to make sure that the essay addresses every point.
Be sure to apply to scholarships as early as you can. Don’t wait until the due date! You never know what could go wrong. Also be sure to apply to as many scholarships as you can. If you don’t win, don’t take is personally and keep on trying! Good luck on your scholarship searches and be sure to contact your Upward Bound Adviser with any questions or concerns you may have!