What are scholarships?
You may have heard of the term scholarship, which means the amount of money awarded to a student in order for him/her to pursue an education and pay for academic-related tuition and fees. A scholarship is earned on the basis of the student’s academic merits, artistic abilities or ethnicity. There are several factors attached to it. The students are not required to pay back the amount after completing their education, unlike loans.
It is offered by several sources such as governmental organizations, colleges, universities, employers, religious groups, social organizations and many more. Scholarships aren’t exactly free money; you have to earn it on the basis of your hard work, good grades, or/and amazing artistic abilities.
What are the basic requirements for earning a scholarship?
Different types of college scholarships require varied requirements and eligibility as the basis of awards are different. However, some of the common requirements and eligibility are given here.
Students must complete the scholarship application form.
In the case of state and national scholarships, students must be a resident of the state or that nation.
Candidates must be enrolled in an undergraduate, graduate or any other program.
When to apply for the scholarships?
The deadlines vary for each scholarship. It may mostly be during the summer of the previous academic year, that you need to search and apply for scholarships. Even if you have missed the chance, don’t worry. Some colleges offer institutional scholarships which can be applied for at any time of the year.
Be on an alert for the ‘Scholarship Season’. A number of websites including thecollegemonk provide timely updates on scholarships. Following any of such website in prior to joining the college can do great help.
How to receive scholarship money?
The mode of receiving scholarship money can vary. Some scholarships are directly transferred to the institution's account in the ward’s name. Some other scholarships are received in the form of cheques and can be reimbursed from banks. There are also scholarships that pay for the academic-expenses of the student and no money transfer happens between the ward and the scholarship provider.
Types of Scholarships
Scholarships are offered as Institutional Scholarships, Country-based Scholarships, Government Scholarships, and Private Scholarships. Institutional Scholarships are awarded by the administrative council of each college. These can include aid-funds as well as endowments.
Government Scholarships are provided by the national or state government to their residents depending on the student’s academic or cultural performance.
The number of applicants for a national-level scholarship and the selection criteria for a Country-based scholarship would be more.
Private Scholarships are provided by private institutions and hence the criteria can vary from academic and non-academic performance to the cultural ethnicity of the student.
Tips for attaining Scholarships
The faster you are to apply, the more prior would be your application. Hustle to apply for all the scholarships that come your way.
Frequently check the college websites and scholarship-provider sites for information on the same and deadlines.
Most scholarships require your essay on ‘why you are eligible for a scholarship’. Hone your essay writing skills to impress the board that you are the most eligible candidate for the scholarship.
Fun facts about Scholarships
Almost 0.3% students of the US win full-ride scholarships that cater to all their academic needs during their stay at the college.
Former Majority Association for Equality offers a scholarship for the average white male who perceive that they would never be eligible for a scholarship.
Students from middle-class families probably receive more scholarships than from low-income families.
Most Scholarship programs can be applied by students in their Elementary, Middle and High School.
Some of the weird scholarships that are worth applying for include Zombie Apocalypse Scholarship, Norris Scholarship by Christmas Tree Farmers of New York, American Fire Sprinkler Scholarships, Create-A-Greeting-Card Scholarship, C.A.T.S Tall Club Scholarship program and many more.
How to best utilize your scholarship amount?
Create an approximation of the amount that you would receive in the form of scholarship. If the amount is directly transferred as your tuition, then there is no point in planning your accounts. If else, this scenario can truly hone your financial management skills.
The leftover money that you collected after your tuition payment can be utilized to enroll in an additional course or an art of your interest. If the chosen course suits with your stream of study, then that would enable you to bag a better job.
Add up some savings to treat yourself!! After all you earned the scholarship out of your sweat.
List out the priorities of your needs first. Utilize the amount wisely. You will have very little amount to your credit.
Maintaining a Scholarship
This isn’t a big task. The requirements vary from institution to institution. Some institutions favor steady academic growth, some others a consistency in athletics and more. Understand the behavior of your institution and plan accordingly to keep your performances steady.
Institutions that mostly favor scholarships
Harvard, Yale, Princeton, MIT, and Amherst are the institutions that mostly favor scholarships and provide full financial aid to those in need. More than the academic performance of students these institutions take into account the financial need they are in and mostly the backgrounds from which they come.
To win a scholarship from any of these institutions you first need to get admitted here. After which the money is generously given based on the financial backgrounds of the students and not their academic excellence alone.
International students can also avail the same amount of financial support like the Native Americans. One surprisingly truth is that more than 70% of the Harvard students rely on scholarships to finance their education.
Parent Contribution, Outside awards and student employment amount is calculated to find out the required remaining amount which is later funded as scholarships. These contributions come mostly from the Institution Endowment funds, Alumni Gifts, General tuition Revenues, State and Federal Grants.
What not to do when applying for scholarships
Never restrict to online scholarship search. Ask friends, alumni, and teachers. The world out there is ready to help.
Assumptions can lead to bad conclusions. Make sure that you rightly identify the scholarship amount, target group, duration, and more related information.
Prepare essays that are tailored for each different scholarship applications. Sometimes one good essay can land you in a full-bright scholarship.
Never skip any scholarship because of the meager amount. After all, every little contribution can create a big amount and so is the case with scholarships.