Basic tips for filling out good scholarship applications

Increase your chances of getting a scholarship by following these simple tips.

As a high school student makes plans for college, she or he will soon realize the cost of attending college is growing. Students and parents can use a variety of resources to help cover the rising costs of higher education such as financial aid, loans and 529 savings plans.

Another way to cover the cost of college is through scholarships. Federal Student Aid states that a scholarship is money for school that students are not expected to repay; the financial rewards of scholarships range from paying for books to tuition. Some scholarships are based on merit and achievement, as other scholarships are based on characteristics and qualities such as having red hair and being left handed.

The majority of the scholarships have a competitive application process since many students are applying for the same scholarship to receive the same financial reward. In an article by Scholarship America in the U.S. News and World Report, there are six types of questions students should be prepared to answer on a scholarship application. These questions come in the form of or are related to academic performance/grade point average, high school activities, community activities, financial need, personal letter or essay, or letters of recommendation. mentions some scholarship application strategies and some tips on a successful approach for getting scholarships. also gives ten tips for a winning scholarship application.

They are:

  • A student should apply for a certain scholarship only if is he or she is eligible
  • Complete the application in its entirety
  • Read and follow all instructions on the application
  • Submit a clean and neat application
  • Write a well-written essay that makes an impact on the judge
  • Take notice and meet the deadlines of the scholarship application
  • Mail the application to the right place with right postage
  • Have someone review the application materials
  • If needed, seek assistance
  • Be proud and satisfied with the application submission

As youth workers, parents and caring adults encourage youth to fill out scholarship applications. Give them tools to help them be aware of what scholarship applications look for. Also, work with youth as underclassmen (freshman to juniors) to help them learn about filling out a scholarship application and give them sample applications to fill out for practice. This will give them the chance to understand what is needed to fill out scholarship applications so they will be prepared before their senior year.

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