Finding the appropriate scholarship which fits with your skills and qualification is a time-consuming process, you need to understand the system and put effort and creativity into the whole process. You have to be active in searching for scholarship opportunities and sources. Contact the scholarship department of the college or university you are interested in, ask around, use online sources, in case you are working, asking your employer is always possible. Keep in mind that you ought to start early since you need quite a long time to prepare for the perfect application and also the deadlines vary as well.
There are indeed many valuable resources that can assist you in your search for the most suitable scholarship. Below we shall talk about them more in depth.
What are some main Scholarship Sources?
Online Resources: One of the best places to start your search is online. Using free scholarship finders, most of the legwork could be done for you. You create a profile and that information can turn into hundreds of scholarship opportunities for you. Be sure to fill out every available field in your profile — even the optional ones — because the more information you provide, the more scholarships you can get matched with. Some of the most popular online scholarship finders are:
Fastweb.com – with a database of more than 1.5 million scholarships
Google Search is another useful tool/source for finding scholarships. However, you have to be very specific when conducting your search otherwise you might not land on the right source. For instance, scholarships for second bachelor’s degree, scholarships for Middle Eastern students studying accounting in England, or specific scholarships for different field of Science or Art for students from X Y Z country. Like these examples, specify your particular needs and interests when you search which eventually increase your chance of writing a more relevant letter/profile. Available scholarships and search criteria can vary by web site, so try using at least two to boost your odds of success.
What are some main Scholarship Sources?
Universities and colleges: When you apply for your desired program to a college or a university, one of the first steps for you should be to contact the admission office, or read the university website to find out about the list of scholarships offered by the school itself. This might even be easier than the online source since schools usually offer variety of scholarships for different fields and alongside your application for your degree, you apply for the relevant scholarship as well. Don’t wait to inquire about scholarships until after you are admitted, which might not happen until the spring of your senior year. School-based scholarship applications can be due as early as the fall of your senior year before admissions decisions are made. In addition, asking about private donors who have provided funds for students pursuing a specific area of study at that university is another option. Some schools automatically consider applicants with grade point averages or standardized test scores that are above a certain threshold for merit scholarships. No additional scholarship application is required. Schools do this in order to woo top academic students.
Employers: Interestingly enough some businesses have scholarship programs available not only to employees but also to their children. If you are a student with a job, contact the human resource department to ask about potential scholarship opportunities. A lot of big companies offer scholarships to their employees to conduct a research in a specific field or to even boost their educational background for further improvements throughout their careers. However, this is the case for some companies. McDonald’s, for example, has a National Employee Scholarship Program that awards $1,000 to one employee in each state and the District of Columbia every academic year. In addition, the fast-food chain annually gives one $5,000 scholarship to the “McScholar of the Year.” Many large corporations (such as Walmart, Intel, and others) recognize student achievements by awarding scholarships. Management might be receptive to an opportunity to give back to ambitious employees.
Religious organizations, your community and lot of other sources which one might not think of immediately can be other options for scholarship seeking individuals.
Asking a proactive strategy, being on time with your search, emailing around for more information, being specific in your search, knowing the field you want to study, your interests and passion are all very important when looking for the relevant scholarship and can hopefully help you in obtaining one.