One thing that stands in many people’s ways when it comes to continuing their education is cost. College is anything but cheap, and with the current economic climate, money can be hard to come by.
Does this mean you should put off your dreams of getting your degree? Not at all, because you can make distance learning at home more affordable by searching for scholarships online.
To help make your scholarship search a successful one, follow these tips:
1. Create a personal profile.
Before you start searching for scholarships, make a comprehensive list of everything that could boost your application, so you increase your chances of success.
For instance, make a list of or collect the following:
- Research papers
With this list, you can get a clearer picture of how you look as a candidate. You can then use all of these strengths to quickly search for scholarships that fit your profile and have potential.
2. Start your search as early as possible.
It’s never too early to begin searching for distance learning scholarships. If you have kids, you can put this to the test, as there are scholarships out there for children as young as five years old.
Even if you know you won’t be ready to start studying this year, now’s the time to start looking for those cost-cutting scholarships. It will give you more time to do a deep dive and apply for several awards, and it can make it easier to plan your finances.
3. Look for scholarships in the right spots.
Depending on your age or where you are in life, you will probably use different search strategies than other applicants. If you’re a high school student, going to your counselor to ask for information would be a logical move.
If in college, you could go to your financial aid office, on-campus alumni offices, or to the department in your field of study to look for opportunities.
If you’re no longer in high school or not enrolled in college, family members may be of help. Ask them if there are any scholarships available through their unions or companies they work for.
Less personal ways to look for award money include using online search engines or scholarship book directories.
As you can see, there are various ways to search for scholarships. Your best bet is to use every method available to expand your reach.
4. Prepare yourself to apply.
Since many distance learning scholarships have strict deadlines, you want to make sure you’re ready to apply in time. You can do this via that list above that contains all of your accomplishments and any past works.
If you find a scholarship that fits, you may not need to waste time writing new essays to apply if you’re already prepared.
Lastly, to get a jump on your competition, contact scholarship committees directly. They can tell you what the ideal scholarship candidate looks like, so you can mold yourself into that applicant without the need for any guesswork.
5. Create your “Why you?” statement.
Scholarship committees like to think that their financial awards will impact more than one person. Keeping this in mind, you should create a “Why you?” statement that reflects how you will change others once you graduate.
Will this statement only be used in essays? No, as you should find a way to incorporate it into every application. Remember, the goal is to stand out from the crowd and show how the scholarship will not only benefit you, but society as well.
For instance, if you were going to study medicine, your statement could be, “I hope to use my role as a doctor to ensure that low-income children get the medical care they deserve.”