Many students breathe a sigh of relief after receiving their college acceptance letters. And though that is an achievement to be proud of, the real work, in some cases, is just beginning.
>Lots of students won’t qualify for government aid, but that doesn’t mean that their families have huge savings accounts just sitting around ready for the high cost of college tuition. Instead, students across the country are in a hunt to turn up scholarship money wherever possible.
- Search in Season
“It’s important to understand that there are two major seasons for scholarships: winter and spring,” Nikki LaVoie tells Fox Business. This is true for returning college students as well as high school seniors. For students already in the thick of their university semester, it is important to remember that the opportunity to turn up money for the current school year is not necessarily over.
For students hoping to take advantage of winter and spring scholarships, start searching and applying in the fall prior to the scholarship deadlines.
- Don’t Give Up
It is easy to become discouraged by the number of hyper-specific scholarships out there. But it important to keep in mind that roughly 30% of college expenses are typically covered by grants and scholarships. Millions of dollars in free money are out there for the taking, so you might as well apply.
It can also become overwhelming to add scholarship essay writing to your plate which is probably already filled with homework, a job, sports and an attempt to cram in some social time as well. But allotting a small amount of time every week to go through scholarship search engines can really pay off in the end by saving you thousands of dollars in student loans.
- Leave No Stone Unturned
It is encouraging to remember that there are a large number of scholarships that are not necessarily based on need or GPA. Visit your college’s financial aid office and ask about special scholarships that the school may know of or that have been awarded in the past. Check local organizations, and don’t overlook the companies your parents work for as these corporations might have special scholarship money reserved for employees and families. US News & World Reportsuggests this basic list of good places to look:
- Student’s field of study
- High school networks
- Religious affiliations
- Community organizations
- Parents’ work or unions
- Campus organizations
- Alumni groups
- Scholarship Search Engines
A great way to eliminate the brunt of the work of finding scholarships is to create accounts with any number of free scholarship search engines available online. These sites can help to pull up scholarships specific to you as an individual by typing in your information such as SAT scores, activities, major, location, etc.
So once you’ve decided on South University accreditation and have sent in your applications, the search is far from over. In fact, it’s just beginning as you set out on yet another hunt for scholarships to keep you in school.
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