Getting Ahead with Your Scholarship Application

So you’re finishing up your application package and you’re looking for some personal statement examples to help you on your essay when you came across some information on scholarships.  At first glance, it may seem as though scholarships are impossible to obtain and that you need to have impeccable grades and an outstanding resume.  While these things may definitely help you, there are a few other factors that can boost your chances of getting a scholarship plan.(1)  Read on for some helpful tips on scholarship applications.

Know what the sponsor is looking for, and gauge your success based on this

Before you start applying for scholarships, it’s important to get a good idea of what the sponsor is looking for.  Try to gather all of the information you need, and determine if you are eligible for a scholarship.  Aside from checking the websites of sponsors, you can also give them a call in an attempt to talk to someone who can give you all of the details you have to know.(2)  Just like using personal statement examples to help you understand how to write an admission essay, it is also important to gather sponsor information for better chances at landing a scholarship plan.

Send all requirements in advance

One of the golden rules when submitting applications of any sort is to make sure that you complete all of the requirements in full and send them before the deadline.  Not only will you get a head-start on your competition, but you will also let your probable sponsors know that you are responsible.(3)  Be sure to allot enough time for writing your personal statement, if it is required.  You can use personal statement examples to get the gist of what a scholarship personal statement should be like.  Before submitting your requirements, compare your essay with a personal statement example to ensure that you did a great job at writing.

Do well with your application essay by focusing on more meaningful discussions

When you are brainstorming on topics to write about in your essay, use examples of personal statements.  You’ll find that most examples of personal statements focus on meaningful discussions, such as goals and aspirations, your merits, and how you make a good candidate for the scholarship.  Some topics that would be great for use in your essay include your personal growth, your character, and your individuality.(4)


Three Myths about Scholarships

With all of the financial troubles that are affecting the economy these days, one of the key goals of most consumers is to get the best deal possible.  College students and their parents can save loads of money by applying this same saving attitude to college education fees.  One of the best ways to get a good deal on college education is to get a scholarship.  If you think that you are not eligible for a scholarship, check out these top three myths on scholarships and think again:

You cannot get scholarships if you’re not an A student

You don’t have to be a straight-A student to get a scholarship.  Many schools are willing to give scholarships to students who show gradual improvement in their grades and other areas.(1)  If you want to bring attention to how you have improved over the years, you may want to do so in your admission essay.  Check out some personal statement examples to see how other people have discussed their academics by highlighting the positive aspects and downplaying the negative.

You cannot get scholarship if you’re not financially incapable

Another common myth when it comes to scholarships is that only people who are financially incapable are able to get scholarships.  Schools are obliged to assess scholarship applications based on the student’s records, personality, and abilities, and not just based on their financial status.  Before you count yourself out just because you are financially capable, try applying for a scholarship and see what happens.

It’s best to pay and let some organizations secure the scholarship grant for you

A lot of companies offer services and products based on searching for and acquiring scholarship grants for you.  While some of these services can be helpful, it is not advisable to pay for them.  You can get loads of information for free straight from the Internet and from the college or univeristy that you want to get admitted to.  Use what you have, and avoid spending extra money just to get the information that you can otherwise obtain for free.(2)

Before you get caught up thinking of what to do about your scholarship situation, make sure that you write a winning personal statement to get you into the college of your choice.  Make use of personal statement examples to help you think of ideas and topics to write about.  Examples of personal statements can also help you get an idea of what colleges and universities expect from their students.  You may want to find a personal statement example that was written specifically for the school that you are applying to.(3)


What You Need to Know when Applying for Financial Aid

Aside from going over several personal statement examples for their writing their admission essay, students should also seek information on how they can best qualify for financial aid.  For many students who are trying to get through college, financial aid is one of their best friends.  With a little help from scholarships and grants, students can worry a little less about how to pay for their tuition and instead focus more on their studies at hand.  Basically, financial aid helps students pay for tuition, room and board, books and supplies, as well as other school fees.(1)  Here are some helpful information that they should know:

Freshmen have a better chance at getting good offers

Usually, freshmen have a better chance at getting good financial aid offers.  This is normally the case, because many school have specific financial aid programs for incoming first-year students.  Since freshmen still have a good four or more years of study in the school, they can be given long-term financial aid plans at lower rates.  This information shouldn’t discourage non-freshman students from finding a good deal, though.

You can negotiate for a better package

Perhaps the best way to get the most out of a financial aid deal is to negotiate.  Most lenders are willing to strike a deal with you, but they will probably wait for you to make the first negotiations.  There are a number of ways in which you can negotiate your financial aid.  One way is to ask for lower interest rates, which can shave off  a considerable amount from the fees and costs of your loan.  You can also try to get a longer grace period on your repayment schedule, so that you have more time to work out how you’re going to pay your bills.  Also, you can negotiate for a higher loan in case the initial offer made by the lender is not enough to pay for your schooling fees.(2)  What other students do is get ideas from personal statement examples so they can provide details in their admission essays on how they want to acquire college education despite their financial situation.

Students should not accept the first offer but should wait until they get accepted to more schools

Another strategy is to wait until you are accepted to more schools before finalizing your loan deals.  While waiting for a better offer, what applicants can do is to learn as much as they can from well-written examples of personal statement so they can have better chances of getting admitted to more colleges and universities.  A personal statement example can help boost your applications even if you don’t have excellent grades.

When it comes to federal loans, it is important for you to wait until you are accepted to more schools, because these loans are often linked to the school that you are attending.  You will then have more leverage to negotiate your financial aid. Just remember not to wait for too long, otherwise you may lose all your chances as you get closer to deadlines for financial aid applications.(3)


A Guide to Financial Aid for Hispanic Students


Hispanic students have numerous financial aid options available to help them deal with the costs of schooling. Some of these types of financial aid programs are referred to as financial aid for minority students. Many of the financial aid solutions for Hispanic students are intended specifically for Hispanics only. Here are some of financial aid programs for Hispanic students.

The Hispanic Scholarship Fund (HSF) This organization is the largest of its kind. Whether you are a Hispanic student attending a high school, a community college, or a university, the Hispanic Scholarship Fund may have the right financial aid program for you. Affiliated with the Hispanic Scholarship Fund Institute (HSFI), the HSF has a variety of solutions to your financial needs.

League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) As the oldest and one of the largest Hispanic organizations in the United States, the LULAC offers plans of varying amounts. Some of the plans offered by this organization require students to go into a particular field of study to be granted a loan.

Other options The organizations mentioned above are only two out of the many non-profit organizations that grant scholarships to Hispanic students. Some of the other institutions include:

* The Hispanic National Bar Association (for law)
* The National Society of Hispanic MBAs
* The Hispanic College Fund

You may also decide to apply for state-based scholarships, which are offered depending on a certain set of criteria as decided upon by the state. Also, companies and associations often offer scholarships or grants to employees who want to further specialize in their field. Companies know what an asset education and training is, so they sometimes offer financial aid plans. Before deciding upon a financial aid plan, be sure to read all of the information and know what you are signing up for.

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Top 7 misconceptions about financial aid

Top 7 misconceptions about financial aid

There are many misconceptions about financial aid.  Many people are afraid to request for financial aid because of these, especially because of the top 7 false beliefs.  Financial aid is actually more easily granted than most people give it credit for.  It is a purely defeatist attitude to say that it is just too impossible to get the grant before even trying to apply for it.

Requirement-based misconceptions

Financial aid seems to be the sort of thing that your straight A student friend has, or something that you can attribute to a classmate who is being raised by his grandparents.  Anyway, those are two misconceptions.  One misconception is that financial aid is only offered to the gifted ones: the straight A students, the outstanding athletes and the promising musicians or leaders.  Financial aid actually does not discriminate.  Once the need is established, you can be granted aid.  Two, you can only apply for financial aid if you are obviously poor.  This misconception can also be reiterated by saying that if you are wealthy, you cannot apply for financial aid.  Actually, the basis for the grant is not wealth but need.  Apply for the aid even if you think you are too well-off.  Then you will be given an Estimated Family Contribution (EFC) based on your family’s wealth and expenses.  A third misconception based on requirement is that a foreigner cannot apply for financial aid.  If you are a foreign student, look for schools that thrive on being multi-ethnic or you can try for athletic or academic scholarships.  The last but not the least misconception based on requirement is that part-time students cannot apply financial aid.  Having less credits in school does mean that you do not need help.  You have to maintain a minimum of six credits however.

Misconceptions on financial aid itself

Three misconceptions on the idea of financial aid are: that millions of dollars intended for financial aid are unclaimed every year, loans are not financial aid, and you can apply for it at the last minute.  The first two are somewhat related.  The first misconception can be a line from a scam.  Be wary of people offering financial aid that will be needing an initial fee.  Because the government is responsible for about 70% of the aid, there may not actually be enough for all those who need it.  This means that the government also offers financial aid through loans.  Student loans are also financial aid, but in a different form. Now that you know that financial aid reaches those who need it, you have to be on time with your application; many people will be needing the grant.

There are examples of personal statements that can help win financial aid

Do you know that your personal statement can help you not just get in a college or graduate school but it can also earn you financial aid?  Excellent examples of personal statements will show the admissions office that you are truly worth the grant.  You must be able to convey your purpose and goals.  Anyway, you must be more confident now that you know how much easier it is to get financial aid.

Photo Credit : jenn jenn