There are many myths about how to win scholarships. These myths can hurt students and their families in the end, causing some students to underestimate their scholarship eligibility and discourage them from applying.
On the other hand, some myths cause students and parents to overestimate their eligibility for scholarships. This can cause them to overlook other important forms of financial aid and unique ways to save for college costs.
Only outstanding students get scholarships
Students with the best grades are not the only ones to win scholarships! Yes, students with higher grades have a better chance of winning, but average students also get scholarships.
Not all scholarships are based on academic performance. In fact, less than 10% of private scholarships are based on grades. Each scholarship provider looks for students who match their criteria and looks different in every way.
A scholarship provider may be looking for artistic talents, such as music, writing, video production, etc. The possibilities are endless; There are lots of fun and weird scholarships that don’t require a high GPA.
Most scholarships are for minority students only
Minority status is generally determined by gender, race, and sexual orientation. White students earn more than their fair share in scholarships, not minority students. According to CollegeStats.org, minorities receive only 28% of all higher education scholarships.
This is likely not due to intentional discrimination, but to the scholarship criteria themselves. For example, minority students are less likely to be involved or have opportunities, in equestrian sports, polo, and women in STEM programs. And while the gap is changing, fewer minority students are graduating in STEM fields.
Scholarships providers’ goal is to make it easy for all students to find scholarships that are right for them. First-generation and minority college students should have easy access to scholarship opportunities!
Full Ride with Scholarships
It is very important to be the top student in your school, yet there are over 85,000 high school speakers and greeters each year. Even the most talented students have many scholarship competitions!
Parents and students often overestimate their eligibility for merit scholarships and underestimate their eligibility for need-based aid.
Students should always apply for both types of aid, to:
Apply for the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to get financial aid from the federal and state governments and most colleges. According to EducationData.org, “85% of first-time full-time students attending four-year colleges receive federal aid,” and nearly a quarter of all federal grants are Pell Grants.
Apply for scholarships. Scholarships are part of the plan to pay for college, not the whole plan. Most students will have to rely on student loans, student employment, and need-based grants, including scholarships, to pay for college.
Only High School Seniors Can Apply for Scholarships
Students can apply for scholarships at all grade levels: elementary, middle school, high school, college, and graduate students. In fact, Doodle for Google is a popular scholarship available to students from kindergarten through high school seniors.
There are award deadlines every month of the year. Deadlines peak in the fall and spring semesters; a student who expects to start applying for scholarships in the spring will miss about half of their scholarship deadlines!
Searching and Applying for Scholarships is Too Much Work
It takes work to win scholarships. However, the amount of work is minimal compared to the possible scholarship payments. If students don’t use a scholarship database to help them find the most relevant scholarship to apply for, they are wasting a lot of time.
opportunityportal.info is updated daily with scholarships to apply for. This saves a lot of time and eliminates most of the work.
Once a student submits their first scholarship applications, it reduces the amount of work for other scholarships they apply for in the future. Students can often reuse and adapt previous application essays. It is also recommended to create a scholarship folder to organize important documents that you will need to submit for future scholarship applications.
Apply for each scholarship you are eligible for to increase your chances of winning a scholarship. Set a weekly or even monthly scholarship application goal and stick to it. If you’re short on time or need a break, try applying for Featured Scholarships. These take less than five minutes to apply!