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Associate Director of Admissions Radford University

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1 Associate Director of Admissions Radford University
Douglas Brady Associate Director of Admissions Radford University Remind attendees to silence their cell phones. Cover logistics such as bathroom location and any other announcements you would like to share.

2 How college can change your life
Let’s get started. Audience activity: Ask audience to call out all the reasons why college is important. Summarize what was said by audience.

3 College is important Unemployment rates are directly tied to your level of education Studies consistently show that attending college adds to your lifelong earnings Difference between a high school graduate and a four-year degree – between $800,000 and $1 million Source: U.S. Department of Labor statistics, September 2011 Notice the gap between unemployment rates for high school graduates and those with a bachelor’s degree. In May 2007 it was only 2.6%. Now it is 5.3%. The more education you have, the more employment options you have. Having a job means you have income, and there is also a correlation between education and income. We asked people how much – in terms of dollars – a college education is worth.

4 College is important There’s more to being happy than how much money you make, but it is clear that you make more money at each higher level of education. In Oregon, someone with a bachelor’s degree makes almost twice as much on average as a high school graduate. The extra money you make over a lifetime can seem like a very abstract concept. Let’s take a closer look at the income gap.

5 College is important People who have attended some college
Report higher levels of job satisfaction Typically live healthier lifestyles Enjoy benefits such as insurance, paid vacation, a retirement plan, etc. Are more involved in their communities through higher levels of volunteering and voting It’s true—college is important! While we’ve talked a little about the financial rewards of going to college, there are other benefits as well. College graduates enjoy higher job satisfaction, live healthier lifestyles, are more likely to have better benefits such as health, disability, and life insurance, along with paid vacation and a retirement plan, and more. College graduates are more likely to be involved in their communities by volunteering and voting. College is more than a higher income – it’s a pathway to enjoying life more. Audience discussion: Does anyone have anything to add about the benefits of going to college? Are there any questions before we move to the next section about choosing the right college.

6 Choosing the right college
Let’s look at choosing the right college.

7 Many choices There are over 6,000 colleges to choose from in the United States With this many choices, where and how do you start to look for the college that is right for you? Before you start searching, think about your goals The great thing about higher education in the United States is the wide variety of options you have from over 6,000 colleges. If that’s the case, how do you narrow down the list of schools from 6,000 to those that would be a great fit for you? One way to do this is to think about what goals you have for yourself.

8 What are your goals? Some students already know they want to
Learn a trade or enter a specific profession Obtain a degree, maybe in a specific field Not sure about your goals? College is a great place to explore your options Goals can change while researching colleges About 80% of college students change their major at least once It’s possible you don’t know what your ultimate goals are, and that’s OK. College can expose you to new possibilities you’ve never considered. On the other hand, you may know exactly what you want to do for a living and what type of college can help you become that. This makes it easy to identify colleges can help you achieve your goals. Activity Ask audience to write out what their goals are.

9 Choosing a college Narrow down your list of potential colleges by identifying the characteristics important to you Factors some students consider Program or major you are considering College size Class size Location or distance from home Support programs Gathering and comparing information about colleges you’re interested in attending will start you on the path to choosing where you’ll attend. There are several factors to consider. Most important is whether the college offers a program that will aid in your career. Audience discussion: Presenter may choose to illustrate with a personal example of how you chose the college you attended. Or, ask the parents in the audience who would like to share their story about how they chose the college they attended. You don’t have to know what you’re planning to major in today but the college you choose should offer programs in areas you’re interested in exploring. School size is also a factor. Can you thrive in a school with large class sizes and less personal attention but more flexibility in what you study? Or would you rather have more individualized attention. Costs may also vary with the size of the school and whether it is a private or public institution. What about location? If you want the vibrancy of a big city you may wish to consider a school in a major metropolitan hub. If the campus is far from home – will that be an issue for you? Depending on your circumstance you may want to look at the support programs a college offers. Support programs are designed to help you stay in school and graduate. Examples of support programs include tutoring, providing you a mentor, residence hall advisors, and much more.

10 Choosing a college Additional factors to consider
Campus culture Extracurricular activities Religious or cultural affiliations Cost of attendance Ultimately cost matters but Think about cost when making your final decision, not as much when starting your search Consider your net out-of-pocket cost, not just the sticker price When visiting a college, get a feel for its “personality.” Does it match yours? Extracurricular offerings can also be important. Many people build their social circle through activities that are organized by the school. Is there a hobby or activity that you can’t live without while enrolled? Activities such as debate team, sports, and/or clubs on campus. Many colleges have affiliations with religious groups or may have a campus culture that‘s part of the mainstream of the school. If you have strong religious beliefs you may want to look into schools that satsify your spiritual side. Don’t self-select yourself out of attending a specific college because it appears to be more than you can afford. While one school may appear to be less expensive, what will your final cost be after receiving financial aid? For example, a more expensive school may offer more institutonal grants or other aid that makes the overall cost out of your pocket less than another school.

11 Researching college choices
Parents and school counselors can help There are many college search web sites All these sites allow you to search for colleges based on the factors that are important to you Your parents can be a huge help in the process. School counselors can too. They have a wealth of knowledge . The Internet is also a big part of the process. When you’re doing your research, it helps to know to some degree what characteristics of a college are important to you.

12 Your college applications
Each college has its own requirements for completing the application process These can include Completing a short form and taking a placement test at a community college Submitting test scores, essays, reference letters and a portfolio at some colleges Check each college’s web site for requirements Each college you apply for will require an application. That’s why it’s important to narrow down the colleges you want to attend. Each college has it’s own requirements which can range from completing a short application and taking a placement test to completing a longer applications, submitting test scores, essays, reference letters and a portfolio. From a college’s perspective, the goal of the application is to learn about you and whether you fit the academic standards for the college and your motivation to attend. Check each college’s website for the requirements to apply. Some colleges will require a written paper application while others will require an online application.

13 Your college applications
Determine college application due dates Postmark date or arrive by date Note on your calendar Read the directions carefully Ability to follow directions correctly is part of the acceptance criteria Meet the application deadlines Each college sets its own deadline Put your deadlines for your college applications into your calendar as soon as possible. Each college application will have different due dates and will say whether your packet needs to be postmarked by the due date or that it needs to arrive at the school by the due date. Many colleges accept their applications online and many prefer this method. Make sure to follow the directions on your application packet. The ability to follow directions is viewed as a positive trait in many college admissions officers’ criteria. You can find application deadlines by visiting each colleges’ website.

14 Your college applications
Application fees Most colleges have an application fee Many colleges will waive the fee You may have to submit SAT or ACT scores Transcripts References/recommendations Essays Other evidence of talent Don’t be surprised if you get to the end of the application and discover that the college charges you an application fee. Many colleges have one or more ways for you to apply at no cost. It’s really important to understand that each college may require you to submit additional information to support your application. These requirements vary from college to college, so you need to look at each college’s web site to know what additional information you need to submit along with your application. Now we’ll talk about some of the things you may have to submit with your college application. The first item is test scores. We’ll talk a bit later about SAT and ACT testing requirements. In addition to test scores, schools may require your high school transcripts, reference letters, essays and other evidence of your abilities. For example if you’re applying to study journalism they may want to see a portfolio of articles you’ve written.

15 College entrance exams
For many students, the admissions process includes taking college entrance exams PSAT or PLAN – “Practice” tests for the SAT/ACT Placement tests SAT or ACT Disability accommodations and fee waivers are available Let’s talk a little more about testing. There are also some tests to be taken while in high school. Not all colleges require standardized testing for admissions but you’ll want to be sure to take any that are required. The Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test is taken during junior year and may qualify you as a national merit scholar should you do exceptionally well. The Scholastic Aptitude Test is generally taken late during junior year and in the fall of your senior year and is generally the most commonly required admissions test. When taking the tests accommodations for disabilities and fee waivers are available.

16 College entrance exams
SAT Measures conceptual thinking rather than facts Critical reasoning, math, and a required writing test ACT Measures what you learned in high school English, math, reading, science and optional writing test Depending upon your learning style, you may perform better on one test versus the other It’s important to understand that the SAT and ACT are very different tests. One measures how you think while the other measures what you know. If you know you do better on one type of test versus the other, that might help you decide which college admissions test to take.

17 Your college applications
Transcripts Official high school transcript needed for each college application College transcript also required if you’ve taken any college courses Transcript is used to document your GPA, class rank and the rigorousness of your high school program Many acceptances contingent on maintaining GPA Most require a final high school transcript Request an official copy of your high school transcript for each college where you plan to apply. You will likely be required to send a final transcript after you graduate as you are expected to keep your grades up. Colleges will also want to review your transcripts for college courses you may have taken while in high school. Colleges use transcripts to document your GPA and review the rigorousness of the classes you took during school. When you are accepted to a college remember your acceptance is contingent on maintaining your GPA until you graduate from high school.

18 Your college applications
References Usually from teachers, other adults and peers Allow plenty of time Give as much information as possible Include stamped, pre-addressed envelope Write thank you notes to your references and let them know when you get accepted If your college requires recommendations you’ll need to be organized to get them in on time. Give your references plenty of time to write letters or complete forms. References appreciate information. While they may know you well, a resume and a note about what you’d like them to focus on can make their job easier. Always include a stamped envelope for them if they’ll be sending it in. Also, some references may have several to write for other students. Allow plenty of lead time so yours gets done by the due date. Finally, send a thank you note to your references and keep them informed. They’re interested in your success and will feel rewarded for their efforts.

19 Your college applications
Admissions essays Stay on topic Essays should be error free Don’t exceed the word limit Be yourself Your essay is about more than your writing skills. It’s also about your ability to complete a task as requested so be sure to stay on topic. It’s ok to recycle essays from other applications but make sure you meet the requirements of the question. Obviously essays (and your entire application packet) should be error free. This means more than using the spell check Have a few trusted people such as teachers, parents and guidance counselors read your essays. Be sure to give yourself some time to be able to make corrections before sending in your essay(s). Be yourself when writing your essay . There’s no need to second guess what the college would like you to think or say on a particular subject.

20 Your college applications
Other evidence of talent Portfolio Audition tapes Writing samples Contact specific program for more information There may be other tasks that you need to complete for your admissions packet. Don’t let these derail your application. Colleges generally post their requirements so be prepared with whatever will be needed. These could be things such as an art or writing portfolio, audition tapes, writing samples or specific information required by the school.

21 Any questions? Ask audience for questions. If audience doesn’t have questions you may want to ask audience “What was something you learned?” or “How will you used what you learned?” These two questions will enable the audience to provide a review of the content through their answers.

22 Paying for college This next segment is about Paying for College. We’ll share the different financial aid resources available.

23 Sources of college funds – 2012
Source: “How America Pays for College”, Sallie Mae, 2012 Every year, Sallie Mae conducts a poll to determine how Americans pay for college. Many times, how you pay for college is a combination of some or all of these methods. We will focus on grants, scholarships and borrowing. Source: “How America Pays for College”, Sallie Mae, 2012

24 Your college costs Which college would cost you the most to attend?
Example private college - $55,850 Sample state college - $19,619 The answer seems obvious, but it isn’t as simple as comparing these numbers Which college would cost you the most to attend? Based on the price alone the answer may seem obvious with the example of the private and state colleges. However, it isn’t as simple as comparing these numbers.

25 Your college costs When you look at the costs listed on the previous slide, you are looking at the college’s “sticker price” More formally known as “Cost of Attendance” (COA) Consists of direct and indirect costs Direct costs are paid to the college Tuition and fees Room and board if living on campus There’s more to the cost of college than the basic tuition price. Your financial aid office will determine your cost of attendance based on several categories of expenses. Tuition and fees Nonresidents at public colleges generally pay more than resident (or in-state) students. Private colleges typically charge higher tuition. Fees are added on for services such as the library, student activities and the health center, among others. If you plan on living and eating on campus, the cost of room and board that is part of COA is paid directly to the college. If you look in the Opportunities book, it lists the “sticker price” of many colleges in the state. In addition, you‘ll want to determine your own cost estimates to make sure that you’ve accounted for things outside the ordinary such as medical bills, etc.

26 Your college costs COA also includes indirect costs
Room and board if living off campus Books and supplies Personal expenses Transportation Allowance for dependent care Loan fees Cost of a personal computer Costs related to disability Reasonable costs for study abroad Cost of attendance also includes your living expenses such as rent, food, utilities along with Books and supplies costs vary but are factored in also. Textbooks can be quite expensive. Some academic fields will require specific supplies that may be more expensive – for example art and lab supplies. Personal expenses vary from student to student but the financial aid office will factor in an amount that the average student might need for things such as: clothing, laundry, medical insurance, etc. Transportation is also factored in for costs to and from home once or twice per year and for commuter students for getting to and from campus. Some colleges may consider other costs as well. If you have dependents, daycare or eldercare may be considered. Some loans have fees and this is taken into account as well as expenses to accommodate for a disability. If you’re required to have a personal computer an allowance for a computer may also be considered. If you study abroad the additional costs for travel may also be considered.

27 Your college costs Comparing COA – the “sticker price” – of various colleges does not give you an accurate picture of what it will cost to attend Can get an estimate of net price by using your college’s “net price calculator” You find out the actual net price by applying for financial aid Just like when buying a car, most people don’t pay the sticker price. The cost for you to attend a specific college is likely to be different from many other students who attend the same college. Why? Every student’s individual financial situation is taken into account to determine the net price that student will pay. Every college that offers federal financial aid has to have what is called a “net price calculator” on its web site. This is intended to provide you with an estimate of what your net price will be after receiving financial aid. These calculators have limitations. Some ask much more specific questions than others, so take this information for what it is – an estimate only. The only way you can truly know what it will cost you to attend a specific college is to apply for financial aid.

28 About the FAFSA FAFSA = Free Application for Federal Student Aid
Determines eligibility for Most federal financial aid programs Many state financial aid programs Much of the aid colleges award from their own funds Some scholarship programs Colleges may require additional forms to collect more detailed data The way to access most federal and state financial aid is by filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). By filling out the FAFSA you will be considered for eligibility for the many financial aid programs. You’ll also be considered for some of the state and private grants and institutional aid the college may offer. Some private colleges may have more private grant money available than state colleges. Some colleges will ask you to complete a form that asked for more detailed financial information. Remember, you will need to complete a FAFSA each year in which you wish to be considered for financial aid.

29 About the FAFSA FAFSA asks you questions about
Income Assets Family size Number of family members attending college Number one reason people don’t file a FAFSA They assume they are not eligible for aid This may be a costly assumption The FAFSA asks you a lot of questions about your personal financial situation such as your family income, assets, family size and number of family members attending college. The goal of the FAFSA is to determine how much financial aid you need and whether you are eligible to receive federal aid. The primary reason people do not file the FAFSA is that they assume they will not be eligible to receive any aid. That might be a costly mistake.

30 Cost of not filing Each year 1.7 million students who would be eligible for financial aid do not file a FAFSA 33.1% would have qualified for a Pell Grant 17.1% would have qualified for the maximum Pell Grant award Also missed out on potential aid from the state, the college and many scholarship providers Each year 1.7 million students do not file the FAFSA. Of those 1.7 million 1/3 would have qualified for the Pell grant with ½ of those getting the maximum Pell grant amount. They also missed out on potential aid from the state, college and/or a scholarship. Although the most recent data is from 2011, it shows many people miss out on receiving a grant. Question for audience: How much is the maximum Pell grant? Answer:$5, % of the people who did not file the FASFA missed out on $5,550. Another 16% missed out on a few thousand dollars. Source: Mark Kantrowitz, “Reasons Why Students Do Not File the FAFSA”, January 2011

31 About the FAFSA Three versions of the FAFSA Online version is best
Online – PDF FAFSA – Print from your computer Paper FAFSA – Call FED.AID It is always free to complete the FASFA Online version is best Built-in edits make it easier to complete accurately Sign it electronically with your PIN obtained from Faster results You only have to fill out one version of the FAFSA, but you can choose which version works best for you. You can begin preparations to file the FAFSA before January 1, but that is the earliest date you can file a FAFSA. You will also have to file a FAFSA each year you want to be considered for financial aid. Be careful of the web address you enter. There is a web site – – that will charge you $80 to help you file the FAFSA. The free site is Most people choose the online version because it has built in edits which help improve the accuracy of your FASFA. You can sign your FASFA electronically by obtaining a PIN (Personal Identification Number) from The benefit of filing online is it’s easier and you‘ll get faster results.

32 FAFSA help is available
You can receive in-person help in completing the FAFSA at a “ 2013 Super Saturday” event Financial aid professionals will help you complete the FAFSA online The date for 2013 Saturday, February 9, 2013 Details at For many years, VASFAA has sponsored Super Saturday. At each location there will be financial aid administrators who will work with you individually to help you complete the FAFSA.

33 Navigating financial aid
After completing the FAFSA, the student receives the Student Aid Report (SAR) Correct any errors and return SAR contains Expected Family Contribution (EFC) FAFSA information is also sent to the colleges you listed to receive the data Once you’ve finished your FAFSA you can expect your SAR in a few weeks – note that you’ll receive it quicker if you do the online version. Check it carefully for errors and return it. Your SAR will also list your Expected Family Contribution (EFC). It’s generally in the upper right hand corner with no decimal points. Your EFC is what the federal government estimates that you and your family can contribute to your college education.

34 EFC determines aid offered
COA (Cost of attendance) — EFC = financial need Financial aid office will then determine the student’s eligibility for federal and state financial aid, and for any aid the college may be able to offer from its own funds Financial aid office may ask for additional information Student will receive an award letter Your EFC goes into determining the aid you are offered – also known as your award. Your EFC is the same no matter which college you’re applying to. Let’s say that you’re going to a college that has a cost of attendance of $20,000 and your expected family contribution is $6,000 annually. The college subtracts $6,000 from $20,000 and will try to offer an aid package of $14,000. The financial aid office will take the cost of attendance and subtract your EFC and work to build a financial aid package that meets the leftover need. Depending on the college, the financial aid office may ask for additional information to help them in awarding you financial aid. Once your financial aid has been determined ,your financial aid office will send you an award letter with the details.

35 Types of federal financial aid
Need-based federal aid Non-need-based federal aid Pell Grant SEOG Work-study Perkins loan Subsidized Stafford loan Unsubsidized Stafford loan PLUS loan TEACH grant There are additional Federal financial aid programs, most of which require you to file a FAFSA There are several federal financial aid programs. It is important to note a couple of things: (1) some are based on you demonstrating need, but others are available even if you do not demonstrate need, and (2) you have to file a FAFSA to be considered for all these programs. The details about these programs are contained in the Opportunities booklets, so you should take some time at home to see just how much money might be available for you to attend college.

36 Virginia grants summary
Virginia Commonwealth Award VGAP VTAG Award based on Need Need and merit Attending a VA private college Eligible schools VA public colleges Participating VA private colleges Maximum award Up to tuition and fees Up to tuition, fees and books Approximately $2,800 Other information Neediest get largest awards Must maintain a 2.0 college GPA Must be full-time student The state grant programs each have different requirements. Some are based on need only, while VGAP is based on both need and merit. VTAG is based simply on attending a participating private college in Virginia. In all cases, the college financial aid office will determine whether or not you are eligible to receive funds. And you need to file a FAFSA to be considered for most of the state aid programs.

37 Understanding award letters
Read your award letter carefully Could be either on paper or online Follow instructions for next steps Meet all deadlines Inform college of changing financial issues Let’s talk about your award letter. Once you have been accepted for enrollment at any college, and have applied for financial aid by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and any other financial aid forms required by the college, you and your family will receive a financial aid award letter. This letter will detail the amount of financial support the college is able to provide for the upcoming year. You might receive the award letter along with your notice of acceptance. Some colleges make the award letters available online. Check with your colleges to see how they will distribute the award letters. Read the fine print • Read your award letter carefully to ensure you understand all terms and conditions so you can decide if you want to accept some, or all, of the aid offered. • Look for instructions for your next steps. You might need to complete additional paperwork, such as loan applications. • Determine if grants or scholarships are available for more than one year. If so, what are the applicable conditions? Be sure to meet all the deadlines and keep your college aware of any changing financial issues such as becoming unemployed, receiving a scholarship, or other financial issues that did not exist at the time you completed your FASFA.

38 Understanding award letters
What if it’s not enough? Research private scholarships Consider any potential employer benefits Check into college tuition payment plans Make financial aid office aware of changes in your financial situation Reminder – you must complete the FAFSA to be considered for most types of aid Consider part time employment during college If after reading the award letter, you believe that the award and your family savings are not enough to cover all of your expenses, don’t panic! There are other options for getting the money you need to attend the college of your choice. • Research other sources for private scholarships. It might not be too late to apply. See if there is a national association affiliated with your major that might offer a scholarship. Review your college catalog, contact the head of the department of your major, talk to your guidance counselor, or take another look at the free college scholarship search services available online. • Consider any potential benefits from your parents’ place of employment. Look beyond just tuition and scholarships. Programs might exist to lower the cost of computers, insurance, or travel. • See if your college offers a payment plan that allows tuition expenses to be spread out over the year. • Make sure your college is aware of any special situations or circumstances that might affect their award decision. Is another sibling in college? Has a baby been born or adopted? Is a parent facing possible layoff? Do any of your family members have a chronic medical condition resulting in unusually high medical expenses? Did you get a new scholarship? Make sure your financial aid office is aware of any unique situations.

39 Any questions? Ask audience for questions. If audience doesn’t have questions you may want to ask audience “What was something you learned?” or “How will you used what you learned?” These two questions will enable the audience to provide a review of the content through their answers.

40 Scholarship searches & scams
In this next section we will review scholarships – what to do and scams to watch out for.

41 Scholarships A form of gift aid – money given to students that doesn’t have to be repaid There are lots of different types of scholarships You don’t always need a very high GPA to be the greatest athlete Diligence and perseverance are great tools when applying for scholarships While a super grade point average and a strong resume and great athletic talent are helpful in getting scholarships being a regular student may also qualify you for a scholarship . Is your GPA offset by a strong focus on a particular talent, skill or volunteer activity? Do you have great ideas of what you want to do with your life? Are you in need financially or do you have strong connections to a particular community? Are you the first in your family to attend college? If so, there are scholarships you may qualify for. Quality counts. A smattering of extracurricular activities won’t stand out as much as focusing on something that you care about and being able to state why that activity is important to you. You still have to look for scholarships. Even if you’re a great student, chances are you need to do some research to find scholarships. They’re unlikely to find you. When applying for scholarships, you may need to follow a different process than what you did to apply to get into college. You may be able to use an admissions essay but you‘ll likely need to gather different information for your application packet. The competition for scholarships can be intense, especially for the big money. However, Diligence and perseverance are great tools to use when applying for scholarships

42 Scholarships An estimated 45% of college students receive scholarship funds Average scholarship amounts received 4-year public college = $4,876 4-year private college = $14,016 Community college = $2,929 According to a survey How America Pays for College 2012 an estimated 45% of college students receive a scholarship with average amounts ranging from almost $3,000 at community colleges, close to $5,000 at public colleges and $14,000 at private colleges. Source: How America Pays for College 2012 https://www1.salliemae.com/about/news_info/research/how_america_pays_2011/

43 Popular scholarship sites
Three good and legitimate sites Fastweb – College Board – Scholarships.com – Many other scholarship search sites but Avoid paying a fee Keep an eye out for possible scams Of course the most popular way of searching for scholarships is via the internet. To search for scholarships you can go to one of the many free sites and fill out a profile. You’ll be asked to fill out a profile which will tell a lot about yourself. This information will be used to match you with scholarships. Note when you get an it means that you likely “qualify” for the scholarship. You haven’t yet won the scholarship. You should definitely verify that you meet the qualifications and that it’s a legitimate offering.

44 Other scholarship resources
A successful scholarship search extends beyond the Internet High school counselor May have a list of local competitions Check with other area high schools College/University Financial aid office Check within your major There are many resources to use when beginning your search for scholarships. An essential place to check is with your current high school. It may have a list of local competitions where fewer people enter, making it easier to win. If your high school doesn’t have a listing, check out others in the area. Local providers of scholarships are generally looking to invest in their community and your potential could be a great investment for them. Often, when you fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, you will be considered for grants and scholarships through the financial aid office. Check out financial aid and other areas of student services to see if they have additional listings as well. Students who are strongly committed to a particular major may also find that there are scholarships available specific to their area of study.

45 Other scholarship resources
Family and friends Employers Religious, civic, and community organizations Foundations Military Public library Another great resource are family and friends. A family member may know about community scholarships that are available. Ask around and you may be surprised at the opportunities out there. Many employers – both yours and those of friends – offer scholarships. Also check with organizations you and your family have been involved with such as the military and/or community organizations to see if they offer scholarships. The public library also has vast listings of scholarships with their application due dates and years in which they’re offered. It’s best to look these up at the library rather than purchasing a book as the information quickly becomes outdated.

46 Successful scholarship candidates
Apply for many different scholarships Request application allowing plenty of time to complete application requirements Turn in error-free applications Follow all application directions Watch out for the fine print Keep copies of completed applications Be thankful and gracious The determined scholarship applicant wins in many cases. Just being organized and following some of these basic tips may land your scholarship application at the top of the review pile. Don’t limit yourself to a few applications. By recycling essays and personal statements, it’s not a lot more effort to apply to 12 organizations as opposed to 2 or 3. Generally to apply for a scholarship you must request an application or download it from a web site. Get your application in time to allow plenty of time to complete it and to obtain any additional paperwork needed such as transcripts and test scores. Successful applicants show that they are qualified. The scholarship awarding committee will not assume that you meet the criteria. Send any proof that you can. Your application must be error free or it will likely be disqualified. Have your parents, teachers, guidance counselor, etc. review your application carefully. Keep copies of completed applications. Whether you receive a scholarship or not be sure to send a thank you note. When you apply next year they may remember your thank you note. Also, keep copies of completed applications in case you need that information for future scholarships throughout your college career.

47 Scholarship applications
May need to provide Proof you have filed the FAFSA Essays/personal statement Letters of recommendation Examples of work in specific study area/portfolio SAT/ACT scores Transcripts Interview – in-person or phone When you apply for scholarships, it may remind you a bit of the college application process. Some of the things you have to give the college when you apply are also required for scholarship applications. We have covered a lot of the topics already, but here’s a tip or two: See if you can recycle your college application essays for scholarship applications If a scholarship requires an interview, prepare for it. Google common interview questions to get a sense of what you might be asked.

48 Watch for scams You’re guaranteed to win or your money back
You can’t get this information anywhere else Give us your credit card number to get started The scholarship will cost some money You are a finalist (for a scholarship you didn’t apply for) If it sounds too good to be true Come to a free seminar We’ll do all the work for you The Federal Trade Commission put together a list of the most common scholarship scams. They sometimes work because they play on your desire to get free money. However, it’s estimated that Americans lose $100 million each year as part of these scams. Remember these warning signs that might help identify a scam (review bullets on the slide) $100 million source:

49 Tips to remember Scam mailings often sound and look official
Expect winning notification from legitimate scholarships via mail not by phone Watch out for 900 area code telephone numbers Always walk away from high pressure sales Be wary of endorsements Scammers who try to get you to fall for their tricks are very good at making their communication look professional and patriotic. Examine anything carefully before responding. Avoid any questions by tracking which scholarships you’ve applied for and only correspond with awarding organizations you’re sure about. If you win you will be notified via mail rather than telephone. Again, you’ll want to make sure any mail you get is the real thing rather than a scam. Legitimate scholarship awarding organizations never have 900 numbers, nor do community service organizations that help with your questions about the financial aid process. High pressure to buy a scholarship search? Walk away… It’s a scam. Some scammers will say they are endorsed by other legitimate organizations even when that is not true. They may also claim endorsements from fictional organizations with names that sound trustworthy.

50 When you win What to expect
Congratulations letter – keep a copy for your records! High profile scholarships may include follow ups May need to send transcripts and proof of enrollment Fulfill obligations – such as thank you letters Check may be sent to you or your college College may adjust your financial aid award When you win a scholarship, you’ll typically receive a congratulations letter. Keep this and feel the joy. A very high profile scholarship win could include follow up interviews or a photo opportunity. The check, when it’s cut may be sent directly to you or to your college. You may also need to provide follow up information such as transcripts once you’re enrolled in college. You’ll also want to fulfill any other obligations that the scholarship requires. Unfulfilled expectations could affect your award.

51 Any questions? Ask audience for questions. If audience doesn’t have questions you may want to ask audience “What was something you learned?” or “How will you used what you learned?” These two questions will enable the audience to provide a review of the content through their answers.


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