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WHAT YOU’LL LEARN: WHEN TO START LOOKING WHERE TO FIND THE BEST AWARDS SIX STEPS TO WINNING A SCHOLARSHIP HOW PARENTS CAN HELP HOW TO GET STARTED TODAY.

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Presentation on theme: "WHAT YOU’LL LEARN: WHEN TO START LOOKING WHERE TO FIND THE BEST AWARDS SIX STEPS TO WINNING A SCHOLARSHIP HOW PARENTS CAN HELP HOW TO GET STARTED TODAY."— Presentation transcript:

1 WHAT YOU’LL LEARN: WHEN TO START LOOKING WHERE TO FIND THE BEST AWARDS SIX STEPS TO WINNING A SCHOLARSHIP HOW PARENTS CAN HELP HOW TO GET STARTED TODAY

2 WHEN TO START LOOKING Start early—some scholarships are open to all grade levels Summer or early fall is the best time of year—gives you time to find programs before deadlines have passed Seniors playing catch up? Don’t give up yet. There are plenty of scholarships with January, February, March deadlines…The key? START TODAY. Sources: CollegeBoard 2013 Scholarship Handbook & SallieMae How To Pay For College: a practical guide for families. 2005

3 WHERE TO FIND THE BEST AWARDS Need based vs. Merit based scholarships National vs. local The search…where to begin? Your high school--scholarship newsletter, counselors Your prospective college—contact financial aid office about scholarships, check their websites Civic and community organizations—Rotary Club, Elks club, Knights of Columbus, YMCA, etc. Businesses—Wal-Mart, Target, Coca Cola, etc. Employers—McDonalds, Burger King, Subway, Starbucks, Chick Fil-A all offer scholarships to students who have worked for them Sources: CollegeBoard 2013 Scholarship Handbook & SallieMae How To Pay For College: a practical guide for families. 2005

4 WHERE TO FIND THE BEST AWARDS…CONTINUED Unions—if parent is a member of a union, scholarships available Religious organizations—your church or temple may offer scholarships, check with your local church or the national headquarters Military associations—may offer awards to dependents of active duty members, Reserve members, and veterans (www.legion.org, )www.legion.org Good websites for internet search: and (non-citizens) and Sources: CollegeBoard 2013 Scholarship Handbook & SallieMae How To Pay For College: a practical guide for families. 2005

5 SIX STEPS TO WINNING A SCHOLARSHIP STEP 1: Prioritize the list of scholarships: Put the awards that best fit at the top of the list (better a few good matches than many long shots) STEP 2: Target your approach: Avoid the ‘throwing Jello-against-the- wall” approach. Blasting the same application to as many scholarship competitions as possible hoping one will stick rarely works. Learn as much as possible about the scholarship organization and build a case for why you are the best candidate for the award by sharing relevant examples that match the purpose of the award and the mission of the organization. Sources: CollegeBoard 2013 Scholarship Handbook & SallieMae How To Pay For College: a practical guide for families. 2005

6 SIX STEPS TO WINNING A SCHOLARSHIP STEP 3: Complete the application:  Be a neat freak. Neatness counts. If it’s illegible, it will be tossed.  Fill in those blanks! If at all possible fill in all spaces.  Don’t save the best for last—list most impressive points first.  Nip and tuck every sentence. Be specific and brief whenever possible.  Don’t be modest. You’re going to have to ‘brag’ about your accomplishments.  Show instead of tell: Give clear examples. STEP 4: Get great recommendations:  Ask in advance—at least three weeks.  Ask people who know you well enough to write a strong letter.. Sources: CollegeBoard 2013 Scholarship Handbook & SallieMae How To Pay For College: a practical guide for families. 2005

7 SIX STEPS TO WINNING A SCHOLARSHIP STEP 5: Write a winning scholarship essay:  Be clear about why you deserve to win.  Reveal something about yourself—regardless of the question, it’s about you.  Have a main point. Include a clear thesis statement—answer the question.  Give specifics. Details and examples make the essay memorable.  Be original.  Expand on accomplishments—elaborate, don’t repeat what’s on the application.  Avoid meaningless facts. Don’t repeat statistics without a reason.  Don’t write a sob story. Explain how did you succeeded despite challenges?  Create positive energy. Avoid sounding pessimistic, antagonistic or critical.  Get Editors for the essay. Get feedback from others to make sure you answered the question and corrected any spelling or grammatical errors.  Recycling essays. Have you written any essays that can be used even in part for a scholarship essay? Sources: CollegeBoard 2013 Scholarship Handbook & SallieMae How To Pay For College: a practical guide for families. 2005

8 SIX STEPS TO WINNING A SCHOLARSHIP STEP 6: Ace the Scholarship Interview  Do your homework—research the awarding organization.  Practice, practice, practice—mock interviews.  Dress for success—Clothing makes a strong first impression. Sources: CollegeBoard 2013 Scholarship Handbook & SallieMae How To Pay For College: a practical guide for families. 2005

9 HOW PARENTS CAN HELP Create a schedule—How much time can your child commit to scholarship search and application process? Encourage your child to research awarding organizations. Help track scholarship applications and required documents. Edit the essay—check for silly mistakes, make sure the question is addressed. Assist with interview preparation by practicing with your child—specifically help eliminate the use of “like” and “um” and “you know.” Encourage, support, but don’t take over. Sources: CollegeBoard 2013 Scholarship Handbook & SallieMae How To Pay For College: a practical guide for families. 2005

10 HOW TO GET STARTED TODAY 1.Schedule time for searching and applying 2.Check local scholarship list 3.Check major scholarship websites 4.Organize your search—create folders for applications in progress and documents required, keep supplies handy (envelopes, stamps) 5.Create a letter requesting recommendations, fill out a brag sheet and make copies 6.Calendar of due dates Sources: CollegeBoard 2013 Scholarship Handbook & SallieMae How To Pay For College: a practical guide for families. 2005

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