Presentation on theme: "3 rd Annual College Prep Fair Scholarship Presentation April 12, 2014 Hector Tejeda Associate Director, Education Initiatives UnidosNow."— Presentation transcript:
3 rd Annual College Prep Fair Scholarship Presentation April 12, 2014 Hector Tejeda Associate Director, Education Initiatives UnidosNow
Getting Started Start by developing a personal statement −Summarize your passion, talents and interests – play to your strengths and leverage what makes you unique −This will serve as a template for college applications as well as financial aid applications −This will help you focus your efforts so that the process does not become overwhelming Identify and prioritize scholarships using your personal statement as a guide Develop a calendar to ensure timely and quality submissions −Often scholarships don’t go to the most qualified but to the best prepared
Scholarship Criteria Merit Talent Special Circum- stances Financial Need Scholarships come in many forms and virtually anyone can qualify for something; must make the effort to identify the right opportunities and submit quality applications
Scholarship Criteria Merit Unique Talent Special Circum- stances Financial Need Usual Merit Guidelines: Very High Merit3.75+ High Merit3.5 Merit3.0 In addition to overall academic achievement, scholarships are given for specific majors: −STEM (science/technology/engineering/math) −Healthcare −Others It is challenging but not impossible to get scholarships with a GPA below 3.0; to overcome this obstacle, you must stand out in one or more of the other criteria
Scholarship Criteria Merit Unique Talent Special Circum- stances Financial Need Some scholarships use FAFSA results to determine financial need Many scholarships require an individual assessment of your budget –gives you the opportunity to explain special circumstances Don’t assume that need-based scholarships are only for students from very low- income families. Eligibility criteria for some scholarships may be more flexible.
Scholarship Criteria Merit Unique Talent Special Circum- stances Financial Need Sports/Music/Art/Theatre/Writing Your talent may not always win you a scholarship but it may get you into a better school (the money will come later in the form of a higher salary) You may not be blessed with the talent to win scholarships at major universities but there are excellent smaller schools that might value your talent.
Scholarship Criteria Merit Unique Talent Special Circum- stances Financial Need Diversity −Ethnicity/Gender/Sexual Orientation −Geographic (US/International) Community Service/Leadership −Club/Church/Youth Organization Overcoming Obstacles −First Generation −Disabilities After-School Employment There are many, many scholarships for students who offer diversity, a passion for helping others, leadership, or evidence of overcoming obstacles
Scholarship Criteria Merit Unique Skills/ Experiences Special Circum- stances Financial Need Scholarships usually require one or more of these components. The combination and/or strength of these criteria will determine how competitive you are.
SOURCES OF SCHOLARSHIPS Scholarships Internal to a College Local and Regional Scholarships Federal and State Governments National Scholarships
Locating Scholarships Check websites from the following sources for a list of scholarships offered and to understand the application process, criteria and timing Targeted Colleges −Speak to financial aid office US Department of Education (“Financial Aid and Scholarship Wizard”) Florida Department of Education (Bright Futures) National/Regional/Local Foundations Large Corporations/Banks Ethnicity-Based Organizations Your county school system/your high school/local library −Speak to your guidance counselor and librarian Other local, regional and state-wide organizations that offer scholarships Corporations, banks, credit unions, churches, community groups, individuals, and other non- profit groups and associations Much of the work has already been done for you since many of the websites have excellent summaries of scholarships available from multiple sources. Manatee County Foundation Sarasota County School System
Scholarship Search Sites FinAid on the Web The College Board FastWeb StudentScholarship Search GoCollege: The Collegiate Websource MACH25 Scholarships.com Embark.com Do not fall for scams promising you scholarship money if you pay a fee. The following reputable websites are excellent sources of information and are completely free:
Students with better grades are more likely to win scholarships, but B and C students do win some −Every scholarship sponsor is looking for students who best match their criteria. Instead of academic talent, they might be looking for artistic talent or athletic talent or diversity Very few students win a completely free ride −Scholarships are part of the plan for paying for college, but not the entire plan There are scholarships with deadlines in every month of the year −Many families wait until spring of the senior year in high school to figure out how to pay for college, missing half the deadlines for seniors Applying for scholarships is hard work −It gets much easier after your first half-dozen applications, since you can reuse and adapt your previous application essays Some students don’t like essay contests and small scholarships, making them easier to win National scholarships are more difficult to get - apply if you are competitive or after you have applied for other scholarships Final Thoughts