8 Tips for Submitting a Great Scholarship Application

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The following tips, originally posted at StudentAwards Conversations, were contributed by a student in our membership.

1. Passion for the Subject

Only apply for an award if you actually have an interest in the subject matter. Your passion or disinterest will be reflected in your writing.

2. Research

Do the appropriate background work and find out exactly what a specific scholarship panel is looking for. Read the rules and regulations, terms and conditions.

3. Clarity of Thought

Be clear and concise. How you communicate is just as important as what you’re trying to communicate. Answer the essay question and only provide relevant information. Do not go over the word limit count. 

4. Not a Résumé

Your scholarship application essay is not a substitute for your résumé, so don’t re-write your résumé in essay form. Don’t list, discuss! Expand on your personal experience and clearly articulate your goals. 

5. Structure, Spelling, and Grammar

Be aware of proper essay structure. Always double-check your spelling and grammar and have someone proofread your work. 

6. References

Ideally, references should be professionals at your school or organization that can vouch for your participation. Inform your references and make sure that their contact information is up to date. Assume that the scholarship administrator will check your references. 

7. Complete All Requirements

Follow the instructions and make sure that you collect and provide all of the required materials. Making a checklist of all the elements will help. 

8. Don’t Miss Application Deadlines

Don’t procrastinate. Give yourself plenty of time to fill out the application and gather required documents such as reference letters and transcripts.