Four Steps to Make the Most Out of Your Scholarship Searches
Finding the money for college has become a very tricky game with many potential pitfalls. This cautionary statement isn’t designed to discourage you from following your dreams and pursuing higher education. Instead this statement reflects the simple reality of today’s ever escalating education price tag. The price of college is rising at a rate that far exceeds the rate of inflation, and these rising costs make finding a scholarship more important than ever. In this article, we will examine some of the ways that you might be able to find the funds for higher education.
Step 1 Begin Preparing and Searching Early
Beginning your search for scholarship money well in advance is of great importance. There are a simply staggering number of scholarships available, and knowing which ones you are eligible to apply for alone can take a good deal of research. In addition, the application process must be taken seriously as well, as applications can be time consuming. This is especially true if you are applying for numerous scholarships.
Step 2 Talk to Your Counselor and Other School Resources
Your counselor, in theory, has resources pertaining to scholarships and which ones you might be eligible for, and you should consult with him or her well before your graduation date. However, you absolutely should not depend on your high school counselor for advice regarding scholarships. Even the hardest working counselor may miss an important option for you, and that means you need also to explore on your own!
Step 3 Try to Get Appointments with Officials at Colleges and Universities
Educators generally like it when young people show planning and initiative. They also appreciate it when their opinions and knowledge is valued. In short, you might be able to get a great deal of information regarding finding scholarships from college admissions officers and others. Reaching out to them is a savvy move, and you should do more than send an email. Picking up the phone and politely asking for an appointment is a good idea.
You also may want to consider showing up in person to ask for an appointment. You will be very surprised how far this type of action will go with many in the education field. It says volumes about your character and your dedication. Anyone can send an email, but few people are willing to follow up a phone call with a visit!
Step 4 Invest in Books on Scholarships, Research Online and Visit Libraries
You might think that all information is online; however, even the cleverest of web searches may fail to give you a complete picture of your scholarship options. There are still times in your life that thumbing through a book makes sense, and this is definitely the case where finding scholarships are concerned. There are many good books written on this topic. A few minutes with a good book on scholarships could literally be worth thousands of dollars.
Ultimately, it is up to you to begin your scholarship search early and to be proactive about finding the money you need. Don’t be afraid to reach out for help and to be persistent.