5 Tips to Find College Scholarships
In the new My College Guide Sophomore Edition, we shared an article about how to earn money for college before your senior year through scholarships, video contests and essay contests. The experts from Iowa State University and William Peace University we interviewed for the article had lots of great scholarship advice—so much that we couldn’t include it all in the article. Here are five more tips to help you find college scholarships:
1. It’s never too early to look for scholarships.
Maura Flaschner, associate director of undergraduate recruitment at Iowa State University, says sophomore and junior year is not too early to look for college scholarships. “Students can get a grasp on criteria, dollar amounts available and how student they can make themselves attractive candidates for when they apply as a high school senior,” she says. Plus, you might even find some scholarships you can apply for before your senior year.
2. Consult all possible resources.
Amber Stenbeck, vice president for enrollment at William Peace University, says high school students should tap into resources that surround them every day, such as their high school guidance office, church or religious organizations, community and local organizations, their parents’ network of friend, and of course, the internet. “It may sound simplistic, but just ask everybody and anyone that you are able to have a conversation with about education. We call this casting a ‘wide net,’ and it’s just smart,” Stenbeck says.
3. Be persistent.
Did you see the article about a girl who applied for 100 scholarships and ended up getting her college education costs covered? Stenbeck recommends being diligent in your scholarship search and applying to any scholarships for which you meet the eligibility requirements. “Search, search and then search some more. And then apply, apply, apply. It works,” she says.
4. Use the power of the internet.
“There are several legitimate websites that students can use as sophomores, juniors and seniors in high school,” Flaschner says. But you also need to put in the time and effort into looking for scholarships, since it will take time to find all the opportunities available to you. To start, a few popular scholarship search sites include Fastweb.com, Cappex.com and Scholarships.com. Plus, check out My College Guide’s scholarships section for info on scholarship deadlines coming up each month.
5. Check with the colleges you’re interested in.
Colleges may help you find scholarships. William Peace University sends students a monthly scholarship newsletter that lists all the external scholarships available. Iowa State University has a scholarship search tool on its financial aid office website where students can search for awards based on major or area of interest. Plus, ask your college admission counselor or financial aid counselor what scholarships you can apply for, and then apply.