28 Jul, 2017

University scholarships

It is common knowledge that the quality of education in American Universities is exceptionally high and for this reason many students all over the world seek to study in the United States. While the quality of education offered in the United States is undeniably high, the high cost required to study in the United States makes it beyond the reach of many people. As an international student, the dream of pursuing a university education in the US is achievable with University scholarships.

Getting a scholarship is a great way to pay university tuition without running into debt. There are a lot of scholarships offered by Individuals, privately owned companies, religious institutions, non-profit organisations and schools. Getting a scholarship can be made possible with proper research and careful planning.

How to find scholarships.

Begin by searching online. The best place to find information on university scholarships is on the world wide web. There are some search engines that are specifically designed to seek out potential scholarships. Websites of religious groups, communities and other organisations should also be considered. There are various scholarships on offer for students with specific unique backgrounds. There are scholarships for;

Students from specific races.

Students with family in the military.

Students that practice a certain religion.

It is also a good idea to consult a teacher or school counselor for information on the types of scholarships available.

While searching for scholarships, it is important that you keep track of the deadline for submission of applications. It is advisable to send in the necessary paperwork a week before it is due to guarantee that it is delivered and received on time.

There a quite a lot of people on the Internet, looking to steal money or personal information from others. There is no need to offer payment for information and scholarships that require fees are not legitimate. Be wary of scammers.

Putting together scholarship applications.

A number of scholarship applications will ask for important information such as school transcripts, bank statements, birth certificate, passport etc. These documents should be made available in advance before applying for a scholarship.

An applicant resume is a prerequisite while filling application forms for university scholarships. In this resume, a list of all special skills, school related activities, community and social activities as well as work experience should be included. Include all relevant details like the name of the company/organization, position held and the contact information such as phone numbers and a web address. A number of universities now make use of online applications so an electronic copy of the resume is required.

Most scholarship forms are available in PDF format and are best filled by typing in the information. If an application comes in hard copy and a typewriter is absent, fill the form with neat and legible handwriting using a blue or black pen.

How to write a scholarship essay.

Before writing an essay for university scholarships, do some research on the organisation or institution offering the scholarship. Study the mission statement of the organisation and outline the points included within, in your essay.

Always follow the instructions. One mistake people make is trying to cut corners while writing essays for scholarship application. Every instruction is included for a reason so if the directions ask for answers to some specific questions, ensure that the required answers are given. If the instructions require an essay of 1000 words, don’t write 800 words. Go through the instructions after the essay has been written to establish that nothing is left undone.

Avoid giving ‘copy and paste’ answers to the topics assigned. Write an engaging piece that mirrors your passion and personal thoughts. This will add a uniqueness that will make the essay standout to the reviewing committee.

For instance, the essay should begin with a story narrating a personal experience. This should of course be in line with the assigned topic. The essay should be descriptive and personal.

Refrain from using vague expressions that don’t really say anything. Give specific examples to paint a picture of your personality.

When the essay has been completed, it should be proofread. Getting a second opinion will help determine where improvements and amendments should be made.

Obtaining recommendation letters.

Most university applications request for at least, one recommendation letter when submitting an application. The letter can be from a teacher, an employer, religious leader or any another individual familiar with the student. The content of the letter should focus on the work, achievements, talents and service rendered to the community by the student. The letter should not be written by a relative or friend.

To make things easier for the referee, a copy of your resume and essay should be made available. This will ensure that the letter being drafted and the other documents will not have opposing statements.

University scholarships

Finalising the process

Thoroughly examine every page of the application and proofread it. Getting a second opinion is equally important as it helps to see things from a different perspective.

Put together all the pages of the application in the order required. Follow the instructions included in the application and ensure that no part is missing as this can make one ineligible for the scholarship.

Having extra copies of the information sent in the application is a good idea. It would be helpful to remember the content of the application when appearing for an interview.

As mentioned earlier, be sure to send in the application before the deadline. It is important that all necessary materials are compiled ahead of time so the application can be submitted before the deadline.

There are quite a number of university scholarships for international students. Some of these scholarships are merit-based. Merit-based scholarships are granted to individuals based on their academic achievements or unique talents. Other scholarships are based on financial needs. Not all scholarships cover the entire cost of tuition though. Some are just one-time awards. Regardless, applying for a scholarship is a good way to explore opportunities that you would otherwise not have.

Remember, there is no specific procedure to follow when searching for a scholarship. The tips highlighted above will help greatly in your search.