Great Advice for Parents 2022

BE READY TO GET STARTED It’s good to be prepared. There are several common requirements for scholarship applications, so get your application materials ready early. In addition to requiring an essay, some scholarships will also require the following things: • Information about your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) application (so complete the FAFSA form as soon as it becomes available!) • At least one letter of recommendation from a teacher, counselor, or someone else familiar with your academic achievements • A professional picture of you–it doesn’t have to be an actual professional head-shot, but it should be appropriate (senior pictures are good for this) • Your latest transcript PUT IN THE TIME ON THE ESSAY A lot of scholarship essay assignments are similar and want you to answer questions like, “What is your biggest accomplishment in life?” You might be able to save time by reusing your responses. Many scholarship applications will ask for rather dry and academic responses, but sometimes you can use your hobbies as material for your essays. That makes the writing easier. And fun essay prompts do exist (such as your best food experience or an impactful memory you’ve had while traveling). Ask several people (preferably people who have recent experience with essay writing or reviewing) to look over your essay and give you feedback. And give yourself time to check your essay for typos before you send it in. ORGANIZE YOUR APPLICATIONS You’ll have the best chance at success if your applications are organized and turned in on time. Consider the following tips: 6 • Sort your applications by due date and complete them in the order they’re due. Keep in mind that some require more work (letters of recommendation, a longer essay, etc.) and may take more time. • Make sure your essay follows the instructions and is within the word limit. • Try to submit your application at least a day ahead of the deadline. Right before the deadline, scholarship websites can experience a high influx of activity and get clogged up or even shut down. • Make sure you include all the required materials and submit everything properly. • With the right tools and preparation, you should have a great shot at a college scholarship. If you want to learn more, view our comprehensive, detailed guide to scholarships. 4 5

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