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What is the best way to find scholarships that I am more likely to win?

I have big plans for college but my family and I do not have the money for all of it. I want to get as many scholarships as I can so my parents do not have to worry about it. #scholarships #financial-aid #college-advice

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Reghan’s Answer

Hi Kaitlyn! I struggled with this same question before college. A few tips I learned
- Look local! There's a lot of scholarships available with your local Chamber of Commerce, High School, etc. It's a smaller pool of applications so your chances I found are better.
- Write a shell of a scholarship essay and use + reuse!! I was writing different essays each time and after applying for my 3rd-4th I realized they're all asking similar questions and I saved myself time and was able to apply for a lot more scholarships that way.
- Ask the High School organizations/clubs you're a part of if there's anything available! I was in Jr. Civitan (Key Club) and by asking my sponsor if there were any organization-specific scholarships was able to apply and be the recipient of a few.

Best of luck - scholarships are a fantastic way to pay for college and if you look at the hourly rate, have phenomenal payback! (ex. 1 hr writing an essay for a $500 scholarship is the equivalent to working a job that pays $500/hr!!)
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Lindsey’s Answer

Great question Kaitlyn. I'm sorry no one's answered it yet! In the meantime, I thought I'd share a few links to other relevant Q&A on CareerVillage.org that should be super helpful for you to read through. I also thought I'd chime in with my two cents:)


Take a look at the "next steps" section below for a list of sites you should create accounts on if you haven't already. Tips:


  1. Dedicate a minimum of 1 hour a day for a few weeks to applying for scholarships and it'll go a long way.
  2. Be thoughtful about your entries, just doing the bare minimum isn't going to land you any scholarships. It's better to spend more time on each entry to ensure it's well thought out than to rush through to try to enter a bunch. Quality over quantity!!
  3. I recommend writing one STELLAR essay. Chances are you'll use it for every scholarship application (potentially only having to make minor edits dependent on what the prompt is). Tell a story that clearly represents who you are and what's important to you. The goal of the essay should be to let the reader in to your life. If you can do that in a genuine and meaningful way you'll be considered, I promise! A couple of ideas: Write about the hardest thing you've had to go through in your life or what makes you so passionate about something. Be sure to include lessons you've learned and what you hope to do with that knowledge/experience later in life.
  4. You hit the nail on the head. Spend more time finding scholarships that directly pertain to YOU so it cuts down the competition. Look for scholarships just for young women, for example, or scholarships in your local community. Know what career path you want to pursue? There are probably dozens of scholarship opportunities that are only for students aspiring to follow a specific career path (e.g. STEM, entertainment, sports, design, etc. etc.)


Relevant Q&A on CareerVillage.org you should read:

What financial support can I find to help me pay for college?

How to stand out when applying for scholarships?

What are the chances of winning scholarships?

Lindsey recommends the following next steps:

Create an account on Niche.com
Create an account on Cappex.com
Look for scholarships from bigger companies like Coca-Cola and Taco Bell.
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