Starting college is an exciting journey that involves more than just broadening one’s horizons academically—it also frequently involves overcoming the financial landscape. A frequent misconception is that once college life begins, scholarship hunting comes to an end. This article “Can You Earn Scholarships While In College?”, however, seeks to dispute these misconceptions and highlight the numerous options available to students who are already fully engaged in their college experience to continue earning scholarships.
Can You Earn Scholarships While In College?
Yes, you can earn a scholarship while you are already in college. Earning scholarships while currently in school is a phenomenal method for diminishing your monetary weight and grandstanding you’re proceeding with scholarly greatness and extracurricular contribution. Here’s the reason chasing after grants all through your school process can be so useful:
- Diminished monetary pressure: Grants give free cash that you don’t need to take care of, facilitating the strain of educational loans and possibly permitting you to graduate obligation-free.
- Supported resume and application request: Grants exhibit your commitment, abilities, and accomplishments, making your resume and future master’s level college or employment forms stick out.
- Investigation of new open doors: Grant valuable open doors frequently range assorted fields and interests, permitting you to investigate new areas of study or extracurricular exercises and possibly find stowed away interests.
Winning additional scholarships once you’ve already started school can help you fill in funding gaps and reduce your out-of-pocket expenses and need to borrow. They can also help pay for unexpected expenses that you may not have initially budgeted for.
How to Earn a Scholarship While in School
1. Use a free scholarship search site.
Students can take advantage of scholarship databases, such as Chegg, FastWeb.com, or the U.S. News Scholarship Finder, to explore scholarship awards for which they are eligible. The more information a student enters, the increased odds of landing one or more scholarships, experts say. It’s important to answer all the optional questions to increase the odds of matching with a scholarship – especially for the lesser-known ones, says Mark Kantrowitz, a financial aid expert and author of “How to Appeal for More College Financial Aid.”
Students don’t always have to look far to find a great college scholarship. Organizations and nonprofits located in a student’s hometown such as his or her church, synagogue or faith community may offer scholarships to their members. Local scholarships are often less competitive than national scholarships, experts say, offering students better odds of capturing the awards.
3. Contact colleges about institutional scholarships.
Applying early is one way to improve the odds of receiving grant aid from an institution, financial aid experts say. And it’s important that prospective students not underestimate the power of institutional aid, says James W. Lewis, president of the National Society of High School Scholars. “A lot of people don’t realize there are great institutions that have very generous scholarship offerings,” he says. “Some families select not to apply because they think they would not qualify for financial reasons, but that’s often not the case.”
4. Earn a merit scholarship.
Merit aid, which can take the form of scholarships or grants, is linked to academic performance and other accomplishments and is not based on financial need. Academic scholarships are often awarded by a school or private organization, sometimes based on a student’s GPA or performance on a standardized test such as the ACT or SAT.
5. Apply to scholarships based on majors.
There are scholarships available for students pursuing a specific college major, from education and biology to engineering. For instance, students pursuing a career in STEM – which encompasses the fields of science, technology, engineering, and math – can apply for a range of awards, such as the Generation Google Scholarship, which provides U.S. undergraduate and graduate students studying computer science, computer engineering or a closely related technical field the opportunity to win $10,000.
6. Take advantage of employer scholarships.
This type of scholarship has been around for some time but can be forgotten in the era of online scholarship searches. Many companies – from Taco Bell to ExxonMobil – offer scholarships to employees or a child of an employee. These types of programs aren’t limited to the private sector. If a parent works for the federal government, the child may be eligible for the Federal Employee Education and Assistance Fund, a national scholarship competition.
7. Use creativity and talent for nontraditional scholarships.
For students who enjoy the spotlight, there are specialized scholarships for acting, dancing, and music. Musicians, for example, can compete in many ways for a scholarship, sending samples of their vocal or instrumental talent to competitions. And for students who don’t participate in the performing arts, there are scholarships available for other extracurricular activities.
8. Lean on a mentor.
Finding a great mentor can help students locate and successfully win scholarships for college. A mentor could be anyone working in a student’s career field of interest who can answer questions, talk about the industry, and even support students in their scholarship search. Plus, scholarships often require a letter of recommendation, and having a great one can help an applicant stand out.
9. Write an award-winning essay.
Essay competitions with small prizes are less competitive because most students don’t like applying for these scholarships, Kantrowitz says. “Consider the odds of only 10 applications for a $500 prize,” he says. “That work comes out to $50 an hour if the student spent 10 hours on it.”
10. Search for renewable scholarships
These scholarships continue to pay awards every year or semester, as long as you continue to meet the requirements. Some may not automatically renew, so you’ll have to submit a renewal application each year, but it’s still easier than starting from scratch.
Scholarships for College Students
Deadline: December 14
Eligibility: Open to high school, college, and graduate students of all years who are residents of the US.
- Must be currently attending, or planning to attend, a college in the US
- Must be a US citizen or permanent resident
Amount: $1,000 (4 awards per month!)
Deadline: Expires on the 28th or 29th of each month
Eligibility: The Smart Owl Scholarship is a monthly no essay scholarship open to all high school and college students ages 16 and older, who are US residents!
Deadline: Last day of each month
Eligibility: Open to high school seniors as all undergraduate students
Eligibility: Open to all students! The $25,000 “Be Bold” Scholarship is a no-essay scholarship that will be awarded to the applicant with the boldest profile.
In conclusion, there is no doubt that the answer to the query “Can you earn scholarships while in college?” is yes. This article has demonstrated that the journey doesn’t end with receiving a scholarship; it continues in the college setting. Through the utilization of institutional, departmental, and honors program scholarships, students can enhance their academic journey while simultaneously obtaining financial assistance.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Is it hard to get scholarships while in college?
Students should be able to find as many scholarships in college as they did in high school. In other words, the difficulty of finding a scholarship does not change between high school and college. Students will still need to look through dozens of scholarships to find opportunities they are eligible for.
2. What Types of Scholarships Can College Students Apply For?
College students can apply for a range of scholarships, including merit-based, need-based, and those specific to their field of study.
3. How Can I Improve My Chances of Winning a Scholarship?
Enhance your chances by maintaining a strong academic record, actively participating in extracurriculars, and crafting compelling application materials.