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How To Apply For College Scholarships While In High School

How To Apply For College Scholarships While In High School

Scholarships can significantly reduce the cost of a high school education, and there are various possibilities available. In many cases, you don’t even have to wait until you’re about to graduate. Scholarships are offered for high school juniors, seniors, and current college students.

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There are other scholarship websites you may visit, and they should offer you more information on the necessary papers as well as some pointers on how to prepare your child for these tests. Continue reading to find out how to get scholarships in high school so that you can be financially prepared for college.

How To Apply For College Scholarships While In High School

Obtaining scholarships while still in high school may appear to be a step too far, but it is never too early to begin looking for financial aid to help support your education. In reality, you should apply for scholarships as soon as possible because certain scholarship programs have limited funds that are granted on a first-come, first-served basis. Scholarships are available at all academic levels to help with the financial burden of attending college. Indeed, the Federal Student Aid organization recommends that students begin applying for scholarships the summer before they graduate from high school.

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What exactly is the meaning of a scholarship?

A scholarship program pays for college tuition. These prizes are considered “gift” financial aid, which means you do not have to repay them. In contrast to grants, most scholarships are awarded on the basis of merit rather than financial necessity. Scholarships are typically subjected to a stringent screening process to ensure that only the top candidates are chosen.

Hiring a Science, English, or Math tutor to assist you in reviewing the subjects that are expected to feature on these tests may increase your chances of passing. Candidates who best meet the selection criteria are awarded funding. Scholarships are available for students in high school, college, and even graduate school.

Steps on how to apply for scholarships while in high school

Here’s a step-by-step guide to applying for scholarships as a high school student.

The first step is to develop a list

Making a list of possible options is the first step in winning college scholarships, whether you are a high school junior or senior. Make a list of scholarship opportunities that you are eligible for. It’s ideal to organize your list by deadlines so you know which ones to apply for first.

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There are various ways to find scholarships, and the Internet is the best place to start. Some scholarship websites allow you to apply with just a few clicks, which saves you a lot of time. Scholarship chances can also be obtained from your high school counselor, the library, local community organizations, and the college you intend to attend.

The second step is to gather your materials

Some scholarship applications require only basic information, while others seek detailed paperwork. Gather all of your materials before beginning to fill out applications to avoid wasting time looking for documentation.

Before you begin, you may not know what each application wants, but here are some good starting points:

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  • Transcripts
  • Community service hours
  • Extracurricular activity information
  • The outcomes of standardized tests
  • Personal statement or essay templates
  • Recommendation letters

Having all of these documents on hand can help to expedite the application process. If you come across an application that requires more documentation, make sure to collect it before submitting the paperwork.

The third step is to complete the applications

Although some applications require a hard copy, the bulk are filed online. In either case, awards with few applications are straightforward.

You’ll need to spend some time providing your name, date of birth, and contact information. Even though this information is basic, tiny errors and typos are easily overlooked, so double-check everything before submitting it.

If your application needs essays, personal statements, transcripts, or other proof, double-check the packet after you’ve finished putting it together before sending it. You don’t want your application to be rejected just because you forgot to include a transcript page or left a form section blank.

You may assume it’s time to kick back and relax if you prepared ahead of time and applied for a bunch of scholarships during your junior year. There are, however, countless scholarships available only to graduating high school seniors, so you’re not done yet.

As a high school senior, you’ll undoubtedly apply for a lot more prizes, but even once you’ve met those deadlines, it’s not nearly time to call it quits. New opportunities appear all the time, so it’s worthwhile to set aside some time each month to look for them. Remember that there are other benefits for college students, so keep an eye out for them each year.

Applying for high school scholarship hints

Here are some helpful hints for applying for scholarships while in high school.

  • Start early.  The earlier you begin your scholarship search, the more time you will have to identify and apply for scholarships.
  • Do your research:  There are numerous sorts of scholarships available, so it is critical to conduct research and identify scholarships that are a suitable fit for you.
  • Meet the requirements: Make sure you meet all of the requirements for each scholarship you apply for. This may include having a certain GPA, taking certain classes, or participating in extracurricular activities.
  • Write a strong essay: Your essay is one of the most important parts of your scholarship application. Make sure you write a strong essay that highlights your accomplishments and why you deserve the scholarship.
  • Get recommendations: Ask your teachers, counselors, or other adults who know you well to write letters of recommendation for you.
  • Don’t give up:  Scholarship competition can be severe but don’t give up. Continue to apply for scholarships, and you will ultimately be awarded one.
  • Follow up.  After submitting your scholarship application, follow up with the scholarship provider to ensure they got it and to inquire if there is anything else you need to do.

5 Scholarships for High School Students

Here are 5 top scholarships for high school students to consider:

1. Redefining Victory Scholarship

Amount:

$10,000
APPLICATION DEADLINE
April 27, 2024
WINNERS ANNOUNCED
May 27, 2024

EDUCATION LEVEL:  Any

Application Requirements: In various spheres of life, success takes on multifaceted definitions, from the pursuit of academic excellence to the realization of personal passions and goals.

Any student may apply, whether going the traditional 2/4 university route, attending a trade school or certificate program, etc.

To apply, tell us what success looks like to you and how this opportunity will help you achieve it.

2. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum: Profile in Courage Essay Contest

Amount: $100-$10,000

Deadline: January 13, 2024

Eligibility:

  • 9th-12th graders under the age of 20
  • Students enrolled in a high school correspondence/GED program in the U.S., or U.S. citizens attending schools overseas

Application requirements: Essay

As its name implies, the JFK Library’s Profile in Courage Essay Contest awards a scholarship to the best essay. The essay must “describe an act of political courage by a U.S. elected official who served during or after 1917.” The essay must be between 700 and 1,000 words, and it must cite a minimum of five sources, which can include government documents, letters, newspaper articles, books, and/or personal interviews.

This scholarship contest is open to practically any U.S. high school student under the age of 20 and is an awesome opportunity for students with a knack for writing and history.

Apply now

 

3. Young American Creative Patriotic Art Contest

Amount: $34,000

Deadline: March 31, 2024

Eligibility:

  • Students in 9th–12th grade
  • U.S. citizen or a permanent U.S. legal resident
  • Enrolled in a public, private, or parochial high school or home study program in the United States, its territories and possessions; or dependents of U.S. military or civilian personnel in overseas schools

Application requirements:

  • A two-dimensional piece of art on paper or canvas
  • Typed explanation of patriotism expressed in art (250 words or less)

This scholarship is an amazing opportunity for talented high school students to show off their art skills and earn scholarship money while doing so! This art contest asks students to create a two-dimensional piece of art that depicts American patriotism. The scholarship has been around since 1979 and more than 4,000 students participate each year.

There are multiple rounds of selection at the local, state, and national levels. State winners compete against one another for national awards of $34,000.

Apply

4. Gloria Barron Prize for Young Heroes

Amount: $10,000

Deadline: April 15, 2024

Eligibility:

  • Ages 8-18
  • Permanent residents of and currently residing in the U.S. or Canada
  • Currently working on an inspiring service project or have done so within the past 12 months
  • Working as an individual to lead their service work

Application Requirements:

  • Project summary
  • Project essay
  • Letter from the lead reference
  • Two additional letters of recommendation
  • One color photo of the applicant

Have you led a community service project? Each year, the Gloria Barron Prize for Young Heroes honors 25 students from across the United States and Canada who have made a positive impact on their communities and/or the environment.

Apply

 

Amount: $10,000 (plus a $1,000 donation to the winner’s school)

Deadline: March 2, 2024

Eligibility:

  • Ages 14 and up
  • High school, college, or university student enrolled in an academic program designed to conclude with a diploma or degree
  • Legal resident of one of the 50 U.S. states, the District of Columbia, American Samoa, Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, the U.S. Virgin Islands, or Puerto Rico
  • International students who have a student visa to attend school in the United States are considered legal residents and are also eligible

Application Requirements: Submit a design for the front of a greeting card

This scholarship is a great opportunity if you enjoy arts and crafts—it rewards the student who creates the best greeting card with $10,000 in scholarship money. Applicants must simply submit a photo, artwork, or computer graphic for the front of a greeting card. The cards are judged on overall aesthetic appeal, quality of execution, creativity, and originality.

Apply

Conclusion

Applying for college scholarships while still in high school is a proactive and rewarding undertaking. Students can set themselves up for financial aid for their higher education journey by starting early, studying available opportunities, and submitting a persuasive application.

The approaches that are recommended, such as maintaining a high academic record, participating in extracurricular activities, and writing compelling personal statements, enable students to stand out in the competitive scholarship landscape. As young scholars embark on this journey, they not only improve their odds of obtaining financial support, but they also gain crucial organizational, self-advocacy, and goal-setting skills that will serve them well in their future academic and career activities.

Frequently Asked Questions

What can you expect when applying for scholarships as a high school student?

Applying for scholarships takes time and effort. Even awards with minimal applications require you to find them, figure out if you meet the criteria, fill out the application, and submit it.

Expect to spend a fair amount of time researching scholarship programs and filling out applications. You’ll need to have easily accessible proof of your grades, community service projects, extracurricular activities, and hobbies. For some applications, you’ll need to write an essay or personal statement that providers can use to determine if you deserve the scholarship.

How much time during high school should you spend applying for college scholarships?

There are plenty of scholarships for high school seniors and juniors. The more applications you fill out, the better chance you have of winning some free money for college. Most awards have fall deadlines between August and November or spring deadlines between January and May.

As a high school student, it’s a good idea to plan on spending an hour each week to find and apply for scholarships. Remember that the time each application takes will vary. It may only take a few minutes to apply for a smaller award worth a few hundred dollars. For a full-ride scholarship, you might need to spend hours on the application.

What can you expect when applying for scholarships as a high school student?

Applying for scholarships takes time and effort. Even awards with minimal applications require you to find them, figure out if you meet the criteria, fill out the application, and submit it.

Expect to spend a fair amount of time researching scholarship programs and filling out applications. You’ll need to have easily accessible proof of your grades, community service projects, extracurricular activities, and hobbies. For some applications, you’ll need to write an essay or personal statement that providers can use to determine if you deserve the scholarship.

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