Give it your best shot
The plain truth is that more people each year need scholarships, and funds are short.
- Be proactive - search for new scholarships regularly.
- Be persuasive - write a winning essay.
- Be professional - submit a timely, complete well-written application.
- Be patient - don't give up!
Most scholarships are for small amounts so you can count on making lots of applications. Your portfolio is complete by now, so this wont be too hard.
- Never build a strong portfolio and then just apply for one scholarship.
- Keep looking. Build on your portfolio of good prospects semester by semester, year by year. It's part of being a college student theses days.
- Reapply! If you are rejected, ask about reapplying. If you are successful, also ask about reapplying. Some community groups especially like to support individual students over time.
Why don't I just give up?
More people apply than can be awarded funds so rejection comes with the territory. Don't personalize this! Many factors come into play:
- Your competition in this round may be especially steep.
- You may not make the first cut if some factors are weighted more than others (e.g. economic need).
- The selection committee imposes new criteria as they go.
- You met the basic criteria, but were not a good fit with the overall goals of this particular application.
- And, of course, if your application is incomplete, sloppy, poorly written or late, it may not be considered at all.
What if I never hear back?
Being patient is hard, especially when you really need money. You may not hear back about a scholarship you applied for, however you may call them and ask:
- if they accept reapplications. How often can you reapply?
- for guidance about submitting a stronger application.