CollegeAdvisor x ScholarshipOwl: Standing Out When Applying to College and Scholarships
Applying to college and want to differentiate yourself from other applicants? Craft your approach to the college and scholarship application process with CollegeAdvisor.com.
Director of Outreach and Advocacy at Scholarship Owl, Jennifer Finetti and former Admissions Officer, Brian Poznanski will share their expert advice on standing out in your college and scholarship essays during a 60 min webinar and Q&A session.
During this webinar in partnership with ScholarshipOwl, you’ll have all your questions answered including:
– What do admissions officers consider?
– How do I craft a strong application?
– How can I develop a unique applicant profile?
Come ready to learn and bring your questions!
2022-12-08 – CollegeAdvisor x ScholarshipOwl: Standing Out When Applying to College and Scholarships
Hi everyone. Welcome to CollegeAdvisor’s webinar on Standing Out When Applying to College and Scholarships in collaboration with our partner, uh, scholarshipOwl. I’m McKenzie and I’ll be your moderator tonight. So if you have any tech issues, you can direct message me. Otherwise, leave all questions for the Q&A section.
Um, but to orient everyone with the webinar timing, we’ll start up with a presentation, then answer your questions in the live Q&A on the sidebar. You can download our slides and you can start submitting your questions in the Q&A tab. Now let’s meet our panelists. Alright, uh, I’m Jennifer Finetti. I am with ScholarshipOwl.
And, uh, my job with ScholarshipOwl is really to be like, kind of like a cheerleader, rooting everyone on as they apply to scholarships. I really try to motivate everyone, keep them motivated, um, because the, you know, the more, more you scholarships you apply for your better chances of winning. And of course, I also share lots of tips and strategies to boost your ops.
Awesome. Yeah. Uh, and hi everyone. Good evening. Uh, my name is Brian Poznanski. Um, I’m happy to be presenting tonight, uh, alongside Jennifer and talk a little bit about, uh, standing out in the college application process. Um, in addition to helping out on these webinars, I also, uh, am a, uh, admission off, uh, officer, former admission officer, uh, with CollegeAdvisor.
So I work with several, uh, students, uh, during the application process. Um, and I have, uh, eight years of, uh, college, uh, admissions experience. Um, having worked at two years at a really small, uh, college outside of Boston called Regis College. Um, and then six years as an assistant director at Boston University, uh, where I also earned my MBA while I was a student there.
Uh, excuse me, as a, an employee there. Um, and I now work in, uh, corporate recruiting, but also again, continue to help with, uh, Application reading at BU and, and obviously in my capacity as an admission officer with college Advisor. So excited to be, uh, chatting with all of you, uh, tonight. Yes. And real quick, we’re just gonna do a poll.
So what grade are you currently in? Eighth, ninth, 10th, 11th, 12th or other. And other can be if you’re a transfer student or if you’re taking a gap year, and if you’re a parent on the call, you can select the grade that your student is in. But while we wait for that, um, can y’all give a brief definition or explanation of what a scholarship is?
Sure. Um, a scholarship is essentially free money that a student can get to help pay for their college education. Um, so it’s not a loan, it’s much better than that. And, um, and I’ll talk more about the specific sources of scholarships, but that’s the main thing you need to know. It’s free money to help you pay for.
Yes. Um, Brian, did you have anything to add? No, I think, uh, I’m sure that this will be covered later on, but you know, I think that there are scholarships that admission officers like myself would be able to award through the, just by applying and through the application process. And there are scholarships that you can seek out, um, from outside entities, um, as well.
So I’m sure we’ll jump into that a little bit more. Yes, and it’s looking like we’re having an older crowd tonight. Um, we have 29% 11th graders, another 29% 12th graders, and 43%, um, transfer and gap year students. Uh, so yeah, so y’all can control the slides. Okay. Um, well, I will admit right off the bat that I did not make a lot of these slides.
Pertaining to the transfer or gap year, uh, audience. Um, but I can definitely add some, some, uh, flavor there, um, as we go through. Um, so what is the recommended timeline for applying to college? Um, you know, it really does vary and I think that this is kind of just a general statement I have to make. Um, with all of these slides, I have to speak in generalities here, uh, this evening because of kind of just every single process that you will go through, um, is gonna be different from every other person on, on, on the webinar and probably every other person that applies to college.
There’s no one, you know, way to apply to schools, apply to scholarships, et cetera, et cetera. Definitely gonna be speaking in some pretty broad generalities. Um, but with that, I mean, I tend to, you know, think about the college application process really kind of starting, um, in junior year. Um, but I do think about, you know, what is your application strategy?
Um, how do you want to go about, uh, applying to schools? And we’ll get to actually what that strategy means in, in a moment. Um, but figure out what your application deadline is, right? So if you’re applying to one of those schools that has a pretty early deadline, like in October, uh, deadline, there’s a couple schools out there, um, there’s a lot of November 1st deadlines.
Um, you know, you’re gonna probably want to have a little bit of a earlier start than someone that is applying, uh, for a January deadline or even a rolling admission deadline that could get, you know, applications in, in January, February, March, um, or even later. So definitely. Definitely working back from there.
Um, definitely, definitely, definitely the goal should always be avoid submitting last minute. Um, there can be a lot of mistakes, uh, that can be made when you’re submitting your application at 11:59 PM the night before the deadline. Um, and unfortunately I have worked with a couple of students, um, that literally have been emailing me or I’ve been on the phone with them at like 11:30 at night.
Um, and, and, and we really definitely wanna avoid that, um, for a whole host of different reasons. And so one of the ways you can get away, uh, you can avoid that, is by starting a little bit earlier and being on time of, of, of your, your, your process. So one of the ways to do that, um, junior year, great time to really ultimately be researching your school list, um, developing that application list, understanding, you know, what schools are out there.
Um, who, where you might be applying, um, and again, developing that school list. I’ll get into a little bit of how you go about doing that in another slide, uh, momentarily. Um, you could do this sophomore year too. I’ll be completely honest. Um, you know, it, it can start as early as freshman year. There’s no specific, uh, key time I, I happen to focus on, on, you know, the last two years of high school.
Cause I think this is the majority of the work that you’re gonna be doing. This research can also include school visits, um, talking to college representatives when they come to your high school, um, visiting, uh, col, going to booth at college fairs. Um, if there are schools in, uh, doing a college fair in your area.
Um, that is a really great time and opportunity to be researching, uh, those schools. But it’s also a great time to be begin taking your, uh, any standardized tests. Um, your SAT, your ACT. Um, I think a very, very common time is to, uh, take those your spring of junior year. Um, and also I think it’s a good time before you leave at the end of the school year, uh, junior year to start asking your teachers for those letters of recommendation.
Um, teachers, no, uh, kind of, uh, surprise here. They have a little time off in the summer and, you know, if they can get ahead of it, um, I’m sure they would appreciate, uh, that time. So, you know, come May, June, uh, before you, uh, hit summer break, um, you know, start thinking about, you know, one or two teachers that you may want, uh, to write letters of recommendation for you over the course of the summer.
Really good time to enjoy your summer, but also a really great time to re uh, get a head start on your application work, start writing some of your essays, um, working on listing out your extracurriculars, um, and really starting to finalize and hone, uh, that school list, especially if you have some early application deadlines.
Typically, um, most applications. Early August. And so that’s when you’re really gonna be able to dive in and start working on a lot of those essays, supplemental, uh, you know, answers, things of that nature. And then lastly, your senior year in your fall, um, you know, there’s still a lot of work to do. Um, you know, you’re gonna be finalizing your application, um, you’re gonna be honing your personal statement any, again, any supplements.
Um, but I really like when I work with my students and they have a good jump on that in the summer. Um, because let’s face it, there’s a lot going on your senior year in the fall, um, other than college application process. Um, and we want you to still be, uh, doing well in your classes. In fact, that’s extremely important.
Um, and so, you know, getting a jump, uh, in, in that summer, uh, will be really important for you all. All right, so let’s jump into a little bit more of talking about strategy and some of those other things that I was talking about. Um, so. I also will say that every single slide that I happen to be presenting tonight, I have done a full webinar on.
Um, so there are additional information out there, um, and I, I know McKenzie always does a great job at, at pointing everyone to that. But, um, there are resources out there, uh, that I go into much further, uh, detail on all of these, uh, particular, uh, slides. So kind of just burning, uh, the surface here, uh, this evening.
Um, so developing a successful strategy, again, it really starts, um, with your school list. And I will say the number of applicants applications that you’re going to submit, the number of schools you’re going to apply to is really gonna vary by, by the applicant for a variety of different reasons. Um, You’re, you’re, um, the type of school that you’re applying to, the major, uh, that you’re looking for.
Um, if you’re an athlete, if you’re, you know, there’s just so many different variations of why you would be applying to more schools than other people. Myself. Um, I am like ancient. I only applied to three schools. That’s like really, really uncommon, uh, nowadays. Um, my sister who applied to school just two years later than me, she applied to 17 different schools.
That’s also, I would say on the, the, the, the kind of high end. I think that what I hear generally is like eight or nine is the kind of average right now. Um, so, you know, building out a school list that’s gonna include a mix of what we talk about being reach, target, and safety schools. And again, I did a whole webinar just on what reach, target and safety means, but ultimately, Some schools that based on your application, uh, statistics are gonna be schools that you think are, uh, gonna be a little bit challenging for you to, uh, be admitted to.
Um, schools that you feel like are probably a pretty good match. Um, and then schools that you feel fairly, if not very confident, uh, that you would be admitted to. Now, again, this is gonna be different for every single applicant because it in, it is based off of your individual skills. It’s based off of things like your average gpa, your, um, curriculum choices, your standardized tests.
What can be really helpful, um, to figure this. Is that most schools will s uh, provide their, um, applicant profile of their admitted class from the previous year. This can be really helpful to kind of understand where you, uh, stack up in kind of their traditional application pool. Now, I also, and I tend to get a little myself, um, people kind of come at me a little bit when I make this statement.
I will go out on a limb and say any school in the top 50, uh, you know, US News World Report rankings, those are gonna be reach schools for the vast majority of all applicants. Okay? And the reason why I feel comfortable saying that is that most of those schools have admission rates that are at or below 30, 25%.
And so if the majority of student. That apply to that school are not being admitted. I would define that as a reach for most applicants. There may be some schools in there that you feel like, you know, that’s a really good target school for me. Um, I really match up, uh, well. But again, um, if, if a school is, you know, that selective in their admission profile, um, you know, I, I would tend to classify that as a reach.
Um, and so looking at school profiles can really help you with this. Again, application deadlines can really help you with this. You know, maybe you don’t wanna apply to 10 schools that all have November 1st applications, because that’s a lot to get done in that timeframe. Um, you know, you wanna maybe spread it out a little bit.
You know, those are some of the things that, that you can help, um, help with or figure out and help you in the process. And then deciding on early decision or early action if that’s a potential strategy for you. I will say there can be a benefit. And again, a lot of information on this on, and it’s a big, big decision, especially early decision, just to remind folks about what these application strategies are.
Early application. Um, so you have to submit early, typically November 1st. Um, you hear back early. Um, but early decision is a binding decision, meaning that if you apply to that institution and you are admitted, you will be enrolling at said institution. Um, early action does not have that binding nature.
It’s simply an early uh, app and an early response, um, but still can have some benefit in, uh, the admission strategy. And then lastly, how do you develop a good strategy? Do not wait. Um, do not wait until. You know, weeks before your applications are due, do not wait until your, the start of your senior year.
Um, you know, building a good strategy starts, you know, in a, at a early timeframe, in, in, in advance, um, by doing some of those things that I talked about, um, on the previous slide. So, um, when we talk about applying, um, there are a variety of different components, right? There’s the application itself, um, and that actually typically, uh, includes things like your extracurricular and activity list, which I list out here, your supplemental essays, your essay slash personal statement.
That’s usually comprised within the context of the application itself. Um, but some of the other really important components of, of a strong college. College application consists of your high school transcript, um, and colleges and universities, uh, board of admissions. We, they will look at all four years of your high school, uh, transcript, your freshman year, your sophomore year, your junior year, and whatever information they have at the time that they’re reviewing your application from your senior year.
Um, most institutions that I am familiar with, um, will not make a decision on your application without some form of senior grades typically. Um, so that’s why it’s really important to start off the year, um, on a good, uh, a good note, uh, test scores if they’re required. Um, obviously there are a lot of schools out there right now that are, um, not requiring test scores for a variety of different, uh, reasons.
Again, did a whole webinar on, on testing policy. Um, Two of the most common ones that you’re gonna hear are test optional or test blind. The major difference here is that test optional means that it is up to you whether you submit, uh, your tests. Um, test blind means that even if you were to hypothetically submit your test to the school, they will not review it and as not part of their application review or admission strategy.
Um, the one thing that I will caution on test optional is that if you do submit it, they will use it and it will be part of their admission decision. And so it, there is a little bit of strategy behind deciding whether or not I want to submit those tests. Um, and that’s where that school profile really can come into play.
Um, I often talk about like, okay, if you look at that school profile and the average SAT is like of an admitted student is like a 1250, let’s say, um, if you scored. You know, above a 1250 on your SAT or the equivalent on ACT, I forget exactly what the comparison is off the top of my head right now.
Um, that would be, you know, probably okay to submit your test scores, um, that would enhance your application. You’re saying, I’m in the top half of admitted students to x, y, z institution, but if you fell below that, I typically would caution and advise, uh, students that I work with not to submit your test scores because you’re already saying that I’m in this bottom, uh, chunk, this bottom half.
Of admitted students. Another thing that I know that we did when I worked at uh, Boston University is we also added something called the middle 50% of admitted students. And that range was even gave that much more information because then you could tell, oh, do I fall on the top 25% or do I fall on the bottom 25%?
And obviously that would probably be a range that you wouldn’t wanna fall in. Um, and so again, submitting tests, uh, can be kind of a question. The other thing I will say about that real quick is that if you don’t submit your tests, There are other pieces of the application that are being evaluated a little bit more intensely.
Um, now most schools will talk about this idea of holistic admission, meaning, uh, an admission review, meaning that they look at all different pieces of the application. And I truly, truly, truly believe that when I reviewed applications, a student that was admitted or ultimately did not get a positive admission decision, it was very, very, very rare that there was one reason why they didn’t, they got the decision that they did.
It’s typically a multitude of things, and that’s where hol, that’s what holistic admission means. We’re looking at a variety of different things. Um, and so one of the best ways that we can kind of round out the admission, uh, piece is looking at those qualitative aspects of your application, like your essay and personal statement, the supplemental essays that, uh, school may submit, um, what you’ve been involved in over the course of your high school career and what your teachers or school counselor have to say about you in your recommendations.
Um, and so that’s what I would say is really rounds out. Um, The college application and what can enhance it, um, is those strong pieces. So paying attention to your essays definitely can be important, especially the supplements. That’s actually where I see the most mistakes. Um, and, uh, because those are done, like, those are the essays that are done at 1159, uh, the night before.
Um, and so it’s, you know, some of those are things like, you know, why do you wanna attend X, y, Z University? Um, or, you know, tell me a little bit about, you know, your, why you wanna study the, the major that you’re applying for. Um, there are also some programs that req, you know, honors programs or even specific schools or colleges at large institutions that require an additional essay to be admitted to that program.
Um, and I’m sure that we’ll get into this a little bit, um, as well with Jennifer, that, you know, there are also some scholarships that may require, um, an essay or, or, or supplemental, um, material. This, the magnitude and kind of, uh, length of these does vary. I’ve seen, you know, um, literally list what you’re reading right now or what you like to watch on tv.
And then I’ve also seen, you know, essays that need to be, you know, several hundred words. Um, so it really does kind of vary, um, in kind of, uh, scope. So that’s what I would say are some of the components of a strong application. Um, So how do you highlight your, uh, accomplishments to stand out? Um, the application gives you a couple different places to do this.
Um, when you’re listening your activities or if you include a resume. I think resumes are really kind of up to the applicant. Um, if you have a lot of information, you’ve done a lot, I think they can be great because it allows you to provide information. But if I open up a resume and it’s, it’s, um, it’s a, it’s a little empty, you know, it, it, it, it kind of rings a little hollow, um, and.
And, and it’s almost, I don’t wanna say it’s a negative, but it, it, it, it can be. Um, so I almost lean more in that situation if you feel like, you know what, I’ve done one or two good things, um, in, in, in school and there’s nothing wrong with that. Um, you know, you can focus on that in the application. So I, I kind of go back and forth with the resume.
Um, that’s just, again, that’s a personal, um, I’m getting a little bit more into a personal opinion at this point, but, um, resumes, uh, can be a really good place to highlight, um, experience your list of activities again. And then on specifically the common application, there’s a honor slash awards section where you can list things like, you know, inducted into the National Honors Society, you know, got the Latin National, uh, medal exam.
Um, was a Hugh o’ Bryant, um, you know, an award recipient, things of that nature. Uh, valedictorian, uh, valedictorian or, um, You know, things of, of national merit, scholar things of that nature are, are where I kind of of see that. Um, but yeah, again, resume can, uh, apply value and then recommendations. Um, so recommendations, I think in the holistic piece are really playing a bigger role in the admission decision process.
Um, I’ve seen that, um, I go to the recommendations to see what the counselor or teachers have to say about the student. They know you, um, probably the best or you’re a, there’s a reason why you’re asking them to advocate on your behalf. Right? Um, and one thing that you can do is provide brag sheets or information for them to kind of.
You know, again, I write here affirm your amazingness. Right? Um, and so that is something that, um, you know, we are looking to those, uh, teachers, those counselors to kind of help at be your advocate. Um, and then last thing I’ll say about recommendations, and I think then we’re, uh, turning it over to Jennifer.
Um, and you can all, uh, take a break from me for a second, um, is with teacher recommendations. Think about a teacher that you know may know you well, but also one that can speak to, you know, your hard work, your grit, your, um, extra effort that you may have put in. So maybe it was a class where, you know, you didn’t get the highest grade out of on your transcript, but you, you got, you know, a B+ and you worked really, really hard for that B+ because maybe calculus, like it didn’t come naturally to you and you really, really had to try and you came for extra help and, and, and things of that nature.
I think that that can be a really great, um, teacher to ask for a recommendation. So I’ll say that, and again, I n pretty sure that I’m done with my portion. Oh. No. One last thing, which is, uh, recommendation. Any final advice? Um, I’ve talked about this, so I’m not gonna spend too much time on this, but pay attention to deadlines and plan accordingly.
You know, I think that that is definitely something that can trip people up, um, and ultimately do your best. Um, that’s all we can ask of applicants. Um, you know, you can’t go back and retake that, that, uh, class from sophomore year that, that maybe you didn’t do as hot on. Um, you know, so you can only provide what you are doing, uh, your record that you have at this point.
And so, you know, do your best, put your best effort forward. That shows, believe me, it shows way more than you would actually think or know, um, when someone does. And also the reverse, when someone doesn’t, it’s very apparent. So that would be my recommendation, um, and my advice. Do your best and, and really just, Try to have fun with it.
It can be a stressful process, but it doesn’t have to be. Um, it can also be, and I think it’s a really exciting process. So, um, do your best and, and pay attention to your, to your own process. So again, I think that I’m done, uh, at this point. Um, and probably have another poll, McKenzie. So I’ll give it back to you.
Yes. So where are you in the application process? Haven’t started. I’m researching schools. I’m working on my essays. I’m getting my application materials together. Or if you’re really lucky, I’m almost done. And while we wait for that, um, we know most students know scholarships, um, uh, know about scholarships for seniors.
Um, but are there any available for underclassmen? Yes. Uh, there are scholarships for younger high school students and there are also scholarships for older students. So, um, that’s a question I’m always asked. I would say in general, most of these scholarships are going to be for juniors and seniors in high school.
It’s not that there aren’t any for students who were younger than a high school junior, but it, the vast majority are going to be for juniors and seniors in high school or for current undergraduate students, or current grad students or students or, or people who hope to be students. Right. Um, you know, so if you are someone who graduated with your bachelor’s degree and you plan to go back to grad school, you can apply for a scholarship after you’ve graduated with your bachelor’s, but you’re not yet enrolled in grad school.
And just one quick plug to always go to the source, um, of the admission. Uh, people, yes, this is something that is a, a question we would get all the time. Um, and just again, when I was in admissions, we had something called counselor of the day. Literally, my job during the day was to answer emails and answer the phone.
That’s all I did all day, um, is answer people’s questions. So, um, you know, the resources are, are, are, are there definitely yes. , uh, and it’s looking like we have 20% haven’t started. 50% are researching schools, 10% are working their essays, 5% are getting their application materials together, and 15% are almost done.
And then also I’d like to drop a plug for Thrive Scholars. You can apply in your junior year. The application is still open, I believe, until the 15th, um, if you’re a junior. So check out that, see if you’re eligible. And then also 10th graders, um, they have a secondary program for Black boys, uh, that are current 10th graders.
Um, so if you are interested in that, you can check those out. And then also career specific, um, scholarships such as teach grants, um, the military offers different, um, awards if you’re interested in that. And then just looking up specific, um, scholarships for your demographics. And, uh, you can control the slides, Jennifer.
All right. Um, there we go. Okay, so what are the different types of scholarships that are available? Well, there are generally two categories of scholarships, need-based scholarships and merit scholarships. If you’re a student who qualifies for need-based federal financial aid through the FAFSA, you’ll find you’re also eligible for many need-based scholarships that are specifically interested in supporting students with financial need.
On the other hand, if you’re a student who doesn’t qualify for need-based aid, you’ll still be able to qualify for many scholarships that are based on your academic merit. So if you’ve got a strong GPA and or strong SAT and ACT scores, you’re gonna find plenty of scholarships that you’re eligible for.
Some merit scholarships will be related to your major or related to your extracurriculars or your community service, or particular hobby or interest you might have. And finally, students who qualify for need-based scholarships should also apply for merit scholarships because you’ll be eligible for both types of scholarships.
So what kinds of organizations offer scholarships? You know, there are three primary sources of scholarships, and probably a lot of you know this already. Institutional scholarships are the ones that are offered by colleges and universities. There are also local scholarships in your community, and there are external private scholarships.
And note that within these, these three sources, each of them tends to offer both a combination of merit and uh, financial need-based scholarships. Institutional scholarships are scholarships offered directly by each college or university. These are scholarships that you can apply to only if you’re planning to attend or only if you are applying to attend that school.
Some colleges will automatically consider you for scholarships once you submit your regular application to the school, while others have a separate scholarship application process. You’ll need to research this for every single college you’re applying to and find out what the scholarship application deadlines are, so you should not assume that the university will notify you about scholarships.
It’s really up to you to do that kind of research and legwork and make sure that you apply on time. And be aware that the scholarship application deadline for institutional scholarships is typically going to be prior to admission decisions coming out. So don’t be the student who gets accepted to our dream school and only then decides to apply for institutional scholarships because the deadline will have passed and you won’t be able to get those institutional scholarships until a subsequent year if you do choose to attend.
Um, so it’s really important that you really look ahead of time and apply for those university scholarships and be aware also that universities use scholarships as a recruitment strategy to encourage students to apply as well as to accept their admission offer. And then the next great source of scholarships are the local ones in your own community.
The easiest way to find out about them is to ask your high school career center or guidance counselor, or if you are, um, a student currently attending a community college, you can ask your community college counselor. Um, most high schools and community college do keep track of many local scholarships, and in fact, in some cases, the school might even have a single application that you can use to apply to all of those local scholarships that are in the list.
Um, local scholarships are really awesome because far fewer students will apply for them because those scholarships are truly intended for the local, regional area where you live. And so, you know, rather than having to compete against people across the nation, you have a much smaller group of people that you’ll be competing against for those scholar.
And finally, there are many, many private external scholarships offered by businesses and universities across the United States. Um, these are the kinds of scholarships that we have on the scholarship owl.com platform. What’s really great about these kinds of scholarships is that you can use them at any college you plan to attend to, rather than, you know, for an institutional scholarship.
If you’re, let’s say you’re offered a scholarship from a university and you end up declining that school and go to a different school, you can only take the scholarships that you are, uh, going to be getting from the university you choose to attend. But on top of that, you can get additional scholarships, which be local scholarships in your community or the private external scholarships to continue to reduce your out-of-pocket cost.
Um, so that’s one thing to really keep in mind. Um, also these scholarships can be easier to find compared to local scholarships because in many cases, local organizations and small businesses may not go to the trouble of doing active promotion to let people know about their scholarships. But, um, the more national scholarships that are available typically are promoted.
You can find that information more easily. And of course, in terms of approach, I recommend that you apply to all three kinds of scholarships, right? You wanna maximize your opportunities. Uh, but this does take more time and.
So when is a good time to think about applying for scholarships? Ideally, you should start thinking about scholarships early on in your education, hopefully by your freshman year of high school. You don’t necessarily have to start applying for scholarships then, but by thinking about scholarships early and planning ahead, you can ensure you’re gonna set yourself up well for scholarship success, for example, you can think about what kinds of extracurricular activities and organizations you wanna get involved with to not only boost your chances for college admission, but also to boost your opportunities for applying for scholarships.
Because many organizations do offer scholarships that their participants and volunteers can apply for. And by building a resume of leadership and community service, you’re gonna position yourself well for scholarships that are focused on these kinds of. In terms of when to actually start applying, um, as I mentioned earlier, I recommend that students start applying in their junior year of high school and continue applying for scholarships all the way until they complete their college education.
So if you plan to go to grad school, law school, medical school, you’re gonna be applying for scholarships every year for several years in a row. So students often ask me, when is the best time to apply for scholarships? And what I always say is, the best time to apply is now because scholarships are available year round, not at one specific time of the year.
I recommend that you aim to apply for three scholarships per week, year round, starting in your junior year of high school again, all the way until you’re done with your college education. And yes, that sounds like a lot, but the great thing about applying for scholarships is that like most things, you’ll get better at it with.
The more often you apply, the better your submissions will be. So if you’re a high school senior and you’re planning to apply for scholarships after you submit all of your college applications, that means you’re gonna be missing out on scholarships that are available between now and the end of Dec and the end of December.
And that’s a lot of scholarships that could make a big difference in your out-of-pocket cost and a big difference in your ability to avoid student loans. So even though you might wanna wait until you’re after your applications are in, uh, and you might also wanna wait until the holidays are behind you, I would encourage you to try to fit in some time for applying for scholarships as well.
And of course, if you’re a current college student, know that you can apply for scholarships year round as well so that you can continually have the opportunity to earn scholarships, earn scholarships that can help you even this year for your next semester, uh, even after your classes have started. And for those of you who aren’t sure if it’s worth applying year round, just to give you an idea, we currently have over $800,000 in scholarships in the scholarship file platform that are available right now.
So, you know, if you don’t believe me, Believe me, there are scholarships that are available at all times of the year. Um, in terms of timeline, some scholarships have longer deadlines, meaning the application period might be a few months or even longer to apply. Um, other scholarships have shorter deadlines and could be, you know, just 30 days or so.
It’s important to check the deadline for each scholarship that you’re applying for. And I always encourage students to apply for scholarships with a closer deadline, as this will help them to not only avoid missing those opportunities, but also the scholarships that are gonna be closing soon will also be awarding their money sooner.
Um, so it’s a great strategy for trying to not only apply for scholarships, but to not have such a long arc while you wait for a decision to be made. Um, in general, most scholarship providers don’t start reviewing applications in earnest until all of the applications are submitted, in other words, until the deadline has passed.
And so sometimes students get really frustrated, you know, they’ll apply for a scholarship that has a 60 day. 60 day timeframe remaining on the deadline and they get frustrated because they haven’t heard anything. But you have to wait for that deadline to close. Then they start reviewing the scholarships and um, you know, depending on the type of scholarship it is, sometimes if it’s like a lottery draw scholarship, they will award that fairly close to the deadline, you know, maybe a few days after the deadline.
But if it’s a scholarship where they asked you to submit an essay or a video or do a social media post or something like that, they have to actually review every single submission. And so it could take up to 30 days, it could take longer, uh, depending on how many applications they’ve received and what their own internal scholarship review process is.
So my point here is don’t get discouraged if you haven’t heard back a, for a scholarship that you’ve applied for, that you were super excited about. Alright. Um, so, you know, what are the requirements for qualifying for scholarships? Each scholarship has its own set of eligibility criteria, just like colleges and universities have their own admission criteria, right?
So when you’re considering applying for a scholarship, you wanna read that information in detail to determine whether or not you’re gonna qualify to apply for the scholarship. Sometimes the scholarship might specify a minimum GPA that you need to have to be able to apply, but this is often not actually not the case.
If the scholarship is need-based, you’re gonna be asked to provide information about your family income, and you might also need to provide verification of that information as part of your application, or if you’re selected as the winner of the scholarship before they confirm that you’re the winner.
They may ask you to provide that verification information about your family income before they finalize you as the. Some scholarships might ask applicants, might ask that applicants have a particular major or career interest, or perhaps the scholarship might relate to a hobby or an extracurricular activity.
But in many cases, the scholarship is gonna be based on a theme or a topic that any student can qualify for, such as a scholarship asking you to write an essay to help persuade students not to text and drive. That’s just one example. Some scholarships don’t require an essay, and instead are designed to inspire your creativity.
There are scholarships you can apply for that, ask you to sing a song or that ask you to submit a video where you talk about a cause that you care about. There are scholarships you can apply for on social media, or maybe you’ll be asked to create an infographic, or maybe you’ll be asked to create some kind of original artwork and take a picture of it and upload that photo as proof of your.
We also have lot. We, um, also have lots of these creative media-based scholarships on the scholarship all platform, including social media scholarships where you’re asked to create and share a post on a particular scholarship theme. Um, the reason why we like to have these kinds of creative scholarships, as well as essay scholarships, is that we really wanna make sure that all students, no matter their ability or interest, can find scholarships to apply for.
Um, some students love essay scholarships and some don’t, right? Um, if you are a really strong writer, that might really appeal to you. You might have college application essays that you’ve already written that you can kind of adjust and modify a bit and submit them as a scholarship application essay.
That’s awesome. You should leverage writing. You’ve already written as long as you can modify it and make sure that it works with the essay topic. However, um, there are some students that are not as strong writers. Maybe they’re not comfortable, maybe English is not their first language, or maybe it’s a student who’s been more focused on science and math and just.
English isn’t their strength, right? So by having all different kinds of scholarships, some that require essays, some that require something more creative, um, you know, we are able then to offer opportunities for students no matter what their situation. Um, and finally, of course, some scholarships are just lottery draws, right?
Where you don’t have any requirements at all, you fill out the application and submit. Um, but your odds of winning a lottery draw scholarship are gonna be far lower than a scholarship that asks you to do something. And just to give you an idea, um, a typical, uh, no requirement scholarship on the scholarship, all platform might have 10,000 or more applicants.
Um, and so your odds of winning that is gonna be, let’s say, one in 10,000, right? If it’s got 10,000 applicants, but a scholarship that requires an essay or requires a social media post or something, those scholarships have far fewer applicant. And so, you know, I encourage you to apply for those super easy scholarships because why not, right?
You should apply for those just because they’re so fast and easy. But make sure you also include other kinds of scholarships that ask you to do something, um, because you might be competing against a hundred students instead of 10,000 just by applying for a scholarship that asks something of you. Um, another thing is to really be aware of the scholarship deadline.
When you Google for scholarships, you’re gonna come across many scholarship opportunities that you get really excited about. And then you discover that the scholarship application deadline has already passed. So it’s important to check the deadline before you start worrying about that or before you start working on your application.
And of course if the deadline hasn’t passed, but it’s coming up fast, you wanna make sure you have time to apply for it. Um, before that deadline comes. Um, on our platform, all the scholarships that we list, we’ve already verified that they’re active in accepting applications. So that’s one of the benefits of scholarship file is you don’t actually have to watch for that, because if it’s a closed application, it won’t be in our platform.
So what should you include in your application to stand out? Um, the most important thing to include in your scholarship application is you, uh, to be sure you stand out. Your scholarship application needs to showcase who you are, what you’ve accomplished, what you care about, and why you should be selected for the scholarship.
Demonstrate your passion. These are the same kinds of things that you’ll need to do for your college application essays, so it should be something you’re already familiar with. And like I said, you may have application essays for colleges that you can leverage and update and modify to use for scholarship applications.
Um, in most cases, the scholarship provider is going to be making their award decision based entirely on your scholarship, application and submission, right? Because most scholarships, not all, but most, do not ask you to do an interview. So all they’re gonna have is what they see from you on paper, or if they ask for a video, you know, they’ll look at your video or whatever.
They’re going to make their decision based on that. So this is gonna be your only chance to help your provider get to know you, get to understand why you are the best candidate for the scholarship. Also, I highly recommend that you honor and respect the scholarship provider by showing that you understand what’s required for the scholarship application.
Be sure to adhere to the requirements and theme of the scholarship. If there’s a maximum and minimum word count. Stay within those parameters. It’s so funny, I will get students asking me all the time, is it okay if I write too much or if I write. Or less than the word count. Why would you do that? They’ve given you, you’ve given you word count parameters, stay within them.
Right? Um, if you’re asked to submit a 30 second video, don’t submit a five minute video. If you’re asked to provide a link to your social media entry for a scholarship, be sure you submit the correct link and that your post and profile are public, so the scholarship provider can actually see and share your post.
If you’re asked to add a tag or a hashtag, please do that. Remember, the scholarship provider is likely to receive many applications from worthy candidates just like you. So they are looking for ways to easily weed out applications to make their job easier. So don’t, if you don’t adhere to the rules of the scholarship, your application will join the slush pile of rejected applications, even if you have an outstanding essay or compelling video or compelling visual that you’ve created.
So don’t be the student who takes themselves out of the competition by simply not adhering to the rules of the scholarship.
So some final advice when applying for scholarships. In addition to simply applying for as many as you possibly can, you also wanna be sure that you maximize your chances of winning, and that relates to your process and focus when you apply. So first and foremost, as I mentioned earlier, always thoroughly read the information about the scholarship, but also do some research about the provider.
That way you’ll have a better sense, a better sense of what the provider might be looking for when they’re reviewing applications. And again, always adhere to the scholarship guide. Focus on applying for scholarships that you have a better chance of winning. For example, if you’re using the scholarship o platform to apply for scholarships, you can actually see the number of other scholarship o members who have applied for every single scholarship on our platform.
So you can choose to apply with fewer applicants to increase your odds. You know what, what we call that is we talk about focusing on low app, low competition scholarships, right? So the fewer other people who have applied the less competition you’re gonna have. So go for those, uh, go for those scholarships that have fewer applicants.
You can also choose scholarships that ask you to submit something like an essay or video or social media post, rather than applying for those super easy one button apply, uh, lottery draw scholarships because your odds of winning are gonna be much lower. If you focus on scholarships that are decided by random drawing and look for scholarships that have a topic or theme that really inspires you, you’re going to find applying for these scholarships to be more motivating and your applications will be stronger because you’re gonna care about them more.
And finally the most important advice is to not give up. It takes time, effort, and persistence to earn scholarships, but it’s definitely well worth it. Every scholarship you receive will reduce your reliance on student loans and will enable you to avoid a lot of debt after you graduate. And remember that providers will take time to review applications.
So it could be that you found out, you find out you want a scholarship a few months after you applied. So just cuz you haven’t heard back doesn’t mean you didn’t win. And um, you know, the other thing is, I highly recommend that you guys join the scholarship All Community on Discord. Um, this is a free community.
You don’t have to pay to join, you don’t have to be a nervous scholarship all to be on it. Uh, but we’ve got over 12,000 students in there all rooting each other on helping out giving advice. You know, students will offer to review each other’s essays. Um, there’s a lot of information about featured scholarships, about webinars.
We have contests where we award prizes to students and really good prizes like Amazon gift cards and technology, things like laptops and iPads and all kinds of things. Um, so, you know, it’s a great place to really get motivated and get support from other students just like you, who all wanna graduate debt.
and that’s it for me. Yes. So that is the end of the webinar. I hope you found this information helpful. Remember again that you can download the site from link in the handouts tab, and this webinar is being recorded if you would like to view it again later on our website at app.collegeadvisor.com/webinars.
Moving on to the live Q&A, I’ll read your questions you submit in the Q&A tab and read them aloud before our panelist gives you an answer. As a heads up, if your Q&A tab isn’t letting you submit questions, just make sure that you join the webinar through the custom link sent to your email and not from the webinar landing page, also known as the website or else you won’t get all the features of big marker.
Uh, real quick, I have been adding some additional information in the public chat. I do not think it is saved, um, with the webinar, so I’ll just briefly breeze through it. There are some links, so if you want the information or the links, just copy and paste them. Schools also have priority deadlines, which are usually around December 1st, so if you’re applying this year, they have already passed and this is to help with getting into honors program or.
honors programs or to get specific scholarships. So that is something also to look out for. Early decision and early action also have similar qualifications. Some schools have a first come first serve basis with their scholarships if they have smaller endowments or funding for scholarships. So it’s very important to submit your application and your financial aid information to those as soon as possible.
um, to make sure that you get the most aid possible and that you get the best packages. Um, DACA students and international students are not eligible for FAFSA, but you can be eligible for school specific or institution specific scholarships, as well as outside scholarships from local areas, just not the federally provided aid in the us.
Uh, adult learners are eligible for FAFSA and financial aid so long as you are a US resident. Um, some schools do restrict your ability to get scholarships or aid if you already have a bachelor’s degree, but not every school does that. Um, what else? Uh, yes, you will have to apply for scholarships in financial aid every single year.
I still have to do it and I’m a junior in college. Uh, local fraternities and sororities are an option for scholarships. I recently received one. And I think lastly, a loan replacement is an example of a scholarship where they will give you scholarships that go directly to your school, the financial aid office, and replace any loans that are a part of your financial aid packets.
I just received one of those sold $2,000 lesson loans. Mm-hmm. . Um, also if you’re interested in any Ivy League school, I currently attend Cornell University. None of them offer merit-based scholarships. They only offer needs-based aid, more information in the chat. And there are field specific scholarships.
Um, , what else? State specific scholarships. And then also scholarships that are offered to just your high school or your, um, county or district. So look into those by asking your school accounts. Say, okay, now it’s onto the Q&A. Sorry. Um, okay, so quick question. What is the difference between a scholarship and a grant?
Do all schools offer scholarships? So a scholarship and a grant, either one is free money that you don’t have to pay back, right? So that’s the best thing. Whether you get a scholarship or a grant, it’s good news for you. Um, as far as which, you know, what do schools offer? Sometimes a school will offer something they call a scholarship.
Sometimes they’ll offer something called a grant. Um, it just kind of depends. Um, the other thing is you should know that every state, I shouldn’t say every state, most state, most states also offer grants. So in addition to federal grants, you can get through the FAFSA. Um, when you apply for the FAFSA, you can also maybe find that you’re eligible for grants offered in your state.
Um, so you wanna check those out as well. . Yeah. There also might be some additional criteria for grants. Like the most common one is that I can think of off the top of my head is like the Pell Grant. Um, that is for very high, uh, high need, uh, folks that have applied for the FAFSA. Um, also, um, grant often is something that in my experience, you don’t have to apply for.
Um, and, and could be, so the best way I can think about it, when we were awarding financial aid, if it wasn’t loan and it was awarded through the financial aid process, it was referred to as a grant, a scholarship was something that was, uh, considered, considered and awarded to applicants that, um, applied for said scholarship, um, based on their academic merit.
Mm-hmm. Uh, also, I wouldn’t say every school’s the same, but yeah. Uh, as a quick note, um, when applying to schools for scholarships, um, you do, um, you usually have to submit FAFSA and CSS profile. Some schools will ask you to do additional, um, applications or supplements in the actual comment app or application portal.
Other schools will ask you to set up a portal on their website to apply separately after you submit your applications, um, for certain scholarships. Uh, and some will not ask for any additional things. They’ll just automatically consider you based off your application. Uh, but going off of that, um, where did it go?
Okay. Do needs based scholarships require your FAFSA and CSS profile also merit scholarships? Um, yeah. Do they require it? Yes. Um, so, you know, in terms of the CSS profile, not every school requires that. All schools do require the FAFSA. Um, but depending on the college you’re applying to, they may also require a c s s profile.
Yes. CSS profile is for about 300 to 400 private institutions. So all of the Ivy Leagues are going to be on it. Uh, and it’s just a very extensive version of FAFSA. Uh, and, um, DACA and international students can apply through CSS profile, just not FAFSA. Uh, going on to the next question, uh, if you see any questions in the chat that you would like to get to, please feel free to read it out and answer it.
Yeah. Um, one real quick, um, and you, cuz you just kind of alluded to it, is that, um, international students can still be considered for scholarships, um, many times. Um, But the only thing they can’t be considered for is, again, need-based financial aid via the FAFSA. So if you’re not a US citizen, you’re not gonna receive any federal funds, um, from the United States government, but you could receive institu institutional funds.
Mm-hmm. , uh, going on to the next question, how does ScholarshipOwl help with getting scholarships? And on that note, how does CollegeAdvisor help with getting scholarships? Okay. So with ScholarshipOwl, if you join, um, you will have access to all the scholarships in our database. Um, so the way it works is that your first seven days, it’s a free trial and you can apply for as many scholarships as you want during that time.
And then if you decide you wanna cancel the trial, it’s no problem. You can cancel and all the scholarship applications you’ve submitted will still be live and active and you may be able to win those scholarships. If you do not cancel, then your credit card will be charged after seven days. Um, the way that it works is that you can choose to do a monthly subscription, which is $20 per month or quarterly, which is $45 for every three months, or $60 for every six months.
So obviously if you become, if you choose quarterly or the six month, uh, version, you know you’re gonna save over the monthly version. Um, and. You know what I do wanna say again? First of all, and I, I put the link in, uh, in the chat here cuz somebody asked about how to join our Discord. Um, so I put that in the chat.
That is a free opportunity for everyone, so you don’t have to be a member of ScholarshipOwl to, to access our community. But if you do, uh, become a member of scholarship, I, the, the benefit is that it’s really a scholarship application, productivity tool. Um, so what happens is you, you not only get to see the scholarships in our database, we actually match you based on your profile.
So the scholarships that show up in your match list, are the ones that you can apply for. You don’t have to wonder when you see something in your match list. G M I eligible. We already know you’re eligible cuz we matched you. So anything that comes up in your list is a scholarship you can apply for. And then we have a lot of these really cool dashboard strategy tools that make it faster and easier for you to apply for not only many scholarships, but to apply for the best fit scholarships for you.
So like I said, you can see the number of applicants, so you can focus on low competition scholarships. Uh, we have credibility scores. So if you’re worried about, you know, scholarship scams and things like that, you can focus on scholarships that have higher scores. Also though, we’ve vetted every single scholarship in our database.
So even though we do have, you know, higher or lower scores just by being in our database, those scholarships have already been pre-screened by a staff member. In addition, uh, we use ai, uh, artificial intelligence and machine learning, uh, to power some of our, our benefits. So, for example, um, we send you three recommended scholarships to you every single week that are based on recommending for you based on the information in your profile, as well as your habits and our platforms.
So the more you use the scholarship op platform, you can train our system to send you more and more scholarships that are gonna be more and more relevant to you. Um, there’s all kinds of features. It’s hard to get into, and I don’t wanna make this like a, a, you know, all about ScholarshipOwl, but I highly recommend you guys join our community.
I highly recommend you guys start a free trial, check it out, and you’ll see how different it is versus the typical standard of Googling for scholarships or going to many different scholarship websites, trying to find scholarships, um, because it’s so much faster, so much easier. And, um, we actually have data that shows that students that use our platform double their chances of winning scholarships as compared to applying for scholarships outside of our platform.
So the, the real benefit is you will increase your odds of earning scholarships through our platform. Yeah, that’s great. I would say the, the best way that we help with college advisors really kind of assisting with things like essays and, and, and building your, um, you know, resume and activity lists and things of that nature that, um, might be required for any, uh, specific scholarship.
Yes. And on that note, um, for those in the room who are already working with us, we know that the admissions process is overwhelming for parents and students alike. Our team of over 300 former admissions officers and admissions experts are ready to help you and your family navigate it on one-on-one advising sessions.
Take the next steps in your college admissions journey by setting up for a free strategy session with an admissions expert by scanning the QR code on the screen. Um, with CollegeAdvisor. You will get that support with, um, scholarships. We also have our own database, including different scholarships and summer opportunities for high school students.
Uh, and then also, um, with my, um, personal experience as an advisor, I’ve helped students with finding, um, scholarships that each school offers, figuring out the deadlines and staying on top of the essays and really making sure that they are qualified and that their application is as strong as possible for these scholarships.
So it is definitely a benefit. So we recommend scanning the QR code on the screen. Um, but now back to the, um, Q&A. Uh, so going on to the next question. Um, a student is asking, uh, do you receive the scholarship money directly or does it go to your school? Uh, how do you claim the scholarship? So that really depends on what the terms and conditions are of the individual scholarship.
Um, in many cases, the scholarship provider will send the funds to the financial aid office of the college that you’re attending with you as the beneficiary. And so, you know, they won’t just do that without talking to you first, right? So if you are selected as the winner, they will ask you, what college are you attending?
What is the contact information for the financial aid office of your school, and so forth. They’ll coordinate that with you, and then you’ll reach out to the financial aid office at your school and say, Hey, I got this scholarship. They’re gonna be sending it. What address should they send it to? You know, should they write anything on the check or whatever, right?
So that’s how that works. If they’re going to choose to pay you the student directly, then they would simply talk to you about how they’re going to award that scholarship. It would be either a check or it could be a wire transfer, it could be PayPal, you know, just depending on how they’re going to do it.
Um, and so if they’re gonna award the funds to you directly, that makes it really easy, right? Because you can choose to use that money for tuition, for books, for housing, really any way you wanna use it. Um, but if it goes to your school, what’s gonna happen is the school will first deduct anything you owe.
The school out of that first. So if, let’s say your tuition, and I’m just throwing a number out here. If your tuition for the semester is $10,000 and let’s say after any financial aid the school already awarded you, there’s a $2,000 balance on that. So if you get a $1,000 scholarship, they will take that $1,000 entirely and apply it to your tuition.
However, if they’ve already, if you’ve already paid everything that you owe the university or if you’ve paid, they, you’ve paid a lot of it, they will take only what they need for the semester or for the year and they will refund the balance to you. Right? So if you got a $5,000 scholarship and if you owed $2,000 in tuition, they would take that $2,000 and then they’d award the remaining $3,000 to you, either to a direct deposit to your account or wire transfer or whatever.
Now that said, if you owe money for housing, they’re gonna take money out for housing too. So you just have to know kind of what you still owe the school versus um, how much you’re gonna be getting from that scholarship. Mm-hmm. uh, Brian, uh, can you talk on, do, um, what should we call it? Uh, will schools lower the amount of aid they give you if you get an outside scholarship?
And also do you have to report all outside scholarships that you get? Um, the basic answer to the last question is yes. Um, you know, typically speaking, you know, for federal, in order to be considered for federal aid, um, you need to report all sources of income. Um, so we’re gonna get really granular. That includes your, you know, part-time job mowing lawn, um, over the summer as well.
Um, and, and this is used to evaluate what is called your. Need based, you know, your ability to pay. Um, and I’m blanking on the exact term at the moment. I’m having a little bit of a brain fart at nine o’clock at night on the East coast here. But , um, basically your ability to pay is used on, uh, based off of, of, of the amount of money that you have, uh, at that time.
So that does include scholarship funds. Um, I wouldn’t phrase it as the school is going to give, uh, institution may give you less money if you have scholarships. Um, especially if it’s a need-based, um, scholarship. You know, I think that they, you know, are evaluating, uh, again, your ability to pay. Um, and then certainly if it’s a merit scholarship, usually those are pretty flat and it’s not gonna have anything to do with how many other scholarships you have.
Um, but yeah, there is a point where you could kind of quote unquote max out your. Um, your funds, um, and some of your need-based, uh, award might be substituted or reduced with other scholarships that you have received. Now, I know we’re at time, but I also don’t view that necessarily as a bad thing. You know, why would you not apply for this scholarship?
Because you might lose, you know, need-based aid, need-based aid. It’s one of those things that you’d rather have the money one way or the other. Um, and so it’s, it’s not, you’re not losing money. Um, it’s just kind of being swapped out is how I look at it. So that would be my, can I, can I add a little bit to that?
Yeah, of course. Um, so this is just, for those of you who are watching, this is referred to a scholarship displacement. There are a few states that now are saying you cannot displace scholarships. So California, for example, where I live, um, starting in January, I believe they’re, they have ruled out, um, displacing scholarships and, um, there’s a few other states as well.
Um, hopefully this is something that’s going to be, you know, especially, you know, California has 40 million people. Hopefully this will help influence other states to do the same so that people will not lose out on scholarships because it takes a lot of time and effort and persistence to apply for scholarships.
And can it be so disappointing to find out, you know, gee, I got a $20,000 skip scholarship from my university, now I got $5,000 more and I’m still gonna end up with a net 20, right? I mean, nobody wants to go through that process. The good news though, is that many colleges will, instead of displacing your scholarship, they will agree to displace any loan that you were offered, right?
So, you know, if you were gonna take out a $5,500 loan in your freshman year and you have this $5,000 external scholarship, if they do displace, they may decide, you know what, we’re not, we’re gonna stack your scholarships and just give you less of a loan, right? So that’s what some colleges will do. And if you’re in that situation, ask your financial aid office to help you with that, to see if you can get them to do that instead of displacing your scholarship.
Mm-hmm. Uh, so yeah. Any final comments or advice that you would like to give to students? Uh, good luck. Good luck. Um, you know, give it your best effort, like I said. Um, and, you know, really just focus on your process. Um, it doesn’t matter what your friends, family, cousins, uh, you know, other people at your school are doing.
Um, and really this is a super individual process. And so if you focus on your process, I, I have every confidence that you will be, uh, success. . Yeah. And you know, my final comment and one of the questions I saw, I know, you know, we did our best to get through the chat here. Um, but one of the questions was, you know, what do I do?
I’ve applied for so many scholarships and I haven’t won anything yet. And so my answer to that is don’t give up. Keep applying. Keep trying, but also, Start thinking about what you’ve been submitting so far and what kinds of scholarships you’re applying for. So if you’re somebody who is frustrated cuz you haven’t gotten a scholarship, but you’re only applying for lottery draw scholarships, then you need to put some other kinds of scholarships in the mix.
If you’re applying for essay scholarships and for some reason you know those applications don’t seem to be successful, take a look at your essay, have a couple other people look at your essay and give you feedback on that. If you’re somebody that has a really um, outgoing personality, consider applying for video scholarships or social media scholarships.
Try something different. Try something that you can get passionate and excited about. So, you know, take that time to self-assess. And I promise you if you do that extra effort, if you are somebody who’s diligently applying for scholarships, that will change and you will eventually start winning scholarships.
But you have to actually decide that it’s worth the effort, uh, to self-evaluate and improve your applications. And that goes same thing for college applications, right? . Um, you wanna put your best foot forward in both cases. Mm-hmm. also on one note, uh, always write your s if you have to write an essay for an application, always write it in a Google Doc or a Word Doc one so other people can edit it easier, but also so you can save it.
Cuz a lot of these, uh, essay questions are pretty redundant, so you may be able to reuse and refresh, um, your essays for other parts of the application, as well as supplements in school specific essays or your personal statement. You can take those and use them for scholarships as well, so long as they aren’t about a school specifically.
Like if it’s something for Dartmouth, then you’re applying for, um, a Coca-Cola scholarship. You probably need to change some words. Um, but yes. So thank you everyone for coming out tonight and thank you to our wonderful panelist, Jennifer and Brian, for all this great information about the scholarships. Um, so, um, that is the end of the webinar, but here’s the rest of our December series where we’ll have different, um, webinars on various parts of the application process as well as, um, different supplemental essay, um, webinars.
But, um, if you’d like to check those out, go to our, um, website at collegeapp.collegeadvisor.com/webinars and you’ll be able to find this recording as well as our other webinars in our upcoming webinars, uh, as well. And you can check out, um, scholarship our dot, um, was it.com or.org .com okay.com, um, for their, um, information about their organization, all the services that they offer.
But thank you everyone for coming out tonight and goodnight. Thank you. Thanks for having us.