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Scholarships: Quick Tips, Tricks, and Why They Matter

Everyone wants scholarships, but not everyone knows you can win them for almost anything! Read on to see how your talents can help you pay for college.

November is National Scholarship Month, and what better way to celebrate than to learn more about scholarships and how you can succeed in finding them? Scholarships, at their core, are competitions that allow students to show off certain skills in order to win money to help pay for college. While most people generally think of essays, there is an array of options and requirements. If you can think of something, chances are somebody is willing to give you money for it. However, since they are generally competitive, that means somebody else also wants that money. So, how can you pull ahead?

The early bird gets the worm

Scholarships are not just limited to seniors—at least, not all of them are. While some are only for college-bound students, the majority are open to students of all ages. This means that even as a freshman you could start earning money for college. This also gives you a lot of practice, which means that with every essay or competition you enter, your applications will get better. It also means if you don’t get a scholarship, you have the opportunity to try again the following year. Or, of course, you can earn more money by applying for, and winning, more scholarships. There really is no downside.

Related: The Ultimate List of Easy Scholarships

Rinse and repeat

This tip is more specifically for essays or writing prompts. Don’t be content with just one draft. Tear it apart, look for anything, anything, that might bother you, and fix it. Then have a friend or teacher do the same thing. Repeat this process multiple times. This will not only allow for a more refined piece, but will give you more confidence in your work. You want your application essays to stand out!

The search continues

There is a scholarship for everything. If you don’t like writing, that is perfectly fine! There are artistic competitions, random drawings, or rewards for your heritage—even scholarships for red-haired, left-handed violinists. So there is no need to stress over essays. If you need help looking for scholarships that suit you, there are many resources. Besides talking to your guidance counselor or teachers about upcoming competitions, there are many websites that are specifically designed for scholarships, including CollegeXpress.com. These are free to sign up for, and they will often send you weekly e-mails with many opportunities. Most also have a section on their website where you can type in a keyword, and any related scholarships will pop up.

Related: List: 60 of the Weirdest College Scholarships

Now that you have some tips to help with scholarships and understand why it’s important to put in the effort to find and apply for them, you can start raking in college funds! Let this guide you to winning some great awards from some awesome organizations, and you can head off to college confident about your financial future. Good luck in your scholarship search!

Need help looking for scholarships? CollegeXpress has your back. Check out our Scholarship Search tool!

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About Zia Sampson

Zia Sampson

I am currently a first-year student at Loyola University New Orleans, where I'm majoring in Mass Communications, both Strategic Communications and Journalism, and minoring in Sociology. I'm in the University Honors Program and the Social Justice Scholars Program. In my free time, I like to watch Netflix, sleep, and read. I am a big animal lover, with four cats and two dogs, and I have two older brothers and a twin sister. You can follow me on Twitter @ZiaSampson.

 

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