Scholarships are a great way to help pay for college, but staring down a pile of applications can seem intimidating. With so many different scholarships, it can be difficult to know what review committees are looking for. Here are a few ways that you can make yourself a great scholarship candidate.
Get Involved in Extracurricular Activities
A lot of scholarships are looking for students who are involved in extracurricular activities. This can include activities through your school such as athletics, student leadership, clubs, arts, etc., but it can also include work history, volunteerism, clubs/athletics outside of school, and more. You don’t have to be involved in everything, but it is a great idea to find a couple of activities that you like and stick with them through your high school career. An Activities Resume is a great way to keep track of your extracurricular activities.
Demonstrate Moral Character
Scholarship committees are looking for individuals who show integrity and moral character. You can show this in your everyday life by working hard, doing your best, and treating others with respect. However, you also need to show your character through your online presence. Try Googling your name and see what information appears. This information will be visible to a scholarship committee if they decide to look you up. Go through your social media accounts and make sure you are presenting yourself in a way that you can be proud of.
The ability to persevere despite setbacks or mistakes (also known as grit) not only helps you during your college and scholarship search, but it is also a great life skill. For scholarships specifically, committees are looking for individuals who can keep working toward a goal, even if they encounter obstacles. Take a look at your life right now and ask yourself, how have I persevered? How have I learned from past mistakes? You probably have some answers to these questions already, but you can develop your grit further by not giving up when you come up against obstacles at home or in school. In a scholarship application, you will show that you have perseverance by working hard at school, challenging yourself with sustained effort in extracurricular activities, and learning from your mistakes.
Overall, scholarship committees are looking for well-rounded students who are good investments for their scholarship funds. If you are involved and can present yourself in a good light, you can make yourself a good scholarship candidate. Good luck!