March is scholarship essay completion time.
Most scholarships (and college applications) will require an essay for consideration. There are plenty of scholarships available. So do your research. To write a powerful essay, consider taking this approach:
- Focus on choosing your career interests first. Your career interests will provide a “passion” to support your essay writing.
- Identify colleges/universities that have majors that support your career interest. Our Student Resources Section has the most comprehensive career and college/majors research links you’ll find on the web.
- Search for scholarships based on your career, school and major choices and your network (parents sometimes work at companies that offer scholarships to employee’s children, certain nonprofits in your community are looking for local students to award scholarship money, your high school will know about local scholarship opportunities, etc.). Also, remember that the most expensive colleges/universities offer “needs based” financial aid. That means, you’ll get a major discount applied to your fees and expenses at these universities if you get accepted. For these colleges, your financial situation is not considered for getting accepted. You’ll need to complete the FAFSA forms in a timely manner to qualify for financial aid. The advice here: “get it done!”
FastWeb claims to have over $24.3 billion worth of scholarships and grants in one location. FastWeb is a comprehensive site with information about scholarships, financial aid, student loans and FAFSA. It is a site worthy of checking out for the advice articles. But keep in mind it is commercially funded. This site is collecting information for its sponsors. You will be marketed to if you register and give private information. Is it ok? There isn’t much in this world that is free. You pay one way or another. So instead of paying a fee, you are paying with your private information which is used to funnel marketing promotions to you.
About Commercial Sites
The web was quickly harnessed by marketing strategist in the 90’s. It is still an excellent tool for getting information quickly but comes with a general agreement that you will be marketed to eventually. Success Discoveries LLC and Career Coaching for Students™ is not selling your information to anyone. However, if you connect out to a commercial site, you might be giving them information. Just be aware of what you are doing. And, be sure you understand that any site most likely has an agenda – to sell you something.
There are unscrupulous web sites and email campaigns that are trying to get your money. A general rule to follow is, “if they request money from you in order to get money”, they are likely a scam. The FTC provides great advice and also tells you how to detect and report information about scholarship scams.