How Do Scholarship Organizations Define Merit
Many merit scholarships look for students with impressive academic achievements. Others focus on community service, sports prowess, professional/business experience, leadership skills, or artistic talent. The most prestigious scholarships tend to go to students who stand out in several different areas.
It’s important to note that, although most merit scholarships are awarded primarily based on merit, many take financial need into account. Financial need qualifications will vary based on the scholarship. If you don’t think you’ll qualify for much need-based aid, you’ll want to focus your energy on pure merit-based awards.
Get To Know The Types Of Scholarships
Its easy to assume that all scholarships are the same. As you start researching college scholarships, however, youll find they fall into a few different categories. Those can include:
- Merit-Based Scholarships: These funding opportunities are awarded to students based on academic, special talent, or athletic achievements.
- Need-Based Scholarships: These scholarships are designed for students who demonstrate an appropriate level of financial need. Youll typically need to fill out the FAFSA® to qualify for one of these.
- Demographics-Based Scholarships: These funding opportunities dont depend on your grades or your level of financial need. Instead, theyre awarded to college students who fall into certain categories, such as ethnicity, religion, or gender.
How To Apply For Scholarships For International Students
Going to University is an amazing chance to get to know people from all over the world, study in old libraries, and gain qualifications to help you achieve your dream job.
It sounds alluring and many of us want to be able to study at University.
The appeal of studying is obvious, but did you know that student debt was more than $1.7 trillion at the end of 2020 in the USA?
To be honest, the reality of the idyllic college brochure photos is that it comes with a steep price. That is why scholarships for international students are more important than ever.
Not everyone can afford to pay for their own tuition, however, that should not stop anybody from studying if they want to. Scholarships are there to make academia accessible for anyone from all backgrounds and classes.
This article will tell you everything you need to know about applying for scholarships for international students in the USA and where to find them.
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When Should I Start Applying For Scholarships For College
Since scholarships are available year-round, dont wait for summer or winter breaks to crank out your college aid applications. Most scholarship deadlines are between September and May, so youll need to stay on your toes to balance them with your regular schoolwork.
The summer after your junior year is a good time to start researching and applying for scholarships, although you can get started even sooner.
Who Can Quality For Scholarships
Scholarships arent awarded just to students with a 4.0 GPA. Each scholarship has its own criteria. Some scholarships are awarded based on need. For others, you must be a member of an organization, be studying a certain field or fit whatever guidelines the group awarding the money decides upon.
Regardless of whether you excel in academics, you should be able to find several scholarships that work for you. There are even scholarships intended for students living in a particular state or town. You can continue to apply for scholarships during your collegiate years all the way up to Ph.D. studies.
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But First How Much Does School Cost
Before you begin your search, a word about the cost of post-secondary: every institution and program will vary slightly, but you can find information about the cost of attending post-secondary by visiting the website of the school you want to attend. For instance, to study at the University of Lethbridge for one year costs about $8,970 for tuition, fees, and books.
Keep in mind, this price tag only includes tuition, books, and fees. If you factor in living costs, that number jumps to about $11,733 – $16,245. Thats no chump change, so lets talk about how scholarships can help foot the bill for your post-secondary education.
A scholarship is a grant or payment made to support a students education, usually awarded on the basis of academic or other achievement. You dont have to pay back a scholarship, its free money!
Raise Your Act / Sat Score
Like the GPA, many scholarships have a minimum requirement for ACT or SAT scores . And again, the higher your score here, the higher your chances of qualifying. Luckily, studies show that when you retake the ACT / retake the SAT, your score is likely to go up. So go to your schools review session, look up some free online ACT/SAT test prep help, and boost your scores! Youll thank yourself in the long run.
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Find Good Fit Scholarships
Not all of the scholarships that youll be interested in will necessarily be good fits, even if you technically meet all of the eligibility criteria. Applying to scholarships wont be the only thing on your mind when you’re putting together these apps, so its important to use your time efficiently when selecting scholarships.
You could technically submit an infinite number of apps, but youd likely be wasting your time. You don’t want to just apply for one or two awards – applying to scholarships is still a numbers game – so aim for 8-10 applications.
Think of it like you think of applying to colleges: select a few reach, a few safety, and a few target scholarships. Use your strengths to select scholarships for fit . For example, if youre top of your class but only played JV-level sports, you might not be the best applicant for a scholar-athlete award.
If a scholarship isn’t a natural fit, you’ll likely be wasting your time.
Have Your Application Reviewed By Someone Else
Regardless of your academic excellence or meticulousness, you can make mistakes in your application that may not be obvious to you, which a third party can spot. If you can get someone who has won the scholarship before to review it, the better. However, parents, teachers, and school counselors can serve this purpose. Different opinions and points of view will help you fine-tune your application before submission.
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Am I Qualified For An International Scholarship
Although it is true that your disadvantaged situation initially qualifies you for a scholarship , you will still have to satisfy other qualifications set by the scholarship provider.
Lets look at a general overview of typical scholarship qualifications required by scholarship providers.
Minimum Scholarship Qualifications
You must be from a country which the scholarship provider specifies
You must be of a certain age as set by the scholarship provider. Note that this is not always the case, there are many scholarships where there is no age requirement.
You must hold a High School Diploma when applying for a Bachelors a Bachelors Degree when applying for Masters and a Masters Degree when applying for PhD
You must meet the academic requirements of the programme you are applying to. In most cases, you have to be accepted in the progamme your are applying to before you are considered for a scholarship.
You must have good knowledge of English language with TOEFL or IELTS scores as proof. In some cases, proof of English as medium of instruction in your university degree would suffice.
Additional Qualifications of Specific Types of Scholarships
Entrance Scholarships: you have to meet the high school academic average set by the scholarship provider
Excellence Scholarships: you have to meet the GPA required by the scholarship provider
Leadership Scholarships: you must demonstrate leadership potential and possess leadership skills and/or experience
Question 8 Of : Download Article
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How Will A Scholarship Impact The Lives Of Students
Scholarships not only cover the costs of furthering your education but it also changes the lives of students. It reduces the financial burden of raising money towards tuition fees. It allows students to have more time on their hands to focus on their studies rather than working part-time to pay off their studies. Scholarships play a significant role in making education affordable and easily accessible.
Students that are applying or awarded a scholarship should know that it comes with many benefits. This can help you get the most out of your college years and life after graduation.
When To Apply For Scholarships
Apply for scholarships early and often. Some scholarship deadlines are as early as a year before you start college. You dont need to wait until youve made your final decision about your school to apply.
But dont worry if you missed out on some of the earliest scholarship applications. There are lots of scholarship opportunities out there, all with different deadlines.
Apply for scholarships every year youre in college, toothere are many scholarships for current college students.
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Where To Look For College Scholarships
Scholarships can come from a range of sources, so its a good idea to search online for opportunities that may be a fit for you. The following websites are excellent resources to help you find potential scholarships:
- CareerOneStop.org. Sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor, CareerOneStop.org is a database of over 8,000 scholarship, grant and fellowship opportunities. You can narrow your search by keyword, location and level of study.
- FastWeb. FastWeb is one of the best-known sites for scholarships. You can search for available scholarships, but you can also create a student profile. The site will send you scholarships that match your information.
- Scholarships.com.Scholarships.com is a database of over 3.7 million scholarships and grants. You can create a profile and get matched to potential opportunities from colleges, private companies, nonprofit organizations and government agencies.
Find The Right Scholarship
There are thousands of scholarships out there as well as other types of funding like grants, prizes, studentships, competitions, fellowships and many others! Luckily not all of them are just dependent on your grades. Do you come from a certain country? Do you study a specific subject? Are you a member of a religious organisation? All those factors for example, can qualify you for a financial support for your studies! ScholarshipPortal can help you find a suitable scholarship for your needs.
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Take Note Of The Scholarship Deadline
Getting your scholarship application in order may involve various steps and will take time, so make sure you start the process at least a month before the deadline.
Its better to get your applications in earlier than later to give yourself time to account for unexpected delays. It also gives you the advantage of offering the scholarship award committee a sneak peek at your stellar time management skills. So get those deadlines on the calendar in bold print and fight the urge to procrastinate.
Most scholarship applications will require:
- High school transcripts and diplomas
- Two or three letters of recommendation
- A resume
- A completed FAFSA or your parents tax receipts
Benefits Of Studying Abroad
1) New Culture
When you get to live amongst locals and observe their daily rhythms, you pick up a lot of knowledge about their culture.
As well as this, you get to taste delicious food, explore social customs, and engage with other traditions.
2) Improve Your Language Skills
If you are interested in learning a new language and immersing yourself in the culture so you can improve your skills, international college students can benefit from living abroad.
Plus, if you are affiliated with a host University you will most likely be offered, language classes!
3) Career Opportunities
Having a life experience of working and living in another country is a great way to boost your CV and stand out amongst the crowd when applying to jobs after graduation.
It shows independence, maturity, and flexibility. All of which are very attractive qualities for an employer.
It sounds amazing, right?
Now, let’s take a look at how to apply for scholarships…
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Raise Your Gpa For More Scholarships
Many scholarships have requirements surrounding GPA levels. While certainly not all of them are lofty GPAs like 4.0s, your odds of qualifying for scholarships will still increase the higher your GPA is. In general, if a scholarship includes a GPA requirement, the lowest they will go is around a 2.5 GPA. Study hard, do your work, seek help if you need it, and put your nose to the grindstone to increase your GPA, and lower your ultimate college debt.
Check If You Are Eligible
Another important element you want to consider early on is finding out what scholarships youre actually eligible for, as some will have specific criteria. By doing careful research you’ll be able to find the scholarships most appropriate for you and then you can spend time working on your application for them.
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How Are You Awarded A Scholarship
Scholarships are only awarded for the duration of the course you have applied for. However, there is a process to follow should you want to re-apply for a scholarship every year. This will help sponsors determine the level of financial aid you require which depends on meeting their academic requirements. Therefore, sponsors can take away your scholarship if you fail to meet their requirements.
Raise Your Class Rank
This qualifier is definitely less common than the previous two, but still present. Class rank is determined by a combination of things, not the least of which are GPA and academic rigor. The higher youre ranked, the higher your odds of qualification, as the scholarship might have a requirement of being within the top 25% of your class.
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What Scholarships Do I Qualify For
To know which scholarships you qualify for is hard to say. There are many types of scholarships academic, athletic, talent-based etc. There are even sweepstakes scholarships that have no pre-qualifications necessary to enter or win.
Consider your strengths and look for scholarships that are intended for someone like yourself. Also consider other aspects of who you are such as your nationality, ancestry or special interests. There are all types of scholarships and knowing which ones you qualify for will ultimately depend on who you are.
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Tips To Get A Subject
- Do your research while youll get some information about a particular award upfront, read up to see what more you can learn about the donor/sponsor, or the purpose behind the award. Then, tailor your answers in your application accordingly.
- Have you overcome certain struggles, or do you have particular ambitions that would resonate with the organisation or individual behind that award?
- Going that extra mile shows initiative, and that youre serious about both the scholarship and your subject, which will impress those reviewing your application.
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How Will I Recieve My Scholarship Money
If you are successful and you get through the application process, then you will probably want to celebrate and you should!
After that, you might start to wonder, how will I receive my scholarship money?
This is a great question, especially when you start planning going to study and will need the money.
Depending on whether your scholarship is funded by the government or a nonprofit it may come in different ways.
For government and private scholarships, the money will go straight to your college account where it will be used for tuition and fees.
For nonprofit and organization-funded scholarships, it may appear in your bank account or as a check.
The simplest way to clear up this problem is to enquire with a staff member after you have been accepted.
College student international scholarships are common so they will be used to these kinds of questions.