College Scholarships Are Still Out There

Economic times as they are people are worrying more than ever about where they are going to find the money for their child’s education, or even their own for those people considering a career change. You should know that there is still scholarship money out there for people who take the time and effort to pursue it, and more importantly, apply for them long before the beginning of the next school year.

Here are a few myths that have developed in the public consciousness about college scholarships and how you can use this information to your own benefit.

1. Myth. Billions of dollars in scholarship money goes unclaimed every year.
That simply is not true. Almost all the money available for scholarships gets awarded every year. Perhaps the biggest mistake you can make is to take a casual approach to getting scholarship money under the false impression that it is there for the taking and all you have to do is discover where it is.

2. Myth. Only the the best students with the highest grades get scholarships.
Academic achievement is only one factor that grantors use in awarding scholarships. Some scholarship money, perhaps most, is not based on academic achievement at all. Other factors such as the proposed field of study, ethnicity, involvement in community activities and organizations, geographic origin, and membership in certain organizations all come into play in the scholarship hunt.

3. Myth. You have to pay for scholarship information.
No you do not. There is plenty of information about scholarship opportunities on the Internet and in your local and community newspapers. If you belong to any fraternal organizations or to a labor union ask the appropriate person if that organization provides any scholarship funding and if they do how to get the ball rolling.

So how you go about hunting down scholarship money? The number one rule is to start early. Starting in January for the school year that begins in September is not too early. If your child is still in high school then be sure that he consults with the guidance counselor who has that kind of information readily available. Your local library may be a good source. Ask at the desk. Contact the financial aid office of the colleges and universities that you’ll be applying to. Stop in at the financial aid office of a local college or university and inquire about whatever scholarship resources they may have available.

There is scholarship money available for many interests, abilities, and people with many different backgrounds. Your child does not have to be the class valedictorian or the class president. Do your homework and apply early. Your best chance of success will probably be with local and regional opportunities.

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Author: Nayem Hassan

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