MYTH: People only can get scholarships if they are straight A students or they are outstanding athletes
TRUTH: People who give scholarships are motivated for many reasons and are often looking for students who are like them in some way -- interested in the same major; social cause; field of study; college; hobbies; etc. If you had extra funds to use to create a scholarship, what would your requirements be? Scholarships are awarded to students with a wide vareity of abilities and interests -- no just straight As or great athletic skills.
MYTH: People only can get scholarships if they are poor.
TRUTH: There is no universal definition of "financial need" for scholarships. If the scholarship does not give a specific income number, apply anyway. The person giving the scholarship might not be concerned about your savings or income, he or she is seeking someone interested in the same major; social cause, field of study; college; hobbies; etc.
MYTH: "Merit" scholarships only consider grades.
TRUTH: "Merit" is defined by the person giving the scholarship. It can mean extracurricular activities; achievements; ambitions; community service; leadership.
MYTH: There is one place to find out about every scholarship.
TRUTH: No one place lists all scholarships- no one book; no one internet site. Plan to look for information about scholarships in many places. There will be some overlap but better to see a scholarship twice than miss the one that is just right for you.
MYTH: Paying for a scholarship search is the best way to find scholarships.
TRUTH: There are many free ways to find out about scholarship. Websites identified here as well as books listing scholarships available at your local or campus library. In general organizations that charge for scholarship searches are going to tell you about the free loan services available from the federal government.
How to Make Informed Choices:
First: Evaluated how much you can afford to borrow based on salary expectations and decisions about how much of your income you are willing to devote to loan payments.
Second: Here are some suggestions to help change your plans and/or behaviors when dealing with loans.
Reliable scholarship search sites:
Good Call http://www.goodcall.com/
The College Board http://bigfuture.collegeboard.org/scholarship-search
Scholarship America http://scholarshipamerica.org/index.php
Pay it Back
After you graduate, donate to organizations that offer scholarships. Support organization that offer scholarships. And encourage organizations you join to consider offering scholarships.
College Board website collegeboard.com
College View www.collegeview.com
Sallie Mae- student loan company collegeanswer.com
Scholarly societies www.scholarly-societies.org
WORK: both you and your parents employers. If they do not offer scholarships they may offer a dependent tuition fee wavier or discount.
LARGE EMPLOYERS, BESIDES YOU OR YOUR PARENTS: ie. Walmart, McDonald's, Starbucks, Coke a Cola
CIVIC ORGANIZATIONS: Kiwanis, The Lions, churches, community foundations, service organizations.
GOOGLE SEARCH: always good for something!