Scholarships and Financial Aid
The following paragraphs tell you how to obtain financial aid and scholarships as you continue your education after high school. The last section lists some of the local, state, and national privately-funded scholarships that are available. If you need financial assistance to continue your education, you should first contact the financial aid office at the educational institution where you plan to attend. Before you do this, however, you need to complete your FAFSA. For your convenience, you will find additional information on the FAFSA process below.
Beginning Your Financial Aid Search
FAFSA - Getting financial aid and scholarships require that you complete your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). You should complete your FAFSA early in your application process. Once you've completed your FAFSA, you will receive a Student Aid Report (SAR). This report shows the amount of money that you and your family are expected to contribute towards your first year of college. This is your Expected Family Contribution (EFC). This figure is used by educational institutions and scholarship funds to determine your financial need.
Personal Statement - Most scholarships require that you write a composition (usually about 350 words), which can include any or all of the following: your high school activities/clubs/leadership positions, community activities, educational goals, career goals, financial need, work experience, and any special considerations. Put plenty of effort into this statement because it needs to make you stand out among your peers. Make sure your spelling and grammar are correct and that you have proofread your statement.
Searching for Available Scholarships
This section lists some privately-funded scholarships. Browse this list. If you meet the primary eligibilities, click on the scholarship name to see the complete eligibilities. If you’re sure you meet the complete eligibilities, apply for those scholarships! The more scholarships you apply for, the greater your chances of success.
Make sure that you submit all of the application materials required for each scholarship by the deadline dates. Make a note of each scholarship deadline date on your daily calendar so that you will not forget them.
Remember that your guidance counselor is available to help you with your scholarship search. Never pay to apply for a scholarship! Don't fall for scams!