Scholarship Application Tips
• Meet the application deadline
If you miss a deadline, even by just one day, you may not be considered.
• Gather application materials early
Give yourself plenty of time to complete each step. Applications that have been rushed look sloppy, and incomplete applications won’t be accepted.
• Don’t ignore small awards.
Small awards can add up. Plus, the larger the award, the more competition you’ll face.
• Request letters of recommendation early
Most scholarships require letters of recommendation. Think carefully about who should write these letters and choose a teacher who can speak to your strengths and ability to overcome your weaknesses (letters from friends and/or family members are a no-no). Give your recommenders no less than two weeks’ notice so they have time to go to the LACC Foundation Scholarship link and write the letter. Be prepared to provide them with additional information about yourself or the scholarship.
• Write a great essay
Think carefully about the question being asked and use this opportunity to tell the selection committee things about you that might not be shown elsewhere in the application. Get help with editing for grammar and spelling, but do your own writing—the committee wants to hear from you personally.
• Sing your own praises
Most scholarships will ask you to tell them what you do with your time. As uncomfortable as this may feel, this is one time in your life when it’s necessary to brag. Tell them about recognition and awards you’ve received. Emphasize activities that show your talents and passions, especially things that demonstrate your ability to lead, take initiative, persist through adversity, and care for your community. Don’t underestimate yourself—employment and family responsibilities can say a lot in your favor as well.
• Don’t give up!
Keep trying even if you don’t win a scholarship right away. Save copies of every essay (self-profile) so you don’t have to start from scratch every time.
Additional scholarships can be found through churches, high schools, and private organizations. You can learn about these opportunities by utilizing free web searches like Fastweb. You may also want to be in direct contact with large companies in your area or your parent’s employer or other organizations with whom you have a connection. In some cases, you may not have to be directly associated with an organization to qualify for a scholarship.