Tips to help you land a scholarship!

By University of Northern British Columbia Modified on February 08, 2018

You’ve hunkered down and researched lists of scholarships and awards to find the ones that fit your academic interests, hobbies, athletic pursuits, and lifestyle. (For more information about being aware of and shopping for scholarships, check out our article Scholarships: Free money, for more than just good grades!)

Now you have to apply. Sometimes all that means is simply checking a box and clicking “submit.” Most times, you will have to send supplementary information to the university or college. For those scholarships, we have a few tips for crafting winning entries:

  • Know your award. Read scholarship/award information carefully. The award you’re applying for is asking for specific information from you, be aware of that.
  • Set time aside. Now you know what you need to apply, make sure you give yourself enough time to write and edit a personal statement or essay, and consider having another set of eyes give it a once-over. Also make sure to give any required references enough time to write a bang-up letter for you.
  • Know yourself. You have chosen this award for a reason: it fits you and you deserve it. It’s not always easy, but this is your opportunity to explain why you’re the exact person for this scholarship. Look deep and think outside of the box. For instance, a leadership award isn’t about how many volunteer hours you’ve put in, it’s about who you are as a leader – in volunteering, maybe, but also at work, in school with tutoring or setting up events and clubs, in organizing and liaising, in the groups you are a part of outside of work or school, and/or in your family.
  • Make sure your references know exactly what you’re applying for. It’s important to share the name of the institution, as well as the specific award you would like a reference for. Purposefully tailored information is essential. Whatever you do, apply for awards. We have almost $3 Million to give away at UNBC, which usually works out to 1 in 4 students coming into their semester with free money – be that student.