Get through Scholarship Apps Quickly and Easily
Most college students don’t enjoy applying for scholarships because, quite frankly, it’s a pain in the butt. Every application seems to take an hour or longer, and you have to fill out a billion applications just to pay for one semester. Wouldn’t it be nice if there was an easy way to cut that time in half? Lucky for you, there is. Here are 6 ways to speed up scholarship applications so you can get the most financial aid possible.
You can use a program online to save basic information you fill out for every application, like your name, address, birthday, and phone number. Sign up for a free account with LastPass or a similar site, and then you will be able to download an add-on for your web browser. If you are logged in when filling out your applications, you can opt to save your form information when you complete a form. Then you can have the program fill out the form data for your next application.
An even better option…
An even better option than a form filler is to use a program like ScholarshipOwl to send out scholarships for you. All you have to do is complete one application in the beginning, and the program will do the rest of the work for you. Scholarship Owl matches students to scholarships they may qualify for, and they offer a dedicated inbox for all of your scholarship applications. You’ll get through a lot more in a lot less time with something like this by your side.
Pre-Write Your Scholarship Essays
You can pre-write some of your scholarship essays to use on multiple applications. You may have to tweak them to specifically suit the scholarship in question, but you won’t have to write something from scratch. Try to make the essays somewhat versatile in length, since some applications require much longer essays than others. You should be able to edit out information from a 1,000 word essay to make it fit into 300 words. Here are some popular essay questions you might want to answer in the pre-writes:
- How will a college education impact your career?
- What is the importance of your major in today’s society?
- What are the most important issues surrounding your field of study today?
- What have you done so far to prepare for your career?
- How have you established yourself as a leader in your community?
- Who has been the biggest influence in your life, and what have you learned from that person?
- What opportunities have you gained from having a good education?
- Where do you see yourself 10 years from now?
- If you could meet one person in history, dead or alive, who would it be and what would you ask?
- How would a scholarship impact your ability to get an education?
You might not come across any of those topics specifically, but they should give you a good starting point to build from. Then all you’ll have to do is add a few sentences related to the prompt in your application to make things work.
Get through Scholarship Apps Quickly and Easily (Continued)
Look for Multi-Purpose Applications
In some cases, you can apply for multiple scholarships through one application. This usually happens when you apply with a large organization or with a school. For instance, you might apply for entrance into a certain college and not even have to apply for scholarships at the school. If the app passes admissions, it will be sent out to financial aid for review. Then they will contact you with any scholarships you might qualify for so you can figure out what else you need. The same happens with clubs that offer multiple scholarship opportunities, like the Elk Foundation or the Freemasons. Try to find as many double-duty applications as you can, and you won’t have to apply for as many awards.
Choose the Right Scholarships to Apply for
You may just need to be selective in the applications you fill out. Look for no essay scholarships that you can complete in two minutes or large awards that could cover most of your costs. You should still apply for everything else, but you might put those applications on the backburner. Try to pick a couple to complete a day, and then you won’t be bombarded by 12-hour app sessions. Once you start making them a part of your routine, you won’t feel so overwhelmed.
Remember that scholarships come up all throughout the year, so you need to stay on the lookout for them. Don’t let your need for speed cause you to neglect your need for next semester’s financial aid.
Get Prepared ahead of Time
At the end of the day, the best way to speed up your scholarship applications is to prepare for them well in advance. Gather multiple copies of your transcripts, recommendation letters, and test scores, and have them ready for whenever you need them. Pre-write your essays and find several scholarships to apply for at once. Then you can just push through them like you would anything else. Fill out as many apps as you can, and you’ll soon be able to pay for your education.