Top 10 Scholarship Tips

Opportunity Cover Image - Top 10 Scholarship Tips

You’re at a point in your life where your next move will be crucial in deciding the fate of your education. Bigger and better things are on the horizon, they’re in reach, and it’s now up to you to secure a prosperous future for yourself.

There’s just one little snag: finances.

Unfortunately, all your lofty ideas about the future won’t just pay for themselves (not yet, at least). You need the right financial backing, and you need it NOW. Lucky for you, there is no shortage of eligible scholarships out there to give you a helping hand — it’s just a matter of discovering how to win the scholarship(s) that’s right for you.       

To that end, here’s a handy list of the top 10 scholarship tips that will help you get to where you want to be.

1.  Learn a New Language

Knowing more than one language is a profoundly effective way to exemplify your prowess and competence to any potential suitor. It's a distinct indication of your ability to commit to things outside of your purview and be successful at it. Bilingualism is a highly sought after, and beneficial, trait.

Ultimately, the more languages you know, the better. You might even say it’s good to learn two languages at once — that’s certainly a good option if you’ve got the time and resources to put into it.

2.  Tell Them What They Want to Hear

Admittedly, this tip might come across a tad bit Machievalien. Nonetheless, you’re here because you want to know what the most effective tips are, and this is certainly one of them (whether you like it or not). If you want that top scholarship, you’re going to have to say the things that are most likely to win over the sponsor/organization.

What you should do is look at what the organization stands for, what their goals are, and, ultimately, how you fit into all of this. From here, you’ll be able to come up with an expertly-crafted pitch for why you deserve to get a scholarship based on your distinct story and strengths.

3.  Read College Scholarship Requirements Very Carefully

To piggyback off that last point, it’s important to stress the importance of thoroughly researching the places you’ll look to for college scholarships. Before you do anything make sure that you’ve got this particular scholarship all figured out. Have a good idea of not only what they’re looking for, but whether or not you even fit into what they’re looking for.

Eligibility is key.

There are all sorts of scholarships out there that pertain to very specific people and you need to find the ones that speak to you. For instance, the Cognitive Disabilities Scholarship from Preply is a scholarship with a specific criteria that might be a great place to start if you have a cognitive disability. Nonetheless, you can rest assured that you will find the one that’s right for you.

Sometimes you’ve got to cut your losses and move on. There’s no one-size-fits-all approach in how to win a scholarship: sometimes it’s just not right for you and you have to gravitate towards what is.

Don’t waste your time on scholarships that aren’t meant for you.

4.  Come Across as Professional

This one’s fairly obvious. These people are entrusting you with their money under the presumption that you’ll make something of it; that you’ll make something of yourself.

So, put their minds at ease and take every precaution necessary to present yourself as the kind of professional and trustworthy individual they first pictured when setting out on this venture. That could mean altering the way you carry yourself, how you write, your online footprint, or even how you dress.

Keep in mind this is not a simple ask on your part and you’re going to have to earn it.

5.  Apply to All the College Scholarships that are Available to You

Earlier we discussed the importance of eligibility and how it should factor into your decision-making process with respect to which college scholarships you’ll apply to. The next step is to do your best to make use of all of them!

Once you’ve taken the time to put together a thorough list of viable options that work for you, it’s time to maximize your odds and take a chance at all of them. Scholarships, like many things in life, are a numbers game — so do your best to make sure they’re on your side. 

6.  Get a Scholarship with Essay Contests

A scholarship application should, ideally, give you the opportunity to show them who you are and what you’re capable of. That’s where essay contests come into play.

What better way to demonstrate your best qualities and personality traits than a well-written essay? This is a blessing of an opportunity to make yourself stand out from the rest and showcase what you have to offer and how much it means to you to get a scholarship of this magnitude.

7.  Try to Focus on Local Scholarships

Yes, scholarships are a numbers game, but there’s also an element of prioritization that you’d be unwise to overlook. Local scholarships, in contrast to state or federal scholarships, provide you with an unrivaled advantage. Not only do they limit the scope of your competition, but they also allow you to compete on home turf.

Perhaps you already know of, or are more personally familiar with, the people/organizations that are offering the scholarship in question. This gives you a lot more to work with and strengthens your chances of being successful.

8.  Use Your Time Wisely

Time is, quite literally, money in the case of earning a top scholarship. Make no mistake, every ounce of time and effort that you exert is directly contributing to you securing the capital required to pay for your schooling.

So, use it wisely.

This is an important transitional period in your life and you need to treat it as such. You’ll need to schedule your life more thoroughly, sacrifice some short-term pleasures, and give this your all. Take this seriously and it’ll produce fantastic dividends in the future.

9.  Be Yourself & Stand Out

This is what it’s all about.

The sole purpose of engaging in these strenuous application processes is to gain a foothold in the hearts and minds of the people whose money you’re vying for.

You can do this by being yourself, or at the very least, the best version of yourself that you can be. If there are shortcomings in who you are, then work on those and use this opportunity as a catalyst to do so. But always remember to focus on your strengths and the things that make you YOU.

As you can imagine, the people who dedicate the time and effort to sift through these applications are probably used to hearing the same contrived drivel over and over again. Be the stand-out application of their day, the exception to the rule, the person who makes it all worthwhile.

10.              Be Resilient, Don’t Ever Let Yourself Get Discouraged

And if all that isn’t enough, always remember to keep pressing forward. There’s no denying how difficult the task at hand can seem, sometimes it makes you want to just give up altogether. But you should never allow yourself to succumb to the fatalistic allure of self-doubt and defeat. That’s never the answer.

No matter how insurmountable things may seem, always know that to succeed is to overcome. If there’s no amount of resistance in accomplishing your goals and aspirations, was it even worth it? If that were the case, you’d have nowhere to derive your sense of accomplishment.

Always keep in mind that it’s all a part of the process — don’t let it bring you down.


Hopefully, this list of scholarship tips has instilled in you a renewed sense of drive and purpose. You’ll often find that the things in life that are most hard to do are hard because of how you perceive them. Sometimes it’s all a matter of shifting that perspective in order to get the results that you want.

Publish Date
June 16, 2020