Finding a scholarship is easier than you might think. Here are some tips on getting a scholarship, including what you should look out for in your application.
1. Start your search as early as possible
The earlier you start your research, the sooner you can get support. And don’t be afraid about not finding suitable scholarships. Just ignore all the misconceptions about scholarships you might have and focus on your application. Because when you have support you can focus wholly on your studies. Many organisations have one deadline per year. If you miss this you will have to wait another year before you can apply.
2. Search the scholarship databases for matching grants
Instead of the complex and time-consuming process of researching on the internet, you can simply check our scholarship databases for funding opportunities. All scholarships are filtered according to application requirements. This saves you time as you won’t have to review scholarships that don’t match your profile.
3. Apply now for scholarships that match your profile
Don’t just randomly send your CV to the most popular scholarship funders. Instead you should focus on applying to the organisations with opportunities that match your profile. And don’t hesitate to send several applications as this will increase your chances of success.
The best opportunities are with the lesser known organisations. There are even some that struggle to find enough candidates each year, so you should seek out these opportunities.
4. Don’t miss the deadline
The biggest mistake you can make is making a late application. In the majority of cases this will exclude you from the process. Many scholarships have one deadline per year so if you miss it, you will have to wait a full year before you can apply again.
5. Personalize your application
No one likes receiving a generic application that has been sent out on mass, so you should avoid sending out one template to lots of different organisations. The best approach is to personalize and tailor each application. This is not difficult and can include things like addressing it to the right person, or tailoring your responses to match the objectives of the awarding body. You can find further help on preparing your application in our How to Advertise guide.
6. Check your application for mistakes
You will leave a bad first impression if you submit a sloppy application. Read it carefully and correct any mistakes before sending it. In particular you should check your spelling and grammar, as well as checking that the information you are including is factually correct.
Also make sure you follow any application instructions that you are given. For example, if you are asked to send in the application on A4 paper, only use A4 paper.
7. Make sure your application is complete
When you are applying for a scholarship, don’t submit an incomplete application. This will usually result in your application being rejected.
8. What appears when you search for your name in Google?
The people responsible for awarding scholarships may Google you to find out more information. Check your privacy settings on Facebook and other social media networks. And look for content that might leave a bad impression and try to get it removed.
9. Use a photo that leaves an impression of professionalism
First impressions count so your profile photo should be high quality and you should look happy and professional. It is advisable to include a photo, even if it is not asked for.
10. Don’t become a nuisance
Many organisations do not send confirmation of receipt. Often 3 to 6 months will pass before you get feedback. Some even write on their website that applicants should not make contact to check on the progress of their application. You should follow that request.