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by Scholarships.com Staff

When reviewing your application, scholarship judges knows only what you tell them. Abiding by scholarship etiquette is an important but frequently overlooked way of letting scholarship judges know that your are serious about your future and appreciative of their donations. To maximize your scholarship potential, remember the following scholarship guidelines:

Professional Presentation Most applicants are dedicated to their education, but they often forgot to show it. Presentation is a great way to let the judging panel know that you have considered each part of the application process. Save email addresses such as dancincutie@yahoo.com or coolestgangsta@hotmail.com for your friends. When applying for scholarships, stick with the more serious name and number versions.

The Magic Words Don’t retire the “please” and “thank yous”. Scholarship providers don't have to offer financial aid, but they do. A simple, “thank you for this opportunity,” makes you stand out, and it lets the judges know that you appreciate  their efforts.

Spelling Spelling and etiquette may not appear correlated, but they are. Students who take the time to polish their scholarship essays are showing the judging panel that their application is important enough to revise thoroughly. Most word processors are equipped with spelling tools, and applicants should take advantage of them. A few grammar mishaps may be overlooked—not everyone is an expert grammarian—but spelling is vital.

Keep Some Things to Yourself Many students take finances into account when selecting a career. It’s only natural that individuals search for jobs that ensure financial security and a comfortable lifestyle. That being said, keep some things to yourself. You can mention wanting to provide for your family or to wanting to break a cycle of financial struggles, but skip the part about bossing people around, wearing fancy suits or wanting to make millions.


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by Scholarships.com Staff

As a means of promoting diversity and developing talent, Scholarships.com has created a new set of scholarships for high school students and undergraduate students. The “Fund Your Future” area of study scholarship consists of thirteen $1,000 awards to be granted to students who pursue a postsecondary education in one of thirteen designated fields and 185 related majors. Included is the Scholarships.com Culinary Arts Scholarship, an award for students who plan to or are already majoring in the culinary arts.

The way to someone’s heart may be through their stomach, but that's not the reason so many students pursue a culinary arts degree. Whether you dream of opening your own restaurant or joining the future cast of the Food Network, culinary arts classes can help you accomplish your goals. If you have the drive, Scholarships.com will help you buy the gas. By applying for the Scholarships.com Culinary Arts Scholarship, you may find yourself $1,000 closer to becoming a chef.

If you’re interested in applying for this essay scholarship, respond to the following question in 250 to 350 words (entries that fall outside of this word range will be disqualified):"What has influenced your decision to pursue a career in the culinary arts?"

Prize: $1,000

Eligibility: 1. Applicant must be a registered Scholarships.com user. Creating an account is simple and free of charge. 2. Applicant must be a U.S. citizen 3. Applicant must be undergraduate student or a high school senior who plans to enroll in a college or university in the coming fall 4. Applicant must have indicated an interest in one of the following majors: Culinary Arts or Food Science/Food Industry

Deadline: June 30, 2008

Required Material: A 250 to 350 word response to the following question: “What has influenced your decision to pursue a career in the culinary arts?”

Further details about the application process can be found by conducting a free college scholarship search. Once the search is completed, students eligible for the award will find it in their scholarship list.


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by Scholarships.com Staff

Young adults often join the army hoping that their contributions will serve the nation's good and aid them in affording a quality education. Army.com admits that, “Ninety percent of servicemembers enter the armed forces for the educational benefits.” Unfortunately, an increasing number of veterans are finding their promised aid insufficient in paying for tuition and other costs.

In an interview with MTV, veteran Evan Aanerud expressed his surprise upon finding that, even with financial assistance, he would have to work full time to cover college expenses. When Evan returned from Iraq and enrolled in the California Polytechnic State University, he received only $430 each month. “That’s about the cost of one-quarter of the books, and that’s about all that I got,” he said.

Even servicemen who receive the maximum $1,100 per month as determined by the GI Bill—a law made to cover each veteran’s college expenses---often find the assistance lacking. With College Board estimating the four-year cost of a public, four-year, in-state university at $54,356 and the private one at $129,228, the maximum $39,636 veteran budget just doesn’t cut it.

But there is hope. If a revised version of the current Montgomery GI Bill is passed, veteran students may soon receive a federal student aid boost. According to the proposal, the new GI Bill would pay the full cost of in-state tuition (up to the cost of the most expensive in-state public university) in addition to a housing and book stipend. With bipartisan support, the bill has a chance at passage if opposing congressmen can be convinced that costs are manageable. Having put their lives on the line to serve the nation, many veterans feel that it's the least they deserve.


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by Scholarships.com Staff

As expected, President Bush signed into law the Ensuring Continued Access to Student Loans Act of 2008. After receiving bipartisan support from the House and the Senate, the bill aimed at ensuring student loan availability was approved by the president.

Worried that the departure of student lenders from the FFEL Program could make student loans more difficult to obtain, legislators hurried to secure a backup plan. According to House Representative George Miller, “The bill carries no new cost for taxpayers.”

The Ensuring Continued Access to Student Loans Act of 2008 indicates that:

o The limit on federal loans will soon increase. Students will be able to borrow $2,000 more to cover tuition and other costs.

o Parents will have more time to save for PLUS Loans. Rather than having to pay as soon as money is disbursed, they will have until six months after the child graduates before initial payments are due.

o Families slightly behind on their mortgages or medical bills may still be eligible for PLUS Loans.

o The Secretary of Education has the authority to advance federal funds to student lenders and guaranty agencies acting as lenders of last resort if the lenders run out of capital.

o Shall a lender of last resort plan be put into practice, guaranty agencies acting as lenders will have to abide by rules and restrictions similar to those governing FFEL lenders.

o Congress may call on the Federal Financing Bank to consider injecting money into the student loan market at no cost to the taxpayers.


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by Scholarships.com Staff

Complicated student loan legal jargon is an unfortunate component of the borrowing process. Two words  all students should be familiar with before borrowing are "subsidized” and “unsubsidized”. Let's break these down:

Subsidized Loans Students who borrow subsidized loans through the Federal Direct or the Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) programs will receive government-backed college money. Because the government agrees to compensate FFEL lenders for loan defaults, student lenders agree to offer low-interest loans. They do not charge students for the interest that accumulates during the college years and post-graduation six-month grace period as the government takes care of these costs. Unfortunately, not all students are eligible for federal subsidized loans because finances are among the eligibility criteria. Students whose FAFSA results suggest financial need and those whose parents applied for but were denied a PLUS Loan may take out subsidized loans.

Unsubsidized Loans While federally unsubsidized loans boast fewer benefits than subsidized ones, their interest rates still tend to be lower than those offered by private lenders.  Students are responsible for all interest that accrues during their years in school, deferment, and grace periods. As long as students don’t exceed their annual loan borrowing limits, they may take out both subsidized and unsubsidized loans. Because unsubsidized loans are not based on financial need, students who are not deemed needy by the government may still take out these loans. The borrowing limit on these loans will vary based on year in school and dependency status, but the sum may not exceed the estimated cost of attendance for each school minus other financial aid a student receives. Students may borrow both subsidized and unsubsidized loans during the same period as long as the limits for each are not surpassed.

Posted Under:

FAFSA , Financial Aid , Student Loans


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by Scholarships.com Staff

Even the most disciplined and well-intentioned parents may have a hard time saving for their child’s college education. To assist parents and students in their search for college funding resources, Oxy has created a college sweepstakes with some hefty awards.

By applying, parents will be entered to win one of eleven prizes ranging in size between $5,000 and $25,000. Because the awards will be offered in the form of 529 Plan contributions, they will continue to grow tax free.  With no essay required, this one is worth a try. For more information about this and other college scholarships and grants, you may conduct a free college scholarship search.

Prize:

1. One $25,000 529 Plan contributio 2. Five $10,000 529 Plan contributions 3. Five $5,000 529 Plan contributions

Eligibility:

1. Applicant must be 18 years old or older or must be a parent of a child who is between 13-19 years of age between April 1, 2008 and September 28, 2008 2. Applicant must be a legal US resident

Deadline:

September 29, 2008 by 3:00 PM ET

Required Material:

1. Online or postal mail registration


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FiSCA Scholarship

January 21, 2008

by Scholarships.com Staff

The Financial Service Centers of America, Inc. (FiSCA) is sponsoring a scholarship for high school seniors who are ready to head off to college—with money in their pockets. Since 1986, this organization has been representing financial service centers from around the country and helping them with the regulations and politics of financial aid.

FiSCA will award scholarships to at least two students from each of five geographic regions in the U.S. The essay requirement is pretty short and straightforward, 100 words max about a person or event that has influenced the student’s life. After completing the essay, students will need to fill out a two-page application and send in their transcript along with two letters of recommendation to the regional administrator. That’s it!

Prize:

1. At least ten grants of $2,000 or more.

Eligibility:

1. Applicants must be U.S. citizens, national residents or permanent residents. 2. Applicants must be high school seniors. 3. Applicants may not be children or grandchildren of FiSCA employees, officers or owners.

Deadline:

Applications must be postmarked by April 3, 2008

Required Material:

1. A completed application 2. An essay of no more than 100 words about a person or event that has influenced the student 3. A transcript that includes first-semester senior grades and test scores 4. Two letters of recommendation

Further details, including information about applying for the award and contacting the scholarship provider, can be found by conducting a free scholarship search. Once a student has completed the search, this scholarship will appear in their "My Scholarships" section--provided the student is eligible.


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by Scholarships.com Staff

If you’ve ever curled up with a worn copy of The Scarlet Letter or Great Expectations, you can attest to the fact that there is no cheaper, better way to travel. Now, some students will even be paid for their escapades. That's because Signet Classics, one of the publishers responsible for printing these great books, is sponsoring a scholarship competition for students. Those who participate can share their ideas about Robert Louis’s Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, and hopefully, win money for college in the process.

Prize:

1. Five $1,000 scholarships. 2. Each winner’s school library (or public library) will also win a collection of Signet Classics books worth an estimated $700.

Eligibility:

1. Applicant must be a full-time high school junior or high school senior (or be home schooled) in one of the fifty U.S. states 2. Applicant must be a U.S. resident 3. Applicant must be between the ages of 16 and 18.

Deadline:

Entry must be postmarked by April 15, 2008 and received by April 22, 2008.

Required Material:

1. Three copies of a double-spaced essay discussing one of four proposed topics about Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. The essay should be between two and three pages in length. 2. The applicant’s English teacher (or parent if home schooled) must send the scholarship essay along with a cover letter on school/parent letterhead that includes: date, student contact (name, grade, address, email, and home phone), name of high school, teacher contact (name, email, and phone), school administration officer contact (name, email, and phone), the number of topic selected,  and certification that the essay is the student’s original work.

Further details, including information about applying for the award and contacting the scholarship provider, can be found by conducting a free college scholarship search. Once a student has completed the search, this scholarship will appear in their scholarship list, provided the student is eligible.


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by Scholarships.com Staff

The U.S. public cannot help but worry about the future of our environment. The reduction in available energy resources affects us all—regardless of age. By applying for this scholarship, students have a chance to be a part of the solution and to find money for college. To apply for The Presidential Forum on Renewable Energy Scholarship, students will have to create a plan for renewable energy in the U.S. The plan should consist of four to six points that describe the approach this country should take to reduce its dependence on nonrenewable energy resources. Winning scholarship candidates will present a feasible, creative solution and take into account the challenges that may be encountered along the way.

For more information about this and other college scholarships and grants, you may conduct a free college scholarship search. If you are eligible to receive this scholarship, you will find the application and contact details in the “My Scholarships” section.

Prize:

Three winners will receive a $10,000 scholarship

Eligibility:

1. Applicant must be between the ages of 18 and 24 as of January 1, 2008 2. Applicant must be enrolled full-time or part-time in an undergraduate college program 3. Applicant must be a U.S. citizen

Deadline:

February 1, 2008

Required Material:

1. An essay between four and six pages in length (no more than 2,500 words) 2. Verification of college enrollment and U.S. citizenship.


Comments

by Scholarships.com Staff

The American Foreign Service Association (AFSA), an association representing U.S. Foreign Service, Foreign Agricultural Service, U.S. & Foreign Commercial Service and the International Broadcasting Bureau employees, is awarding a scholarship to students who are willing to do some thinking. This annual contest is a bit more advanced than your typical “Why was George Washington a great leader” essay, and it will probably take some research. Not everyone will be up for that, all the better for those who are. The topic for this year’s competition is “The challenges facing the American Foreign Service in the 21st Century,” and, based on the award description, Condoleezza Rice wants to know what you think. Before answering, you may want to read up on the Foreign Service, a group of employees who work at U.S. embassies around the world. Once you’ve done that, let Condoleezza know what it is that you think.   For further information about the registration form (there is no application form), please conduct a free scholarship search.

Prize:

1. A $2,500 college scholarship for the winner and a $500 award for the winner's school 2. A paid trip to Washington D.C. for the winner and his/her parents

Eligibility:

1. Applicant must be a student in grades 9 through 12 attending a public, private, parochial or home school OR must participate in a high school correspondence program in the U.S., its territories or overseas as a U.S. citizen. 2. Students whose parents belong to the U.S. Service or who have served on the Advisory Committee are not eligible for the award.

Deadline:

April 15, 2008

Required Material:

1. A completed student registration form signed by the student and their teacher. 2. Four copies of an essay on the topic, including four copies of sources used. The essay must be double-spaced, written in 12 point Times New Roman font, have one-inch margins.

Further details, including information about applying, can be found by conducting a free scholarship search. Once a student has completed the search, this scholarship will appear in their scholarship list, provided the student is eligible to apply.


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