High School Students

Investigate Scholarship Options Early

High school students who hope to earn college scholarships and grants should begin researching scholarship opportunities during their sophomore or junior year of high school or even earlier. It’s important to find out what types of scholarships for high school students are available, so that you can take steps toward making sure you are eligible well in advance of the time you will need to apply. By investigating scholarship options early, you’ll have time to take the right classes and beef up your resume to ensure you have the best chance of winning scholarships when it comes time to start applying.

For example, the National Key Club scholarship program is open only to Key Club members with two years of tenure in the organization. If you wait until your senior year to join the Key Club, you will have eliminated yourself from consideration for this type of scholarship. Additionally, the Dell Scholars Program is open to only those individuals who spent a minimum of two years in an approved college readiness program. Students who hope to receive these prestigious scholarships must plan ahead in order to qualify.

These are not the only scholarship awards that have participation requirements. Many of the awards most worth winning have specific eligibility requirements, rather they be a certain GPA, a certain ACT score (just imagine coming across this and realizing the next ACT test day is after the scholarship application deadline), a record of community service or any number of other criteria. The earlier you investigate scholarship options, the earlier you’ll know not only what’s out there, but what you’ll have to do to win.

By conducting a scholarship search and researching scholarship and grant oportunities early on in your high school career, you can be at an advantage when it comes to scholarship eligibility. Then, when your senior year of high school arrives and you begin the scholarship application process in earnest, you can put your name in for tons of awards for which you’re clearly eligible rather than beating yourself up and thinking of what could have been.

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Photo courtesy of Rice University

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