Many scholarship websites and other financial aid search companies, both online and off, offer to match students with sources of financial aid for a fee. Some even take you through the entire search process and only tell you when you’ve finished this tedious process that you must pay in order to see your results. Why pay for this information when you can use a free scholarship search website offering that same information? By definition, scholarship information is public so despite the scholarship myths they propagate, these "pay to play" sites can’t tell you anything you can’t find somewhere else for free. There are a lot of scholarship websites out there, but you need to be careful which ones you use. It is important that you be wary of scholarship scams and only visit scholarship websites you know are trustworthy. Look for sites that are associated with other reputable organizations. Find out how long they have been around and whether there have ever been complaints against them registered with the FTC or BBB.
The Scholarships.com Advantage
Naturally, we recommend using Scholarships.com's free college scholarship search. We offer our service absolutely free of charge and have built and maintain our scholarship database in association with those providing the actual scholarships. This means we have the most current, accurate information about a given scholarship award. And reputable? Scholarships.com is among the most reputable sites of any variety on the web today and one of only a few reputable sites in our particular field. Founded in 1999, we are members of BBB Online and TrustE. We also have earned and proudly display the NACAC Seal of Approval and are members of both NACAC (National Association for College Admission Counseling) and NSPA (National Scholarship Providers Association).
The scholarship websites and other links listed below may prove useful to you as well:
The above sources are provided by the U.S. Department of Education, which oversees federal efforts to help students in all aspects of preparing for and attending college. Studentaid.ed.gov is a great resource in general, with links to information on multiple types of financial aid. These tools are an excellent way to supplement your research on Scholarships.com and ensure that you’re making the most of your online scholarship search.
Remember to start your search for scholarships early, as many scholarships have early deadlines. We recommend you begin in your junior year of high school or at least the beginning of the year you will be graduating high school/entering college.