Anything for free is always the best, so while student loans are great, grants or a scholarship for an online degree is even better. Grants are usually need based, whereas scholarships are usually based on grades or some type of social demographic. Apply for Federal grants, but also take the time to apply for scholarships, even if your past grades were not the best. Finding scholarship can be a challenge, so be sure to read our article, "Tips You Need for Finding Scholarships for Online Degrees". Once you have identified one or more scholarships that you want to apply for, use the following steps to make your applications the best they can be, increasing your chances of being awarded the scholarship for your online degree.
Do Your Research
After you identify some potential scholarships, read the scholarship requirements and information thoroughly, ensuring that you understand the scholarship and what it requires to apply. Some scholarships can be relatively generic, perhaps offering money to 50 qualified first year college students. Other scholarships are very specific in their target audience, for example one scholarship might be just for women who are seeking a scholarship for online degree in journalism. There is no reason to waste your time or that of the scholarship committee by applying for a scholarship for your online degree that clearly does not apply to you.
Once you are sure that you are part of the target group for a specific scholarship obtain the application. Look over the application and be sure that you understand everything that the scholarship committee needs from you to consider you for the financial gift. Getting a scholarship for your online degree will require you to hit upon every requirement of the scholarship and submit it in a timely fashion. Likely, you will need to submit your high school or previous college grades, a resume, one or two letters of reference, and a personal statement explaining why you deserve to be awarded the scholarship.
Show Off Your Talents
As you compile your materials, put a lot of effort into your personal statement or your essay about why you deserve the scholarship. Sell yourself. Explain why you deserve this degree, name specific accomplishments that you have made, and tell why your education is important. Convince the committee that your past work is deserving of reward and that your future education is worth supporting. Ensure that your statement is well written, interesting, personable and direct.
If it is at all possible, try to follow-up on the progress of your application. Do not bug the people every day, but do check with someone a couple of weeks after you submit your application; you can ask if they received it and if they need any further information from you. If you are not awarded the scholarship ask if you can talk to someone about it, so you can learn if there was something you missed or information lacking in your personal statement helping you learn for the next time you apply for this, or some other, scholarship for an online degree.
It is possible to cover the cost of an online degree with grants and scholarships. This can be especially true if you choose one of the more inexpensive online degree programs.
If so, what do you think made your application stand out? Share your tips with others.