Scholarships

From the Experts: Scholarship Best Practices

Follow these scholarship best practices to improve your chances of getting noticed by scholarship providers and, ultimately, win!

The Fastweb Team

April 22, 2020

From the Experts: Scholarship Best Practices
With so many scholarships available, many students wonder why they aren’t winning. It’s true: it isn’t easy to win, however, there are some simple methods of approaching the process that can help you become more successful. Here are some best practices to improve your chances of getting noticed by scholarship providers and, ultimately, win money to pay for school.

1. Updating Your Fastweb Profile

Updating your Fastweb profile is one of the easiest ways to boost the search process. By keeping your profile up to date, you’ll accurately be able to see all of the scholarships you qualify for in real time. Make sure to add all new activities or any changes to your student information because even the smallest details can make a huge difference in qualifying for your listed options.

2. Maximize Searching on Your Own

There are a variety of ways to maximize the search process. You just have to know where to find them. Some recommended places to start your search are: Fastweb's College Scholarships App Did you know that Fastweb has an app? The app is free to download, easy and convenient - all you need to get started is a Fastweb account. Once you have set up your Fastweb account online, simply download the app to get started. When you log in, you’ll see a list of scholarships which you qualify for based on your Fastweb profile. The Fastweb app is available to download free on both iOS and Android devices. Featured Scholarships
This section consists of easy-to-apply-to awards and is refreshed monthly. Take advantage of these opportunities each and every month – they take very little effort and can really boost your chances of winning! Your Fastweb Dashboard
Your scholarship matches appear under your personalized dashboard, complete with a potential value of all of the awards you qualify for, the number of opportunities that your profile matches to, and upcoming deadlines. Browse Different Scholarship Themes Here, different types of awards are highlighted based on the theme – including majors, student types, seasonal awards and more. The Scholarship Directory
The Scholarship Directory identifies the most common award categories. You can easily find new opportunities added within each category as well as the largest awards.

3. Create a Calendar and Stay Organized

One of the best tips for your applications (and the search in general) is to keep it organized. It can be hard to keep track of different awards, dates and deadlines; but it's vital to remain diligent in the organization of your search. Create a calendar, in addition to using the list of deadlines on Fastweb, with award deadlines. Make a goal of submitting each application well before the deadline, in the event that something comes up that would stall you. By taking a proactive approach to applications and deadlines, you'll be better equipped (and have more time) to make changes or wait for letters of recommendation or fix a broken printer should the need arise. Set aside time to apply. By doing this regularly, you’ll submit more applications than you would when just applying during down time. You should look at your scholarship search as if it’s like any other assignment or project that’s due – consider your due date on (or before) each deadline!

4. Apply for ALL Scholarships You Qualify for, Regardless of Award Amount

One of the most common issues students encounter within their scholarship search is limiting themselves by amount. Small award amounts add up, too; so apply for any and all opportunities for which you qualify.

5. Improving Your Scholarship Essays

This one is a no-brainer – or it should be. To put your best foot forward, work to improve your application essays. It’s also helpful to save your essays so that you can reuse essay parts that are applicable to other scholarships. That way, you won’t always have to start from scratch when crafting your essay. Here are some essay resources to help you improve your skills: • Handling Scholarship Essays
The Simplest Way to Write an Essay
Brainstorm Common Scholarship Essay Questions
Grammar Guide
7 Tips to Get Over Writer’s Block
• Winning Scholarship Essay Tips: Part I and Part II

6. Learn from Scholarship Winners

Did you know that Fastweb scholarship winners share their scholarship winning tips on the Wall of Fame? Spoiler alert: most of these winners have the same advice, which is to never stop applying and to apply for as many scholarships as possible. But, you don’t have to take our word for it; check out their recommendations for yourself. Never underestimate the value of learning from your peers, scholarship winners and from students who have been on both sides of the winning spectrum.

7. Take Advice

Take all of the advice out there - it can actually help you develop your winning strategies. Here are some more resources from the experts: • 7 C's of Winning ScholarshipsLet's Talk Scholarships: Application TipsWinning a ScholarshipWhat You Need to Know About Winning Scholarships

8. Don’t Give Up!

Unfortunately, it's difficult at times to win a scholarship, and not everyone is guaranteed to win. It's vital that you never give up applying - because then you're guaranteed to never win one. If you’re frustrated with your scholarship search, you’re not alone. Many students tirelessly apply – and keep applying even when they don’t win. Eventually, your hard work will pay off. That’s the ultimate secret to winning, if there is one at all.

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