What is the key to finding college scholarships? Know your sources. Higher education is expensive, but every year more and more money is given away to supplement that cost. A quick online search for “scholarships” reveals almost 66,000,000 keyword hits! Well, how do you narrows these down? There are many sources already planned and mapped out for you.First, check out government online sources. The government alone will provide over $83 billion dollars in aid this year.
- Ed.gov – The US Department of Education website has a wealth of knowledge regarding financial aid. Clicking on the “Student Financial Aid” link on the right menu bar will bring you the in depth articles discussing government money. You can learn how to apply for college aid, federal student aid, or federal loans here.
- Students.gov – Not only can you find scholarships, but they lay out a full fledge college planning course. Information found here includes military programs ( G.I. Bill ) , career planning, and even state level funding articles.
- Fafsa.ed.gov – Fafsa is the “Federal Application For Student Aid” This is the basic government requirement for federal aid. Here you are taught how to fill out the application as well how to follow up your application.
Secondly, online search databases are a great place to find scholarship money. There are hundreds of them out there. A quick search for “scholarship search” will pull up more than enough to find good matches. Most of these sites will require in depth personal information down to your address, phone number, or high school. Make sure to check out their privacy policies to see how your information is handled. These search engines will match scholarships to you based on your given personal information. One slight drawback to this type of searching will be the advertising that you have to wade through. You are given to option to skip most ads so it is only mildly annoying. I will only try scholarships databases that are free. You should not be required to pay for this type of information.
Lastly, look around for corporate or business funding. Many corporate and business entities have a employee education program. Both parties have a stake in your education, so feel free to look around for your “ideal” job and find companies that match your ideal. Call them up and see if they offer some employment education incentives. Most companies will fund a portion of your higher education in exchange for so many years of dedicated service. Fortune 500 companies are more than willing to find tax write-offs in education.
Financial aid can be found almost anywhere. Get passionate and make funding your education a full time jobs for a couple weeks. Adopt a “Ain’t to proud to beg attitude” if you want to succeed.