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Finding the Best College Scholarship Opportunities

College scholarship searching can be very frustrating for parents and their students. I know, I’ve been there! Keep reading…

#CampusChat - Finding the Best College Scholarship Opportunities

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It’s college scholarship week on #CampusChat!

If you need college scholarship help and advice, this #CampusChat Twitter chat is JUST FOR YOU.  The focus of this week’s scholarship chat is how to find the best college scholarship opportunities. 

My guest this week is Jessica Velasco of JLV College Counseling. Jessica is an independent college counselor. Prior to starting JLV College Counseling, Jessica worked at colleges in Calif & Wash. in admissions offices. She has served on multiple scholarship committees and has extensive knowledge about college scholarships. Her site has an amazing scholarship database and she will be sharing her advice on how to find scholarships in our chat. Here are all the details:

  • What:           #CampusChat Twitter Chat
  • When:          Thursday, December 1st (Did you miss the chat? The script is below)
  • Time:           9-10pm, EST
  • Topic:          Finding the Best College Scholarship Opportunities
  • Host:            Monica Matthews @AidScholarship
  • Guest:         Jessica Velasco @Admissions411
  • Sponsor:    Smart College Visit @CollegeVisit

Here is the script in case you missed the chat:

Breaking Down the College Scholarship Application

Q1 All scholarship apps need a student’s name & email address. What are some do’s and don’ts here? #CampusChat

A1 Use a professional email address, such as your name for all college and scholarship communication. #CampusChat
A1 Double and triple check you entered your email correctly. It might be the only way they will contact you. #CampusChat
A1 Refrain from using an email that can be seen as offensive – No alcohol, drug, sex, or violence references. #CampusChat

Q2 What about the scholarship essay? How can a student get his or her essay to stand out to the judges? #CampusChat

A2 Catch the reader’s attention early. If it doesn’t catch their interest early, they may stop reading. #CampusChat
A2 Reread your essay – if someone could send in the same essay, they probably will. Make the essay uniquely yours. #CampusChat
A2 Be yourself – don’t write what you think the judges want to read. #CampusChat

Q3 Should students include a scholarship/activity resume with their apps? Do they really help? #CampusChat

A3 Resumes/Brag sheets are great ways to showcase all of the great things you’ve done – include one if you can. #CampusChat
A3 Resume/Brag sheets can highlight accomplishments that you may not have been able to share in the scholarship app #CampusChat
A3 Do not include if directions say do not include additional items. Not following directions = no scholarship #CampusChat

Q4 So many scholarship apps are submitted online now. What tips can help make them impressive? #CampusChat

A4 Use fonts that are easy to read. Fancy fonts probably will not impress the judges. #CampusChat
A4 If asked to submit a document, don’t use a program that is not common – they may not be able to open it. #CampusChat

Q5 There is often an “other info” box that students can fill out. What should they say here, if anything? #CampusChat

A5 Add info that could make your case for the scholarship – more details about activities, etc. #CampusChat
A5 Don’t Repeat – Don’t use “other info” to repeat info that was already included in the scholarship app. #CampusChat
A5 It’s okay to leave the “other info” area blank if everything was already included in the scholarship app and essay. #CampusChat

A6 For physically mailed in scholarship applications, what are some important tips? #CampusChat

A6 Mail all app materials together, including the rec if you can. This will ensure they get everything they need. #CampusChat
A6 Don’t guess about postage. Take it to the post office to ensure you pay the correct postage. #CampusChat
A6 Adding tracking can ease your mind when you’re wondering if it has been received. #CampusChat

Q7 Most scholarship apps require a letter of recommendation or two. How can students get the best one possible? #CampusChat

A7 Give your rec writers at least a few weeks to write the rec – last minute requests might not be accommodated. #CampusChat
A7 Give rec writer details about scholarship – Writer may choose to cater the rec specifically to the scholarship. #CampusChat
A7 Provide a brag sheet. Even if you know the rec writer well, they might have forgotten all of the great things you’ve done. #CampusChat

Q8 What are some ways that students can further impress judges on a scholarship application? #CampusChat

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A8 Follow all directions. Not following directions could automatically disqualify you for the scholarship #CampusChat
A8 Answer all questions. Don’t get caught up in telling your story and forgetting something the essay prompt asks for. #CampusChat
A8 Make your essay stands out – the essay could be the only thing that distinguishes you from other qualified applicants. #CampusChat

Q9 Do judges check the social media habits of students? How does this behavior impact scholarship decisions? #CampusChat

A9 Some check social media, others do not. Always be safe and assume they will check social media. #CampusChat
A9 Your online presence should match how you are presenting yourself to the scholarship judges. #CampusChat
A9 Negative and unprofessional activity online could lose you the scholarship, even if you were the most qualified. #CampusChat

Q10 What are your 3 BEST tips for submitting college scholarship applications? #CampusChat

A10 Read the scholarship information closely. Follow the directions carefully – not following directions could disqualify you #CampusChat
A10 Submit an essay that stands out from the crowd – don’t send in the safe essay others will also submit. #CampusChat
A10 You don’t have to wait until the deadline – there could be unforeseen circumstances that could make it late. #CampusChat

 

Not sure how to attend a Twitter chat?  Keep reading…

What is a Twitter chat and how do I participate?

Joining a Twitter chat may seem intimidating, but it’s really is easy!  If you don’t already have one, go to Twitter.com and create a free account. (Students, please keep in mind that scholarship judges and college admissions officers read students’ tweets and take note of Twitter usernames!) Try and use your real name or something that represents you and passes the Grandma Test. More on the Grandma Test here.)

Once you have your account set up, type #CampusChat into the search bar at the top of the page. Be sure to use the hashtag —> # in front of “CampusChat”.  This will bring up all of the Tweets involving SmartCollegeVisit and #CampusChat.  At 1pm, you will start to see the questions being asked and the answers being shared.  Keep refreshing the page to see all the tweets about #CampusChat, or use a free service like Hootsuite.com to easily follow along and join in on the chat.  If you have a question, just ask it in 140 characters or less, making sure to include #CampusChat somewhere in your tweet. Make sure you are following me @AidScholarship and @CollegeVisit so you will not miss any questions or answers.

If you have any questions about how to participate in a Twitter chat, feel free to email me at info@how2winscholarships.com.

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