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Five Steps to Completing a Successful Internet Search for Scholarships

Step 1
:  Commit to following a scholarship search strategy or click here. 

Step 2:  Build a tool kit before you start your searches.

  • Prepare a one-page detailed, personal statement about yourself.
  • Prepare a follow-up letter.
  • Prepare thank you cards and personalize them.
  • Prepare a cover letter and resume.
  • Prepare a scholarship tracking worksheet in Excel. You must have Excel loaded on your computer to use this worksheet.
  • Pick one scholarship website from the list in the Financial Aid Handbook.
  • Open a free email account at

Step 3: Access the website and complete the registration process.

  • Answer every question truthfully to maximize your scholarship opportunities.

  • Use the free hotmail account email address where you want to receive your search results.

  • Apply only for scholarships that have restrictions. If they are restricted then you  maximize your opportunity to receive one. It really is a matter of numbers. 

  • Apply! Apply! Apply!. Let's say 100 people apply for a scholarship that has no or few restrictions. Your chances of getting that scholarship are 100:1 or 1 percent. Let's say 40 people apply for a more restricted scholarship.  Your chances of getting a more restricted scholarship are 40:1 or 2.5 percent. What types of scholarships are you going to apply for in this scenario? Avoid scholarships that most people may qualify for because your chances of getting a scholarship are reduced significantly.

Step 4:  Record every scholarship application in the Scholarship Tracking Sheet (Requires MS Excel).

  • Record every piece of information in your Scholarship Tracking Sheet.

  • Complete all of the follow up steps exactly. Do not forget any step in this process. 

  • Apply for as many scholarships as possible however 100 different scholarships with restrictions should yield at least one to four positive responses. 

Step 5: Complete every step in the tracking process. 

  • Complete each and every step in the tracking process according to the dates you recorded in your tracking sheet. Remember - "the early bird gets the worm".

  • Do not get discouraged if you get a rejection letter - get even. Persistence Pays!  You never know when an organization will get new or additional funding and have to give it away.

  • Keep your name and personal story in front of the selection committee and you will have a better chance of getting noticed and getting a scholarship in the second round.   

 Last Published 3/30/15