Scholarships are probably the most sought out student financial aid available, mostly due to the fact that they don’t have to be repaid, unlike student loans and most others student financing options. Each year there are thousands and thousands of scholarships being given by various sponsors, both government and private.
The two most common ways to look for a scholarship are either through college aid office or using the internet and major free scholarship search sites such as FastWeb. Then again you can always check the newspapers and look in the public library for new scholarships being given each year.
But you have to understand one thing, unlike grants, which are also a form of student financial aid that doesn’t have to be repaid; scholarships are given to students with certain qualifications or extraordinary achievements in a certain activity or in some cases for special talents. But in some cases students with only great scores without any special talent or ability can be given a scholarship for a certain field of study, also minority groups and people with high financial need can also be given a scholarship.
If you use an online search like FastWeb you will be able to look for scholarships that match your profile. The search on that website will compare your background and your achievements with the possible scholarships and get you only those scholarships that match with you. Aside from that you can even apply online for a scholarship using FastWeb.
You are probably asking why you would need to look at bulletin boards and public libraries for scholarships when websites like this have it all. Well, this is a free website that offers their search service based on the scholarships submitted to them and other online media sites, there are those scholarships that aren’t listed in the database like local scholarships or some private industry scholarships. So if you don’t find what you are looking for online it is best to check around libraries and your school or even the local financial aid office.
Most of the student scholarship options are based on achievements, so many students without 4.0 GPA never ask around as they think there are no scholarships for them, which is wrong. There are plenty of student scholarships for average students that have different qualifications, like scholarships for certain ethnicities or even lefthanders.
Aside from finding the right scholarship you need to know a few more things, like the basics of scholarship scams, which are quite common these days. The website we mentioned offers free service, also, the scholarships should be free for you, and there are those that ask for money in order to give you money, which are 99.99% a scam. There are several things you need to know about how much a scholarship can benefit you, the only way to know that is to compare your specific situation and prerequisites with the scholarship you qualify for, that way you will know if some part of the scholarship may be taxable.