What You Need To Know About Scholarships
Scholarships are sometimes referred to as "free" money because they do not need to be paid back. Like the definition states, they are based on "financial need, or academic or other achievement."
But don't let the word "free" fool you - earning a scholarship takes work: it could be the culmination of years of high grades in school, the hours of service you have provided to your community, or as simple as writing an essay about why you deserve the money.
Scholarships come in all shapes and sizes and its up to you to seek out the ones you may qualify for AND to apply.
Scholarships come from many places:
Financial Aid and Scholarships for Latino and Hispanic Students
Click here for more information.
Scholarships Opportunities for Undocumented Students:
Educators for Fair Consideration
University of Utah Dream Center
Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund
Finding Scholarships You Qualify For
You may have heard that there are scholarships out there "with your name on them." Trouble is, you have to go out and find them. Here's how:
The Best Scholarship Search: Fast, Fruitful and Free
One easy and productive way to find this money is to use FREE online scholarship search tools (see the list on the right). But before you get started, take a few minutes to think about what makes you unique. For example, did you know there are scholarships for left-handed people? And don't forget your parents. Their residency, heritage, employment, memberships, military experience, etc. can all lead to scholarship opportunities.
Below are some search factors that can yield numerous scholarships. If you get too many results, try narrowing down your search using one or more additional factors. The more qualifications you meet, the more likely you are to win the award.
Beware of Scams
Check out our L-O-N-G list of scholarships under the "Scholarships By Month" tab.
We have a dedicated staff member in the Student Center who can help any student with the scholarship process. Stop by, email or call (206-963-1996) Stephanie Rowan-Bailey. She is available Monday-Friday 9:30am to 12:45pm.
Other Ways to Find Scholarships
Clubs, foundations, financial institutions and associations with which you have some connection or interest may offer scholarships. You can also try government agencies involved in education, such as state education offices.
Local scholarships are often the easiest to get because there is less competition and the scholarship judges may already be familiar with you or your family. Your high school counselor probably has local scholarship information. Local chambers of commerce can also help you connect with community sources that may offer scholarships.
Here are some other local sources you can try:
You can begin your search—and your applications—anytime. Some scholarships are available to high school juniors, or even sophomores and freshmen. It makes sense to start early, since much of your extra time in your senior year will be taken up with college applications.
Pay close attention to the deadlines and requirements for each scholarship. Some ask you not to apply until a certain date. Some are open year-round. Some require a separate application and supporting documents, such as your high school transcript.
Sometimes it's hard to get started, especially if you think the application requires a lot of heavy-duty research. To get motivated, look upon it as a treasure hunt, and you won't be far from the truth.
Top Scholarship Search Engines