1. Start searching for scholarships as soon as possible. Don’t wait until Year 13 to start searching, or you’ll miss some of the deadlines. Remember your year 12 results are the ones taken into account not your year 13 ones.
2. Answer all of the optional questions on a scholarship matching web site for about twice as many matches.
3. Look for local scholarships on bulletin boards near the careers advisor, or the library’s jobs and careers section.
4. Apply to every scholarship for which you are eligible. Pursue less competitive scholarships, such as small awards and essay contests, since they are easier to win and the money adds up and helps you win bigger scholarships.
5. Don’t miss deadlines. Use a calendar and checklist to get organized.
6. Tailor your application to the sponsor’s goals. Read and follow the instructions carefully.
7. Personalize your essay and be passionate. Write about something of interest to you. Make your application stand out from the crowd. Talk about your impact on other people. Give examples and be specific.
8. Google your name and make sure you have a professional online profile. Use a professional email address, such as email@example.com. Clean up the content of your Facebook account, removing inappropriate and immature material.
9. Proofread a printed copy of your essay and the application for spelling and grammar errors.