The application process of applying for a scholarship is similar to applying for a job. Much hard homework needed to be done. Once you have done your homework on looking out all the available scholarships that you wish to apply, you should then spend some time going through each and every one of these to ascertain if they match your desired wish. Although, it is an all time consuming and tedious process of work, it is worthwhile to spend plenty of time making sure that all of your applications are correct, that your application is an outstanding one supported by your letter of application, your resume listing your achievements, your letter of support and recommendation by a third party.
We do not have a 100% guarantee tip on how you can get that scholarship you are applying for, but by following the following guidelines it will maximise your chance of getting one. Of course, the fact of the matter is what may work for one may not work for the other. At the end of it, it is entirely up to each individual to package it and how much smart and hard work has been put to it.
Gathering Information by Research
Obviously, as in all tasks, preparation is the key. Start your homework early. Gather as much information as possible. There is so much information which you must gather and with scholarship application there is much liaison which you will need to interact with the sponsor. It may be to follow up on more information needed to complete the application form, query on some of the answers needed, submission of type of essay, or letter of recommendation form organisations which provided reference of your character. Also, sometimes, the scholarship is provided by a private organisation, it pays to gather information on the organisation’s mission statement, philosophy and the direction. It is better to gather more information than less.
As you put in great effort in your search, it will give you more options as to what you can do with each of them. One of the most important factors is to compare and check your eligibility of the scholarship. Yes, it is pointless to submit an application if you are clearly ineligible for it. For example, it is important to check if there is specific gender, race, nationality, indigenousness group, religion or special restriction requirements listed on the application form, although, these sort of requirements may soon be outlawed.
Read Instructions Carefully
When you know you are eligible to apply, the next step is to read the instructions on completing the application form. Follow the guidelines to the utmost strictest direction. Some of the common oversights of applicants are:
• The form is not completely filled up. One or two other additional form may be required to be filled up as well as some questions were left unanswered.
• The documentation where requested were not submitted.
• Response to questions was not answered correctly. Always answer the question correctly and exactly. If the applicant do not give their full contact details, how can the sponsor contact them if these were not provided?
• Illegible handwriting is a big problem. If you are applying for something important, the least you can do is either typed it out or handwrite it clearly and cleanly.
Preparation for Submitting Your Application
Your material which you have gathered must be organized in a professional presentation format. Image impression counts. Preferably if you are applying for a few scholarships which are each of different type and nature, it would be wise to create separate folder for each and filed them by their date of application or by alphabet order for quick reference purpose. Keep notes of what needed to be done or follow up appointments. In your submission, tick off from the check list each item form the list. The list may include:
• Academic results from schools or university/college.
• Letter of recommendation.
• Letter of support, financial from parents and banks.
• Completed form, including application, resume, etc.
Once you have your entire document ready, package it in such a way, that it is systematic and easy to follow when the sponsors received them. Your package should be professionally bound and filed accordingly.
The next step is to do a personal checklist:
• Proof read your application again for grammar and spelling errors.
• Check for any questions which you have left unanswered.
• Make photocopy of all your application which you can make notes for follow up appointment.
• Submit application early in case you miss the deadline.
• Consider certified mail or courier for return receipts.
• Have proper contact details listing where and who and when you can be exactly contacted. Sometimes successful applicant cannot be contacted as they have moved or changed contact details without informing the sponsor of the change in details.
Personalised your Applications
As with a job application, when you have done your homework, the details collected should be utilised to full effect. If you know the name of the manager in charge and the specific requirements of each scholarship, it pays to personalise your application as in doing so, it will make your application stand out. Address each specific requirements individually, specifying the name of the manager, your strength in the area in which the sponsor are looking for, that you have the requirements to undertake the challenge of a scholarship award and so on.
Good luck! All the best!
memo: To be honest, I myself do not being granted any scholarship by my government. Quiet disappointing because I have my very best during the interview last time. My academics performance? It is very excellent. I guess the government has made a wrong decision for picking somebody else intead of me. lol~