"Top 10 Mistakes Made On Scholarship Applications"
Winning scholarships is not
easy. With as many as tens or even hundreds of thousands of entries per
competition, you should do everything you can to make your application perfect.
Incorporating the advice of over 40 different scholarship judges, here are
common mistakes that students make that take their applications out of the
running, and how you can guarantee that your scholarship application will NOT
- Forget to include your name and/or address! You would be
surprised how many students do not include their name or address on an
- Submit an incomplete application. Make sure you include
all required references, photos, transcripts, and essays.
- Be rude or
abusive to the judges. Telling the judges that they will burn in Hades if they
don't pick you or that they are idiots because they don't accept applications
from students in your major is a sure-fire way to guarantee that you will NOT be
considered for this award and that the judges will tell all their judge friends
how immature you are.
- Submit a dirty application. Use a plate for your
lunch, not your application. Don't spill (root) beer on your
application! Make copies before you start. Fill in the original in a clean space
after you have everything completed and ready to go.
- Apply when you do not meet their minimum requirements. If
they require a minimum 3.0 GPA and you have a 1.2 GPA, don't waste your time!
- Send it "postage due." Oops! Bring your envelope to the post office
and have them weigh it for correct postage.
- Mail the envelope but forget
to put the application in it. Surprisingly common!
inappropriate supporting documentation, such as including a picture of you at
age 6 months when the application asks for you to include a photo. Or including
a copy of your arrest record as a reference! (This really happened!)
No one can read your application. The use of fancy, hard-to-read script
typefaces on your essay, or handwriting that even a doctor would be ashamed of, spells disaster.
- Spelling errors! Even one spelling error can doom your application!
Remember, if you do not take the time to spell-check your application, the
judges won't take the time to read it!
I know that these seem like
common-sense mistakes, ones that very few students would make, but these are the
most common mistakes made by 75% or more of all applicants! Last summer, I sat
on a judging committee, and 96% of the applications contained three or more of
the above errors. Why so many students make these mistakes is a mystery - but I
hope after reading this, you will not be one of them!
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