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Why Are Scholarships Important?

Why Are Scholarships Important?

Have you ever thought about earning your college degree, only to start worrying about how you’re going to afford it? According to a recent report by Georgetown University, college costs have increased by an incredible 169% since 1980. Today, prospective students face an enormous burden in arranging funds for their education.

Fortunately, there is assistance available to those who qualify. Scholarships are available for individuals who excel in sports or academics, and also for those who are simply in need. These programs allow individuals the opportunity to pursue an educational career they would not otherwise be able to access.

Below, we’ll introduce you to the most popular scholarship programs and discuss how deserving students can secure assistance covering college costs.

Why Are Scholarships Important?

scholarships help cover educational expenses

Students who can’t afford to pay for college out of pocket have three options: government-sponsored financial aid, student loans, and scholarship opportunities.

Unlike loans, scholarships do not need to be paid back. This money goes towards the costs of tuition, without any expectations of repayment. While funds are rarely delivered to the student directly, they provide tremendous relief to those struggling to keep up with the high price of tuition.

Scholarships are an important way to incorporate individuals who come from low-income households into the educational space. These programs also allow students to interact with individuals from different backgrounds, who they may not otherwise meet.

These programs also provide a major incentive to pursue higher education. According to the National Association of Student Financial Aid, almost 95% of colleges are off-limits to low-income students due to the cost. The more scholarship programs that become available, the more likely these individuals are to actually attend college.

What Types of Scholarships are Available?

Attending college isn’t cheap. Scholarship programs are competitive, and few individuals are selected to receive funds. Fortunately, the number of scholarships available is on the rise. Today, different types exist to better support students from low-income backgrounds.

Merit-Based Scholarship

Merit-based scholarships award students who stand out due to academic, artistic, or athletic achievements. They indicate that the scholarship provider recognized a specific drive or talent unique to the student. Individuals who receive this kind of assistance are often expected to keep up with this kind of performance throughout their college careers.

Some college scholarships come in the form of a one-time award. Others can be renewed each year of your college education, depending on eligibility.

Need-Based Scholarships

Need-based scholarships are awarded based on financial status. Different programs may set up different eligibility requirements to determine whether or not the student is in exceptional financial need. While these programs are largely based on family income, other factors like behavior and academic performance can also influence your odds of receiving scholarship assistance.

Need-based scholarships can be provided by the university directly, though they may also be funded by private organizations and sponsors.

All students who apply for a need-based scholarship must fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Additional application requirements may include a college essay or teacher endorsement.

Prospective college students in need can apply for the following scholarships:

  • Pell Grant
  • SEOG Grant
  • Cal Grant
  • Jack Kent Cooke Foundation scholarship

Why Would I Benefit From a Scholarship?

Additional financial support allows students to do a lot more than simply attend college. Check out the list below to learn more about some of the perks scholarship recipients enjoy.

Give You More Time to Spend Studying

Having a part-time job can be a challenge for many college students. Not only can work cause unnecessary stress, but it takes time away from your studies. Scholarships give students the peace of mind they need to stay on campus and in class.

You May Have Access to Additional Support Services

Scholarships aren’t only about money, though that is a big part of the package. Certain programs also introduce additional perks like mentorship opportunities or tutoring assistance when you need it. They may also introduce you to additional financial aid programs that you can rely on as you move forward in your college career.

It Can Expose You To a Wide Network

Individuals attending the same university who have been awarded the same scholarship may find themselves grouped together during social events on campus. You can use these connections for educational support or professional networking. You never know what kinds of opportunities a former classmate can introduce you to!

It Can Provide Access to a Wider Net of Colleges

The truth is that tuition is pricey, particularly when it comes to popular and private institutions. Scholarships provide students with the financial assistance needed to attend schools that would otherwise be crossed off their list.

It Looks Good on a Resume

College graduates are certainly familiar with the process of putting together a resume. While not all employers will review every detail, scholarships tend to stand out. These programs are highly competitive, for one. Having been chosen means that you put in more work than others up for the same opportunity.

How Do I Apply for a Scholarship?

scholarships help cover educational expenses (1)

High school students should start preparing for the scholarship application process early. If all goes well, they’ll receive the funds they need to attend their top schools. Some students even manage to win multiple scholarships after putting in the work.

  1. Fill Out the Application: First, you need to start with the application process. This tells the scholarship provider that you are interested in what they have to offer. If all goes well, you may be asked to submit additional information or sit for an interview.
  2. Complete the FAFSA: All need-based scholarships require you to submit a FAFSA. This process is necessary to determine what type of federal aid you qualify for. Be sure to pay attention to the deadline and get your information in on time.
  3. Take a Scholarship Exam: Some scholarships require specific exams or scores in order to qualify.
  4. Submit an Essay: Essays are often included in the application process. In some cases, you can select the subject. To save time, you can work off of one template and tailor each version toward the different scholarships you are applying for.
  5. Get a Letter of Recommendation: A letter of recommendation can have a huge influence on the scholarship process. It’s a great opportunity to give the providers more information on your and your strengths.
  6. Submit Test Scores and Transcripts: You’ll also need to submit all documents. That includes high school transcripts, test scores, medical records, and so on.

Conclusion

Whether you’re interested in pursuing a bachelor’s degree or are gearing up for graduate school, it never hurts to apply for a scholarship. These funds provide tons of relief to students who come from low-income backgrounds. They also lessen the burden many students face after earning their degree.

As of 2022, the amount of money owed in student loan debt reached 1.75 trillion in the United States. Even if your scholarship doesn’t cover the entire cost of tuition, it can help chip away at what you’ll owe at the end of your four years.

If you’re interested in pursuing a certificate or degree program in the San Diego area, plan your visit to ICOHS College today.

We offer scholarships and title IV funding to help students cover the cost of tuition. Call us to speak to one of our representatives (858) 581-9460 or contact us via email for more information on financial assistance.

Students attending ICOHS College will have full access to our career counseling program. They’ll also receive lifetime job placement assistance after graduation.

ICOHS College is accredited by the ACCET (Accrediting Council for Continuing Education, accet.org). To learn more about ICOHS College accreditations and licenses, visit our accreditation page.

FAQ

What Resources Provide Scholarship Help for Students?

Institutions, organizations, the government, and individuals all provide assistance. You just need to complete the requirements to apply.

How Do Scholarship Programs Benefit the Community?

Scholarship programs benefit the great community by providing their friends and neighbors the opportunity to pursue a college education. Graduates may even choose to return home and apply their skills for community advancement projects. Seeing good things happen to deserving students also helps lift morale.

How Much Do Scholarships Typically Provide?

The amount of money a scholarship provides varies greatly. Some may offer as little as $100 while others will provide a full ride.

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