Understanding Scholarships

Understanding Scholarships

Understanding ScholarshipsFinancing Your Education: Coping with Financial Strain Every individual on the face of the Earth has a right to an education, regardless of what certain
individuals think.

In first world countries, we are lucky enough to be able to choose whether we progress in school, and indeed how far we can progress.

The options after high school are endless, with individuals being able to choose whether they go to university or college, or even go to a trade school as part of a work-based training program.

This, of course, is a personal choice because everyone has different strengths and weaknesses, but there are certain factors that may dictate the direction we choose to head in as we embark on our journeys in the big wide world.

Financial limitations and worries may be the main factor for the majority of individuals. Problems with funding may actually prevent someone who is extraordinarily talented from going to university and making the most of their potential.

However, there are solutions to this problem, which in itself has existed for centuries. Individuals have their own way of solving the problem if they do choose to make the most of their potential and head to university. Some individuals may choose to drop in and out of school when they have the cash.

They may attend for three semesters and then spend a year working to build up enough funds to attend for another semester and so on. They may also choose to continue working through college to supplement any help they may get from their parents or to preserve their savings.

However, this can put individuals through severe stress as the financial burden begins to tell on them and it ultimately may affect their health. There is now an easier option though.

Scholarships and grants, collectively known as financial aid, can really boost the financing that you have behind you and can make all the difference between eating and starving.

A scholarship or grant can give you the funding you need to make sure that you get through college in one piece and go on to forge a successful career on the back of obtaining your degree.

There are various packages available to individual students out there and some providers actually offer several scholarships rather than just the one for students to literally fight over. There are a variety of ways for an individual to benefit from a scholarship. They come in a variety of guises, including athletic, federal and school scholarships, so you could feasibly apply for several, and that may give you a better award ratio! The award of even the smallest scholarship would enable you to avoid at least a little stress on your finances. You may still have to work through college but would have that little bit to fall back on if need be.

The main function of a scholarship is to enable an individual to make it through college unscathed. Some come out with huge debts so this is not always possible. However, at least you would have a base to work from, you could figure out a budget to stick to and work from there if you did happen to come into some money along the way. Unlikely as this scenario may ultimately turn out to be, dreaming for a little while can at least make you forget the financial burden that you may well be carrying after a while!

How To Write the Ultimate Grant Proposal

Anybody who has looked into the possibility of getting a grant before will know that there are two distinct types of grant application. The first is a grant application concerning funding for undergraduate degrees. For example, an individual coming from a family 200% below the poverty line will most likely attempt to obtain a grant to make life a little easier whilst attending college.

In this instance, the student will most likely be sent a form to fill in asking for the annual income, personal details, dependent details, a quick summary of what the student intends to study an other similar information. This is pretty straightforward and requires very little effort because the federal government education department will do the calculations for you. You are not asking for a specific amount of money, just a little help.

The other kind of grant proposal and application is at the opposite end of the spectrum to a hardship grant. These grants are usually requested by individual students, or those intending to be students to fund research or invention.

Certain schools and colleges accept certain grant proposals for different things, for example, one college may accept an application for an archaeological dig, whereas another may only look at scientific research and inventions. This is of course down to the discretion of the school and the size of the budget.

If you do happen to be a Masters or PhD student and want to make a difference, then you can apply for a grant, but you would have to make it unique so that it catches the eye of the individual in charge of grants and stands a better chance of approval.

To help your grant proposal stand out from the crowd then always remember to do the following:

* Include a comprehensive research proposal – This must be in plain English with a little jargon for effective, but easy to understand and laid out really well so that the professor will not scan the first page and throw it away. If it is cluttered or messy, or even too long, then he will. 6 pages, no more and no less, double spaced and in 12-point font is the standards layout, but do not use a fancy font because it will look as though you are trying to make up for something.

* Put forward a well-reasoned and logical argument – never back track or try to argue against yourself because you will seem uncertain of what it is that you are trying to discover. Make sure the aims are clearly defined, preferably in bullet points, and demonstrate that you have already started basic research.

* Plan out your time – Break your work down into manageable sections that show you have thought out what it is you are to do and have set reasonable goals. When you get to the analysis and fieldwork, make sure that it is clear how you will reach your conclusion and highlight any unique issues that you expect to come up during your investigation and analysis.

* Include the extra material that gives you credibility as a researcher – This should include a recommendation from a respected member of the faculty who will supervise your throughout. He or she should clearly state how they will become involved, what his or her function is and exactly how much of the workload he or she will be taking on. You should also include a resume for yourself, which should be no more than two pages long.

* Finally, the all-important budget – lay out your sums effectively so they show that some thought has gone into them. You will have covered all angles and probable costs, even those that it may take to get your research back on track if something goes wrong. This is the one page that most grant applicants get to include. It need only be one side of the A4, but enough to show the college just how committed you are!

* Finally, never ever try to jazz the proposal up too much because it will look as if a monkey completed it! Make sure that it is all your own work and is delivered in the traditional, plenty of white paper layout! This will impress them more because it shows professionalism, and thus it will appeal to them!

Regards, Coyalita

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