Writing a winning scholarship essay can be time consuming and overwhelming. As an effort to make the process easier for you, we’ve drafted some useful writing tips that will help you create a stand-out essay.
Thoroughly read and outline the instructions:
While this might seem like an obvious tip, it’s very important to read the instructions and stick to the guidelines. The application process will be different for every provider and will have a unique prompt or set of instructions. The organizations who offer private scholarships will provide an essay topic that will almost always be specific to their interests or nature of their work. In addition to the “traditional” essay format, a lot of private scholarship providers are taking it a step further and asking students to upload videos or images as a part of their application. Overlooking the technicalities of the instructions is a common mistake that can be easily avoided by outlining, step-by-step, what the process entails.
Make it unique:
On another page, we discussed how a personal injury and accident law firm is offering a scholarship to students. Their essay asks students to discuss how lawmakers and individuals can make the roads a safer place for drivers and pedestrians to reduce accidents and injuries. This makes sense, because of their line of work but it will be different if it were a doctor’s office, insurance company, or sports team. The winning applicant will write an essay that caters specifically to the company or organization that is providing the scholarship. There are several things you can do to make a personalized, unique essay:
- Research the provider by visiting their website
- Include facts or statistics, if possible, from gathered research
- Address the provider by his or her first name
- Express an interest in their line of work
Make it concise and personal
Most likely, you’ll have less than 1,000 words to express why you’re the best candidate for the scholarship- this can be a little overwhelming! It is important to be as concise and to-the-point as possible. Rather than rambling on and using up your 1,000 words or least, it’s best to collect 1 or 2 major points and branch off of them. If there’s a solid, main, and logical theme, your essay will flow a lot better and will be easier to comprehend for the reader.
Make it personal. While it’s great to include facts and insights, it also doesn’t hurt to tie in a story or an experience you’ve had. It allows the reader to gain an idea of who you are as a person and will make you more likely
Proofread, proofread, proofread!
You might have a phenomenal topic with brilliant ideas and insight, but if you haven’t proofread it, you can easily be disqualified for grammatical errors, run-on sentences, or misspelled words. Have a fresh set of eyes read it before you submit it; your mom or dad, friend, or sibling. If possible, it’s best to have a professional take a look at it. You can stop by your school’s writing center or ask one of your teachers for a critique of it.