Follow these simple suggestions in preparing your application and your packet for the best outcome.
- Read ALL information and instructions carefully. You will put a lot of time and effort into your application, and you don’t want it to be ineligible because you overlooked something.
- Make copies of the application so that you have some rough drafts from which to work.
- Apply early. Follow all deadlines given, but do not wait until the last minute to submit your application.
- Always be honest in your representation of yourself and your achievements.
- Only apply if you meet the scholarship's minimum criteria. Do not waste your time or the donor's time if you are not eligible.
- If you cannot complete your application online, then it is best to type it using a standard font like Times New Roman or Arial. Make your application look as neat as possible. If your evaluators cannot read your application easily, then it will most likely be eliminated.
- Put your name on every page of your application, essays and any other materials that you submit. You should also number the pages, where appropriate. This way, if any of your papers get misplaced or out of order, the evaluators will be able to put them back in order and still have a complete application for you.
- Answer every question. By leaving a space blank, it will appear that you overlooked it or that you chose not to answer it.
- Check for typos! This alone could disqualify an application. Do not rely on spell check to do it all. Spell check can catch a lot of things, but it does not save you from all errors. It can be difficult to objectively evaluate your own work. Your mind often reads what you intended to write, not what you actually wrote. Enlist the help of friends or instructors to proofread your entire application before you submit it.
Putting It All Together
- Place all of your documents in an envelope in the order that they were requested. This makes your application easier to review. This also helps you to double check that you have included all of the necessary papers.
- Make sure that the envelope you use allows you to submit a flatapplication without folding. A folded application looks sloppy and can be cumbersome for reviewers to handle.
- You may choose to send your application Return Receipt Requested or use a delivery service to make sure the application is received by the donor.
- Do not staple documents. Use paperclips or binder clips instead. The reviewers will likely need to make copies of your application, and this will make it easier for them.
- Do not use special folders or covers.
- Follow all of the directions in the letter. Donors have taken the time to spell out for you exactly what they want to receive, so it is in your best interest not to deviate from those instructions.
- Make a copy of your completed application for your file.
- Remember: Your application should be professional and interest the reader in who you are and what you have to say. The application that you submit represents you, so make the best possible impression!