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Grants vs Scholarships: Applying for scholarships from any part of the world is something most students really desire, to take their studies to the next level. However, there are differences between Grants and Scholarships but it’s very vital to take note of certain truths about scholarship application/benefits and truths about yourself. Ask yourself; Am I really eligible for this scholarship? Do I have enough qualifications? The answer to these questions is what this article is all about.
Grants vs Scholarships: The Truth About Scholarships
To be sincere, scholarship is not a bird of roses that can be given to anyone who asks for it. A scholarship application is something you have to give a conscious approach and earn it with your full potentials and demonstration of established qualifications.
In other words, scholarship is based on merit and not on whether you are qualified or you are from a developing country or you have enough qualifications or you belong to a minority group or you are disadvantaged.
If you must earn a fully-funded international scholarship, you have to ensure not to omit any step while applying online but ensure you follow due process as directed on the official website and not have the mindset that you have all the qualifications to be accepted into the scholarship scheme.
Most scholarship sponsors appreciate it when applicants adhere to the rules on the scholarship website, and if you must be selected for the award ensure to do the needful to avoid time wastage.
Am I Qualified for an International Scholarship?
This question is what you should ask yourself before applying for a scholarship. If you are disadvantaged which is already a disqualification for a scholarship, do not panic as the minority scholarships, developing country scholarships and scholarships based on financial need are meant for people in such category.
In addition, you will need to satisfy the scholarship qualification set by the scholarship award providers.
Minimum Scholarship Qualifications
- You must come from an eligible country as required on the official website
- Must have a high school Diploma before applying for a Bachelors Degree program; likewise a Bachelors Degree before applying for your Master’s; and your Master’s before applying for a PhD.
- You must meet the required age limit as directed on the website before applying for the scholarship. Note that some scholarships do not come with age requirements.
- Must meet the academic requirements as directed on the website. For instance, before your application will be considered for the scholarship award you need to be genuinely accepted into the program you are applying for.
- Have a proof of TOEFL or IELTS scores and a good understanding of English language.
Additional Qualifications of Specific Types of Scholarships
- Excellent Scholarships: must meet the GPA requirement as required on the official website. For instance, it ranges from 3.0 or above or on a 4.0 rating scale.
- Entrance Scholarships: you must meet the required high school academic average as expected by the scholarship providers. For instance, it ranges from 90% or above.
- Development Scholarships: You have to return back to your country after your program has come to an end.
- Youth Scholarships: you must be below 25 to be eligible
- Competition Scholarship: must ensure to win the competition. For instance, ‘’essay competition”.
- Leadership Scholarships: must possess leadership potentials attached with good leadership skills/experience.
Are my Qualifications Enough?
It is good to have good qualifications before applying for a scholarship but note that even if you have the minimum qualifications it doesn’t guaranty you will be given the scholarship award.
It’s true, that good qualification boosts your chances but yet, hundreds or thousands of individuals are applying from different countries for the same scholarship.
However, there are criteria/standards set up by the scholarship providers to enable them to screen the best applicants who will receive the scholarship award.
Below are some scholarship requirements for the screening process:
- A motivation letter from the student. For instance, (motivation essay)
- The academic performance or grade of the student. For example, (test score, and a referee letter from the student’s previous education).
- The academic excellence/capacity of students towards their proposed discipline. You must be able to showcase a strong connection between your long-term career goals and choice of subject.
- Student’s competency, accuracy, consistency and quality of the application submitted are also considered.
- Student’s assessment is also based on their impact or potentials to add to the growth or improvement of their home country. This is specifically for Development Scholarships.
Therefore, with these criteria, you can use it as an advantage over other applicants. However, if you don’t have quality academic grades, you can improve your chances of winning the scholarship by using your personal Motivation Letter which is a very strong tool that shows and explains how well you deserve the scholarship.
In addition, you can do further research on the current area of concentration of the scholarship you are interested in, also students are awarded scholarships based on their research or the field of studies they choose. Therefore, ensure your research or chosen field of studies aligns with the core missions or expectations of the scholarship provider.
Also, strive to know the profile of the scholarship recipients in the previous session; this will give you a deep understanding of the kind of students that are needed in that specific scholarship.
A Simple Test
We have provided a simple way you can use to test your chances of winning a scholarship. Be sincere to yourself; have you gotten at least the minimum qualification for a scholarship?
If yes, congratulations you now have a strong chance of winning a scholarship; either you look for a means to meet the required qualifications as expected by the scholarship providers or try to locate other scholarships that contain fewer qualifications.
What is The Benefit/Importance of Scholarship?
According to research, only 0.3% of students in the United States received a full-ride scholarship. Based on the outcome of this research, students may not find it interesting to apply for this financial aid.
However, the benefits of scholarships cannot be overemphasized as the benefits are huge. Yes, applying for a scholarship can be stressful as well as applying for a college, but the most interesting aspect is how you can convince the scholarship providers that you are the right candidate for the scholarship.
Below are the benefits and importance of scholarships.
Top 8 Benefits and Importance of Scholarship Award
- Scholarships make Education Easier to Access
College is Expensive: based on records in the United States, the average student debt in the 2018 session was $29,800. However, if you are a student with potentials from poor family background, getting a quality education may seem impossible.
This brings us to the point, where we answer the question of “Why do you think scholarships are important”? It is not ideal if you are limited in your educational career due to low household income.
Over the years, one of the most outstanding benefits of scholarship to society is that it produces nurses, lawyers, engineers, academics, scientists, and doctors from environments that usually make traditional college financial assistance difficult to get.
In addition, having more capable hands in these professions will better the society and as well help fill the vacant spaces for unemployment.
2. Students that win Scholarships can Access Extensive Support
Acquiring a scholarship is capable of changing your bank account status to a healthier bank balance. Most colleges provide assistance to students under scholarships, to enable them to utilize their money properly.
However, irrespective of the financial aids on the ground doesn’t mean the college will not allow you to spend your money as you wish.
It simply means they will assist you to experience all the benefits that come with scholarships, by providing full guidance to walk you through the program.
Therefore, this support will be of great assistance to anyone who is new to the system. It also implies that the college will stand by you at every point in time to ensure you achieve your dreams and come out with flying colors.
3. Scholarships help You Build Your Network
Building a network while you are schooling is part of the benefits of scholarships; most students don’t give attention to this, because they lack the understanding to create quality connections between their co-students.
For instance, establishing a valuable network within your academic field may turn out to be a huge benefit after graduation. Furthermore, you can have an employment advantage over other students who got the same award within your field of studies.
However, keeping in touch with a senior colleague within your field of studies while in school can be a great advantage or benefit to you.
Networking can offer you research opportunities, memorable academic opportunities, as well as enable you to create a group of quality friends within your industry.
4. There is no Need to Work
Most undergraduate students have jobs to help sustain them, while they go about with their studies according to the USA Government statistics. Acquiring a job at college can assist a student greatly.
But, if you work 15 hours per week as a student, will you have enough time to focus on your studies?
This aspect is where you have to put into consideration and figure out how to stay away from work while at school, you will then have much time to focus more on your studies and work towards having a better result.
One of the most interesting parts of scholarship is that you don’t have to stress yourself to work. In other words, there is no need to work. Therefore, you can dedicate all your time and be fully committed to working on your academic projects. In addition, it helps you improve on your grades which could get you a better job after you have graduated.
5. Scholarships Give Your Resume a Boost
The early stage of seeking a scholarship can be a bit difficult, but the end result is priceless. Due to the importance and some benefits that come with scholarships, thousands of students from different countries deemed it fit to try their luck and see if they can get a scholarship award.
In addition, if you are awarded a scholarship, it gives your Resume additional recognition in society. When submitting an application for a job with a resume that contains a scholarship, it tells the employer that you are a hard-working person at college and even before you got the scholarship award.
This has a significant meaning as it may boost your resume and increase your chances of getting the job.
6. Scholarships Encourage Philanthropy
Truth be told; your manner of approach to life will change from one level to another. This is because if you received help from a scholarship donation, it transforms your mindset and helps you develop a feeling of rendering help to people around you, no matter how little or large the case might be.
In addition, you may feel motivated to sponsor someone on scholarship or assist the college with freewill donations.
7. Scholarships Gives You Access to More Colleges
Indeed you can get access to more colleges when you apply for a scholarship, even if you are from the poor family background. However, one of the sweetest benefits of scholarship is the fact that it gives you the quality education of your dream. Therefore, you will be able to gain unlimited access to international colleges, if you have outstanding academic abilities.
8. Scholarships Gives You Additional Experience
Your scholarship providers may expect you to do voluntary work in your industry. This is not to stress you, but to broaden your understanding within your field of studies. It also gives you a memorable real-world experience that will boost your Resume and perhaps, help you in your academic career.
What is the difference between Grants and Scholarships?
The difference between Grants and Scholarships is not far from each other, as they are both types of gift aids.
The word Gift aid refers to a particular kind of money that a student does not need to work for or repay after acquiring it, unlike student loans and student employment.
However, Gants and Scholarships are mostly seen as synonyms, but there are significant differences between them. Grants are treated as financial need, while Scholarship is treated as an award that is based on merit.
Grants vs Scholarships: What is Grants?
Grant focuses on financial need and for you to be eligible, is by demonstrating a need for financial assistance. Grant is not just something anyone can apply for and get it without presenting a genuine reason attached with a financial need that requires urgent attention.
However, Grant is different from the expected family contribution (EFC) and college cost of attendance (COA). Grants also have different types and unlike the Federal Pell Grant that focuses solely on the (EFC), for States grants such as; (Cal Grant and New York Tap Grants), their eligibilities are related to income cutoff.
Note; grants are issued by the federal and state governments and by universities and colleges.
Top Largest Grant in The World
The highest grant that offers a single grant program is known as the Federal Pell Grant. Bear in mind that only universities and colleges offer almost half of all grants, while grants that are more than a quarter come from the federal Pell Grant, and the remaining are divided between the state grant programs and the military student aid.
For you to be given a grant from any of these reputable organizations, you have to file your Free Application to the Federal Student Aid from October 1st.
Use the link fafsa.ed.gov and submit your application.
What is a Scholarship?
The legit way to win a scholarship award is based on merit. It may also be given on the ground that you are gifted or talented, such as being extraordinary and unique in your doings.
For instance, those who were awarded by the Stuck at Prom scholarship contest were given the prize of $10,000 per person, for having the best dress tux.
Scholarship awards are offered by different organizations such as; employers, religious institutions, foundations, unions, philanthropists, fraternal groups, non-profit organizations, and professional membership organizations.
In addition, hundreds of colleges offer full-tuition academic scholarships using the high school grade point average (GPA) of the student, including the class rank and the admission test score.
Most scholarships have similar features to grants. For instance, to renew the need-based grant, most grants entail that students should maintain a specific minimum GPA.
Applicants should know that Fellowships are scholarship awards given to graduate students alone. The total of $6 billion is what millions of students are given on both private Scholarships and Fellowships each year. According to statistics, about 1 out of 8 college students receives an average college scholarship of $4,000.
Therefore, in applying for any scholarship it is advisable for applicants to use a free scholarship matching tool. For example, the recommended tools are the ones provided by the College Board’s Big Future and Fastweb.com.
We started this article by asking you a few questions about how prepared you are before applying for any scholarship. Please ensure you follow the steps given to you above, to get yourself equipped for any international scholarship award. However, we also highlighted some reasons for the importance or benefits of scholarships.
We also talked about the differences between Grants and Scholarships.
Therefore, with these tips given to you, we believe you now have a better advantage over other applicants on the steps to win or gain a scholarship in any International College or University of your choice.
However, we also expect your feedback, if you have any questions, other key points regarding the importance of scholarships. You can also ask us about when and how to apply for any international scholarship? Kindly reach out to us below in the comments.
Thanks for Your Time