Scholarship Essay Workshop Dr. Hanan Alhaddi Adel Mozib
Things to know • Scholarship essay is essentially a letter about “you” to the scholarship committee • The essay is written in support of a scholarship application • It has to be a “winning” essay – you are trying to win the scholarship • Essay should be unique to the scholarship • There is plenty of resources!
Things to know • Scholarship committee want to know about “you” • They want to see that you are passionate, determined, reliable, and worthy of the scholarship • So make it personal, passionate, but honest
Who grants scholarships? • Schools/universities • Companies • Profit/non-profit organizations • Private grants
Tips for writing a “winning” essay • Know the audience • Start planning in advance • Make it personal • Use the help of an editor
Know the audience • Read the qualifications! • If you qualify: • Learn about the scholarship • Learn about the granting organization (in applicable) • How do you fit in? • Think about why do you qualify?
Start planning in advance • Pay attention to the deadline • Start working ahead of time • Give yourself plenty of time (do NOT wait to the night before) • Put together a timeline (what to do and when)
Use the help of an editor • Find a good writer • Ask if he/she is willing to proofread your essay • Allow yourself time to incorporate the edits into the final essay • Ensure essay is well written and free of misspellings and/or grammar mistakes
Steps for writing … • Read the instructions • Begin with an outline (for what you want to write) • Ensure outline includes all elements required by the essay • Start writing the essay (elaborate on the points from your outline)
Steps for writing … 5. Make sure the language is simple, clear, concise…but effective! 6. When listing your accomplishments, be confident (don’t brag) 7. Ensure essay is free of any grammar and/or spelling mistakes
Steps for writing … 8. After you are done: • Read the questions again to make sure you have addressed everything • Find an editor (someone with strong writing skills) to proofread your paper
Example questions of essays • Talk about a life-changing experience that has influenced you deeply • What are your career goals and how will you achieve them? • What are the challenges of attending college and how do you plan to overcome them?
Example questions of essays • Who has been the most influential person in your life and why? • Why do you want to go to college? • Why should you be selected for this scholarships? (here, they want to know about your accomplishments, examples of leadership, and your personal characteristics)
What NOT to write • Plagiarism (copy and paste from existing resources) • Do not repeat stories of example essays (even in your own words) • Do not talk about things unrelated to the question(s) of the essay • Remember, it must be honest and personal
Words to use and to avoid • Use formal language • Words to use: • Do not, can not, … • As • Things (it is better to be clear and specific) • Avoid slang language • Words to avoid: • Don’t, can’t, … • Like “I feel like….” • Stuff
Activity • In 1 paragraph, answer the following: Why did you select your major and what do you hope to accomplish?
Resources • http://www.collegescholarships.com • http://www.scholarshipsaz.org • http://www.scholarships.com • OR • You can always use google • Type key words as scholarship essays, tips for writing, etc.