Common Scholarship Application Mistakes
1. Not answering the question being asked.
Question: What are your college and career plans?
- I do not plan to go to college... (this may not be the right application for you)
- I do not know what I want to do... (You still have time to choose. However, this is not the appropriate time to address this concern.)
- I plan to travel the world... (That is a great plan. However, it does not answer the question asked.)
I plan to go to ________ college/university to study ____________ which will help me become a ____________. After college I will pursue a career as _____________________.... (except with more detail and in your OWN words)
Be specific, provide relevant details and be succinct
Question: Do you have any unusual circumstances?
This question is asking for serious circumstances that may have impacted you during high school, i.e. parent divorce, parent deployed, parent in jail, multiple school moves, death in family, serious sickness of self or family member, etc.
Question: Identify a person who has had a significant impact on your life and why?
The key word in this question is significant. This question takes thought to realize the impact of a specific individual and provide evidence of that (examples). The significant impact could include helping you determine your role in society (with examples of how the person did that and what you see your role as), your future career path (with examples of how the person did that and what the career path is), etc.
2. Not staying within the parameters of the essay.
Stay within all parameters. Use 12 pt font if it says 12 pt font. Keep in mind the number of words you use in an essay if there is a word limit. Any word document automatically counts the number of words used. It is not vary difficult for a reviewer to check the word count and any other parameters set for the essay. Do not let this be the reason your essay/application is not chosen. Reviewers receive several applications and in some cases the difference between the applications is who met the essay requirements and who did not.
3. Grammar Errors
Have a teacher, counselor or parent review your essay for grammar errors and content. As stated earlier, do not let this be the reason your essay/application is not chosen. Reviewers receive several applications and in some cases the difference between the applications is who wrote an eloquent essay correctly and who did not.