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SEARCHING FOR PRIVATE SCHOLARSHIPS

SEARCHING FOR PRIVATE SCHOLARSHIPSIn addition to applying for federal aid by submitting the FAFSA and the CSS Profile, your student can apply for private scholarships. This money can be awarded based on need or merit. This process is time consuming and sometimes frustrating, but with organization and perseverance your student can be successful.

Where should you look?

1. Access CIS (Career Information System) where after answering some questions you can search a scholarship database.
2. Visit the College/Career Center where many private scholarships are processed and advertised. Scholarship lists are also posted on Naviance Family Connection.
3. Be sure to access the Oregon State Scholarship website: www.getcollegefunds.org, or pick up the booklet in the College/Career Center. These scholarships are available to Oregon high school students. (The due date is March 1st)

Websites are a good place to find out about many more scholarships. These sites will match you with national essay writing contests, labor unions, religious organizations, ethnic programs, areas of major interest, talents etc. www.fastweb.com
www.finaid.com

4. Be sure to check with places of employment, both the studentís and parentsí.

How to get the most money for your effort:

1. The more scholarships you apply for the better your chances of getting at least some money. Develop essay writing topics and a system of searching.
2. Apply for local scholarships. The award maybe small, but your chances are better and every bit helps.
3. Go for the scholarships that require essays Ė most students wonít, therefore there is less competition.
4. There are many off-the-wall scholarships with very specific requirements Ė research them all, you never know.
5. Contact the financial aid offices of the colleges you are considering and apply for scholarships they may be offering.
6. Do as well as you can on college entrance standardized tests.

A few other things to keep in mind:

1. Donít count on full ride athletic/talent/academic scholarship.
2. Donít use old research guides or outdated websites.
3. Donít skip over the specific requirements. It is a waste of your time to apply for a scholarship for which you are not qualified.
4. Donít procrastinate until it is too late to do a good job on the application.
5. Donít keep all the applications in your backpack or under your bed Ė have a filing system and add some organization to the madness.
6. Donít wear jeans with holes, see-through tops, hats, or chew gum at the interview.
7. Donít refuse help from parents or guidance counselors. This is big job and you need all the help you can get.

Donít give up.

Judith Christie
College Planning Consultants