With the cost of college climbing every year, what could be better than free scholarships? Often times we hear that there are free scholarships available to college students, but where does someone find these? Literally, these free scholarships are all around!
There are a number of different websites where students can register for free and easy scholarships. For example, this website has a simple three step process after which students can be considered for free scholarships. In the first step, students fill out a brief registration form online. Next, the student will be registered with the website. Third, the applicant is match with a variety of programs and schools. The website indicates that it has awarded more than 750,000 to students and awards of up to $10,000 per student are available. In order to be considered for this scholarship, applicants must apply prior to the December 31st deadline. Students who have more questions about this opportunity can find answers to many FAQs at this link.
Another easy way to find free scholarships is to sign up with a scholarship search engine. There are a number of different search engines available. For example, Fastweb! provides students with scholarship matches with minimal effort. Students spend a little time upfront filling out an online profile, related to their educational history and demographic information, and then are matched with targeted scholarships that best meet their needs. One of the advantages of looking for scholarships this way is that it saves the applicant a lot of time as the system filters out awards that the student is not eligible to apply for. Additionally, the websites are all free to the student!
Students can also find many free scholarships by doing a simply google keyword search. For example, the applicant may want to look for “scholarships” plus their major. Every major has a variety of scholarships, some of which are based on financial need while others are based on academic merit. The keyword search also works well for looking for free scholarships at specific colleges or universities, for students with unique interests, for students from different racial or ethnic backgrounds, or for students from specific geographic regions. Try to be creative and test out a few different keyword searches before throwing in the towel!
One of the easiest ways to find free scholarships is to complete the FAFSA application. This will quickly inform the student whether he or she has qualified for any state or federal funding. In addition to filling out the FAFSA, the applicant may want to explore the financial aid website at their future or current college or university. Most institutions have free scholarships that are exclusively awarded to students who attend their university. Some of these awards are only open to incoming students, as they are earmarked to attract the best and brightest students. Other awards are open to students who are continuing in the college, provided that they meet certain GPA, residency, or other unique criteria as described in the scholarship description.