Our Guidance Office shares many tools throughout the school year for seniors exploring post-secondary education options. In addition to the links provided here, juniors and seniors are encouraged to stop in and pick up other materials available.
College Planning Presentation
Michigan Colleges and Universities
Scholarships are a type of financial aid awarded to students to be used for financing your post-secondary education. Scholarships defray the cost of college attendance and need not be repaid. There are thousands and thousands of scholarships available to students each year.
Each scholarship opportunity is its own entity with different deadlines, criteria, and supplemental materials to be included for consideration (letters of recommendation, essays, transcript, etc.). Scholarships may be based on financial need, academic or other merit, minority status, religious preference, etc. The quest for scholarships is particularly competitive in this difficult economic time especially if your ACT score, GPA, class rank and academic courseload has not been particularly rigorous.
Although the quest for scholarships is not difficult, it does require a great deal of organization and diligence in order to meet deadlines and maintain files (dates of submission, criterion for each scholarship, date to claim award, follow up contact information, etc.).
As stated in the Senior Survival presentation in September, it is extremely important to have some sort of organizational process such as hanging file folders placed in your survival crate/tote or a set of folders on your flash drive in order to track scholarships including:
Amount of award:
Online (web address):
Snail mail address:
Contact information for scholarship:
Deadline of submission:
How will award recipient be notified and when:
Responsibilities/deadlines if awarded to me:
***Be sure to keep copies of what was sent with each scholarship
I would also recommend maintaining a hanging folder or flash drive file folder of scholarships of interest, and also a file folder of scholarships in progress to monitor steps toward completion (cognoscente of deadlines, items to be gathered, etc.).
An additional hanging file folder or flash drive folder should entail a couple of quality essays to include with scholarship applications if requested. One of the essays should include post-secondary goals and long range career plans. It should address the importance of education, courses taken to provide a strong academic foundation, etc.
Another essay should be written to highlight personal struggles to overcome adversity (if applicable), parent and/or personal sacrifices, unique qualities, hobbies or interests, and a brief paragraph pertaining to character. This essay serves as an accurate and concise snap shot to personalize and accentuate scholarship applications. Once written these essays can be adapted to meet the criteria of the scholarship applying for, and can be utilized when applying to colleges and universities.
I would strongly suggest adding a hanging file folder or flash drive folder including 2 or 3 signed quality letters of recommendation to be gathered from employers, teachers who know your strengths, family friends, a coach, club advisor, counselor, etc. When asking others to write letters of recommendation, please provide them an updated resume including your name, address, phone number, extra-curricular activities, employment, awards, honors, and community service. Be sure to convey to the writer the purpose of their recommendation and its importance.
A final hanging file folder or flash drive file should entail pertinent guidance office contact information to expedite scholarship and college application processing. Please provide 48 hour notice when requesting transcripts, test scores, student schedules, and report cards.
Current Scholarship Opportunities
Students are encouraged to stay updated on current tuition assistance and scholarship opportunities. Current offerings are available in the Guidance Office in addition to this web posting.
Scholarships are everywhere…major corporations, colleges or universities planning to attend, parents’ employers, books in the media center, internet searches, etc. In addition, any academic related scholarships that I’m made aware of will be placed in four locations at the high school. Regularly monitor the announcements, the bulletin board across from the guidance office, the top file cabinet drawer in the guidance office, or the guidance office link on our high school web page. The following links are also recommended for scholarship searches:
www.careercruising.com (education and training hot button, financial aid)
Our community organizations realize the importance of education and offer a wide array of scholarship opportunities to deserving seniors. Toward the spring of the year I will be meeting with seniors to provide applications for our local scholarships. Students meeting the six pillars of character will be encouraged to complete an application and return it to the guidance office by a specified day and time.