Knowing how to apply for graduate school scholarships can open up new opportunities for your educational future. Graduate school is extremely expensive, so many students who have attained their undergraduate degree forgo further education because they simply cannot afford it. The government gives plenty of money to undergraduates, but little is set aside in the form of grants for graduate students. Fortunately, there are a lot of scholarships available for those entering graduate school. Many students fail to take advantage of these opportunities, however, and end up paying more for grad school courses than is necessary.
Applying for graduate school scholarships is much the same process as any other scholarships type. You need to locate as many potential scholarships from as many sources as possible. Then, you need to submit high-quality applications to as great a number of these as possible. The best way to obtain a scholarship is maximizing your applications. A 10% success rate does not look so good when you have applied to only 10 scholarships, but it can make graduate school much more affordable if you have applied to 100 scholarships. Read on for information on a few places to turn in order to obtain graduate school scholarships.
Some of the most overlooked sources of grad school scholarships are the schools themselves. Your school undoubtedly provides scholarships to incoming students, and many people fail to check the most obvious place. Search for scholarships in your particular field of study. If you had a high GPA in college, search for merit-based academic scholarships. You may not need to even submit an application separate from the one you send in simply to attend the school. Other times, you may need to prepare an entire application package, complete with an essay. Either way, the potential reward is undoubtedly worth the work.
Private organizations also give away a number of grad school scholarships. Many of these are for students going into a particular profession, such as those given by the Emergency Nurses Association. Search around on the internet for scholarships that come from organizations in the field in which you plan to work. The great thing about these scholarships is that the pool of applicants is necessary limited, so your chance of earning the scholarship is much higher than for one that is more general.
Lastly, search for scholarships given to a particular group of people or for a particular trait. There are a number of grad school scholarships available for women, for example. This is particularly true of fields in which a specific type of person does not generally participate. There are a few engineering scholarships for women, for example, as there are few women in this field. If you have a unique skill or characteristic, you might be able to have it rewarded through a grad school scholarship. If you have two or more which can be combined, your odds skyrocket.
The best place to search for all of these scholarships is Scholarships.com. There, you can sort and filter the potential scholarships to match your needs. Focus in on graduate scholarships in a particular career field, for example, and find a comprehensive list of all scholarships with those traits.