How to Find Scholarships for High School Seniors

By Rebekah Richards , last updated October 23, 2011

Scholarships can significantly reduce the costs of going to college, but finding scholarships isn't always easy for high school seniors. If you're planning to start college next year, use Internet searches, local contacts, and other resources to find scholarships that are a good match for your qualities and abilities.

Internet Searches

The U.S. Department of Education has a scholarship search that allows you to search for scholarships based on keywords or personal information that you enter. For example, you could search for music scholarships or football scholarships. Remember, there are many types of scholarships, not just scholarships that reward academic or athletic achievement. You can also search for scholarships on search engines such as Google, but be wary of scholarship scams. Don't ever give out your credit card information or pay a fee to a scholarship search service; finding scholarships should be free. In addition, don't ever pay for a scholarship competition, especially if they contact you before you contact them.

Local Contacts

Local churches, schools, and community organizations often have scholarships, so ask around. Ask your parents to ask the human resource department at work whether their employer offers scholarships. Talk to your high school guidance counselor about scholarship opportunities; he or she should know of several opportunities and may be able to recommend scholarships that are a good fit for you. Your school may post scholarship opportunities in the career center or in another location. You can also share scholarship opportunities with your friends or ask older siblings or classmates which scholarships they applied for while in high school.

More Resources

You can also find scholarships in scholarship books, which are available at public libraries. In addition, many colleges and universities offer scholarships and grants, so check the college's web site or call the admissions office of your potential schools to find out more. You may even be automatically entered for scholarships just by applying to a school.

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