How to Get Scholarships for Current College Students
By Jill Gardiner
, last updated September 20, 2011
Most people think that once you’ve enrolled in college, your financial aid package is more or less set in stone. This is not the case, however. You or your college student can still get scholarships even if you’re currently enrolled in college. The important thing is not to sit back and accept your college financing lot but instead to actively pursue better ways to pay for your tuition up until the day you graduate. Here are a few tips and tricks for how current college student can get scholarships.
Fill out the FAFSA
The most important thing when it comes to getting the best financial aid package for college is to fill out your Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA, accurately and well before the deadline. This document determines not only what types of aid the federal government will give you, but also the amounts and types of aid you’ll receive from your college or university. Be sure to fill it out every year, just in case something changes, to be certain you’re getting the best aid possible.
Get Good Grades
It should go without saying that once you’re enrolled in college, it’s important that you get good grades. Not only can this affect whether or not you remain eligible for whatever financial aid you’ve already received, getting and maintaining a high or perfect grade point average could open the doors to a new academic scholarship. This is especially the case when it comes to your grades in those classes that are related to your major. Speak to the head of your department to find out what types of scholarships are available, what it takes to qualify for them, and also to let him or her know that you’re interested in finding additional ways to fund your education so that, ideally, he or she will think of you should something come up.
In the same way it’s important to speak to the head of your department in order to make him or her aware of your interest in scholarships, work-study programs, grants, or other educational funding opportunities, it’s a good idea to do the same with other people on campus who may be able to assist you in this way. Regularly check in with your financial aid department to see if there are any new opportunities of which you might avail yourself. The career counseling office may have some opportunities as well. Don’t overlook the administrative assistant in these departments as well as your own. Not only do they know a lot of what’s going on around the office, they may be able to steer you towards those people who handle most of the scholarships and grants for the school. Asking questions and putting your interest out there can only help the situation. It even pays to ask around with other students about how they’re funding their education, any opportunities they’ve taken advantage of, and whether or not it’s something you could try.