There are many scholarships made available to students from all walks of life. As the specific characteristics of such scholarships vary, so do their requirements. Different types of scholarships follow special eligibility requirements that applicants must meet in order to obtain the award. Scholarships can be administered for a number of reasons and come from assorted sources.
Scholarship requirements are generally based on things such as a student’s income or financial need; her grades and academic merits; athletics, extracurricular activities or community service; the major she's planning to pursue; and other affiliations and memberships she has. Given that there are so many different scholarships, it’s important to identify the specific scholarships that you are personally eligible for. This information is usually listed with the scholarship, under headings such as “Applicant Information” or “Eligibility Requirements.”
When it comes to scholarships that are administered by the government (including state and federal financial aid), applicants are required to meet a definite criterion. Scholarships of this sort are typically given to students who demonstrate a need for financial assistance. The requirements for need-based scholarships such as the above are centered on the student’s income and the income of his household. The U.S. Department of Education utilizes a pre-determined formula to determine a student’s qualification for awards like the Pell Grant. The formula consists of: the student’s income and that of her family, the Expected Family Contribution (EFC), the general cost of tuition (of the program/school that the individual seeks to attend) and the amount of credits or classes she needs to enroll in. Other examples of scholarships that have need-based financial aid requirements are: Federal Subsidized Stafford loans, Federal Pell Grants, Perkins loans, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants and the Federal Work Study.
Scholarships that are given by a college or university may have their own requirements that must be met. In many cases, schools award scholarships as an incentive for prospective students. These award requirements can be centered on the individual’s academic merits; including her GPA, standardized test scores and academic history. The student’s prior participation in school activities, athletics, clubs and other groups may play a significant role with regard to certain scholarship eligibility requirements.
Scholarships can be awarded by different businesses, corporations and clubs as well. When it comes to these scholarships, a student is usually required to have an association within a particular area or group--for example, a labor union, the military, a trade or vocational association. The specifics regarding a student’s affiliation with a religious group, political party, his gender, ethnicity and background may also be taken into account as requirements for a number of scholarships. In addition, a number of organizations offer scholarships to promote their cause and present them with the opportunity to encounter individuals who can serve as future assets to their organization. The organizations that have scholarship programs have a tendency to create their own set of eligibility requirements. For example, they may require an applicant to submit an essay on a subject of their choosing.
Different scholarships consist of different requirements and apply special criteria when selecting the recipients. If a student fails to meet or adhere to the specific requirements, the scholarship could be taken away or jeopardized. Case in point: A number of scholarships require the recipient to maintain a certain GPA or enroll in a distinct number of credits to ensure their status as a full-time student. Candidates may also have to pass an exam, write an essay or submit a portfolio or project that illustrates their talent. Additionally, many scholarships require the applicants be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident and have a high school diploma or GED by the time the funds are administered. Since there are so many scholarships that include diverse eligibility requirements, it’s important for students to be aware of whether or not they fit the criteria from the start. It’s also imperative that a student file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) every cycle, so that she's qualified to receive the various aids. Below are links pertaining to scholarships and the requirements.
Serena Spinello holds two master’s degrees and is pursuing her Ph.D. in medical science. She has been a professional writer and researcher for over 10 years and is an active member of the American Medical Writers Association, Academy of Medical Educators, and the National Association of Social Workers.