APPLICATION DEADLINE IS JUNE 30TH!
Acing the essay questions
In early July a committee of 6-8 people gathers together to select scholarship recipients. Every application is carefully considered for a scholarship and some of the factors that we consider when choosing recipients are financial need and GPA, but the biggest factor is the personal statement section. We ask 3 questions that require you to write longer answers (up to 750 words each).
- Why did you chose your program and what factors will lead to your success? (What knowledge or life experience do you have that will help you be successful? What do you know about this career? What are your career goals?)
- What do you want the committee to know about you that will set you apart from other applicants? (This is your chance to tell us your life's story. What sets you apart from other applicants? Why should we choose you?)
- Please list your activities and accomplishments. Include volunteer work, leadership roles, clubs, committees, teams, etc. (Do you feed your neighbor's cat? Help out your PTA? Usher at church? If you don't have time for any of that now, do you plan to do something in the future or have you in the past?)
When you write your winning essay, we really just want you to tell us why you need and/or deserve a scholarship. We aren't too concerned with perfect spelling and excellent grammar, and we give awards to students of all ages, from every program, with various financial needs. However, we have to score everyone on something, so be sure to address the questions that are asked.
How your application will be scored
Your financial need as documented by your Expected Family Contribution (EFC) and your GPA are used along with your essay scores to rate your overall application package.
Every essay is read and scored by two or more members of the scholarship selection committee. The scores are added together and averaged for a total possible of 4 points per essay. readers use the following rubric to come up with this score:
Overall Essay 40%
0 - No essay
1 - Very little effort (a few sentences; very little substance)
2 - Some effort (long or limited paragraphs; describes some relevant essay pieces)
3 - Good effort (multiple paragraphs; displays knowledge of program area and career)
4 - Outstanding (makes case for support by addressing program, career and community work)
Program Alignment 40%
0 - No mention of program alignment or career goals
1 - Does not match (it is clear they are not in the right program or know nothing about it)
2 - Limited alignment (They like their program but have little experience or exposure to the career)
3 - Good Program Alignment (makes case for appropriate program, discusses career goals)
4 - Excellent program alignment (student makes an excellent case for program success and career path)
Community/Volunteer Service 20%
0 - No mention of service
1 - No service (but mentions it in the essay)
2 - Limited service (helps family/friends, mentions past or future involvement)
3 - Some current involvement with community organization(s) (church, nonprofit, school, ASBTC, etc.)
4 - Active or significant past involvement in community organization(s)
Check out the tutoring center for more help writing your personal statement!