By Simon Ashley

Winning a scholarship can help pay for college and unlike loans they do not have to be paid back. This makes them a very attractive form of financial aid. Also you usually don’t have to demonstrate a financial need to win a scholarship which makes them a viable alternative to middle class students. Scholarships are awarded to students for a whole range of reasons. They can be awarded on the bases of merit, special needs or to members of ethnic minorities or religious groups that have helped their community.

However there is usually a lot of competition amongst students to win a scholarship so it is important to stand out from the crowd. Sometimes one of the requirements when applying for a scholarship is the submission of a scholarship essay. This will be read by a panel of judges who will decide which students should be awarded the scholarship. A scholarship essay is a way for you to talk about yourself, mention experience and interests relating to that scholarship and why you deserve the scholarship.

When writing a scholarship essay you should talk about where you come from, your interests, goals and ambitions for the future. You should explain how the scholarship will benefit you and how you will use the money to further your goals.

It is a good idea to mention past work experience and activities relating to the scholarship you are applying for. For example if you are applying for a nursing scholarship, it would make sense to mention any work experience you have caring for seniors in a care home or any other care related work. If you were applying for an ethnic minority scholarship, you could talk about how you have helped that community in the past.

When writing a scholarship essay be sure to use proper spelling and grammar. Don’t just proofread the essay yourself; get someone else like a teacher to read the essay to see how it could be improved.  Make sure you submit correct supplementary materials with the essay and ensure it is submitted well before the deadline. If you meet their requirements and you submit a great essay that stands out from the others you increase your chances of winning that all important scholarship that will help pay for college.

Simon blogs about how to write great scholarship essays  at mytestpapers.com, where he provides free advice and help for students pursuing higher education.