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Here’s an old one: college is getting expensive!
Well, it really is common knowledge that higher education costs are much higher today than they were decades ago.
A byproduct of this unfavorable trend is the even more popular and more unfavorable student loan situation.
Long story short, the nation knows all about the $1.3 trillion dollars in student loan debt as well as the extremely inconvenient average cost of attendance for higher education. It is pretty clear to many prospective students that they are going to be forced to take out student loans. But, what if they didn’t have to?
You might wonder how this can be done. Well, the answer to that question is simple: scholarships.
Everyone knows about scholarships. They are a great alternative to student loans because they are essentially the same thing minus the repayment part (the part everyone struggles with). Plenty of people write off scholarships as solutions for the academically gifted or someone who gains recognition by accomplishing something ridiculous. In other words, most people don’t think they have a chance at a scholarship, or they think they shouldn’t waste your time.
This is the wrong idea to have. Especially after you hear about weird scholarships.
Weird scholarships are just like normal scholarships, but they have specific eligibility criteria that sets them apart from a standard scholarship, such as a merit-based opportunity.
In short, these scholarships are much easier to qualify for compared to the big name scholarships.
If you are looking to secure a weird scholarship for yourself, you will be happy to see that we have some tips on just how to do that.
1. Spend Time Researching
You want to make sure that you spend some time looking for the right weird scholarship.
You do not want to spend a bunch of time filling out paperwork for no scholarship in the end. When you are spending time looking for scholarships, that time is only worth what you get back in scholarship money.
If you don’t want to completely waste your time, then you need to make sure that you only pick scholarships with the best chances of success. This requires research. Knowing what a scholarship requires is the first step to deciding if you should start an application.
For example, if a scholarship wants you to build and launch a rocket, but you absolutely hate this type of stuff, then you should look for a different scholarship that meets your needs. The whole point of this is to get the most value out of your time which is never a bad thing. There are plenty of scholarship resources on the internet that have already done half the work for you, so make sure you use these resources to the fullest extent.
2. Look Towards Your Inner Self
There are various different weird requirements to all of these weird scholarships.
You need to find out what is different or unique about yourself before searching for a scholarship online.
This is going to help you from wasting your time researching because you need to focus on relevant opportunities.
Another example works great here. Let’s say you have red hair. Boom. Start looking for red head scholarships! That is the perfect thing to research, and you wouldn’t be wasting any time in doing so. On the contrary, let’s say you have brown hair. Looking for a hair specific scholarship is going to be a big mistake because everyone has brown hair, so you need to find something new (maybe research being left handed, the sky is the limit).
3. Organize it All
If you figured out what makes you stand out, then the next step is to get everything is order.
Think of your unique characteristics as niches you fit into. After some research, you should have a list of scholarships that fit into different niches. It is important to keep these separated and organized. This will keep you from mixing scholarships from different niches.
This is important since many similar scholarships require the same information.
Knowing this, you can save time by recycling applications from previous submissions, so you do not want to end up using the wrong niche-specific information for a scholarship. At the end of the day, your application process is more streamlined, and you can save a ton of time through simple organization. There are plenty of services that specialize in storing files such as Dropbox.
4. Do Not Stop Applying
Many people who experience success end up settling for just one scholarship. This is a big mistake.
There is no cap limit to how many scholarships you can win.
This means there is unlimited free money on the market for you to secure for your education.
It is totally plausible that you can pay for your entire tuition with scholarships, and this becomes more believable when you factor in the weird scholarships strategy.
About the Author:
Pyper Barnes is a recent graduate from the University of Alabama. Pyper is the owner of WeirdScholarships. WeirdScholarships.net is a website dedicated to helping students find unique and interesting scholarship opportunities.