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How to Write a Scholarship Essay – Guidance from Start to End

Student's Assignment Help June 14, 2019 145 Views

If you are entirely done with selecting the place where you’d want to do your further studies, you can move towards learning the methods to write a scholarship essay. Applying for a top college can be a burden, especially for those who face financial issues.

They need to apply for some scholarship programs that can help them to pay their tuition fees. Various students with similar backgrounds use for the same applications, so you must try to write a unique and impressive essay to assure the readers that you are a deserving candidate.

It can be tough to write a compelling scholarship essay for the students. There is not a single way available that you can adopt to write it. Instead, you have to follow various guidelines and elements to do so. The main focus while writing the essay should directly speak about the organization’s goals and the main objective of the respective prize as well. The authors should have a unique and clear insight into their past, present, and future.

You need to personalize your essay by showing the enthusiasm towards your study goals to the organization. Your essay should have the capability to amaze the readers or judges by writing it with passion. Content of the article should be convincing enough that can show the judges that you really are a deserving applicant.

What a Scholarship Essay really is? Definition

The scholarship is a way used by various organizations to support the students financially based on their academic achievements. Though every student came in contact with multiple types of educational essays throughout their academic life, scholarship essays are somewhat different. In applications, you just have to list down the events you are a part of, achievements, awards, etc.

You don’t get the chance to elaborate on any of your experience. Through scholarship essays, you can do so to tell the judges about the issues you faced and strategies you applied to overcome those obstacles. Readers are not at all interested in your sob stories, but they can feel your enthusiasm from the solutions you used in your problems.

The committees that have criteria to give scholarship to every eligible student will not demand the scholarship essay. The application is more than enough for them. The scholarship essay is a way for organizations through which they scrutinize the submitted applications and choose the best applicants among all.

Though you list down your involvements and achievements in the form as well, the essay is a way to share your experiences in various significant events with readers. Students should outline the essential aspects that they want to cover before started writing the essay, and it should be adequately in line with the application.

How to Start a Scholarship Essay Introduction?

Various private schools and Universities provide a more significant number of opportunities for their students. They generally ask their applicants to write a scholarly essay or just fill the application. It is so to provide some financial support to the needy ones so that the capable students could not be left behind from the quality education.

This sort of essay is a periodic component of the application procedure, and hence, the students must learn how to start writing the introduction of your scholarship essay. The statement “The first impression is the last one” apply in such articles as well. It is the introduction section only where you can get the attention of readers from starting quickly by writing compelling content.

Before you start writing, you should know the main objective of your application paper. Then prepare a striking intro for your essay. You have to demonstrate your personality in it as it is a way to inform the scholarship committee about you as an individual.

However, the subject of the paper will itself force the students to open up, but still, you should try to show the judges that you fit the criteria for the application. It will also indicate if you really need any assistance or not. So don’t ever make your efforts towards writing a good story, instead, depict the real incidents that will show your enthusiasm towards your study goals.

Read More: How to write an introduction of an essay

1. Scholarship Essay Prompt: The scholarship organizations give a question or “prompt” that is to be addressed by the essay. Sift through the prompt and try to find out the underlying issue that they actually want to ask. After reading the question, ask yourself if they really want you to reply for the same, or there is something hidden behind it.

Like they might ask “Why do you want to study Computer Science?” and its underlying question would be “Why do you want to study Computer science and how much you know about this field to be a deserving candidate for the scholarship?

You have to cover more aspects within a limited number of words, 500 approximately. So try to be concise, and avoid using general statements in your article.

Some of the common prompts that you need to answer in your paper are:

  • Describe the leadership features and tell them whether you have got any of those.
  • Tell the judges enough about your ambitions and show your obsession towards it.
  • Explain your goals about your profession.
  • Do you have any characteristics that can make you a leader and a distinctive human being?
  • Can you offer anything unique to society?
  • Describe the strategies you use to overcome the issues that act as an obstacle in your career goals.

Regardless of the topic, try to show your goals, background, and interests in the prompts of your scholarly essays. Also, highlighting your past experiences that suits best with the funding organization’s objectives and missions is the most crucial aspect of any academic essay.

2. Planning is the Key: A most common mistake committed by the students is to be in a hurry for almost every work. According to the students, the process of planning is a total waste of time. But they should know, planning act as a guide map in completing things effectively. It is an essential key to success. It is not at all about having any creative skills. It can also be done by listing down the aspects to write in order.

Start your planning by creating the instructions list. Read the given guidelines carefully and start pursuing it from the beginning.

Without proper planning, your content might shift from the main criteria of your paper that can, later on, be rejected by the scholarly committee. Prepare an outline of your scholarship essay also to prevent yourself from making any mistake. This outline will serve as a roadmap for the students while writing the content in their composition. Make a list of every possible key point that students want to describe in their paper.

Proper planning can also reduce your efforts of thinking and deciding while writing as you just have to follow the pre-decided instructions. Also, don’t forget to make a do’s and avoid list.

3.  Scholarship Essay Outline: Drawing outlines is a must task that you should do for every type of writing. The scholarly essay is no left behind from this. The framework would guide you throughout your book. So don’t be too lazy and make a proper outline for your paper. Students sometimes face some confusions and difficulties while creating an effective outline. It is no big deal. Unless specified, you can also follow the default structure that is defined here.

Starting sentence:

How to start any sentence is a common issue faced by students. Herewith following points, you can begin your statements without any trouble.

  • Write down your full name.
  • Tell the subject of your program that you are going to apply.


Here we don’t mean to elaborate your problems, your financial scarcity, or anything else that would turn into a sob story later on. Instead, define this point with the following points:

  • Brief the significant challenges that you have ever faced in your life.
  • The strategies you have followed to face these challenges to overcome from them.


  • Tell the ambitions for your education.
  • Define your reasons and achievements to show that you deserve to be a student of your dream college.
  • Elaborate the matter of interests for you to choose the particular field of science.
  • Explain the reasons why you need to participate in a particular program to earn your significant objectives.
  • If you do have any long-term objectives, then brief them as well.
  • Why are you in need of the degree?
  • How does a scholarship play a significant role in helping you to attain your major objectives?
  • Outline the notes for your conclusion.

The above-defined structure is the default and perfects to draw a clean outline. If there are any specific guidelines defined by the organization, and then strictly follow them.

Read More: How to write an essay outline for students

How to Deal with Scholarship Essay topics

In your scholarly essay, you just don’t have to explain why you are an eligible candidate to win the award. Your main goal should be on making the judges realize it themselves by writing some interesting facts of your life. You have to be concise enough to cover every aspect within a limited number of words. But don’t try to use sophisticated vocabulary and incomplete sentences to maintain its conciseness.

Students often use more general statements in their essays like “Education is an important part of our life.” Such statements just cover the space of your article and do nothing in impressing the judges. To be more specific, and use those statements only, that could define your personality, background, goals, achievements, and much more. You can also try the method of sharing a “slice of your life.” Try to avoid telling every detail of your life. Be specific with your story; don’t try to be narrative.

This type of essay seems like a resume, but it isn’t. You can’t keep sharing about your achievements and awards as it could reduce the quality of your essay. Share your experiences with the readers that you have got from the events mentioned in the application. Don’t even cover the space by rewriting the activities similar to form. Instead, elaborate some of your major activities from which you got to learn more. Try not to distract your focus from the principal objective, and do not go beyond the list of application.

Share your life’s experiences that could help you to get your unique application shortlisted. Don’t bore the judges like others by mentioning your every achievement and awards. Share your significant successes only.

The scholarship application is a place to share your every progress. But an essay is a source to define your considerable achievements that could help them in having a winning scholarly essay. Share your life’s experiences and original story in brief, or just a piece of your life.

How to Write a Scholarship Essay Draft

Now you need to learn the ways to draft your scholarly essay successfully. You should not use any hard method for this and try to make it as simple as possible. You can quickly notice this step whether you understand every instruction or not. If something is left behind from mentioning in your paper is also determined through the essay draft only.

There could be nested draft as well in which you can mention those things that you forgot to define in the primary draft. To start writing the draft could be hard for you as a student, but the main doors can be opened with a free-written essay draft.

You don’t have to write the entire document in a single session. You can take multiple goes by writing the draft freely if you don’t have any strict deadline and limited timeframe. You even don’t need to follow the particular ways to write an essay for such scholarly essays. You can also consider writing a conclusion before the introduction and body section if you clearly know what to include in your article.

How to Create Scholarship Essay Conclusion

To leave a permanent impression of your essay on the mind of readers, you have to write a powerful conclusion. The conclusion is the final outcome of your writing so it must not include any new content in it. It is just a summarized view of your scholarly essay.

To make it more powerful and attractive, you can write your conclusion by following some main ways:

  • You can prefer the Cycle model. Develop a central statement for your essay in the beginning and restate that thesis statement in your conclusion. Your readers may feel involved by using this method. You should not even distract your focus from the central report. The entire content should also revolve around it. Readers will be much aware of your objective of applying for the scholarship by using this model for writing the conclusion.
  • Try to get an insight into your future. You can also start writing the conclusion by sharing your experiences and how it can help you in the future. You don’t have to give a deep thought about whether your skills are struggling enough or positive or negative. Everyone learns from mistakes, and experiences come by trying. By sharing every significant expertise, you can easily win the objective of writing your paper. Make sure not to share those experiences that have the least effect on your future as it can reduce the effectiveness of your essay.

Revision of the complete scholarship essay

Not only is the most exceptional document entirely written, but they are also revised correctly. The key to a successful paper is a revision, and it should be given equal importance as you gave to your writing. Match the final draft with the given instructions. Identify and correct all the errors you have made.

One possible way to revise your article is to ask your relatives to read it for you. It is hard to find the errors from your own writing, but others can easily do it. You can refine your article as many times as you want, till your complete satisfaction. Don’t try to edit your material with other’s statements as a winning essay is one with much originality and try not to fake your emotions in it.

You can also use the other way of revising your money giving essay. Read your entire paper loudly multiple times and make appropriate changes if required. Try to shorten down the lengthy and complicated sentences. Your article should be written in a simple, clear, and concise manner as possible.

How to Write a Winning Scholarship Essay – Step by Step

While applying for the scholarship, students sometimes may need to write a scholarship essay. Hardly any scholarship program based exclusively on transcript or application form. The scholarship essay is a necessary part of the application that you have to submit to the scholarship committee. It is used to inform them about who you really are and your commitments towards your future goals.

Students should clearly explain the role of education in their career. While writing the winning scholarship essay, you should not distract your focus from the very purpose of your scholarship.

There are multiple styles to write scholarship essays. Unless specified, it must be written in this basic format.

  • Maximum length should be two to three pages.
  • Double spaced
  • Font style is Times New Roman, and font size is 12 points.
  • Use the margin of one inch from every side.

College students can write outstanding scholarship essay by following below steps:

  • Step 1 – Make sure your essay fits the theme: To write a brilliantly convincing scholarship essay, students should be more aware of the primary purpose of filling the application form. You must know why the particular scholarship committee is organizing the scholarship for the students. The statements in the essay must go with your application form.

Let’s say you are going to apply for a community service-based prize. In application, you described each group of community service that you are a part of and the rewards you’ve ever won. On the other hand, in the essay, you suggest some job finding techniques for the homeless that blocks the streets. It is a total mismatch with your application and a distraction from the main purpose of applying for the scholarship.

To increase your chances of getting a scholarship, you must write a winning scholarship essay by choosing your life’s aspects to highlight in it. The central theme should be entirely inlined with the application form.

  • Step 2 – Answer the underlying question: Every student throughout their life faces these underlying questions many times, asked either by their parents, teachers or others. It is the most common strategy adopted by the judges of scholarship to expect the best answers to such underlying questions from the students. These hidden questions fetched from the actually asked questions.

Let’s say an organization is going to give a prize to the students who want to study medical science can ask, “What made you study Medical?” And its underlying question might be like “What made you study Medical, and how you are a brilliant future medical science person that our organization should give you the scholarship money?

You should clearly define the reasons in the essay that why you are a deserving candidate for the applied scholarship. Many students with a similar goal and background of you may apply for the same application. Judges choose the best and deserving applicants from the pool of applications. So students must submit a winning scholarship essay by giving the most appropriate reply for such underlying questions to enhance the chances of getting a scholarship.

  • Step 3 – Share a slice of life: Though it is hard enough to describe everything in the limited number of words, you should also share a piece of your life in the essay along with explaining why you are a deserving applicant. Try to cover the main aspects of your life only and focus on one point at a time. Like if you are describing your involvement in some activities, describe your significant achievements and experiences as well.

It is somewhat a tricky part of the essay and similar to a resume. You should not describe anything new in it. Your focus should be towards the activity only that you are currently elaborating and try to just share the “slice of your life” without going in detail.

  • Step 4 – Show passion in your writing: Students, throughout their academic life, face lots of essay writings. Some of them even are out of their interest and knowledge. From there, you can note that the topics of your interest show more enthusiasm in you in writing your thoughts about the matter. The similar case is with the scholarship essays. In such pieces, you have to show your emotions, experiences, achievements and much more to become a more deserving applicant. It seems easy to fake the feelings with some artificial sentences in your essay, but it is extremely hard to convince the judges with such fakeness.

If you have a genuine enthusiasm about something, you even don’t have to put much effort to write a natural and winning scholarship essays.

  • Step 5 – Be specific: The most common mistake committed by the students in their essays is to use more general statements which just cover the space of describing the piece of your life. Instead of vague statements like “Education is an important part of a student’s life,” use more specific explanations. Specific statements should explain how education has moulded your life and why you require the scholarship.

There is already more to explain in limited space like about your life, how you are a deserving applicant, underlying questions, and much more. You should not waste that precious space in those general statements that are common to everyone. Try to keep it original.

  • Step 6 – Have a thesis statement: There should be a central point or thesis statement of your essay. Try to figure out the key statement in a single sentence. And if you are not able to fetch it, then it is an indication that you need to modify your writing. You must give a thesis statement of your writing to your readers that should be attractive enough. Your entire essay should revolve around that thesis statement only to enhance the chances of having more winning scholarship essay.
  • Step 7 – Build on your accomplishments: In the application, you list down your every achievement, talent, activity, accomplishments, and awards. The essay gives you a chance to explain them in some sentences. You can’t cover everything in detail in the article but can share with the judges your experience with some of your significant activities. It is of no worth to copy down the same list in the essay. By doing this, you may lose the chances of even becoming a valid applicant.

Scholarship essay allows you to demonstrate and explain the significance of your major achievements in your life. Example, instead of sharing that you were an organizer of an event, share in what circumstances you arrange the stage or something like this.

  • Step 8 – Avoid the sob story: The actual place of sob stories is in television serials and films. It is a common mistake that most of the students commit while writing the scholarship essay. They try to convince the judges by explaining how badly they need money for their education, in what circumstances they are living, and more like these.

You have to understand that there is no space of such stories here. Judges have no interest in reading problems, so they reject these applications. They seek for the applicants with solutions. You should know that you are not the one who has issues. From all the applications, at least 90% of students explain their problems in the essay.

If you wanted to be a deserving candidate, then you must give solutions to the issues like despite unfortunate circumstance, how you manage your study. Judges get impressed with those who try to find out the answers to their problems, not with the pity seekers. So to write a winning scholarship essay, you should explain your struggles to fight with difficulties instead of sob stories.

  • Step 9 – Show positive energy:  Positive vibes work everywhere. Even people generally say that if you don’t know anything nice to say, then it’s better to keep silent. Judges also don’t want to read the negative aspects of your life at all. People generally use to tell emotional stories to get pity, but the organization has its own purpose of giving money to the deserving candidates.

The applicants with optimism in their application succeed in writing winning scholarship essays. It doesn’t mean that you are not allowed to share your problems, but overly antagonistic, critical, and pessimistic themes should be avoided. Judges generally ignore the applicants with closed minds and sob stories. You should not share your emotions with everyone. Instead, convince the judges with the solutions you used to face such problems that will show your enthusiasm towards the applied application.

  • Step 10 – Find people to read your essays:   It is extremely hard to find the errors from your own writing. For this, you don’t have to hire any professional editor. You even can take help of your well known like parents, advisors, relatives, professors, roommates, friends, siblings, etc.

When others read your writing, they can easily find out the errors, and you can correct them on time before submitting it. As it is about money earning essay, then you should take help from multiple people to refine your content and get the best one. Other would sometimes suggest you with their statements but try not to alter according to them. To maintain the originality of your winning scholarship essay, you should write your inner voice statements only.

Students should not use any inappropriate content in their scholarly essay. They should be more specific in their statements. Avoid using general comments that play a null role in fulfilling the objective of your paper. Share a slice of your life; include only those experiences that can somehow help you in your future as well. Don’t forget to revise your essay before the actual submission as it is an equally important step in your money-giving easy. Various appropriate changes are also made in this step only.


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