Questions Students Should Ask about Scholarships

Receiving a scholarship, applying for a scholarship or participating in activity where a scholarship is a grand prize are some of the ways that students attain financial funding for their academic career. However, many students assume that a large scholarship will cover all of their needs. They find out too late that the scholarship may not cover the needs they thought it would or in worst-case scenarios may not cover the entire full academic year. Here are some questions student should ask about scholarships in order to avoid these types of scenarios.

Funding

The first question students ask about scholarships is what does the scholarship fund. Some scholarships may find only one academic semester. Other scholarships may fund full academic years or offer what is called a full ride scholarship which covers the entire academic undergraduate career or graduate study for a student. The key to knowing how far a scholarship will go is to find out what it funds to begin with. Some scholarships may only fund tuition expenses while others will cover only books and supplies. By asking this question first a student will avoid any unnecessary charges or unexpected expenses.

Duration

A student should always ask the duration of the scholarship. In some cases a scholarship may not last for more than an academic term. This is the most common issue with students and scholarships. It is also one of the most common scenarios. A student may assume that a scholarship covers more than an academic term when in fact it only covers one academic term or one academic year. This often leads students to a position where they cannot afford further education at the institution of their choice and may need to either discontinue their studies completely or transfer to a more affordable institution.

Academic Considerations

Scholarships may have an academic clause that will hinder the student receiving further scholarship funds if there grade-point average drops below a certain amount. A student should always ask what the academic consideration or grade-point average required is to maintain the scholarship. All too often students may feel that a 3.0 is a suitable grade-point average to maintain their scholarship when in fact the scholarship may have an academic clause that states a student must have a much higher GPA to obtain the scholarship on an ongoing basis.

Injury Considerations

Injury considerations should be questioned when dealing with sports related scholarships. For example, a student may obtain a football scholarship that will cover their entire academic career as well as the supplies and materials they need for their college classes and for their football related purchases. This full ride scholarship may cover 4 to 5 years of academic studies. However, some scholarships may have an injury consideration or injury clause that states if a student is injured and cannot return to the sport they will lose their scholarship funding. For many students on sport scholarships this is a deal breaker when it comes to completing an academic education. In situations where sport scholarships offer the full funding or vast majority of the funding of the academic career student should question any injury clause of considerations of that they are aware of possible complications.

 

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