The secret to winning college scholarships is to apply for local scholarships. This means your child should apply for scholarships that are open only to students in your community, city, or state. Students have a much higher chance of wining these college scholarships because the applicant pool is much smaller compared to scholarships that are open to the entire nation.
Many students, including me, waste their time in high school applying for big national scholarships that they find on scholarship search engines. For example, I applied for 100 college scholarships my senior year in high school. I ended up winning 20 scholarships. But interestingly, 19 of the 20 that I won were local scholarships.
So to help you avoid wasting time, here is a list of 5 college scholarships your child must apply for. The scholarships listed below are what I call “national-local” scholarships. This means they are open to the entire nation, but allot a certain number scholarships to each state. Hence, your child is only competing against students in your state.
(1) Coca-Cola Scholarship
The Coca-Cola scholars program awards 250 college scholarships worth $3 million each year! The scholarship is open to seniors with at least a 3.0 GPA. Coca-Cola awards scholarships to students who show a “commitment to community.” As a Coca-Cola scholar myself, I have to say that this scholarship program is the cream of the crop. The Coca-Cola Scholars program does a tremendous job at staying in touch with scholarship recipients and helping them in their academic and professional careers well after the money is awarded. October Deadline.
(2) AXA Achievement Scholarship
The AXA Achievement Scholarship program awards one $10,000 college scholarship to a student from every state, Puerto Rico, and the District of Columbia. The scholarship is open to seniors who demonstrate ambition, drive, and goals. As an AXA Achievement scholarship recipient, I would recommend putting a lot of effort into your essay. I remember crafting an essay I was really proud of when applying for this scholarship back in high school. And I ended up winning the award for the state of Nevada! December Deadline.
(3) Ronald McDonald House Charities
Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) award college scholarships to high school seniors in a RMHC area in order to create, find, and support programs that directly improve the health and wellbeing of children. Each RMHC determines the number and amount of scholarships it will give away each year. As a RMHC scholarship recipient, I would recommend contacting your local Ronald McDonald House Charity to find out about your area’s specific scholarships. January Deadline.
If you have a Sons of the American Revolution chapter in your area, then your child should apply for this scholarship. It is actually open to all high school students, not just high school seniors. It requires that you write a 800-1200 word essay on “an event, person, philosophy, or ideal associated with the American Revolution, the Declaration of Independence, or the framing of the United States Constitution.” However, when I was in high school, I simply reused an essay I had written for my AP U.S. History class. I ended winning a few hundred dollars for an essay I had already written for school! Deadline Varies.
Finally, for those of you based in Las Vegas, I would recommend applying for the 2400 Expert SAT Excellence Scholarship. We administer the college scholarship through the Clark County Public Education Foundation. It is open to high school seniors who have scored high on the SAT. However, we don’t get many applications for the scholarship each year — so your chances of winning are high! April Deadline.