How to Host a Scholarship Party

By Elise Nelson on October 19, 2017

Scholarships: the saving grace for many college careers. Without scholarships and financial aid, hundreds of students wouldn’t be able to attend college at all. The hunt for this extra chunk of money is a necessity, but honestly, it’s not the most exciting task in the world. Why not make a party out of your scholarship search?

Invite your friends over and spend a few hours drawing up lists of scholarships worth applying for.

What will the scholarship search party look like?

Everyone should bring their own laptop and maybe a snack. You and your friends are going to search for scholarships together, so you all need the right tools. The quickest way to find scholarships is by browsing the web (gotta love the Internet), so you should ask everyone to bring a laptop or tablet or at least plan to share a laptop with another partygoer.

If you want to go old-fashioned you can also find scholarship listing books on Amazon or in bookstores. New and updated volumes are released every year.

You might get hungry after a few hours of searching. Ask everyone to bring a snack or drink to share with the group!

You’ll need some background noise to keep things interesting. The sound of fingers furiously typing away on keyboards can be relaxing, but hearing it for hours might be enough to drive someone crazy.

It’s a good idea to have some kind of background noise to drown out the tapping. However, you don’t want the noise to be too distracting. Your goal is to find a solid chunk of scholarships to apply for by the end of the party, so you need to remain focused!

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Try playing some music loud enough for the room to hear, but soft enough to keep everyone’s thoughts in order. If you think the group is getting too off-task, try switching genres. Studies have found that listening to classical music boosts productivity. Of course, breaks are important too so it might be necessary to jam out to some pop tunes for a while.

Split up the work to get the most results. There are so many different sources for finding scholarships — too many for one person to juggle. The best way to tackle the search is to divide and conquer. Each person should be assigned a few scholarship search websites that they will be responsible for during the party.

Search through your designated sites until the party ends, and then share your findings with the group. While it is important to search for yourself, keep in mind that the point of the party is to work together. If you come across a scholarship that doesn’t interest you, but it might interest your friend, pass it their way!

Pick the location with ample, comfortable space. The best place to host a scholarship party is somewhere with comfortable seating and room to spread out. Since it isn’t the most entertaining task in the world, you want to be cozy while you search for scholarships.

Image via Pexels.com

What are the best sources for finding scholarships?

1. Websites like College Board or Scholarships.com

You might have heard about or used College Board in high school as you prepared to apply for colleges. In addition to compiling information on colleges, College Board hosts a scholarship search function known as BigFuture. The feature is updated annually as new scholarship and financial aid programs pop up.

Scholarships.com is a widely popular tool, fostering over 3.7 million college scholarships and grants.

2. U.S. Department of Labor’s free search tool

Sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor, CareerOneStop offers a list of awards, grants, and scholarships based on your degree level. An overview table lists the scholarship name, the amount of money awarded, and the application deadline for your convenience. You can also search by keyword or filter by location and award type.

Image via Pexels.com

3. Foundations or organizations in your field

There are a number of foundations dedicated to raising money for scholarship funds, such as the Coca-Cola Foundation. These foundations typically offer scholarships to applicants who show leadership skills, research skills, or overall motivation to create a better future.

Some of these scholarship programs are geared specifically towards certain majors, races, or geographical areas. Chegg allows you to search for scholarships on their website using these types of criteria.

4. Your employer or your parents’ employers

Your job may be able to help you pay for college in more ways than one! Check with your boss or look up your employee benefits online to see if your employer offers scholarships.

Companies such as AT&T, Best Buy, UPS, Comcast, JetBlue, Starbucks, Disney, and more provide funding for college courses. Some companies give funding to immediate family members of their employees, so ask your parents to check their benefits as well!

By Elise Nelson

Uloop Writer
Elise is a senior at Albright College in Reading, Pa, studying journalism. She hopes to pursue a career in feature writing and editing for a magazine. Much of Elise's time is dedicated to being Editor-in-Chief of Albright's student newspaper, The Albrightian. She is also a member of Sigma Tau Delta English Honors Society, and co-hosts a radio show on WXAC 91.3 FM.

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