樱花直播

Scholarship
application tips

Dr. Susan Thurman, former 樱花直播 Scholarship Director, provides essential tips for students applying for scholarships. Her advice covers the three key components of most applications: resume, essay, and recommendation letters. A crucial reminder for both scholarship and college applications is to meticulously proofread all documents.

Preparing Scholarship Essays

Abide by the essay鈥檚 guidelines.聽If an essay has a maximum of 500 words, writing 1,000 words will not聽give you an edge over other applicants.

Don鈥檛 try to force an essay you聽have previously written into a聽topic that doesn鈥檛 match.

Reading your essay aloud helps you determine how your essay聽will read to its reviewers.

Share your essay with your parent聽or guardian. Then, run it by a friend聽or a mentor for a more objective opinion without familial bias.

Focus on depth, not breadth.聽Immerse yourself in 1-2 clubs or聽organizations, rather than joining聽multiple superficially.

Include plenty of details; don鈥檛聽generalize.

Stand out from the crowd! Don't bore the scholarship committee. Be unique, use quotes, references, and be yourself.

Preparing your resume

Be sure your contact information is up to date, with address, telephone, email and current聽school.

Begin with academics: GPA, academic awards, Dean鈥檚 list, math bowl champion, etc.

Include volunteer activities. Don't forget to list dates of service聽activities.

Music, sports, clubs/organizations, hobbies, academic camps, employment, internships, etc.

Make it memorable! Be yourself, use quotes, references, and stand out from the crowd. References聽available upon request, with permission obtained beforehand.

Highlight high school achievements.聽Exclude pre-high school activities聽unless they're exceptional (e.g.,聽National Geography Bee win, early charity founding).

Leadership is about actions, not聽titles. It's not just holding club聽officer positions or being a team聽captain. True leaders demonstrate聽their abilities through their actions.

How to ask for recommendation letters

  • Find an educator with whom you can discuss your extracurricular activities, college aspirations, other classes, etc.
  • Provide your recommender with all of the information they will need to prepare and submit your recommendation.
  • Read the application requirements carefully 鈥 an application may have a limit of one recommendation, may allow more than one, or may require more than one.
  • Make sure to give your educator friendly reminders weeks before your scholarship deadline.
  • Give thanks! Surprise them with a hand-written thank you card (not an email or social media post!).
  • Maintain communication.

  • Ask for a recommendation at the last minute.
  • List someone as a recommender or reference without their knowledge.
  • Skimp on the information they need to prepare and submit the recommendation.
  • Take it personally if the educator is not able to prepare a recommendation for you.