Although private-sector scholarships make up only 3% of the funding awarded annually, students still spend countless hours searching and applying for these awards. Why? Because they help pay college costs - or do they?
It takes hard work and dedication to receive private-sector scholarship money. You must locate the sources, gather the recommendation letters, write the essays, and meet the application deadlines.
Next, you wait for the results.
Finally, if things are in your favor, you win an award, or maybe even two or three. All of your hard work has finally paid off - or has it? Did you know that most colleges deduct your private-sector awards from the institutional gift money you have already been offered?
Simply put, your private-sector scholarship money most often goes back into the school's coffer, and is eventually given to another student. Who really benefited from all your hard work? Exactly, the college! Your funding package still contains the same proportion of gift aid (free money) and self-help aid (money that is worked for or borrowed). The college's "contribution" is simply less.
Can this be avoided? How can you make your efforts pay dividends for you?