How To Start Writing Your College Scholarship Essay

April 5, 2017

If you’re reading this bog post you’re probably stressed out about how to write a college scholarship essay. In fact, many students just as you think that this type of essay is completely different or substantially different from college application essay or a typical academic essay. Nothing can be further from the truth; an essay is exactly that, an essay. It follows the same form and it has the same objective the only difference here is that instead of trying to change somebody’s political views in the case of academic essays or trying to get the reader to admit you into their particular college as in the case of college application essays. Your trying to convince the reader to award you the money, that’s all there is to it. It’s an act of literary persuasion, so, once you wrap your mind around that fact everything else would becomes easier. Why? Because your written essay is in the past. A typical high school courses assign essay assignments to their students. If you’ve written one essay and you’ve written another essay you’ve gotten quite adept in writing essays then you should be fine with the scholarship application essay. There are a few tweaks but they’re not major departures from the standard format or structure of a typical essay.

First, just like any essay a scholarship application essay needs a good introduction it needs a middle part where you do most of your argumentation and a strong conclusion that ties everything up and directs your fire power to your overall conclusion. To start writing your scholarship application essay you have to read the question posted by the scholarship package, read it carefully. Don’t read it just once or twice, read it at least three times. Understand every word understands the whole point behind it and what is the whole point behind a typical scholarship question? It’s the basic question, why should the awards committee give you the scholarship money instead of another applicant. Once you have a clear idea of the question being asked by this scholarship committee you should then write down as much and as fast that you can all the thoughts that come to your mind that answer that question. These are elements from your past, past experiences, past jobs, past classes so on and so forth. Also list down the emotions, realizations, and changes in points of view or other things that come to mind that is triggered by the question. At this stage of the game you probably have a long laundry list of past experiences. Now comes the tough part, reread the question and then filter your answers. What I mean is, you have to delete material that is irrelevant to the question.

So, right now at this stage we’re just knocking out things that are completely irrelevant meaning you don’t really answer the question. After you’ve done some more housekeeping the next step is to rank the remaining items in terms of strength. How strongly do they answer the question? How relevant are they? At the end of this exercise you should only have four or five items left on your list. These are the items that you will then develop further for your college scholarship essay. At this point, we will increase in size again. What you’re doing is, you’re trying to tell mini stories in each of these elements. What you do is read each item and read the story and then at the end of the process we mash up all these stories and then clean them up so that they flow and support the main thesis of your application essay.