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College and scholarships can be scary subjects.
We want our kids to have bright futures, and for most of us that means we could use some financial help along the way. So if your child wants to continue her education after being taught by Mom, how can you help her pay for that?
I have some tips for you. It doesn’t need to be intimidating, but it does require some searching and patience. The work for scholarships is really the same for homeschoolers as it is for any other student. It’s a matter of finding them and applying, and all applications require different things.
1. Check with the Financial Aid Department of Your Intended College.
All colleges have scholarships available, and many of them go unclaimed. Contact your chosen college, pour through the options, and apply for anything you can!
This is a great free online resource that pairs students with scholarships and financial aid.
3. Your Company
Many companies offer scholarships for their employees’ children. The bigger the company, the more chance there is this opportunity, but even smaller companies often have scholarships available. Ask the boss about it. If the company doesn’t give scholarships, you might suggest offering them.
4. Local Non-Profits
Non-profit organizations often have scholarships to give to local students. Check their websites or simply call them and ask. If you or anyone in your family is volunteering for any non-profit group, that would be a great place to start.
5. Local Businesses
Often banks, grocery chains, and even larger chain stores have scholarships available. Check websites and go to their offices and ask.
6. Don’t Ignore Small Scholarships
Some of these options may amount to $250-$500 here and there. But don’t skip small options; they can really add up!
7. Unusual Scholarships
These are perfect for those crazy homeschoolers! There are scholarships for knitters, gardeners, Duct Tape fashion makers, and even Lego builder competitions! I’m serious. Google it.
8. Check Your Library
Libraries not only have information about local and statewide scholarships, but many of them offer scholarships themselves. It’s worth asking!
9. Register with Scholarship Zone
This site is worth registering through. They draw a name every month, and the winner gets a scholarship. So great!
10. Check with Your Co-op/Electric Company
Almost all co-ops have scholarships for students in their area.
11. Practice Your Essay Skills
Most scholarship applications require an essay from the student. Work on your student’s essay skills by having him write some practice ones. Pick a topic that your student is interested in and have him write one page about why he loves it. Be sure to have him read it aloud to himself before handing it to you.
12. Clean Up Your Social Media Accounts
It’s possible that your student’s Facebook page will be under scrutiny as she is being considered for scholarships. Immature or inappropriate content could affect her future.
Last, I would encourage you to have your student do most of the research and contacting businesses instead of you doing it for her. This is a great way for her to begin to take the reigns for her future. Being bold and persevering are a great beginning to whatever her future holds!