Tips on Finding Scholarships

— Cole Tan

— Cole Tan

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There are countless places to go on campus for scholarships. But how will a student cover all of their bases? Especially when tuition, books, housing, a laptop and living expenses are all on the line.

A good place to start is the Office for Financial Aid and Scholarships. Not only do they have a database on their website for all scholarships that run through their office, but they also have financial aid counselors that can assist in person with walk in appointments during business hours. They are there to look at a student’s personal situation and help them whether it be with tuition payment options, FAFSA, or even to accommodate changing circumstances such as a loss of income.

According to Hilerie Harris in the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships, “the best way to find scholarships is through the department of the student’s major.” The College of Engineering alone awards $1.6 million every year through approximately 435 scholarships to students within their college. This funding primarily comes from private donors, as is the practice in all departments on campus.

While some of a department’s scholarship funding comes from the state, it is mostly supported by alumni or other donors, which is why there is some variance from college to college in scholarship availability. But overall, Monica Heaton from the College of Engineering feels that they award scholarships very similarly to the other 16 colleges on campus.

Then there is the avenue of third party resources. This is a broad and daunting path in some cases. There are websites such as Fastweb that have thousands of scholarships, but efficacy can vary when every student in the United States is searching. Harris still recommends it simply because students should apply to as many scholarships as they can. There are outside resources for every college and every student. Even local organizations such as the YMCA and the Alpine Recovery Lodge offer awards to students.

Situational resources such as the Hinckley Institute of Politics and the Learning Abroad Office at the U will provide scholarships upon acceptance into some of their programs. With the Hinckley Institute Internships in Washington D.C., for example, they will look at your housing costs during the semester in DC, your personal need and a number of other factors and help you to get the funding you need. The Hinckley Institute of Politics has scholarships and low interest loans for students who have no affiliation with the institute itself, such as the John and Anne Hinckley Scholarship.

Visit the Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid website at financialaid.utah.edu.

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