The "hidden" benefits of scholarships
What would winning a scholarship look like for your student?
Of course, it would feel fantastic for your child to walk across the stage at graduation knowing they won a scholarship or two. And it certainly would be a proud moment for you!
But let’s look at the long-term benefits of scholarships for a moment. These are some of the “hidden” benefits of winning a university entrance scholarship:
Do you know that winning a scholarship could help to improve your child’s grades in university?
Or that it could help them to win more scholarships in the future?
Or that it can help them to stay mentally and physically healthy?
And it could increase the likelihood of them getting employment in their field, or admission to professional school?
Here are some of the benefits of winning a scholarship:
It could mean less money you, and your student, must pay for university.
It could mean less money your student must borrow, and pay back (with interest).
It could mean fewer hours your student must work during the school year to pay for tuition, residence, books and other costs. Your student would have to work about 90 hours in a minimum wage part-time job to earn the equivalent of a $1000 scholarship. That's 90 hours they could spend studying to improve their university grades. It's also time they can spend maintaining healthy eating and sleeping habits, exercising, and leading a more balanced, less hectic life.
As one student, Amy Edwards, put it, “Receiving this scholarship allowed me to focus less on the cost of supplies, books, and courses. It made the first year transition a lot easier. It costs a lot to go to university. If you don’t have the money, it can be hard to focus on what you are there to do.”
It could mean less stress for you, and your student, worrying about incurring student debt. “I was stressed out,“ says Amy. “Receiving this scholarship let me focus on what I was actually there to do, which is study."
It could mean increasing your student's chances of winning more awards in the future. Once you win one, it helps you to win more because it shows a record of success. For example, even a small award can often be a useful stepping stone to winning more (and bigger) scholarships. This is why I say, "scholarships beget scholarships".
As stated in this article in University Affairs, "Smaller awards can often be a useful stepping stone to winning major, prestigious external scholarships. Applying for these awards can pay dividends. The applications are often less daunting, the response times shorter, and the chances of success higher! For many scholarship competitions, any awards or scholarships that you have already won will work in your favour when your application is assessed. In general, having already received scholarships will increase your likelihood of winning another!"
A scholarship or award on your student's academic record or resume could give them an edge in the competitive arena of professional school admission, and/or employment in their field. Scholarships are an excellent addition to student's record because they demonstrate achievement.
Don’t wait until university
Grade 12 is the time to set the foundation for future success. That’s because although there are scholarship opportunities in university, there are far fewer of them and the competition is much tougher. The dollar amounts of the awards are usually lower as well.
Grade 12 is your child's best opportunity for scholarships. There will never be a better time with more opportunities, more money, and less competition.
If you don’t believe me, ask anyone who missed the boat and just started to look for scholarships AFTER they've graduated Grade 12. There are far fewer of them, and they are much more competitive.
Don’t miss this golden opportunity to reap the many “hidden” benefits of scholarships!
Need help with scholarships? Please check out my services.
About the author
Janet MacDonald is a Scholarship Coach with mycampusGPS Education Consulting. She is a former Canadian university admissions officer. For seven years, she was the coordinator of a scholarship program at a major Canadian university. Janet has helped her student clients win hundreds of thousands of dollars in scholarships.