There are several other avenues to pursue when seeking funds for college expenses. These include local, community-based resources and corporate and foundation scholarship programs. The key is to set aside enough time to complete a thorough search, to write a quality application and to apply on time. Many outside resources have deadlines several months prior to the start of an academic year.
We suggest that you first check with your high school guidance or college counselor for assistance with local scholarship opportunities. Some of these may require an essay or separate application. Also, check with your parents to find out if their employer offers any type of educational scholarships or other benefits for dependents.
There are a number of websites specifically designed to assist you with an outside scholarship search. One that we have found to be helpful for some students include:
- Listing of common on-line sites related to financial aid
- Listing of outside scholarship resources
Lastly, we caution all families to thoroughly check out any agency claiming to find you outside awards - guaranteed for a fee. It is always a good idea to find out if the service is legitimate by contacting a financial aid officer or calling an organization such as the Better Business Bureau.