Mastering the Scholarship Essay 

Most scholarship applications will require the submission of an essay. Although, this may be the most intimidating part when applying for a scholarship, this is actually your time to shine. A well-thought essay will increase your chances of winning a scholarship. By following the steps below, courtesy of Fastweb, you are on your way to writing a winning essay.


Get organized. Brainstorm ideas that fit with the essay topic(s). Create an outline to keep your thoughts in order.

Develop a theme that fits the scholarship. Think about the kind of student the scholarship donor might be looking for. Highlight elements in your essay that personally describe you and at the same time complement the donor's requirements.

Be original and creative. Scholarship judges can read up to hundreds of essay applications. To really capture their attention, you have to make sure you are able to draw in the reader right away.

Show, don't tell. If you are sharing a volunteer experience, for example, be specific. What duties did you perform? How did it change your way of thinking? What affect did it have on your life or the lives of others?

Revise and Edit. Treat your scholarship essay the same as you would any essay or paper for one of your courses. The reward is money instead of a grade. Write multiple drafts to catch mistakes. Ask your professors, counselors, friends or family to check for any additional spelling or grammar mistakes.

In addition, The Center for Academic Support (CORE) CO- 303, offers help with scholarship essays  throughout each semester. Contact the Center for Academic Support at (925) 473-7590 for hours of availability.