#1: Start ASAP and Apply Early
Many scholarships have early application deadlines, so don’t miss out on these opportunities. You can even apply for college scholarships before you’ve started college! SUNY Ulster has an application period every year in the winter for returning and graduating students and every summer for incoming freshmen.
#2: Search Locally
Don’t stop at just Ulster; look in your community, too! Local banks, grocery stores, clubs, businesses, organizations, and churches are all potential sources for community scholarships. Also check state-funded scholarships. States have lots of money to disperse when it comes to providing education.
#3: Read the Requirements
If you apply to a specific scholarship, make sure you are eligible right from the start, so you’re not wasting your time. Also, never pay to apply for a scholarship, since these are usually scams.
#4: Follow Instructions Carefully
Errors can quickly get your scholarship application denied. Proofread it. Have someone else proofread it as well. Double check your answers to make sure you completely and accurately responded to all questions.
#5: Neatly Presented, Neatly Packaged
If your scholarship application must be mailed, use certified mail or better yet, FedEx, making your application look as professional as possible.
Make sure the application is complete and correct. If you are not sure about something in the scholarship application, don’t hesitate to ask someone at the Foundation or whoever is in charge of scholarships where you are applying for one.
#7: Check for School Specific Scholarships
If you’re graduating, check with the college you would like to attend. Usually, there are many school-specific scholarships available. Some scholarships offered through the Ulster Community College Foundation specify a preferred transfer school, so be sure to include your plans in the application to better your chances of getting matched up with these scholarships. Earning scholarships based on a transfer college can also help you make your school choice when the time comes for your final decision.
#8: Be Active, Stay Active
Being in a sports team, club, or doing some type of community service will always better your chances of receiving a college scholarship. Numerous scholarships offered through the Foundation stress community involvement as a requirement.
#9: Maintain your GPA
Keep your grades up. A higher GPA will increase your eligibility for most scholarships, on top of increasing your chances of receiving funds through Financial Aid.
#10: Ask a Foundation Employee for Help
Visiting a Foundation employee in the Clinton 203 suite can help you learn more about traditional scholarships that might be available to you, as well as any aid or special scholarships that fall outside of those covered by the General Application, like Lights for Learning.
Even if you don’t think your chances of getting a scholarship are likely, at least fill out the Ulster Community College Foundation General Scholarship Application; there is one for current students and prospective students. If you have any other questions about Ulster’s scholarships, contact the Foundation by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, by phone at 845-687-5293, or stop by the offices in the Clinton 203 suite on campus.