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Other reasons scholarships go unclaimed are the myths and longstanding beliefs about financial aid that have overlapped into the private sector. Many of these misconceptions started with the state and federal scholarship restrictions and now students fail to apply for private sector scholarships because they think the old governmental rules apply.

Such old cliches as
"My parents earn too much money";
"My grades are not good enough";
"The deadlines are only in the Fall" or
"I am too old to get a scholarship"
do not apply in the private sector. If anything, the opposite is true.

For example:

80% OF THE PRIVATE SECTOR DOES NOT REQUIRE THAT YOU SHOW FINANCIAL NEED. Most private sector sources don't care how much money your parents make. The 20% that do care have a wide variety of qualifying ranges.

90% OF THE PRIVATE SECTOR IS NOT LOOKING FOR THE STRAIGHT A STUDENT. Grades aren't always that important. Sometimes you can get a scholarship just by going through an interview, promising to work for a company afterwards or simply filling out an application. Many application questions deal with personal, occupationl, and educational background, organizational affiliation, talent or ethnic origins.

DEADLINES, QUITE LITERALLY, PASS EVERY DAY. Any time is a good time to get involved. Deadlines may be set up to fit the corporation's tax year or they may simply be set up for the convenience of the group that meets to review the scholarship applications.

AGE IS NOT A RESTRICTION. In 1990, one out of four students in the United States was over the age of 25. In 1993, almost half of all students were over 25. Many "students" are parents finishing degrees after starting families. Others are making career changes as we shift from the industrial wave to the hig-tech arena. Still others are students who have postponed college until they could afford it. There are many, many scholarship sources interested in the re-entry student and the mid-career development student. The Business and Professional Women's Foundation awards hundreds of scholarships to applicants who must be older than 25 or even 35. There is a scholarship at the California state colleges for students over the age of 60.

  FASTaiD 1998 CEE       All rights reserved. Do not copy or redistribute in any form.         Mail: Editor