12 Steps to Write a Winning Scholarship Essay

How to write a winning scholarship essay, 2022: To apply for scholarships would be literally difficult if it wasn’t for the essays. Though there are some scholarships out there that do not demand for an essay. Essay is the most difficult part as well as the most important part of your application.

It is a chance to prove your case to the scholarship committee on why you merit or deserve the scholarship. It also gives you the chance to sell your personality and what you’re passionate about.

If you are planning on applying for a scholarship, know that there are some details that just might make your entry win. In this guide, you will learn important steps and tips to write a winning scholarship essay.

12 Steps To Write a Winning Scholarship Essay

  1. Start on time

To achieve a wining scholarship essay, it is very important to begin writing it in time, ahead of the deadline. Doing this gives you ample time to brainstorm and proofread the essay. You are also afforded the wiggle room to go over the essay, make corrections, adjustments and improvements.

If you wait till the eleventh hour to begin writing your essay, you may end up with a poorly written essay riddled with typographical errors.

Starting on time will give you enough time to think about the prompt, plan, draft, and revise. A well-planned essay has a much higher chance of winning than one you crank out last minute. Give yourself at least 2 weeks before the deadline of an essay to brainstorm, draft, and revise your essay.

  1. Choose the right scholarship

One common mistake applicants make is they work so hard to write essays for the wrong scholarship. What does this mean? A lot of scholarships are created with a particular cause or demographic in mind, so you might have stellar results with straight A’s and write a compelling essay but still get turned down.

For example, a math genius applying for scholarship meant for history students. Check to make sure you are eligible for the scholarship you are writing for.

  1. Do your research

There is need for you to do proper research, try to find out about the company or organization giving out the scholarship. Familiarize with their mission, vision and motivation for giving the scholarship. This information will help you tailor your essay to fit the persona the scholarship is looking for.

Many scholarship providers also feature previous scholarship winners on their website, often with the essay that won. Read these essays to get a sense of what they are after.

  1. Brainstorm and plan

A wining Scholarship essay writing process will go much more smoothly if you have a road map for where you’re going. The very first step is to get some organic ideas circulating, so that you end up choosing an essay focus that makes the most sense for you.

After you have a clear sense of your essay’s focus, you can begin to outline. Some students like to skip the outline, but it actually makes the drafting process much faster!

Depending on the length and depth of the scholarship essay, you can even just lay out the details you’ll want to include in your introduction, body, and conclusion. It can be as simple as that, but you don’t want to skip the planning process.

  1. Adhere to instructions of principles of writing ANY strong essay.

It is important to read the instructions carefully and do well to adhere to all of them. Details like the word count and essay format are easily skipped by overzealous applicants who while their essay maybe good, ruin their chances by failing to adhere to the essay instructions. Read between the lines of the essay prompt and understand what the committee might require of you. This might seem obvious, a lot of applicants fail this simple test.

  1. Your introduction has to be perfect, not good.

Yes! Just as with every competition that comes with a prize, there are always many fresher. The scholarship committee has to go through thousands of essays and you will do well not to bore them with your introduction. The introduction is what draws the reader to your essay and convinces them to keep going; hence this part of the essay has to be your strongest. Your introduction has to be perfect, not good.

Your second sentence should give the reader something to look for; to make them be curious to know more.

  1. Evoke emotion

The best and easiest way to draw emotion is to tell a compelling story. We are all enthused by stories long before our ancestors started peeling orange with knife. When done right, this can help the reader connect with you and keep their attention on your essay. Emotions also help the reader to see you as a person rather than a faceless author.

Tell personal stories and experiences that have shaped your growth, and relate them why you are applying to the scholarship.

  1. Mention only relevant accomplishment

If you have mentioned your accomplishments in another part of your application; the essay is not the place to start mentioning them all over again. Only pick one or two relevant accomplishments that will help you further emphasize your strengths and positive qualities, and tell the story that led to achieving them. Just don’t start mentioning accomplishments for the sake of mentioning them.

  1. Be Specific, Be honest, Be concise and Be professional

You don’t want to go off script in a scholarship essay. It is easy to get carried away. For instance when telling a personal story, it is important to be apt and not give superfluous information. This is especially important when the essay has a word count, every word matters and it would be wise not to use too many words on information that might not sway or interest the reader.

You do not need to decorate or make up details to try to seem more deserving of the scholarship money. Nothing is more powerful than your authenticity. It’s much easier for readers to spot baloney in an essay than you may think. So long as you keep it professional, readers want you to sound like you. You don’t have to write a stuffy essay for it to be good! Keep it clean and clear, but also keep it real!

  1. Your conclusion should be apt.

Most people use the conclusion to simply paraphrase the entire essay. You should do better than that. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box for something unique. One great way to make your conclusion memorable is by posing a question for the reader to think about. Or you could take the reader back to a curious point you raised from the beginning.

  1. Mind your words and language.

It is best to stick to simple words and phrases when writing your essay. The committee can tell when you have written an essay with a thesaurus as your guide. Often, ‘big words’ are used in the wrong context or duplicated too frequently. You don’t need ‘big words’ to write a good essay. It is also important not to use swear words or offensive words. Abbreviations and compressed phrases should also be avoided.

  1. Proof your Scholarship Essay

Finally, proof your scholarship essay, make sure it is absolutely perfect. Spelling errors, grammar mistakes, and typos are the fastest way to have your scholarship essay dismissed by the readers! On the other hand, having a perfect essay substantially increases your chances of being selected.

That’s it. The 12 tips to write a winning scholarship essay.

Hope you have been able to get one or two lessons to help you write your essay. Be original and confident in writing a Winning Scholarship Essay. Write your essay in a compelling manner using some of our guidelines.