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Scholarship Essay

Scholarship essay generator.

scholarship essay example pdf

Essays are compositions of widescale function. Essay writing is also often a part of academic examinations or a composition that helps someone express his/her ideas to the world. Commonly, essays are written to pass school; however, there is a form of document that can also take someone into school.

What is a Scholarship Essay?

A scholarship essay is a personal statement written as part of a scholarship application. It’s designed to demonstrate your values, qualities, and suitability for the scholarship on offer, responding to specific prompts or questions posed by the scholarship provider. The essay is a critical component of the application process, allowing the selection committee to understand more about you, your background, and your educational goals.

Format of Scholarship Essay

  • Introduction : Introduces the main idea or response to the essay prompt, includes a hook to grab the reader’s attention.
  • Body Paragraphs : Provide detailed examples and experiences that showcase your qualifications, achievements, and how you align with the scholarship’s values.
  • Conclusion : Summarizes your essay, reinforces how the scholarship will help you achieve your educational goals, and includes a thank you to the scholarship committee.

How Do You Write a Scholarship Essay?

  • Understand the Topic : Grasp what the scholarship committee seeks in responses.
  • Plan Your Essay : Brainstorm ideas that showcase your strengths and alignment with the scholarship’s goals.
  • Compelling Introduction : Draw readers in with an engaging start that introduces your main point.
  • Develop the Body : Use specific examples and experiences to demonstrate your qualifications and how you meet the scholarship criteria.
  • Conclude Effectively : Summarize key points and express how the scholarship will aid your educational or career ambitions.
  • Proofread : Ensure your essay is clear, error-free, and impactful.

Types of Scholarships Essay

  • Merit-Based Essays : Focus on academic achievements, leadership qualities, or artistic talents.
  • Need-Based Essays : Highlight financial need and how the scholarship would support educational goals.
  • Personal Statement Essays : Reflect on personal experiences, challenges overcome, and personal growth.
  • Career Goal Essays : Discuss professional aspirations and how education will help achieve them.
  • Community Service Essays : Describe involvement in community service or volunteer work and its impact.

10+Scholarship Essay Examples

Scholarship self introduction essay.

Scholarship Self Introduction Essay

Sample Scholarship Essay in PDF

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Scholarship Personal Essay Sample

Scholarship-Personal-Essay-Sample1

Education Scholarship Essay Sample

Education Scholarship Essay Sample

Scholarship Personal Statement Essay Example

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Student Scholarship Personal Statement Essay

Student Scholarship Personal Statement Essay

Scholarship Essay Example

Scholarship-Essay-Example1

Field of Study Scholarship Essay

Field-of-Study-Scholarship-Essay

Sample Scholarship Essay Outline

Sample-Scholarship-Essay-Outline

Simple Scholarship Essay Sample

Simple-Scholarship-Essay-Sample

Sample Scholarship Essays

Sample-Scholarship-Essays

What do scholarship essays want to hear?

Scholarship essays seek to understand the applicant’s unique experiences, achievements, and aspirations. They want to hear a genuine, compelling story that showcases your character, resilience, and how you’ve overcome challenges. Essays should also reflect your academic and career goals, demonstrating how the scholarship will help achieve them.

What are the essay requirements for scholarships?

Essay requirements for scholarships vary but typically include a word limit, specific formatting guidelines (e.g., font type, size), and a prompt or theme to address. They may ask you to discuss personal achievements, challenges you’ve overcome, your career goals, or why you deserve the scholarship. Always follow the provided instructions carefully.

How do you start a strong scholarship essay?

To start a strong scholarship essay, open with an engaging hook that captures the reader’s attention. This could be an intriguing question, a surprising fact, or a brief anecdote related to the essay prompt. The goal is to make the scholarship committee want to read more about you and what you have to say.

What should be the first sentence of a scholarship essay?

The first sentence of a scholarship essay should be captivating and thought-provoking. It could introduce a pivotal moment, a personal insight, or a question that hints at the essay’s theme. This sentence sets the tone for your essay and encourages the reader to continue reading.

Do I put my name on a scholarship essay?

Whether you put your name on a scholarship essay depends on the specific instructions provided by the scholarship provider. Some may request that you include your name and other identifying details, while others may prefer anonymous submissions for unbiased evaluation. Always follow the application guidelines

What is the importance of a scholarship essay?

The reason why it is essential for you to make sure that you will create a comprehensive and detailed scholarship essay is due to the benefits that it can provide to your scholarship application. Some of the importance of a scholarship essay include the following: it can help the committee know more about you ,  it can showcase your writing skills and other abilities.

How to format your scholarship essay?

Aside from the content of your scholarship essay, its outline format and choosing what type of format essay you use like,  MLA format essay , APA essay , or even Chicago style  format are also of importance. Be aware of your word count. Do not use any fancy fonts as it can make the essay look informal. Make sure that your font size can make your discussion easy to read. Your margin should be an inch from the document’s top, bottom, and sides. The margin that you will use in the document can play a big part in the overall appearance of the letter.

How to write a 500 word essay?

Be thoroughly acquainted with the directions in your essay, completely comprehend the essay prompt, identify important points and keywords, compose a compelling introduction, craft an interesting body, remarkably close your scholarship essay, and proofread.

A scholarship essay is an important document that is used in the processes of a scholarship application. This letter may be simple but it can provide a lot of difference with regards the decision on whether an individual will be approved for a scholarship grant or not. A scholarship essay is a composition written by an applicant to avail the perks of a certain education-supporting program. Considering that this document will be one of the bases of one’s admission, facilitators of the scholarship program you are applying for may give you specific instructions regarding the format of your essay.

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Crafting Your Winning Scholarship Essay: Essential Tips

How to Start Your Scholarship Essay: Engaging Introductions

Overcoming Obstacles: A Key Theme for Scholarship Essays

Personal Growth Stories: Perfect for Scholarship Essays

Why I Deserve This Scholarship: Essay Writing Strategies

Educational Goals and Your Scholarship Essay: A Guide

Leadership Experiences: Highlighting Them in Scholarship Essays

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Scholarship Essay on Career Aspirations: Mapping Your Future

Creative Scholarship Essay Ideas: Standing Out from the Crowd

Scholarship Essay Writing

Scholarship Essay Examples

Barbara P

Winning Scholarship Essay Examples for Students: Tips Included

37 min read

Published on: Mar 14, 2021

Last updated on: Jan 31, 2024

Scholarship Essay Examples

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Scholarship Essay - A Complete Writing Guide

Scholarship Essay Format - A Complete Guide

Most Popular Scholarship Essay Prompts & Questions

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Many students face financial barriers when it comes to pursuing higher education. The rising costs of tuition, books, and other educational expenses can be overwhelming. 

This is why the scholarships offer a lifeline by providing financial aid to students, but the competition is fierce. 

That's where CollegeEssay.org comes in. 

In this blog post, we are providing scholarship essay examples that will inspire and guide you in creating your own exceptional essay. 

These examples serve as beacons of success, offering valuable insights into the art of scholarship essay writing. 

So, without further ado, let’s get started. 

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Scholarship Essay Examples Financial Need

Why this scholarship essay worked.

This scholarship essay example effectively conveys the applicant's financial need and their determination to overcome the challenges associated with it. Here's why this essay worked:

  • Personal Storytelling: The essay begins with a personal anecdote that establishes a connection between the applicant's background and financial constraints. This helps create empathy and demonstrates the genuine impact of financial challenges on their educational journey.
  • Resilience and Resourcefulness: The applicant showcases their resilience and resourcefulness in navigating financial hardships. They highlight their proactive approach to seeking part-time employment and actively pursuing scholarships.
  • Academic Commitment: Despite the financial strain, the applicant emphasizes their commitment to academic excellence by maintaining a high GPA. This showcases their dedication and ability to prioritize their studies amidst challenging circumstances.
  • Community Involvement : The essay also highlights the applicant's involvement in community service. This demonstrates their desire to give back and make a positive impact.
  • Connection to Scholarship: The applicant clearly articulates how receiving the scholarship would benefit them. This demonstrates a strong alignment between their goals and the purpose of the scholarship.

Want more examples, check out these winning scholarship essay examples.

Financial Aid Scholarship Essay

Scholarship Essay for Financial Need

Scholarship Essay Examples About Yourself

Why this essay worked.

This scholarship essay worked for several reasons, such as:

  • It effectively showcases the applicant's passion for mathematics, community engagement, and resilience.
  • It compellingly conveyed the applicant's dedication, ambition, and potential for making a positive impact. This makes them a deserving candidate for the scholarship.
  • Clear connection to the scholarship's goals and how it would further the applicant's educational journey and impact.

Here are some scholarship essay examples about yourself; get an idea from them, and create a successful essay.

Scholarship Essay Example About Yourself

Scholarship Essay About Yourself

Scholarship Essay Examples for Nursing

Why this essay worked.

This essay worked due to its compelling portrayal of the applicant's genuine passion for nursing, coupled with their unwavering dedication to making a positive impact in patient care.

The essay effectively demonstrates the applicant's well-rounded preparation for a nursing career and their clear alignment with the goals and mission of the scholarship, making them a strong candidate for consideration.

Below are some more examples of scholarship essays for nursing.

Nursing Scholarship Essay

Scholarship Essay for Nursing

Scholarship Essay Examples About Career Goals

This essay worked for the following reasons:

  • Clear and Specific Career Goals: The essay effectively outlines the applicant's career goal of becoming a clinical psychologist specializing in mental health support. The clarity and specificity of the goal demonstrate a well-defined path and a strong sense of purpose.
  • Demonstrated Preparation and Commitment: The essay showcases the applicant's comprehensive preparation for their career goals. It also demonstrates their readiness and dedication to excel in the field.
  • Alignment with Scholarship Objectives: The essay effectively highlights how the scholarship will contribute to the applicant's career aspirations. This includes attending conferences, workshops, and advanced training programs.

If you find difficulty writing the scholarship essay about career goals, get help from the below-mentioned examples, and submit a well-written essay.

Scholarship Essay Examples About Leadership

Three reasons why this essay worked are:

  • Demonstrated Leadership Experience : This essay effectively highlights the applicant's practical experience in leadership roles, showcasing their ability to lead teams, organize events, and coordinate volunteers.
  • Commitment to Personal Growth : The essay demonstrates the applicant's proactive approach to leadership development by seeking formal training and participating in workshops focused on honing their skills. 
  • Emphasis on Collaboration and Empowerment: The essay emphasizes the applicant's belief in collaborative leadership. It promotes inclusivity and empowers team members to contribute their unique perspectives. 

Here we gather some good scholarship essay examples about leadership that help in your writing.

Leadership Scholarship Essay Example

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Scholarship Essay Examples About Community Service

Here are the reasons:

  • Genuine Passion and Commitment: The essay effectively conveys the applicant's genuine passion for community service, highlighting their long-standing involvement and the transformative impact it has had on their life. 
  • Integration of Service with Education: The essay demonstrates the applicant's proactive approach to integrating their passion for community service with their educational pursuits.
  • Aspiration for Social Change: The essay goes beyond personal experiences and highlights the applicant's aspirations for broader social change.

Here is an excellent community service scholarship essa y that can help you write for community college.

Scholarship Essay Example about Community Service

High School Scholarship Essay Examples

  • Clear and Convincing Goals: The essay effectively communicates the applicant's strong desire to pursue higher education despite financial constraints.
  • Demonstrated Leadership and Well-Roundedness: The essay showcases the applicant's involvement in extracurricular activities. It highlights their ability to balance academic responsibilities with active participation in clubs, sports teams, and community service initiatives.
  • Emphasis on Giving Back and Community Engagement: The essay not only focuses on the applicant's personal aspirations but also highlights their commitment to giving back to their community.

The following are the best high school scholarship essay examples, use this for your help, and write an attention-grabbing essay.

Scholarship Essay Example for High School

Scholarship Essay for High School

Scholarship Essay Examples for University

Why this essay works.

Three reasons why this essay works are:

  • Strong Personal Motivation: The essay effectively communicates the applicant's unwavering commitment and determination to pursue a university education.
  • Articulation of Long-Term Goals and Social Impact: The essay goes beyond highlighting the applicant's academic achievements and financial needs. It emphasizes the applicant's desire to contribute to their community and make a positive impact on society.
  • The connection between Scholarship and Applicant's Potential: The essay effectively illustrates how receiving the scholarship would directly address the financial burden. Plus, it will enable the applicant to fully embrace the university experience.

Here are some excellent scholarship essay examples for university students that help you in writing the essay.

Scholarship Essay Example for University Students

Scholarship Essay Examples for Engineering

This essay worked because of the following reasons:

  • Passion and Commitment: The essay effectively conveys the applicant's deep passion for engineering. It also shows their genuine commitment to making a positive impact in this field.
  • Alignment with Scholarship Objectives: It clearly establishes the connection between the scholarship and the applicant's goals in engineering.
  • Future Impact and Growth: It also communicates the applicant's aspiration to contribute to the field of engineering and make a positive difference in the world.

The following is another scholarship essay example that can help you in creating the perfect essay on your own.

Scholarship Essay Examples for Masters

This essay worked for several reasons:

  • Clear Purpose and Goal: The essay effectively conveys the applicant's clear purpose and goal of pursuing a master's degree. It highlights the transformative impact that a master's degree can have on personal and professional growth.
  • Financial Need and Scholarship Alignment : The essay addresses the financial challenges associated with pursuing a master's degree. It demonstrates the direct alignment between the scholarship and the applicant's needs.
  • Impact and Giving Back : The essay goes beyond personal aspirations and emphasizes the applicant's intention to make a broader impact on their community and society.

Here is an example that you can use as a guide and write a perfect scholarship essay.

Why Should You Receive this Scholarship Essay Examples

Three brief reasons why this essay worked are:

  • Clear and Convincing Arguments : The essay presents concise and compelling arguments to support the applicant's case for receiving the scholarship.
  • Personal Connection : It demonstrates how receiving the scholarship would directly impact the applicant's academic journey
  • Gratitude and Future Commitment : It expresses sincere gratitude for the opportunity and emphasizes the applicant's commitment to making the most of the scholarship.

Here is an example, take help from them for your scholarship essay.

Why Should You Receive this Scholarship Essay Example

Why I Deserve This Scholarship Essay Examples

  • Compelling Personal Story: The essay effectively presents the applicant's personal story and highlights their dedication and commitment to their education
  • Addressing Academic Excellence and Financial Need : The essay successfully addresses both academic excellence and financial need, which are two crucial aspects considered by scholarship committees.
  • Commitment to Making an Impact: The essay goes beyond the applicant's personal goals and emphasizes their dedication to making a positive impact in their community. 

Here’s another example for this scholarship essay below:

Why I Deserve This Scholarship Essay Example

Tips for Writing the Effective Scholarship Essay

When it comes to writing an effective scholarship essay, there are several key tips to keep in mind. 

By following these guidelines, you can maximize your chances of standing out and impressing scholarship selection committees. 

Here are some essential tips to help you craft a compelling scholarship essay:

  • Understand the Prompt

Take the time to thoroughly understand the essay prompt or topic provided by the scholarship provider. Pay attention to any specific instructions or guidelines given.

  • Research the Scholarship

Familiarize yourself with the organization or institution offering the scholarship. Understand their values, mission, and objectives. This knowledge will help you align your essay with their goals and demonstrate your fit for the scholarship.

  • Tell Your Unique Story

Use the essay as an opportunity to showcase your personal experiences, like obstacles you might encounter, achievements, and aspirations. Highlight what sets you apart from other applicants. Be authentic and genuine in conveying your story, like overcoming personal failures.

  • Start with a Compelling Introduction

Grab the reader's attention from the beginning with a strong and captivating introduction. Consider starting with a compelling anecdote, a thought-provoking question, or a powerful statement.

  • Structure Your Essay

Organize your essay into a clear and logical structure. Start with an introduction, followed by body paragraphs that support your main points, and end with a concise and impactful conclusion.

  • Be Concise and Specific

Scholarship essays often have a word or character limits, so make every word count. Be concise in your writing and avoid unnecessary fluff. Focus on providing specific examples and details that support your claims.

  • Showcase Your Achievements

Highlight your academic accomplishments, extracurricular involvements, community service, leadership roles, or any other relevant achievements. Link them to the values and goals of the scholarship.

  • Address the Selection Criteria

Ensure that your essay addresses the selection criteria specified by the scholarship provider. If they are looking for specific qualities or skills, tailor your essay to showcase how you possess those attributes.

In conclusion, writing an effective scholarship essay is a crucial step in securing the financial aid you need for your education. 

By following the tips outlined here, you can enhance your essay-writing skills and create a compelling narrative that captivates scholarship selection committees.

Be authentic, concise, and specific in your writing. Tailor your essay to align with the values and objectives of the scholarship provider. And above all, believe in yourself and your potential to make a difference through education.

If you're seeking further guidance and support in your scholarship essay writing journey, consider partnering with our AI essay writing tools !

We also have a team of experienced and professional essay writers who can provide personal essay writing service with valuable insights. 

Hire our college paper writing service  today and take the next step towards securing the financial aid you deserve.

Barbara P (Literature, Marketing)

Barbara is a highly educated and qualified author with a Ph.D. in public health from an Ivy League university. She has spent a significant amount of time working in the medical field, conducting a thorough study on a variety of health issues. Her work has been published in several major publications.

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How to Write a Scholarship Essay (with Examples)

September 27, 2023

How to write a scholarship essay examples

While applying to college, many students are faced with an additional, daunting task: how to write a scholarship essay. Financial need, already a sensitive subject, can become a stressful factor in the process alongside other existential unknowns. Luckily, scholarship essays will not require you to go tiptoeing around the taboo topic of money. Furthermore, most scholarship essay prompts more or less resemble standard supplemental essay questions. The trick then is to make your scholarship essay stand out. The following article and scholarship essay example will offer up pointers for anyone striving to win a college scholarship.

Organizing Scholarship Essays by Prompt

You may feel like melting into a lump of despair when facing a browser full of tabbed scholarships. The best way to avoid getting overwhelmed is to organize and analyze a list of prompts. Why? Because your first goal is not simply to figure out how to write a scholarship essay. Rather, you’ll want to know how to save time while writing complex and relevant scholarship essays.

As you look over the various prompts, you’ll notice that some sound fairly open-ended, while others ask for something quite specific. In response, you should annotate each prompt with thematic keywords. This will help you figure out when you can use the same essay for several prompts.

Your annotated list may look something like the following…

Sample Scholarship Essay Prompts

1) “Explain something that made a big impact in your life.”

  • Keywords: event , personal development, growth, background

2) “We’re committed to diversifying education abroad by providing funding to students who are typically under-represented in study abroad. Please describe how you and/or your plans for study abroad could be viewed as under-represented.”

  • Keywords: minority, diversity, identity, study abroad

3) “Some students have a background, identity, interest, or talent that is so meaningful they believe their application would be incomplete without it. If this sounds like you, then please share your story.”

  • Keywords: background, identity, interest, talent

Sample Scholarship Essay Prompts, Continued

4) “Please explain a personal hardship or catastrophic life event that you have experienced. How did you manage to overcome this obstacle? What did you learn and how did you grow from it?”

  • Keywords: event, personal development, growth, challenge, background

5) Describe a change you would like to make in the world. Tell us about how you would plan to make that change, and what obstacles you might encounter along the way.

  • Keywords: world development, challenge, future

6) “Tell us three things that are important to you. How did you arrive at this list? Will these things be important to you in ten years? Why?”

  • Keywords: background, values, interest, development, identity, future

Scholarship Essay Prompts ( Continued)

7) “What does it mean to you to be part of a minority community? What challenges has it brought and how have you overcome them? What are the benefits?”

  • Keywords: minority, community, challenge, growth

8) “Please explain how your experience volunteering and participating in community service has shaped your perspective on humanity. Elaborate on how these experiences have influenced your future ambitions and career choice.”

  • Keywords: community service, humanity, community, background, future, values, career

9) “Discuss in your essay any challenges or obstacles you have dealt with and overcome in life and how this will help you succeed in college and beyond. Describe how volunteer, community service or extra-curricular activities have shaped who you are today and what it has taught you. May also include future educational plans and career goals.”

  • Keywords: challenge, future, community service, interests, value, personal growth, career

How to Write a Scholarship Essay through Prompt Analysis

Let’s compare some prompts by keywords. You’ll notice that some prompts have a lot of overlap, such as prompts 1 and 4. Both have event, personal development, growth, and background as keywords . Prompt 4 includes the additional keyword challenge . This prompt explicitly asks you to explain how you have “overcome” a “personal hardship or catastrophic life event.” While prompt 1 is not so specific, it would be easy, even natural, to include this narrative arc in your response. This means depicting how you faced the thing that “made a big impact in your life.” In other words, these two essay prompts, though worded differently, allow you to tell the same story.

Other prompts provide potential overlap. In this case, it’s up to you to find and interpret these moments. You may consider the values, strengths, interests, and experiences you wish to relate. For example, prompts 7, 8, and 9 all mention community through different approaches. While prompt 7 focuses on one’s past involvement in a minority community, prompts 8 and 9 are more future-facing, and don’t mention minorities.

Scholarship Essay Examples (Continued)

Here, your best strategy involves answering prompts 8 and 9 together in a single scholarship essay. To do so, the essay would need to detail “a challenge or obstacle you have dealt with” (9) which has thus “shaped your perspective on humanity” (8). This narrative arc will thus inform your “future” educational and career plans (8 and 9). Note that prompt 9 allows you to mention extra-curriculars. However, I wouldn’t recommend it, since this would make your essay less relevant to prompt 8. After your essay is written, adapt it to align with prompt 7. Consider condensing the part about the future into one final sentence and focusing more on minority aspects of your community.

How to Scholarship Essay Avoid Burnout

The above tactic will allow you to avoid burnout by strategizing your essay approach ahead of time. In turn, you’ll be able to maximize your efforts from the get-go. You’ll also likely find that your essays become more complex and nuanced when you consider several prompts at once.

The next step involves editing. Refer back to the prompt, once you have a draft written. Ask yourself, did I answer the question fully? Do I need to edit this essay further to emphasize a particular point? Do I need to cut the essay down to fit a new word count? Contrarily do I need to bulk it up? If so, are there other essays in my portfolio from which I can borrow material? Strategic editing will allow you to respond to a large number of essays during peak essay-writing season.

Finally, you’ll notice that most essays require a word count between 250 to 600 words. It’s often easier to write a longer essay first. This will allow you to go into greater detail without censoring your ideas. You may find yourself including dialogue, scenery, emotions, and all sorts of other specifics that make an essay personal. As you whittle down this essay to comply with a similar prompt, you’ll want to identify which pieces of the essay do the most work to get your message across. Don’t simply condense everything by eliminating details, for details are often the most memorable aspects of an essay. More on this next.

How to Write a Scholarship Essay Using the Three Fs

The three Fs can be applied to any college essay, though they are particularily useful in scholarship essays. Why? Because the three Fs will enable you to impress readers and beat out other applicants. Ultimately, they’ll help you win financial support. Think of the three Fs as a checklist to go over, once you’ve completed an essay draft. Ask yourself, is my essay fabulous? Flawless? Fearless?

How to Write a Scholarship Essay (Continued)

If your essay is fabulous , it glitters with personality. It is detailed, unique, and does its best to highlight your impressive journey. If your essay lacks a little fab, ask yourself, how can I make this essay more enjoyable and memorable to read? If your essay is flawless , it lacks all spelling, syntactic and grammatical errors. It answers every aspect of the essay prompt, and leaves no room for vagueness or misunderstandings. To avoid flaws, give your essay to several people to proofread. Finally, if your essay is fearless , it is not afraid to get a little vulnerable. This may sound contradictory to the first F. On the contrary, this fearlessness refers to the confidence to tell your own story. A fearless story isn’t afraid to go deep, add complexity, or get emotional. It is unafraid to show why its author deserves a financial boost.

Scholarship Essay Example

Now that we’ve established how to approach the scholarship essay, let’s dive into a scholarship essay example. The scholarship essay below stems from a prompt we saw above: Describe a change you would like to make in the world. Tell us about how you would plan to make that change, and what obstacles you might encounter along the way (500 words).

My generation is growing up in a time of increased global turmoil. We’ve witnessed Brexit, the Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. elections, a series of refugee crises, and the invasion of Ukraine. It’s easy to liken this moment to Europe in the 1930s, which saw a spike in fascism and propaganda (their version of fake news). Only now, my generation must also contend with the hottest summers on record, raging forest fires, and the beginning of the 6 th extinction. It’s no wonder we deal with it all through increased skepticism and existential dread.

While I don’t have a simple solution, I believe most problems stem from ignorance. Xenophobia and racism, offshoots of ignorance, can be overcome by exposing isolated groups of people to greater diversity. This begins in the classroom. While dictators are hard to dispose of, education provides critical thinking skills, which allow citizens to make informed decisions when electing officials. Finally, developing a willingness to learn at an early age creates an instinct to continue learning throughout life. We desperately need intellectual flexibility if we are going to adapt to the planet’s needs as a world population and put a stop to industry-led fossil fuel burning.

Scholarship Essay Example (Continued)

The change I’d like to make is free, enhanced education for everyone, at every level, from elementary school to post-doctorate research institutes. To do so, I suggest defunding national militaries and channeling this spending into schools. Imagine if 80% of the 877 billion dollars the U.S. military spends annually went into learning. Combating fascism and climate change would look more feasible. And yet, no leader would agree to making their country more vulnerable by relinquishing arms and armies. Change must come from the people.

As the planet continues to heats up, and conflict over land increases, we must work together. The first step towards increased education is communicating this need for education: through journalism, on social media, in the streets. Next, I suggest lobbying politicians for incremental change. Finally, I believe a global grassroots movement to implement future-focused education, led by activists, educators, and philanthropists, would make this theoretical idea a tangible reality.

Last year, my mother, who never received a college education, decided to offer free gardening courses in our backyard. I quickly joined in. While teaching a handful of neighbors how to provide year-round food for pollinators may seem trivial, I’ve already seen positive repercussions. One conservative neighbor has set up an organization that collects and redistributes leftover produce from the markets to refugees. Another neighbor is now teaching middle schoolers how to cook and compost. These efforts have brought unusual strangers together and given visibility to our movement, #futurefocusededucation. I’ve seen it firsthand. The more we educate, the sooner we can combine our knowledge to create solutions.

Scholarship Essay Example Dissected

This scholarship essay succeeds at answering all parts of the prompt. It includes the change the author wants to make, and inevitable obstacles she’d face at the governmental and international level. These obstacles may sound insurmountable. Yet the essay shows that individuals are not powerless to enact change when they work together towards a common goal. The author provides various thoughtful steps we might take in order to prioritize education and peaceful collaboration.

Finally, the author portrays herself as someone personally invested in the political, humanitarian, and environmental state of the world. She proves that she’s already begun to make the changes she wants to see at the microscopic level. Overall, readers of this scholarship essay can see that this student is invested in bettering the world. This student would make for a proactive participant in her academic environment.

What’s Next?

Now that you have some inkling of how to write a scholarship essay and have reviewed of our scholarship essay examples, you may want to delve into more aid-related articles on the College Transitions Dataverse. You can read up on Need-Based Financial Aid Grants , and learn about Selective Colleges with Generous Scholarships . Furthermore, you may want to create your own Scholarship Timeline , in order to stay on top of the various deadlines. Good luck!

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Kaylen Baker

With a BA in Literary Studies from Middlebury College, an MFA in Fiction from Columbia University, and a Master’s in Translation from Université Paris 8 Vincennes-Saint-Denis, Kaylen has been working with students on their writing for over five years. Previously, Kaylen taught a fiction course for high school students as part of Columbia Artists/Teachers, and served as an English Language Assistant for the French National Department of Education. Kaylen is an experienced writer/translator whose work has been featured in Los Angeles Review, Hybrid, San Francisco Bay Guardian, France Today, and Honolulu Weekly, among others.

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Scholarship Essay Examples

With college tuition costs rising each year, many students apply for merit scholarships to help make college more affordable. However, merit scholarships can be competitive—and that’s where our scholarship essay examples come in. By reading our scholarship essay examples, you can learn what it takes to write an award-winning essay. 

Scholarships are an excellent opportunity for students to lessen their college tuition costs. Most merit scholarships require a brief application, usually including one or more essays. Below, we’ve rounded up our best scholarship essay examples.

Reading winning scholarship essay examples, especially scholarship essay examples about yourself, can help you begin the scholarship essay process. By reviewing essay examples, you can learn how to craft a strong essay. You’ll also get a better sense of what scholarship committees look for when they review applications.

In this guide to Scholarship Essay Examples, you’ll find tips on how to write the best scholarship essay, as well as:

  • Various scholarship essay examples about yourself
  • A strong scholarship essay sample about why I deserve the scholarship
  • Scholarship essay examples about financial need, and more!

We’ve included scholarship essay examples specific to schools, including UC Berkeley, as well as specific programs, like the SHPE scholarship. We’ll also discuss the different types of scholarships you’ll find on your scholarship search. 

Now, before we jump into our essay examples, let’s learn more about getting scholarship money for college.

What is a scholarship essay?

A scholarship essay is an essay you’ll include in your merit scholarship applications. In many ways, your scholarship essays might resemble your college essays. So, the scholarship essay format should seem familiar. 

The best scholarship essays will highlight who you are and why you deserve money for college. Scholarship essay prompts will ask you to include various information, from details about your background to explanations of why you deserve a scholarship.

Crafting a compelling, well-written essay can help you win substantial financial awards to help cover your college tuition costs. However, not all scholarship essays are the same. Later on, we’ll review different winning scholarship essay examples to show you what kind of essays you’ll write in your application process.

Types of Scholarships

There are many different types of scholarships available to students. You can find a variety of scholarship opportunities on scholarships websites. The earlier you start your scholarship search, the more scholarships you’ll find. 

While some scholarship applications accept applicants of all backgrounds and abilities, some have very specific eligibility guidelines. So, you may not be eligible for every scholarship. If you’re not sure whether or not you’re eligible, you can find eligibility information on most scholarships websites. 

Here are a few different scholarship types you may come across in your scholarship search:

  • Academic scholarships
  • Merit scholarships
  • Essay competitions
  • Community service scholarships
  • Military scholarships

Scholarship essay prompts will differ across programs. As you’ll see in our winning scholarship essay examples, the prompts can vary in word count and complexity. We’ll provide you with descriptive essay examples to help you get an idea of what to expect.

Merit-Based Scholarships

Most scholarships we’ll highlight in this article are merit-based scholarships . A merit-based scholarship is money awarded by a college or community organization based on your academic achievements. 

In contrast, a need-based scholarship is awarded based on a student’s financial need. If you are applying for financial aid, be sure to check out our scholarship essay examples about financial need. You’ll find both merit- and need-based scholarships on your scholarship search.     

To qualify for a merit-based scholarship, you generally must meet specific criteria. Scholarship committees look at your grades, academic achievements, extracurriculars, and even test scores. Need-based scholarships can have similar requirements, but they’re primarily concerned with your family’s financial status.

There are many merit-based scholarships available to help students afford college, including:

  • National merit scholarships
  • Gates Scholarship
  • Jack Kent Cooke Scholarship
  • Robertson Scholarship

Check out our guides on these popular merit-based scholarships for more details. There, you’ll find tips on how to write a winning essay. Our descriptive essay examples can also help prepare you to apply to these programs After all, while prompts vary, the scholarship essay format remains fairly standard. 

Finding scholarships

In this guide, we’ll highlight some scholarships you may be eligible for. However, make sure to check out the rest of our resources to help you approach the scholarship search. 

Some scholarships we’ll discuss include:

  • QuestBridge scholarship : helps low-income students attend elite colleges
  • Park scholarships : for students attending NC State University
  • SHPE scholarship : offers financial assistance for Hispanic students interested in STEM degrees. 

Scholarship essay examples about financial need will help you prepare for your scholarship applications. For instance, if you apply for the SHPE scholarship, you’ll include a lot of details about your background. 

You can also use scholarship search portals or scholarships websites to find other scholarships you may be eligible for. 

How do you write a scholarship essay?

While scholarship essay prompts may differ, you’ll usually stick to the same general scholarship essay format. 

One resource that can help you write the best scholarship essays and find money for college is Sallie Mae. Sallie Mae is a private lender offering undergraduate, graduate, and professional student loans. They also grant scholarships and provide aspiring college students with a scholarship search portal on their scholarships websites. Here’s what they have to say about having a winning scholarship essay format.

Organization

When writing a scholarship essay, it’s best to start with a scholarship essay format that organizes your thoughts. This will allow you to follow a plan that clearly and concisely gets your points across. You should begin your essay with a solid introduction. Then, introduce your supporting arguments and add an appropriate conclusion. 

A good scholarship essay clearly states why you deserve to win money for college with evidence to back up your argument. You’ll see how to do this in our scholarship essay sample about why I deserve the scholarship. The best scholarship essays will be original and honest. It should be written in an inspirational and positive tone, highlighting your strengths and capabilities. 

When you feel like you have put your best foot forward, you should ask others for their feedback. This can be from a teacher, counselor, or one of our advisors here at CollegeAdvisor! Proofread your final essay and make sure you’ve caught any spelling and grammatical errors before submitting your application.

Up next, we’ll get into our descriptive essay examples and the different scholarship essay prompts they responded to. 

By looking at scholarship essay examples, you can learn what exactly makes a good essay. So, let’s look at some descriptive essay examples written by students looking to secure money for college. 

First, we will walk you through scholarship essay examples about yourself. Then, we’ll look at a scholarship essay sample about why I deserve the scholarship. Lastly, we will provide you with scholarship essay examples about financial need. Remember to keep these scholarship essay examples in mind when writing essays of your own!

Scholarship Essay Examples About Yourself

Let’s take a closer look at some scholarship essay examples about yourself.

Scholarship essay prompts vary quite a bit, so make sure you understand what the prompt really asks of you. That way, you can answer the question or address the prompt in its entirety.

Some scholarship essay prompts may ask how the scholarship will make a difference for you. They may also ask about any contributions you have made to your community. 

Ready to look at some winning scholarship essay examples? Check out these scholarship essay examples below.

The first of our scholarship essays is for Phi Sigma Rho. Here’s the prompt: 

How do you promote Phi Sigma Rho and STEM on your campus or in your community? (300 words Max)

Phi sigma rho scholarship essay.

In my campus and community, I strive to promote Phi Sigma Rho and STEM by promoting Phi Rho’s values and sharing my experiences and passion for Phi Rho.

My involvement in the Women in Engineering Program (WEP) and Society of Women Engineers (SWE) has allowed me the opportunity to promote Phi Rho and STEM. These activities have given me insight into how to successfully create a network that will support and encourage women in engineering to continue their careers. 

Within WEP, I served as a sophomore orientation leader (Envoy), mentoring first-year women and assisting with program logistics. As an envoy, I was able to promote Phi Rho ideals of friendship and encouragement. I was also able to informally recruit for Phi Rho by sharing my experiences and passion for the sorority.

Within SWE, I was the Internal Relations Chair my freshmen year and am the Director of Member Engagement this year. Both roles are related to member engagement, allowing me to promote friendship within engineering. Member engagement is important for creating a community among female engineers. Similar to my envoy position, my leadership within SWE has allowed me to share my love for Phi Rho.

Additionally, my volunteer experience with Engineering Ambassadors (EA), a STEM outreach group, has allowed me to promote STEM in the community. In EA, I give presentations on engineering, speak on panels, and lead hands-on activities for K-12 students. EA has taught me strategies to promote STEM to children and teenagers.

Because of Phi Sigma Rho, I have the confidence to inspire and encourage the next generation of female engineers. I hold the values of scholarship, friendship, and encouragement in the highest regard and strive to embody those in every leadership position and volunteer role. Through SWE, WEP, and EA, I have promoted Phi Sigma Rho, its values, and STEM as a whole in both my campus and community.

This is, in many ways, a scholarship essay sample about why I deserve the scholarship. The writer clearly highlights how they’ve engaged with Phi Sigma Rho and how their values align with those of the organization. The writer also provides specific examples of their leadership positions, skills, and accolades. 

The next two of our scholarship essay examples about yourself are for the SHPE scholarship. Here they are: 

SHPE Scholarship essay example #1

Essay prompt:.

Summarize your life experiences and any challenges that have impacted your path to higher education. (250 Words) 

Essay Example:

I vividly remember the first day of First Grade because I didn’t know the Pledge of Allegiance like the rest of my classmates. Growing up in a Hispanic household, I had never learned what the pledge was. This was the beginning of several years of disconnect. 

From receiving weird looks when I told classmates my family opened Christmas gifts at midnight, to my parents’ confusion when I didn’t want them to speak Spanish in public, both sides of my life never understood the other. As a result, I always felt out of place in school, like I was behind in some way because I didn’t share the same upbringing as my classmates. In contrast, academics felt like a level playing field, something we were all learning together in the same way.

While I couldn’t tell you who won the super bowl, I could do mathematics or read just as well, if not better, than my classmates. Socially, I always felt out of place, but academically I was always comfortable, and as a result, I tried to excel in that area of my life. That desire to succeed created the relentless work ethic I have today and the appreciation I have for education.

Despite the lack of emphasis from my parents on schoolwork, I developed this sense of responsibility and persistence to pursue an education. Although my family’s Hispanic culture made my life difficult when I was younger, it made me a more resilient person.

More scholarship essay examples

Shpe scholarship essay example #2.

Discuss your educational and career aspirations as well as your ability to complete and achieve these goals. (250 words)

Using a degree in engineering, I hope to work on improving sustainability and efficiency in the aerospace industry by creating cheaper, safer, and more environmentally-conscious options.

Recently, Pratt and Whitney designed an engine that is 16% more efficient and will release 3600 less metric tons per airplane per year. Excitingly, it also greatly reduces the noise footprint of an airplane. Innovations like these will allow the aerospace industry to evolve and improve while reducing negative environmental impact. I hope to work at the forefront of this innovation, pushing the boundaries of improved engine performance and efficiency. 

Last semester, I started working in the Experimental and Computational Convection Laboratory on campus to learn more about turbines. Some current projects in the lab involve new turbine cooling techniques and additive manufactured heat exchangers. Throughout the course of my undergraduate career, I hope to learn more about the barriers facing improved engine and turbine efficiency. Following undergraduate, I plan to attend graduate school to gain a deeper knowledge of these topics. Following graduate school, I may go into industry working on turbines and jet engines. Due to beginning research early, I believe graduate school is an attainable educational goal.

The potential ability to make a difference in the environmental impact of the aerospace industry is exciting. To accomplish this, I know studying Mechanical Engineering will give me the skills necessary to fulfill my career goals.

Both of these scholarship essay examples use specific details to highlight the writer’s strengths, experiences, and accolades. In reading these winning scholarship essay examples, we get a sense of who the writer is both as a person and as a student. 

Scholarship Essay Sample about “Why I deserve the scholarship”

Another scholarship essay prompt you may come across is “why I deserve this scholarship.” A good scholarship essay clearly highlights why you deserve to win the scholarship and provides evidence to support your argument. 

Below, you’ll find scholarship essay samples about why I deserve the scholarship. You can use these as a guide to help you tackle your own scholarship essays. 

Here’s the first of our scholarship essay examples, which was used for the Park Scholarship: 

The Park Scholarship is an investment in the potential of young people. It prepares scholars to make lifelong contributions to communities, states, nations, and the world. Tell us a story that illustrates your potential to make these lifelong contributions. (What have you done that should compel us to invest in you?) (Max. 3,990 characters including spaces.)

Park scholarship essay example.

Coming from a Venezuelan family, I have always been able to connect with total strangers through Spanish. Whether I’m eating at a restaurant or volunteering, I am constantly stumbling upon other Spanish speakers. The ability to converse in their language allows me to bond with them in a way I couldn’t in English, something I do not take for granted. 

Because of my experience, I believe that learning a foreign language is an incredibly important skill. Being able to speak in a second language allows a person to understand another community and reach out to people within that community. Additionally, speaking a second language assists in appreciating other cultures. This appreciation is important for fostering open-mindedness, something America as a whole struggles with today. 

In my school district, foreign language classes are not offered until late middle school. Once in high school, many students drop the class. In addition, those who stay in the class often find that the classes provide little more than a basic understanding of the language and then become discouraged in their learning. On a larger scale, this issue affects America as a whole. Second language programs often come second in terms of funding and planning and are not encouraged as rigorously as other academic courses. As a result, many Americans are ignorant to the benefits of bilingualism and are unable to understand the viewpoint of those who are multilingual.

After my freshman year of high school, my frustration with my community’s lack of priority for second language learning culminated in my desire to take some sort of action to promote foreign language education. In my sophomore year, a classmate and I created and ran an introductory Spanish program, Spanish in the Spring, at my local library for young children in the district. I spent hours at home creating lesson plans, activities, themes, and advertisements for the program. I placed heavy emphasis on cultural aspects and the importance of the Spanish language in America and the world as a whole.

My purpose for this program was to introduce children at a young age to learning a foreign language, so their desire to learn would continue throughout their life. Through the program, I was also able to share my belief of the importance of learning a second language with the children, as well as their parents. After the final day of the program, I was thrilled when one parent mentioned their desire to learn a foreign language program themself. I felt that if I made an impact on one person or family, the entire program was worthwhile. 

Unfortunately, this past spring I was unable to continue the Spanish in the Spring program due to library scheduling restraints. However, I hopefully plan to offer the program again this spring with some changes that will improve and expand the experience. One of these changes will include the immersion of parents into the experience to encourage foreign language education as a family activity.

While this program was only offered once, the impact was immeasurable, for the children, for the cause of foreign language education, and for me.

This is another scholarship essay sample about why I deserve the scholarship. In it, the writer clearly and directly answers the prompt—that is, they highlight their potential to make a lifelong impact on members of their community. 

Ready for another scholarship essay example? Here’s the next one: 

How will a ScholarSHPE impact your life and education? (200 Words)

Shpe scholarship essay example.

Receiving a ScholarSHPE will give me the gift of time and opportunities. My parents are unable to support me financially throughout college due to large amounts of accrued debt. A ScholarSHPE will reduce my financial stress and allow me to improve my overall health as a result. It will also prevent the need to work several hours a week at a part-time job to pay for tuition, books, and living expenses, which will limit what I can do academically and outside of class. A ScholarSHPE will allow me to spend more time on research pursuits, engineering extracurriculars, volunteer work, and school work, instead of long hours at a part-time job. 

This essay sample is fairly straightforward. In it, the writer follows a clear scholarship essay format, explicitly answering the prompt. 

UC Berkeley Scholarships essay examples

Let’s look at some school-specific merit scholarship essay examples. 

At the University of California – Berkeley , students can apply for a variety of merit scholarships. These scholarships can help offset the cost of UC Berkeley tuition. 

Below, we’ve included various scholarship essay examples for the UC Berkeley scholarships. These UC Berkeley scholarships can help students cover their college tuition costs. This can make the UC Berkeley tuition less of a barrier for students hoping to attend. 

You’ll find a variety of UC Berkeley scholarships that can help you afford UC Berkeley tuition. Available UC Berkeley scholarships include: 

  • Berkeley Undergraduate Scholarship
  • Fiat Lux Scholarship
  • Middle Class Scholarship
  • Regents’ and Chancellor’s Scholarship

These are just a few ways to cover the cost of UC Berkeley tuition. UC Berkeley students also receive more than $10 million per year in outside scholarships to cover college tuition costs. If you are interested in exploring non-UC Berkeley scholarships, check out this list of outside scholarship resources . 

To help you get started, check out our winning UC Berkeley scholarship essay examples. The authors of these scholarship essay examples about financial need all won money to help cover their UC Berkeley tuition.

UC Berkeley scholarship essay examples

I am grateful to realize how fortunate I am today. All the loved ones around me and their acts of kindness have given me such a great life. I also realize the sacrifices that those around me have had to give up in order for me to succeed. It is because of this that I have realized what “paying it forward” truly means. I have been given the opportunity to make an impact in my community and I have fully taken advantage of this opportunity. I have been a volunteer for the Buddyball Sports Organization, which is a non-profit sports organization dedicated to providing the opportunity for children with developmental disabilities to play sports.

Growing up, watching and playing sports has been one of my greatest pleasures of life, so teaching these less fortunate kids has been something I have enjoyed doing every single weekend. On top of this, I am also both a volunteer at the South Orangetown Ambulance Corps and the Nyack Hospital. With the desire to pursue a career in the medical field, volunteering at these places has given me a great idea of what my career could look like in the near future. While all of these volunteer activities have had a significant impact on me, little did I know that this summer would truly make a lasting difference in my life. 

This past summer, my family decided to go on a vacation to India to visit my relatives. This was the first time in my life that I was going to India and this was only because my grandmother came down with Parkinson’s disease and was extremely sick. Little did I know at that time that my visit to India would be a life-changing experience. Never could have I imagined such a filthy village. Everywhere I looked, there was garbage and to make matters worse, no one seemed to do anything to try to ameliorate the repugnant image of my home country.

While I realized on my flight home that I was not going to be able to make a difference and help my community back in India, there was nothing stopping me from doing so right here in Rockland County, New York. When I was told that I would have the opportunity to help organize and direct “Make a Difference Rockland,” I joyfully accepted! Make a Difference Rockland is a free public meet and greet for all local non-profits and other government agencies in an attempt to promote different community service opportunities within the public. By gathering all the local non-profit organizations and giving them a chance to present themselves, people learn more about all of the local community service opportunities that are available to them. This way, the community will be able to recruit volunteers and will not have to suffer through calamitous conditions.

As one of the people in charge of organizing, it was my responsibility to adequately contact, invite and help prepare for hundreds of people. Once I gathered their contact information, I had to ask each one of these places if they would be interested in joining the fair. If interested, I had to also prepare a table for them to present themselves at the fair. The feeling of bringing all of these community service groups together brought me a feeling of happiness that I will never forget. 

The best scholarship essays will teach the reader about who the writer is, what they care about, and why they deserve a scholarship. The essay above does just that—it highlights the writer’s background and describes how they give back to their community. 

Next, let’s dig into a few more scholarship essay examples. 

If you’re interested in more descriptive essay examples, keep reading. 

Reading a ton of winning scholarship essay examples is a great way to pick up on what makes them winners. Over time, you’ll start to notice how the details, tone, and flow all work together to tell a story.

Below, you’ll find a few more scholarship essay examples. Our first one is from the NC Parks Scholarship. Here’s the prompt:

What do you do to serve your community? Why do you do the service that you do? What impact have you made? What challenges or insights have your service contributions given you? (Max. 3,990 characters including spaces.) 

Community-focused scholarship essay example #1.

“What are the boys like in high school?” “Is it easy to get a boyfriend?” Sighing, the other frustrated leaders and I look at each other as we read the questions posed by the younger girls. Every year at Girls’ Night Out (GNO), a program that introduces and prepares eighth-grade girls for high school, the girls question the leaders about relationships and dating ad nauseum, irritating other leaders to the point of ignoring the questions. 

Giving each question a careful and deliberate answer is often difficult, but instead of disregarding the issue, I try to offer my most sincere and honest advice. Originally, when I began as a group leader in the program I would give the same response, “You shouldn’t worry about boys. Instead, enjoy your friends, and do things you enjoy.” While that advice is true, it is often not the answer that will satisfy the girls. Through many years in the program, I have learned that advice is not “one size fits all”; it must be individualized to the person’s needs. Now, when faced with a question about dating, I respond with more questions before giving “words of wisdom”.

Many times I am able to understand the perspective of the middle school student, allowing me to give advice accordingly. Supplying proper advice about sensitive topics is one of the most impactful parts of GNO. As a role model and positive influence for the girls, I largely impact their ideas and perception of the environment when entering high school. In addition to teaching the students valuable lessons, volunteering at GNO has taught me that various perspectives may present themselves identically. To better understand those around me, it is important that I look beyond the surface for the other person’s viewpoint.

Beyond understanding other viewpoints from GNO, I have learned from other service that understanding a person’s situation is essential for providing exceptional assistance. Through Key Club, I volunteer many times a year at the local food pantry. As a volunteer, I help the recipients “shop” at the small grocery store using a point system. The process takes up a lot of time because shoppers do not always know what they want. Originally I  thought this was a poor design. I believed it would be much more efficient to just hand out the food rather than giving out points and shopping with the food pantry recipients.

Upon expressing my opinion to one of the adult food pantry staff, he explained to me that the grocery store aspect of the store taught the recipients life skills. Additionally, by giving them autonomy over what food they “bought”, they retained a sort of independence, an important skill to have if they find themselves above the income level required to use the food pantry.

The next time I volunteered I took note of the skills presented. Budgeting of points, deciding whether or not they needed something, determining the quality of the fruit, and decision-making of choosing extra food or toiletries, were all skills that those above the poverty line have ingrained. For those who have been using food pantries and other assistance for prolonged periods of time, these skills are not so natural. As a result, teaching the people means after they no longer need the services of the food pantry, they have valuable skills necessary for their independence.

From this experience, I learned an important lesson: helping people is not just giving them what they need at the moment, but understanding what they will need in the future and providing that as well. After realizing this, I emphasize the abilities that the food pantry teaches whenever I dedicate my time. By doing that, I am positively affecting the development of those skills. 

When reflecting on the various ways I have served my community, one thing stands out to me: I always understand another viewpoint or gain a new perspective afterwards. For me, the ability to look at something from different angles is an unparalleled talent, and one of the most important skills a person can have.

Describe your volunteer or community experience with SHPE or other organizations and any internships you have held.  (250 Words)

Community-focused scholarship essay example #2.

In SHPE, I have been involved in planning the Penn State College of Engineering STEP-UP (Student Transition Engineering Program at University Park) Program as a chair. The STEP-UP program helps students from Penn State branch campuses smoothly transition to the University Park campus through a 3-day program in the spring. The program introduces them to engineering resources, other engineering students, and provides professional development. Due to COVID-19, this year it was held virtually. 

Within the Society of Women Engineers and the Women in Engineering Program, I have volunteered at different STEM events in the community for elementary school students. I am also currently serving as an Envoy (a mentorship and logistical position) for the Women in Engineering Program Orientation. Additionally, I participate in many of SWE’s service events, such as donating and collecting donations, cleaning up areas on and around campus, and visiting nursing homes.

On campus, I am also involved with Engineering Ambassadors (EA), a group that does STEM outreach around Pennsylvania from the elementary school to high school level. EA goes virtually or in person to schools, does engineering presentations and activities, and answers questions.

Prior to COVID-19, I had secured an internship with Pratt and Whitney, however, they had to cancel their internship program. As a result, I was fortunate enough to obtain a Process Quality Engineering internship at Brentwood Industries for summer 2020.

Both of these scholarship essay examples highlight how the writers have given back to their communities. These winning scholarship essay examples highlight the writers’ strengths. In doing so, they highlight why these writers deserve help with college tuition costs. 

Reflecting on scholarship essay format

As important as the content of your essay is, your scholarship essay format is equally important. As you write, be sure to adhere to the scholarship essay format guidelines provided to you. 

However, there are some things all of the best scholarship essays have in common. Here are some general tips, tricks, and outlines to help you in your own writing process.

Three scholarship essay writing tips:

  • Word counts are hard to adhere to, but the other applicants must adhere to them, too. Make sure every word counts. 
  • When you write a solid essay, you can repurpose some of your key points, including specific anecdotes and details, in other scholarship applications.
  • Writing a good essay helps you solidify who you are and what you want. This sets you up for success in the scholarship application process and beyond. 

Three essential elements to include in your essay:

  • State your goals. Scholarship committees are investing in your future and your potential. To take a chance on you, they need to know your plan and what you want to do with your award. 
  • Establish an implicit or explicit link between your goals and the scholarship you are applying for. Describe to the committee how the specific scholarship will help you attain your goals. Give them a tangible reason as to why you deserve their investment. 
  • Share your story. Use personal details about your experiences that highlight your identity and objectives. How have you pursued your goals and prepared for your future? How will the scholarship help you going forward? Get personal and be honest.

Storytelling in your essay

Some of the best scholarship essays utilize good storytelling strategies. You should share the details of your personal story in a narrative, using a logical order. Remember, telling personal details about yourself and your goals does not mean simply restating your resume!

By the end of the essay, the scholarship committee should have an in-depth sense of why you applied. You should reveal:

  • When and how you arrived at your future goals
  • Your motivations to accomplish these objectives
  • What traits or skills you have developed along the way
  • The meaningful experiences that drive you to your goals
  • Any personal challenges you have faced and how you have overcome them
  • What has shaped you and your worldview

These details humanize you and show your complexity as a person and an applicant. It’s helpful to use anecdotes and personal experiences to give life to facts and details about yourself. Sharing real-life experiences will help make your essay more interesting and more fun to read.

Creating your scholarship essay format

Once you have thought about what you want to say, start thinking about your scholarship essay format. You may start by making a list of what your reader may be interested in:

  • How you spend your time
  • Your accomplishments
  • What your passions are, etc.

Start by brainstorming everything you may want to include in your essay. Then, think about whether the stories you include support your arguments. Ask yourself, “What did I learn?” or “How did this get me closer to my goals?”. These reflections help the reader connect to your purpose for writing. 

Make sure to organize your thoughts in a narrative order. However, there isn’t just one way to write an essay. So, don’t limit yourself to one version of your story. You may find yourself writing multiple drafts before you get to your final scholarship essay format.

Editing and proofreading your essay

When you think you have finished, be sure to proofread and edit to ensure it’s ready to be submitted. Check that you’ve adhered to all the scholarship essay format guidelines (like the word count). 

Reviewing also includes getting input from others! An outside reader’s opinion can help you confirm your essay effectively communicates your ideas.

Tips for scholarship essays

You may notice some similarities between the scholarship essay examples about yourself we’ve provided. That’s because the authors of the best scholarship essays all use similar strategies to make their essays great. 

Here are 5 tips from U.S. News to help you make all of your scholarship essays stand out:

Tips for writing stand-out scholarship essays

1. get personal and be specific.

The best scholarship essays will share an authentic story with impactful details. The key is to be yourself and not shy away from personal details. The more the committee gets to know about you, the more likely they are to invest in your future. You want your essay to offer a genuine, in-depth look into who you are as a person.

2. Tell a story

Your essay should be more than a collection of facts—it should tell a story. That means having a solid introduction that grabs the reader’s attention from the very start. Then, you should include a logical flow of experiences or details. By the end of your essay, you want your reader to have learned something valuable about you.  

3. Tailor the scholarship essay to the prompt

Some of your scholarship essay prompts may be similar across different scholarship applications. However, it’s important that your essay is specific to each prompt and answers the question entirely. While you can repurpose an essay you’ve already written as inspiration or a starting point, be extra attentive when doing so.

4. Don’t tailor yourself to the reader

Many students fall into the trap of telling a story they think scholarship foundation committees want to hear. Instead, stay true to yourself as you craft your scholarship application essays. Don’t tell your reader what you think they want to hear—just tell them who you are. 

5. Follow directions

This final tip may arguably be the most important. Above all else, students should follow instructions. This means adhering to the scholarship essay format guidelines and word count. It also means answering the essay prompt in its entirety. Application readers can be easily frustrated by a student’s failure to follow directions. This could reflect poorly on you and your essay in the long run. 

Use these tips to guide you as you approach the scholarship essay format. 

Scholarship Essay Examples – Final Thoughts

We hope our roundup of scholarship essay examples has shown you how to approach your scholarship applications. With rising college costs, scholarships should be a part of your college financial planning process. Take the time to do your own scholarship search based on your specific interests. You can find plenty of scholarships to apply to on scholarships websites and college financial aid pages. There are many different scholarships websites to help you with your search. 

Save this guide

Feel free to save this guide and review our scholarship essay examples about yourself and about financial need. You can always look back on our scholarship essay sample about why I deserve the scholarship when writing your own essay. 

Start with an outline that organizes your thoughts. Then, make sure your essay is clear and concise. Be original and honest, and include personal details and anecdotes when appropriate. State why you deserve to win the scholarship. Then, support your claim in a way that makes a scholarship committee invested in your future. 

We’re here to help

Don’t forget to proofread your essay and ask others for their feedback. When in doubt, reach out to our advisors at CollegeAdvisor. Our team is always here to help support you find and apply for scholarships!

This article was written by Bailey Bennet. Looking for more admissions support? Click here to schedule a free meeting with one of our Admissions Specialists. During your meeting, our team will discuss your profile and help you find targeted ways to increase your admissions odds at top schools. We’ll also answer any questions and discuss how CollegeAdvisor.com can support you in the college application process.

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​How to Write a Scholarship Essay (With Examples)

​How to Write a Scholarship Essay (With Examples)

  • 6-minute read
  • 22nd August 2022

Writing a scholarship essay can seem like a daunting task. For many students , higher education isn’t possible without financial aid, and scholarships are especially valuable because the money awarded doesn’t have to be paid back.

Even though the stakes are high, there are a few manageable steps you can take to ensure you write a great essay to submit with your scholarship applications. We have a few top tips to help you get started, along with writing examples to demonstrate some key points. Check out our guide below to learn more.

A scholarship essay is a great opportunity to present yourself and your accomplishments in an impactful way. It is, therefore, essential to be aware of each scholarship deadline so you can allow sufficient time for the writing process, which typically includes the following:

·   Read the essay prompt and brainstorm ideas.

·   Create an outline covering the key points you want to address.

·   Write a draft and seek feedback from trusted teachers, family, or friends.

·   Make any necessary revisions and proofread before submitting your final draft.

Scholarship review committees will be able to tell if you rushed through your essay, so give yourself the best chance of winning an award by staying organized and on schedule!

Who and What?

Researching the scholarship provider and diligently reviewing the essay prompts can help you write an essay that makes you stand out as a top candidate.

1. Who are you writing to?

Learn more about the organization offering the scholarship and why the scholarship fund was created.

For instance, a scholarship may honor its organization’s founder, and the founder’s qualities (e.g., integrity, good citizenship, and leadership) might be the same values guiding the scholarship program as a way to continue the founder’s legacy.

If you identify with any of the same qualities, you can incorporate those keywords into your essay to demonstrate your shared values. Remember to remain authentic, though!

2. What are you writing about?

You must read the essay prompt carefully to identify precisely what you need to accomplish with your essay.

Some prompts ask about your career goals and how you plan to achieve them or your achievements and the challenges you overcame to reach them.

You’ll write about common topics across multiple scholarship applications – some may even be similar to your college admission essay – so you can repurpose your essays as long as you’re diligent about tailoring each one to its prompt.

Your application will likely require other items such as transcripts and test scores, but the essay is your chance to offer something entirely unique. Write about key experiences that highlight who you are and what you’ve accomplished, or you could mention something you’re passionate about.

Remember to follow any specific instructions regarding length and formatting, and be sure to answer all questions listed in the prompt. It can hurt your chances if you’re unable to show the committee that you’re detail-oriented and can follow directions.

Structuring Your Essay

Your essay should follow a standard format that includes a clear beginning, middle, and end. Typically, you should:

·   Establish your main idea in the introduction.

·   Include a separate body paragraph for each key point that supports your main idea.

·   Draw it all together and revisit your main idea in the conclusion.

Scholarship committees read thousands of essays each year. And often, there are hundreds of applicants for an award that can only go to a select few candidates. Writing a powerful introduction and conclusion gives you a chance to make a lasting impression.

1. Introduction

Write an introduction that hooks the reader and encourages them to stay engaged till the end of your essay. Don’t be afraid to add personal, tangible details and an anecdote .

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For example, if you’re writing about your career goals, demonstrate why you’ve chosen that career:

It was the biggest game of the season, and the stands were packed despite the bitter cold. My heart was beating louder than all of the cheers, and I was filled with the anticipation that one more run into the end zone would give us the championship. Everything went silent during that run when the tackle shattered both my leg and my dreams.

My world has always revolved around being an athlete – until one day it couldn’t. I spent many frustrating months rehabilitating, but I got through it because of my dedicated physical therapist, who helped me recover both physically and mentally after a devastating loss. And it was that profound experience that led me to pursue a career in the exercise sciences.

2. Conclusion

The conclusion is the last thing your reader will see, so it’s another opportunity for you to make your essay memorable.

Rather than summarizing with a general statement such as “this is why you should award me a scholarship,” perhaps explain what the financial assistance will help you achieve:

My parents never had the opportunity to go to college, and neither did their parents. I watched them work hard every day just to make ends meet, and I often questioned whether I could achieve anything more. Nevertheless, I spent four years working as hard as I saw my parents work, and I beat the odds by getting accepted to college. A scholarship could be invaluable for me, as it would allow me to attend and be successful without having to worry about finances.

Persuasive Writing

While you don’t want your scholarship essay to be overly informal, you’re certainly allowed to add some creativity and personal details to help persuade your readers.

One of the best ways to do so is by writing with the modes of persuasion ; that is, ethos, pathos, and logos.

Demonstrate your credibility. Use your real-life experiences and interesting details to establish, for example, how you’ve contributed to your community:

I saw how much bullying was impacting so many students at my school, so I founded my high school’s first anti-bullying club and organized campaigns to bring attention to the harm that people can cause one another.

Evoke an emotional response. The “show, don’t tell ” writing technique, which involves using descriptive words when discussing actions and emotions, can be especially useful here:

During one of our first awareness assemblies, the theater was completely silent as I read aloud anonymous stories from students about the scars bullying had left on their lives. Tears were stinging in my eyes as I described the struggles my classmates were facing, but I persevered to give a voice to those who didn’t have one.

Convey your point with reason and facts. Use statistics to demonstrate what you’ve accomplished:

In the first year alone, our club improved students’ feelings of safety and acceptance at our school by 53%.

Proofreading and Editing

Don’t forget the importance of proofreading your essay, as spelling and grammar mistakes can leave a bad impression on your reader. Our expert editors can help ensure your writing is clear, concise, and error-free. Give yourself a better chance at impressing scholarship committees by submitting a free trial document today!

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10 Winning Scholarship Essay Examples From Real Students

Make your application shine.

Only at the ice rink could I be myself; the feeling of the cold rink breeze embracing me, the ripping sound of blades touching the ice, even the occasional ice burning my skin as I fell—these were my few constants.

Writing a scholarship essay can be intimidating. The competition is fierce and the stakes are high, so students are bound to feel the pressure. It may be helpful, therefore, to look at essays that were successful. What did those students do to impress the committee? These scholarship essay examples will give you a better idea of how to make an application shine! 

Tips for Writing a Scholarship Essay

We’ve put together a whole guide for how to write a scholarship essay , so if you haven’t read it already, definitely give it a look! In addition, here are some quick tips to help students get started. 

Carefully read the rules

The last thing you need is to be disqualified from winning a scholarship because you didn’t do the right thing. 

Start early

Don’t wait until the last minute to start researching and applying for scholarships. Give yourself plenty of time to work through the process. 

Get to know the provider

Think of the scholarship provider as your target audience. You want to tailor your essay to impress them, so do your research. What kinds of candidates are they looking for? What causes do they support? Dig deep for the information you need!

Think about who you are, what you want to say, and how to appeal to the scholarship committee. Write everything down and then choose the best ideas. 

The scholarship committee will be reviewing many applications. How can you make yours unforgettable? Highlight your strongest assets, share hard lessons if they showcase your growth as a person and/or student, and be honest. Never lie in a scholarship essay!

Be professional

Consider this the most important academic paper you’ve ever written. Don’t use slang or casual language. Submit a properly formatted essay that’s been well-edited and proofread by multiple people.

One last tip

Don’t reuse scholarship essays! Yes, it’s time-consuming, but students need to put the same effort into every application. Use the same process and it will get faster and easier every time!

Scholarship Essay Examples

Afc visionary scholarship essay by nicole kuznetsov.

Award Amount: $5,000

Essay prompt: Why do you want to go to college? Why is it important to you?

Why it was successful: The  beauty of this essay is that it’s well-organized and simple. Nicole Kuznetsov chose to outline her story by using chronology and provided a clean, concise story following a linear path.

As a child, my life had structure. Coloring books had lines, letters took on very specific shapes, and a system of rules governed everything from board games to the classroom.

North Coast Section Foundation Scholarship Essay by Christine Fung

Award Amount: $1,000

Why it was successful: Christine Fung masterfully shared how her upbringing instilled strong values, a love for education, and a passion for medicine .

The more involved I became, the more I learned as a leader and as a person.

The Bill Browning Scholarship Essay by Gabby DeMott

Award Amount: $10,000

Essay prompt: Discuss an accomplishment, event, or realization that sparked a period of personal growth and a new understanding of yourself or others.

Why it was successful: Gabby DeMott shared her experiences with personal growth and overcoming fears in Germany. She also appealed to the very human feeling of wanting to belong in a way that was inspiring. 

Never have I felt so accepted while being an outsider, so proud of a country that isn’t even mine, so part of something I didn’t really belong to.

Life Happens Scholarship Essay by Emily Trader

Award Amount: $15,000

Essay prompt: How has the death of a parent or guardian impacted your life financially and emotionally? Be sure to describe how the loss of your parent/guardian impacted your college plans, and explain how the lack of adequate (or any) life insurance coverage has impacted your family’s financial situation.

Why it was successful: Emily Trader fully addressed the prompt in honest, beautiful detail. She knew her audience and tailored her essay to appeal to them while telling her compelling story. 

If this devastating experience has taught me anything, it is this: financial planning for these situations is absolutely invaluable.

Change a Life Foundation Scholarship Essay by Isabella Mendez-Figueroa

Essay prompt: Please explain how your experience volunteering and participating in community service has shaped your perspective on humanity. Elaborate on how these experiences have influenced your future ambitions and career choice.

Why it was successful: Isabella Mendez-Figueroa shared an empowering story about her parents overcoming financial adversity so that she and her sister could be the first in their family to go to college. 

As I’ve grown I’ve learned to fight my own monsters but I now also battle the ones that frighten my parents, the monsters of a world that they weren’t born into.

Giva Scholarship Essay by Joseph Lee

Essay prompt: Who is (or what makes) a good doctor?

Why it was successful: Joseph Lee offered a captivating , personal story that was essentially a list of things that make someone a good doctor without it feeling boring or calculated. 

I learned such lessons in the purest manner possible, by being a patient myself, and will use them to guide me in all future patient encounters, as I strive to be a

New York University College of Arts and Science Scholarship by Ana

Award amount: $39,500 

Essay prompt: Explain something that made a big impact in your life.

Why it was successful: Ana discussed how early experiences w ith learning difficult things has contributed to her passion for teaching and supporting students. 

Only at the ice rink could I be myself; the feeling of the cold rink breeze embracing me, the ripping sound of blades touching the ice, even the occasional ice burning my skin as I fell—these were my few constants.

The Fund for Education Abroad Rainbow Scholarship Essay  by Steven Fisher

Award amount: $7,500

Essay prompt: The Fund for Education Abroad is committed to diversifying education abroad by providing funding to students who are typically under-represented in study abroad. Please describe how you and/or your plans for study abroad could be viewed as under-represented.

Why it was successful: Steven Fisher’s powerful essay   connected his realizations about his own sexual identity with embracing the beautiful diversity found all around the world. 

My growth as a person was exponential. I rewrote so many areas of my life where I didn’t do things I wanted because of social conditioning.

Women’s World Banking Founder’s Scholarship Essay by Rosaisha Ozoria

Essay prompt: Write about your hopes for the future of women and girls worldwide.

Why it was successful: Rosaisha Ozoria   focused on a very specific topic , financial literacy for Hispanic women, and emphasized its importance and relevance to her own life. 

This is a tremendous goal, but for me, it is an opportunity to make a difference – in my neighborhood and for my Spanish community.

The Millennium Gates Last Dollar Scholarship Essay by Famyrah Lafortune

Award amount: $3,500

Essay prompt: Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” —Nelson Mandela Describe a change you would like to make in the world. Tell us about how you would plan to make that change, and what obstacles you might encounter along the way.

Why it was successful: Famyrah Lafortune starts with a strong statement about ending racial inequality and then details the steps she’ll take to make it happen. 

By raising awareness of racial disparities that occur everywhere, I might encourage a new wave of change in our country ...

Do you have any great scholarship essay examples? Share them below!

Plus, check out  the ultimate guide to college scholarships, want more suggestions be sure to subscribe to our newsletters ..

Need money for college? These scholarship essay examples will help your application stand out over the competition!

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How to Start a Scholarship Essay (With Examples)

scholarship essay example pdf

Will Geiger is the co-founder of Scholarships360 and has a decade of experience in college admissions and financial aid. He is a former Senior Assistant Director of Admissions at Kenyon College where he personally reviewed 10,000 admissions applications and essays. Will also managed the Kenyon College merit scholarship program and served on the financial aid appeals committee. He has also worked as an Associate Director of College Counseling at a high school in New Haven, Connecticut. Will earned his master’s in education from the University of Pennsylvania and received his undergraduate degree in history from Wake Forest University.

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scholarship essay example pdf

Bill Jack has over a decade of experience in college admissions and financial aid. Since 2008, he has worked at Colby College, Wesleyan University, University of Maine at Farmington, and Bates College.

scholarship essay example pdf

Maria Geiger is Director of Content at Scholarships360. She is a former online educational technology instructor and adjunct writing instructor. In addition to education reform, Maria’s interests include viewpoint diversity, blended/flipped learning, digital communication, and integrating media/web tools into the curriculum to better facilitate student engagement. Maria earned both a B.A. and an M.A. in English Literature from Monmouth University, an M. Ed. in Education from Monmouth University, and a Virtual Online Teaching Certificate (VOLT) from the University of Pennsylvania.

How to Start a Scholarship Essay (With Examples)

As an admissions officer, I reviewed thousands of essays for students seeking admission and scholarships. The essay is one of the most important parts of the scholarship application process–a strong essay can go a long way. However, with so much competition, it is important for your scholarship essay to stand out. That’s why it’s important for you to start a scholarship essay off right!

There are some very simple things that you can do to ensure that your essay is engaging from the very first sentence. In fact, beginning your essay with an exciting opening is one of the most important things you can do, because it will immediately distinguish your essay from the others. 

Keep on reading to learn more about how you can nail the very first sentence and start your essay off right!

Engage the reader with the first sentence

No matter what type of essay you are writing, you will want to ensure that the very first line grabs the attention of the reader. One of the biggest mistakes that students make when starting their essay is simply restating the prompt. This is bland and boring. 

Now, you might be wondering, “how do I engage the reader with the very first line of my essay?”. The good news is that there are several ways that you can do this that are very simple to do. 

Related:  How to answer scholarship essay questions about your career goals

Begin with dialogue

First, you could begin your essay with conversation. This can be an interesting and unexpected way to start your scholarship essay. Maybe someone asked you an unexpected question? Perhaps you were having an interesting conversation with a friend or family member? Either way, dialogue can be a powerful tool to start your essay.

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Put the reader in your shoes.

Alternatively, you can choose to start your essay by placing the reader right in your shoes and show them something from your life. Appeal to the senses and show the reader what you see, hear, smell, or taste. These specific details will help your essay come to life and make it even more memorable. 

Also recommended: What’s the best scholarship essay format?

Scholarship essay introduction example

Next,  we’ll look at a specific example of how you can open up your essay. Let’s say you are applying for the Questbridge scholarship program . One of the essays that you will be asked is:

We are interested in learning more about you and the context in which you have grown up, formed your aspirations, and accomplished your academic successes. Please describe the factors and challenges that have most influenced you. How are they shaping your future aspirations?

You might be tempted to rephrase the question and start your essay with something like:

“I have grown up in a rural context and this has formed my aspirations and allowed me to accomplish academic success…”

This is generic and will not engage your reader at all. 

Instead, what if you started off your essay with something like this:

“I look outside my bedroom window and see Henry, my favorite chicken, pecking at something in the dirt.” 

Makes a big difference, right? As a reader, you are probably wondering: why does this person have chickens outside their bedroom window? Why did they name this particular chicken Henry?

See also: Here are our top writing & essay scholarships for students!

Keep the ending of your essay in mind as you write the opening

While crafting your opening, be open to ideas about how to close your essay. There is no need to stress about the ending now, but being mindful of effective ways to end an essay is always a good idea. Say you are opening your scholarship essay with Henry the chicken. Is there a way for Henry to make an impactful appearance at the end of the essay to close things out in a way that perfectly wraps everything up? The key is for the essay ending to be meaningful and memorable for the reader. 

Don’t miss: Our free scholarship search tool

If you can’t think of a “wow” scholarship essay beginning, keep writing!

Sometimes, we know what we want to say, point by point, but we are not ready to be creative when it comes to opening an essay. In that case, keep writing! There is always the option of going back and crafting an engaging opening after your essay is written. Simply write your main idea where the first paragraph would be to guide you as you write. After, go back when your creative juices are flowing, and craft the amazing opening (and closing) that your scholarship essay deserves!

Final thoughts

As shown, there are many questions that we as readers will have after reading an engaging essay opening such as the one just shared; We want to learn more about the student who is writing this essay. After all, as a writer trying to stand out in a pile of essays, that is our main goal. 

We hope that you have a better understanding of how to start a scholarship essay so you can maximize your chances of winning scholarships!

Additional resources

Scholarships360 is the go-to for all things college admissions and scholarships! Wondering how to write a 250 word essay and how to write a 500 word essay ? Curious how to write an essay about yourself ? Wow, do we have the resources to help! Additionally, check out our free scholarship search tool to help you finance your college education. Best of luck to you and your future endeavors! 

Key Takeaways

  • The first sentence of the essay is what makes the reader want to continue reading 
  • Engage the reader by appealing to the senses
  • Create a sense of wonder in your essay, making the reader want to learn more about you
  • Keep the ending of the essay in mind as you craft the beginning

Frequently asked questions about how to start a scholarship essay

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Scholarship Essay Guide

Scholarship Essay Examples

Last updated on: Feb 9, 2023

Amazing Scholarship Essay Examples for Your Help

By: Dorothy M.

Reviewed By: Jacklyn H.

Published on: Sep 1, 2020

Scholarship Essay Examples

When it comes to paying for college fees, a scholarship is the best option you can get to finance your studies. Scholarships offer you money that you never have to repay. But, here is a twist; you need to compete with several candidates.

Hundreds of students go to college every year, and not everyone can afford the expenses required for completing the degree. The need-based scholarships help students by providing free money to complete their studies. However, getting financial aid is not that simple; you need to convince the committee members to grant you the scholarship.

When you apply for the scholarship, the first thing you need to do is write a winning  scholarship essay . The whole process of a scholarship application is daunting, and students can feel overwhelming. However, the most important part of the application is writing an essay that should be well thought out.

This blog will walk you through many winning scholarship essay examples that will help you write your essay. So read the examples carefully to understand the whole process and structure of a scholarship essay.

Scholarship Essay Examples

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Scholarship Essay Examples for Students

Writing a good scholarship essay is the first step you make towards getting financial aid. It gives you an opportunity to showcase your abilities and your accomplishments other than academic grades and scores. It is a great chance for you to show the committee members that you deserve this scholarship. You can show them the real person behind the application and convince them that you are the perfect candidate.

Students who apply for scholarships usually have the same resume, grades, and achievements. The committee is tired of reading the same essay and stories every year, and now they don’t even bother to read the complete essay. They just read the first few lines and decide whether they should move forward or reject the essay. Therefore, you need to grab their attention in the beginning by giving them unique or interesting information about you.

Below you can find some amazing scholarship essay examples to help you understand what you should be writing in your essay.

Scholarship Essay Format Examples

For writing an incredible scholarship essay, you need to follow the formatting guidelines. If you are unable to do so, you won’t be able to make a mark on your reader’s mind. The scholarship committee is very strict about the formatting and structure of the scholarship essay.

Therefore, you need to make sure that your essay is well structured and properly formatted according to the guidelines. You need to be careful while writing your essay because it is the only chance you shine and be noticed by the committee. The scholarship committee members look for something unique and amazing about you that sets you apart from other candidates.

SCHOLARSHIP ESSAY OUTLINE FORMAT

How to Write a Scholarship Essay - Examples

Whether you are writing the scholarship essay for the first time or have written it before, you still need guidance. There is no rule or procedure that ensures your essay is right or wrong. However, there are some tips and guidelines that you can follow to write a good essay. If you have an amazing story to share and follow the tips, you can easily write an impressive essay.

Here is the step-by-step guide on how to write a scholarship essay with examples. Check out the samples given below to learn the procedure and write a perfect essay.

HOW TO START A SCHOLARSHIP ESSAY - EXAMPLE

HOW TO WRITE A SCHOLARSHIP ESSAY - EXAMPLE

HOW TO END A SCHOLARSHIP ESSAY - EXAMPLE

High School Scholarship Essay Examples

Middle school or high school students usually do not have enough skills to write a good scholarship essay. They always struggle with writing assignments and try to get away with it through backdoors. But you do not have to worry as we have provided some interesting and effective examples for your convenience. These examples will show you how to structure your essay that impresses the reader.

You can write your essay without following guidelines and examples, but are you sure that your essay will grant you the aid? Do you have the confidence that your essay is impressive enough that it will definitely get you financial aid?

Well, you may have an interesting story to tell, but if you do not follow the guidelines, you will not be able to perfect your essay. Therefore, it is essential to read some sample essays so that you don’t have any trouble writing your story. Read the scholarship essay examples for high school students given below to have a better understanding.

HIGH SCHOOL SCHOLARSHIP ESSAY SAMPLE

SCHOLARSHIP ESSAY EXAMPLE FINANCIAL NEED

College Scholarship Essay Examples

Scholarships are mostly required for college education as they are more expensive than high school. Many college students work part-time jobs to cope with their financial needs and support their families. This results in bad academic performance and poor grades, as they do not have enough time to study. Scholarship opportunities are a kind of blessing in disguise for such students.

The pro tip for college students is to write a college essay and reuse it in a scholarship essay for a similar essay prompt. It will not just save you time but help you produce a better essay worthy of a scholarship grant. It will also help you show your strengths and abilities and become a scholarship winner.

The example given below will help you write a compelling scholarship essay for college. These examples will guide you throughout the writing process and help you write a flawless essay.

SCHOLARSHIP ESSAY EXAMPLE FOR COLLEGE

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Scholarship Essay Examples For Masters

According to a research study, many competent students in the United States never apply for a master’s degree due to financial problems. Even after giving remarkable performances during college education, they can’t pursue their master’s degree. The scholarship is an opportunity for such needy students who have extraordinary academic records and want to get higher education.

However, as the education level is getting higher, the expectations of the scholarship committee are getting high. When you write a scholarship essay for the master’s level, you need to keep many things in mind. Scholarship prompt, formatting guidelines, word count, sentence structure, and most importantly, an outstanding story. These few things should be kept in mind and taken care of while writing your essay.

Read on the given master’s scholarship essay example and learn how you can show your reader that you are a more deserving candidate than others.

Good Scholarship Essay Examples

Students need to read some good scholarship essay examples to learn what committee members are looking for. These examples demonstrate how you can elaborate on your academic career, future goals, career goals, and previous experience.

You can also discuss your contribution to community services and how it impacted your life. The sample scholarship essay also helps you learn how you can cover all the areas of an explicitly asked essay prompt.

The most common scholarship prompts ask you to write about yourself or the field of study you want to apply to. These prompts help the scholarship committee learn about you as a person and your goals for the degree. We have carefully chosen the essay examples given below to guide you on how you can efficiently display yourself.

The below samples are chosen from the real world to make sure you can connect with them and understand them easily.

SCHOLARSHIP ESSAY EXAMPLE ABOUT YOURSELF

Short Scholarship Essay Examples

Sometimes the scholarship application specifically mentions the word count which is essential for students to comply. It is essential to complete the essay within the mentioned word count.

You can write under or over fewer words than the given limit but cannot exceed too much. However, some online application software does not allow you to write a single character over the specified limit.

Refer to the following helpful examples written according to the specified word count, i.e., 250 and 500 words scholarship essay.

250 WORDS SCHOLARSHIP ESSAY EXAMPLE

500 WORDS SCHOLARSHIP ESSAY EXAMPLE

Nursing Scholarship Essay Examples

Nowadays, scholarships are focused on the study disciplines and academic fields. For example, a scholarship for social media influencers looks for candidates who are renowned influencers. Similarly, a nursing scholarship is designed to find candidates who wanted to become nurses.

If you want to get into a nursing institute, you can benefit from this opportunity and get financial aid. Check out the template and sample nursing scholarship essay given below and learn how to write a flawless essay.

NURSING SCHOLARSHIP ESSAY TEMPLATE

NURSING SCHOLARSHIP ESSAY SAMPLE

Why I Deserve This Scholarship Essay - Example

Why I deserve this scholarship essay is the most common scholarship essay prompt. Hundreds of students apply for the scholarship every year, and it becomes difficult for the scholarship committee to decide which candidate is the most deserving.

Therefore, it is your only chance to convince your reader that you are the most deserving candidate by smartly addressing this prompt. Check out the example given below to learn how you can tackle such kinds of scholarship essay prompts.

Scholarship Essay Example about Career Goals

Defining your career goals in a scholarship essay plays a crucial role. Scholarship committee members are looking for candidates who want to bring a huge and good change to society. Therefore, they are expecting something incredible from you and your career plans.

Here is a scholarship essay example about career goals that will help you write about your career goals in your essay. 

Scholarship Essay Example About Career Goals

Scholarship Essay Example about Leadership

The world looks for future leaders in today’s students, so are the college admission officers. A scholarship essay about leadership prompt is intended to see what kind of leadership qualities you possess.

Check out the example given below to learn how you can showcase your leadership qualities in your scholarship essay. 

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Common Scholarship Prompt Essay Examples

Mostly, the essay prompts are given because the scholarship committee specifically needs answers to those questions. They wanted to get to know you better, so they provide you with the explicit prompts you need to address. The most common scholarship essay prompts are as follows:

  • Why do you deserve this scholarship?
  • Why should you receive this scholarship?
  • What makes you more deserving than other candidates?
  • Have you ever gotten into any trouble? How did you tackle that situation?
  • Discuss your career goals and why did you choose that specific career?

These are the most common scholarship essay prompts students are specifically asked to write their essays on. Below you can find the sample essays for these prompts. Read the essays and learn how you can efficiently address these prompts.

Now you have many winning scholarship essay examples; you can start writing your essay. Reading the example essay is a great idea to learn how to write a good essay while following the guidelines. The examples also help you make your essay stand out and shine among other applications. However, it is understandable if you still find it challenging to write a flawless essay.

If you are one of those students who cannot write an impressive essay, get help from  5StarEssays.com  essay writers. We are a professional and legitimate ‘ write essay for me? ’ service that provides brilliant essays at affordable prices. Our writers can write a winning essay that will improve your chance of landing the scholarship grant.

If you have already written your essay but are not sure if it is worth submitting or not, then you can also contact us. Our writers will improve the quality of your essay and give the finishing touches to make sure it is free of mistakes. Making your essay free from grammatical and punctuation errors is important to make an impression on the reader’s mind.

Therefore, if you lack good and essential creative writing skills for writing an impressive scholarship essay, contact us. Do not waste your time and energy writing a poor essay that has the least chance to grant you financial aid. Just place your  order  with us and get a brilliant essay quickly.

We are available 24/7 to help students of all academic backgrounds and degree levels. You can contact us whenever you need to without having a second thought.

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Dorothy M. is an experienced freelance writer with over five years of experience in the field. She has a wide client base, and her customers keep returning to her because of her great personalized writing. Dorothy takes care to understand her clients' needs and writes content that engages them and impresses their instructors or readers.

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  1. Learn How to Write a Truly Impressive Scholarship Essay!

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  1. How to Get Scholarships for College (Write a Great Scholarship Essay)

  2. Scholarship Essay: Format, Examples and Don'ts

  3. Scholarship Essay Examples to Get You Inspired (and WIN FREE $$$)

  4. Scholarship Essay Sample About Why I Deserve The Scholarship

  5. How to Write an Effective Scholarship Essay

  6. CFA Scholarship Guide

COMMENTS

  1. Scholarship Essay

    Types of Scholarships Essay. Merit-Based Essays: Focus on academic achievements, leadership qualities, or artistic talents. Need-Based Essays: Highlight financial need and how the scholarship would support educational goals. Personal Statement Essays: Reflect on personal experiences, challenges overcome, and personal growth.

  2. PDF Sample Scholarship Essay

    Here are some sample responses from one of ScholarshipsA-Z's student leaders. These well-written, powerful essays helped this student win scholarships worth over $1,000. The student's name has been changed to protect the student's identity. SAMPLE QUESTION 1: What are your career goals, and how will earning a college degree or certificate ...

  3. 14 Scholarship Essay Examples That Won Thousands 2024

    Scholarship Essay Example #5. Questbridge Finalist essay earning $3,000 in application waivers plus $3000 in local scholarships by Jordan Sanchez. Prompt: Some students have a background, identity, interest, or talent that is so meaningful they believe their application would be incomplete without it.

  4. PDF How to Write a Scholarship Essay

    Create goals for the writing. For example, your goal in responding to an essay might be to: . Demonstrate personal traits in myself that are similar to the personal. traits of the person for whom the scholarship is named. (The Brower. Youth Award is given in honor of David Brower, to "honor his lifetime.

  5. 16 Scholarship Essay Examples to Help You Win Scholarship

    Here are some excellent scholarship essay examples for university students that help you in writing the essay. Scholarship Essay Example for University Students. Scholarship Essay Examples for Engineering. As an aspiring engineer, I am driven by a deep passion for innovation, problem-solving, and creating solutions that can transform our world ...

  6. How to Write a Scholarship Essay

    Yes, but make sure your essay directly addresses the prompt, respects the word count, and demonstrates the organization's values. If you plan ahead, you can save time by writing one scholarship essay for multiple prompts with similar questions. In a scholarship tracker spreadsheet, you can group or color-code overlapping essay prompts; then, write a single essay for multiple scholarships.

  7. How to Write a Scholarship Essay: Complete Guide + Examples

    Approach #1: Use the resources above to write a great essay that spells out your big dreams, then end with 1-3 sentences describing specifically how you'll use the scholarship money. (We'll call this the "I have big dreams and you can help" approach.) Approach #2: Explain your financial situation in detail, then end with 1-3 sentences ...

  8. PDF Writing a Scholarship Essay

    Scholarship decisions are made very. quickly; you need to immediately. make yourself stand out. The judges can read all the "facts". about you on the application; the. essay is where they can discover. your heart and soul. The essay is an introduction to who you are, what you value, how you. see the world, what you hope to.

  9. PDF Writing for Success: Scholarship Essays

    Time away from a draft offers clarity. Read the draft as if you're the most skeptical person you can imagine. Look for opportunities to add detail, clarify, emphasize an idea, and delete irrelevant details. Rearrange a few times. Move the conclusion or the "so what" point to the beginning. Try bookending an anecdote with information about ...

  10. How To Write A Winning Scholarship Essay (with example)

    There are a number of ways to hook the reader, including: Using startling statistics. Opening with a moving sentence. Making a strong statement. For an example of an engaging hook, say you are writing an essay about social media distraction. Perhaps you could open with: It might sound odd, but I love my flip phone.

  11. How to Write a Scholarship Essay (with Examples)

    Sample Scholarship Essay Prompts. 1) "Explain something that made a big impact in your life.". Keywords: event, personal development, growth, background. 2) "We're committed to diversifying education abroad by providing funding to students who are typically under-represented in study abroad.

  12. Scholarship Essay Examples

    Sample scholarship essay #2. By Alison G. ESSAY PROMPT: Submit an essay of 350-500 words to tell us ONE thing you are, or were, most concerned about regarding preparing for college, and what you've done, or are doing, to overcome the challenge. After living independently since I was fifteen, my biggest worry was not only paying for college, but learning how.

  13. 9 Scholarship Essay Examples

    Scholarship essay examples about financial need, and more! We've included scholarship essay examples specific to schools, including UC Berkeley, as well as specific programs, like the SHPE scholarship. We'll also discuss the different types of scholarships you'll find on your scholarship search. Now, before we jump into our essay examples ...

  14. How to Write a Scholarship Essay (With Examples)

    Structuring Your Essay. Your essay should follow a standard format that includes a clear beginning, middle, and end. Typically, you should: · Establish your main idea in the introduction. · Include a separate body paragraph for each key point that supports your main idea. · Draw it all together and revisit your main idea in the conclusion.

  15. 10 Winning Scholarship Essay Examples From Real Students

    The Bill Browning Scholarship Essay by Gabby DeMott. Award Amount: $10,000. Essay prompt: Discuss an accomplishment, event, or realization that sparked a period of personal growth and a new understanding of yourself or others. Why it was successful: Gabby DeMott shared her experiences with personal growth and overcoming fears in Germany.

  16. PDF Easy and Free Scholarship Essay Samples

    Fund for Education Abroad Rainbow Scholarship $7,500 by Steven Fisher. Prompt: The Fund for Education Abroad is committed to diversifying education abroad by providing funding to students who are typically under-represented in study abroad. Please describe how you and/or your plans for study abroad could be viewed as under-represented.

  17. How to write a winning scholarship essay

    3. Fill your scholarship essay with keywords/synonyms of keywords used in the scholarship statement. Using the keywords from the scholarship statement throughout your essay will demonstrate your commitment to addressing the question being asked. For instance, I made a special effort to ensure references to 'leadership'; 'innovation' and ...

  18. How to Start a Scholarship Essay (With Examples)

    The first sentence of the essay is what makes the reader want to continue reading. Engage the reader by appealing to the senses. Create a sense of wonder in your essay, making the reader want to learn more about you. Keep the ending of the essay in mind as you craft the beginning.

  19. PDF WRITING A SCHOLARSHIP ESSAY

    WRITING A SCHOLARSHIP ESSAY When you write a scholarship essay, you'll want to work through the following steps. Some may seem obvious; others are easy to forget. Your goal is an essay that the readers will notice and remember—one that stands out from all the others they're getting. Your essay will show

  20. PDF Personal Statement Scholarship Essay Example

    Provide a Personal Statement to the Scholarship Committee. PERSONAL STATEMENT ESSAY. My two passions in life drew me to X College. While some of my fellow high school classmates looked for a campus close to home, others chose the freedom of being far away. Some looked for specific programs of study like pharmacy or law enforcement.

  21. PDF Scholarship Essay Outline

    a. State why you need this scholarship b. State how this scholarship will help you. 5. Conclusion a. Highlight an item or two from your essay. b. Thank the judges (optional) Final Essay Tips • Always read over the instructions & requirements of the scholarship • Proofread your essay • Keep the essay simple & short (no more than one to two ...

  22. Winning Scholarship Essay Examples That Actually Work

    Nursing Scholarship Essay Examples. Nowadays, scholarships are focused on the study disciplines and academic fields. For example, a scholarship for social media influencers looks for candidates who are renowned influencers. Similarly, a nursing scholarship is designed to find candidates who wanted to become nurses.

  23. PDF Sample Scholarship Essay Outline

    iii. How will a scholarship help you achieve your educational goals? b. What are your long-term career goal(s) ? i. What can/will you do with your degree? ii. How will a scholarship help you achieve your long-term career goals? IV. Native Community a. What is your community involvement? i. What extracurricular/volunteer activities do you do? ii.