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How To Write A Scholarship Essay

How To Write A Scholarship Essay

Writing has always been one of the most challenging tasks for students. It is especially true for writing a scholarship essay since this activity requires students to demonstrate their reasoning, creativity, and writing skills the best they can to win a financial prize. Oftentimes, students consider their chances of getting a certain scholarship low because of the fear of writing a scholarship essay. If you want to get rid of the fear of writing or if you have just found a perfect scholarship program that requires an essay for participation, this guide is for you. Below, we will give you a few tips and instructions on how to write an essay for a scholarship without stress.

What is a Scholarship Essay?

Before we start revealing all the writing secrets we know, let’s make the definition of a scholarship essay clear.


A scholarship essay is a form of an application essay that a student needs to write to participate in a contest where the main prize is money for tuition, room, and board, or other expenses. Most often, such contests are designed for high school and college students; sometimes there are scholarships for graduate students or young researchers.


Scholarship essays are graded by the judging committee of experts capable of making an unbiased selection of the best paper. Usually, these people are either college teaching staff or members of a certain foundation who set up the scholarship. The process of paper grading requires them to check every paper independently, and only after that, they can decide on the best piece of writing.

How to Start a Scholarship Essay?

Now that you know what a scholarship application essay is, you need to find out how to start it. Long story short, you need to take into account the essay guidelines and know the sponsor of the competition. You have to find out the story of the foundation that grants the scholarship, the sponsors’ names if it’s a college scholarship named after some honorary alumni, etc. Once you do this preliminary research, you will understand what style of writing will be the most suitable for your essay and how you can use quotations, jokes, and other hooks in your essay introduction.

Scholarship Essay Outline

Do you enjoy planning things? Even if you hate it, you need to do it for your scholarship essay (unless you do not intend to win money). Outlining your paper is one of the best things that you can do to increase your chances of getting the main prize. ‘How is it possible?’ you may ask. This is because an outline makes your paper structured, keeps your thoughts and ideas in place, and does not let you go off-topic while writing your first draft. Also, it helps you edit your paper and check whether you revealed all thoughts that you intended at the start.


How to write a scholarship essay outline? Follow the tips below:

  1. Figure out the central idea of your paper. This is to have something to start from. Your main thought should be included in your thesis statement so that you can support it throughout your writing;
  2. Plan your introduction. Whatever topic you choose for your scholarship essay, your introduction should contain three elements: a hook, a thesis statement, and an encouraging sentence to convince your audience to keep reading your piece. Thus, start your writing with some fact, figure, quotation, or your own thought that will be an attention-grabber. Then, smoothly connect it to your thesis statement and finish your introduction with a call to action. You can appeal to the readers’ brains as well as emotions in this part;
  3. List your arguments. Now that you go on to writing an essay body, you have to make your arguments clear to yourself. List them in the order of importance and remember that one argument with the supporting information makes one paragraph. Do not mix them us in one paragraph so that your scholarship essay could be clear and easy to understand;
  4. Add notes from your references. Are you going to include any pieces of evidence that require citations, figures, or statistics? In such cases, we advise you to add pages and sources to your outline immediately after you’ve found the relevant information. Do it now and you will not need to look up a lot of material while writing;
  5. Outline your conclusion. Although it is the final part of your essay, it is as much important as the previous ones. This is your last chance to persuade your audience of your uniqueness and exclusiveness to win a scholarship. Therefore, do your best to list your concluding points precisely and do not repeat your introduction lines at the same time.

How to Choose a Topic for a Scholarship Essay?

Now that you know how to design your first draft, you are probably interested in finding the topic to adhere to a scholarship essay format. There are a few ways how you can select the issue that a judging committee will like:

  • Write on a proposed topic from an unusual point of view. Sometimes, scholarship program organizers give a certain topic or a list of topics to choose from. In this case, you do not need to invent a vehicle and think about whether your topic is good enough. Instead, you need to concentrate on writing a creative, amusing paper to stand out of the crowd;
  • Write a personal story. The second popular way to write a strong scholarship essay is to tell who you are, but not all your life story from birth, but some sequence of events that make you an exceptional person for this scholarship;
  • Describe an event that changed you and made you who you are now. This option is also good for a scholarship essay. Under such topic, you can tell about a day in your life that turned your worldview upside down and made you a completely different person;
  • Tell your readers about your life after getting a scholarship. Finally, you can tell your audience about your plans and actions once you are granted this very scholarship. Thus, you will show them that you are a determined individual who knows what they want.

Scholarship Essay Examples

If you are still in doubt about the kind of essay you need to write, we have a few samples for you to read. Check each example of scholarship essay and try to guess why these pieces were successful:




How to Format a Scholarship Essay?

Another stumbling block in writing a scholarship essay is formatting. Many students are confused about the citation style, font size, etc. when it comes to writing an essay for a competition. Therefore, we advise you to always read the essay guidelines attentively. There are many chances that formatting requirements are stated there. If there are none, and you are free to choose any, make sure you know the formatting style you are about to use. Look up the latest guidelines of APA, MLA, and Chicago citation styles, choose either of them, and apply the most appropriate one to your text once you’ve finished writing.

Scholarship Essay Writing Tips

At this stage, you already know how to complete a scholarship essay but you still may be hesitant to begin. With that in mind, we would like to share a few more tips with you:

  • Prepare your working place. The first thing you need to do to get ready for work is to clean up your space. Take away everything that is on your table if it does not help you to be more productive. Turn on the light in your room and open a window to get some fresh air;
  • Set a timer. Still can’t concentrate? Promise yourself to work at least 20 minutes on your text. Set up a timer for 20 minutes and start writing. We bet you will not notice the time passing;
  • Promise to congratulate yourself somehow once you finish writing. Of course, you will win the competition and the money for a scholarship essay will be yours. But yet promise some small reward to yourself for your patience and effort and give it to yourself right after you complete your essay. Trust us, it will motivate you pretty well;
  • Turn off your social media notifications. All those Instagram and Facebook sounds from your phone will not help you stay concentrated on your scholarship essay. Moreover, even your laptop notifications can be destructing, so do not forget to turn them off as well;
  • Create a favorable audible environment. Do you love working with the music playing in the background or prefer silence? Whatever your working habits are, it is worth following them. If you are feeling more motivated with ‘It’s My Life’ by Bon Jovi, why not listen to it?

Write My Scholarship Essay for Me, Please!

Now that you know how to write and how to end a scholarship essay, you can start working on it immediately. If at any stage of writing, you feel that you need professional advice, you can always turn to an essay writing service. Asking for help is completely okay, be it writing from scratch, editing, or proofreading. You should not be afraid to ask for corrections if you feel that your scholarship essay can be more polished and formatted better. Just ask a professional freelance writer to write your essay for you, and you will not regret the result!