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How to: Get Scholarships

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Chances are, you may have noticed the chaos tearing away at the senior class over the past few months. It’s college application season; between getting accepted into a dream school and worrying about financial aid, the class of 2018 has been stretched to their limits. Luckily, there are plenty of options for students to pay off their college tuitions without taking out loans!

Use the FAFSA

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid opened this year on October 1st, and is available to be filled out until June 30th. Despite the long deadline, you should submit your application to the FAFSA as soon as possible. By submitting your application early, you can make sure you don’t miss any deadlines and maximize the amount of money you receive. Tennessee has a first come, first served FAFSA deadline.

Check Naviance

Naviance is an online tool that is integrated into Farragut High School. Along with making it easy to access transcripts and teacher recommendation letters, Naviance also offers a full list of available scholarships that apply to you! The list contains minority scholarships, scholarships that apply to your major, scholarships for specific colleges and so many more! Naviance also lists all requirements for each scholarship, as well as the maximum payout.

All Farragut High School upperclassmen should already have an account set up, so you don’t even have to be a senior to start your college planning. You can even go straight to the application from your Naviance account, making filling out scholarships a breeze! To access your Naviance account, ask your guidance counselor for your login information, start adding in test scores and nationality, and let the scholarships come to you!

Talk to Your Senior Counselor

So you use Naviance scholarships, but can’t find a way to completely pay off your tuition? With a mountain of scholarships and little time to find them, it may feel like you need some extra help to find the right ones.

Enter Ms. Bolinger.

Ms. Bolinger is a busy woman. She can’t handle every senior rushing to visit her at once, but if you send her an email and make an appointment with her, she can definitely hook you up with scholarships.

A Few Examples to Get You Started

The Questbridge Scholarship is a great option for students looking to attend larger universities across the country, like University of Chicago and Rice. It’s generally aimed at low-income, first generation, minority students, with high GPA’s. The requirements aren’t cut-and-dry, though, and if you feel like you meet most of them, you can earn full tuition! The deadline has already passed for this year, but any class of 2019 students should consider the Questbridge Scholarship next year.

Duct Tape offers a “Stuck at Prom” scholarship contest, where seniors can win up to $10,000 for designing a prom dress and/or suit with duct tape. You can learn more about it at stuckatprom.com, but the competition is stiff! Try not to put all your hopes on a scholarship contest, or you may end up in a sticky situation.

If all else fails, student loans can help cover the rest of your college costs. Student loans can seem stressful, but, combined with scholarships, they shouldn’t seem as overwhelming.

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