The little tricks that can get you ahead in the grants race

August 27th, 2013

When you are looking for a grant you are in a race and that is because, obviously, the number of students who want and need grants is much larger than the number of grants that are available out there. So in order to get an advantage you need to develop a few skills and use some tricks.

One good trick is to go outside your University of choice. Use some research skills to dig for grants in bookstores and school counseling offices. Use smart Internet search to identify grants in your area and to get all the application data which you must study carefully in order to get all the details. Go to state and regional government educational offices and ask them if they know about any type of grants.

Consider multiple fields of study. Grants are usually offered for specific fields of study and some of them may not be your first choice, but consider getting free education as opposed to finishing college and being in great debt. Not having debt when you finish education can be a great push forward.

Make a good list of the grants you found and create a calendar of the submission dates of each and every one of them. Start collecting application data for the ones your need to apply sooner and prepare the documents. A calendar will help you not to miss the application data for the grants that you are interested in. Submitting you application early on in the process can also increase your chances of getting that grant. Foundations and universities start to process the applications early on and if yours hits the spot you might be already be marked as a good candidate. Preparation pays off in these cases.

Prepare the support documentation. You will need letters of recommendation, transcripts and financial data. Don`t underestimate the time you need to prepare these documents. Getting recommended can take weeks and getting the right legal financial documentation can be a hefty process and you might need a few weeks for that too. Ask for letter of recommendation from skilled professionals who might offer an opinion that matters and ask friends and family to review your application documents for errors.

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