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Top 10 reasons for Students Scholarship Application rejection

5 minutes reading time (966 words)

If you're looking to study abroad, you'll need to be prepared to pay a pretty penny. For many international students, scholarships are the only way to make their dreams of studying abroad a reality. So, why do so many scholarship applications end up in the trash?

There are a few common reasons for student Scholarship application rejection. Avoid them if you want your application to have a chance! 

1. You don't qualify for the scholarship 

There are a lot of scholarships available, but it's important to be realistic about your chances of getting one. Every scholarship has specific requirements, so only apply if you meet them. For example, don't bother applying for a scholarship meant for straight-A students if you generally get C's. Or if the scholarship is for Nigerian citizens and you're from Singapore. It's just not going to happen and you'll be wasting your time.

Of course, you can't apply for a university scholarship unless you've been accepted into that program first! So keep that in mind when considering which scholarships to apply for. 

2. You forgot to research all the options

There are a lot of scholarships out there for students willing to do the research. The first step is finding out what options are available to you and then gathering as much information as possible on each one.

Many colleges and universities offer scholarships or bursaries, which are usually based on academic merit and can be quite competitive. However, this is just the tip of the iceberg. There are also many private foundation scholarships (such as the Fulbright), international government agency scholarships (such as those offered by the British Council), and even government-sponsored scholarships. For more information, contact your local Department of Education.

Remember, it takes time to prepare a good scholarship application, but it will be worth it in the end! 

3. You only applied for one or two scholarships

There are plenty of scholarships out there for students - so apply for as many as you can! It may take some time to write each application specifically, but it'll be worth it when you get the money. So go for it! 

4. You left it until the last minute 

You can't just rely on research alone to get ahead. You also need to allocate time to get organized. Find some appropriate references and communicate what you need from them. Make sure you have all the necessary documentation, like transcripts (which may need to be certified). Don't risk submitting an incomplete application; everything needs to be accounted for. 

5. You missed the deadline 

It is surprisingly common for people to assume that all scholarships have the same deadline. However, each scholarship has its own unique deadline. If you miss the deadline for a scholarship, you will not be considered for that award. It is important to note that submitting your application late reflects poorly on your organizational skills. 

6. You didn't answer the question 

The questions asked by the scholarship committee are designed to assess your abilities and whether you are a good fit for the scholarship. Therefore, it is important that you answer each question thoughtfully and completely. Do not try to impress the committee by talking about your high school accomplishments; instead, focus on answering the question at hand. If you do not follow directions or answer the questions properly, the committee will assume that you have submitted a generic application to multiple scholarships, which will likely result in your application being rejected. 

 7. You fell for a scholarship scam

Beware of online scholarship scams! Some sites will guarantee you a scholarship for a small fee, but these are usually not legitimate. Also be cautious of agencies that require your bank information or money upfront - you should never have to pay to apply for a scholarship. So don't be scammed - do your research and only apply for scholarships that you know are legitimate. 

8. You lost your audience on the first page 

If you want to apply for a grant to continue your studies or do research, don't assume that the person reading your application will understand every technical detail of your planned PhD. It's important to avoid using jargon and acronyms unless you're willing to explain them, because chances are the person reading your application doesn't know what they mean. A good way to test whether or not your writing is understandable is to ask yourself if your mother would be able to understand it. 

9. You forgot to check your grammar 

And your spelling too. Some committee will put your application on the reject pile if it has just one spelling mistake. It needs to be perfect, and it demonstrates your language ability too. 

10. You didn't get it proof-read 

It's always a good idea to have someone proofread your work for spelling mistakes and proper sentence structure. Additionally, it can be helpful to run your scholarship application by your referees beforehand. That way, they know exactly what skills and abilities to highlight if they need to provide a reference for you. 

If you're looking for advice on scholarships, talk to one of our student counselors. They can help you with any questions you have and point you in the right direction. You can also find more articles on available scholarships on this blog.

Common Errors people make when applying for scholarships 

Applying for scholarships can be a daunting task, but it's important to remember that everyone makes mistakes. Here are some of the most common errors people make when applying for scholarships:

  • Mailing the envelope without the application
  • Using an impossible-to-read fancy font
  • Using completely illegible handwriting
  • Submitting their arrest record as a referral
  • Submitting a baby photo as their 'recent' picture

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