Finding scholarships for high school seniors is important, now more than ever, with college tuition costs at an all-time high. You want to go to college to get a degree and the college experience, but you can't afford to pay twenty-some thousand dollars a year for it. So you're going to need scholarships, which help you get a degree without having to sell your soul to the bank and end up with student loan debt that will take you years to pay off. To be able to afford a college education, you need to know what types of scholarships are out there and where to look for them.
Start your search by looking at the colleges you want to go to. Colleges want quality students to enroll, and are willing to pay for them to come to their university. Several colleges even offer a full-ride scholarship to the best prospective students. An example of this is the Moorehead-Cain scholarship that gives its recipients a full-ride at UNC Chapel Hill. Getting these scholarships is often difficult because of all the competition, but it can be done. Having a high GPA and SAT/ACT score will obviously help you get them, but what's really important is making the college know what you bring to the table. Sell yourself like you would sell a product. Make sure they know about your great social skills, incredible focus, or whatever it is that you think will allow you to succeed in college. This will put you above most other applicants and give you the best chance to win. The deadline for college scholarships is usually early in your senior year so make sure you get your application in before the deadline. See the college websites for more information on the scholarships they offer.
Another way to get money for college is through specific scholarships. A specific scholarship is strictly for students of a certain race, gender, or career. If you're a minority, a woman, or if you know what you want to major in, then there are scholarships out there specifically for you. You'll typically have a slightly better chance at winning them compared to scholarships for everyone because not as many students will be able to apply. Some of these scholarships are offered by colleges but most come from other organizations. For example, Google gives out $10,000 to students who are going to major in computer science every year. To find specific scholarships, just search for them on Google and you will find a ton that you can apply for.
On their search for college money, high school seniors often overlook the most important source of cash - local scholarships. You have the best chance to win local scholarships because you're only competing against students in your area. For this reason, it's important to apply for as many of them as you can. Most local clubs, churches, and stores give out money for college to students in the community every year. While they might not give you as much as national scholarships, every little bit helps and it can add up fast. Start looking early so you can make sure you don't miss out on any easy money.
Searching and applying for scholarships will take a lot of time and effort during your senior year of high school but can go a long way toward paying for college. The most important thing to do is to make sure you apply for every scholarship you can so you don't leave any money on the table.