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The Search for Scholarships

     Like most other college students, I look for ways to minimize the amount of money I have to pay for my education. One of the ways I like to do this is by searching for the various scholarships that are offered, and when I had the opportunity to ask the University of South Florida advisors questions, I asked them about resources for scholarships. But, unfortunately they did not respond to my question, but I am sure that was due to the large volume of questions that we all had for them. Their lack of response led me to research various scholarships on my own, and I came across one that I want to share in case the information could help anyone else.

     When I was researching scholarships, I ended up on the Florida Student Financial Aid website (http://www.floridastudentfinancialaid.org), and this was new to me. I had used the Federal Application for Financial Aid before, but I did not realize that there was a state specific database. The application was incredibly easy to fill out, and it merely required basic information. I think it took me less than ten minutes to complete the whole application. Once I was done with the application, it showed me scholarships that I was eligible to apply specifically for. One of these scholarships in particular caught my eye; it was called the ‘scholarship for children/spouses of deceased or disabled veterans’. Since my Dad passed away a few years ago from a service-related disability, I thought this was the perfect scholarship for me to apply for. Much like the general application, this application was also quite easy and it did not require anything extra such as an essay. In addition, the scholarship was not based on grades or educational experience, it was just based on if you were the child or spouse of a deceased or disabled veteran. Luckily for me, I applied just in time for this scholarship because the deadline is April 1st, if anyone else has gone through the same experience I encourage you to apply for this scholarship before the month is over. Even if you are not eligible for this particular scholarship the Florida Student Financial Aid website has a large amount of other scholarships for Florida residents.

     Another scholarship I thought could be helpful for some of my classmates was the Florida Fund for Minority Teachers. This one caught my eye because we are all studying to be teachers. This particular scholarship is for minority students who are in school studying to become educators. Again, if this applies to anyone I strongly encourage you to apply for the scholarship.

     Even though the University of South Florida advisors did not answer my question, having to think of a question to ask them led me to do some independent research, which proved to be quite valuable. I think scholarships are something that most college students can benefit from, but not enough students apply for them. I hope that this blog may have encouraged someone else to visit various websites to help make an expensive education more affordable.

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