How to Write a Scholarship Essay

It takes a lot of time and effort to apply to college. All applicants must pass exams, gather all necessary documents, fill out a variety of forms, and so on. However, qualifying for and being awarded a scholarship is frequently even more challenging!

Because tuition fees are rising, most students decide to apply for scholarships to help cover some of their costs. If you choose to apply for a scholarship, you will almost certainly be required to write an essay.


What Exactly Is a Scholarship Essay?

In the case of scholarship essays, these are pieces of writing that students submit in conjunction with their scholarship applications. It is the most crucial aspect of your application. A scholarship application essay can make or break your chances of being selected for one. A good scholarship essay should make your application stand out and give the committee a sense of who you are, what goals you pursue, and what qualifies you for a scholarship.

Individual organizations that strive to support education frequently offer scholarships. As a result, scholarship essays should often demonstrate the author’s passions and beliefs that align with the organization’s interests. Scholarship essays are frequently referred to as scholarship application letters.

What distinguishes scholarship essays from college essays? These types of work have one thing in common: they should both represent you and your opinions or beliefs. However, several distinguishing features set the two apart:

  • Purpose – A college essay should reflect your personality, whereas a scholarship essay must often demonstrate that you share the organization’s beliefs and interests.
  • Scholarship essays are typically under 500 words in length. College essays may be more extended (up to 650 words).
  • Prompt – Often, prompts for college essays are much broader than those for scholarship essays. Furthermore, many colleges will allow you to choose the topic. In contrast, a scholarship organization may require you to answer specific questions in your text (for example, “why do you deserve this scholarship?” is a standard topic).


The Outline

The following is a general outline for a scholarship essay:



  • A hook that piques the reader’s interest
  • Statement (what makes you worthy of a scholarship?)



  • What’s been your most significant life challenge?
  • How did you get through it?
  • What is/are your educational and professional goal(s)?
  • What are your current educational objectives?
  • Why did you select this specific college or university?
  • What was it that led you to this particular subject of research?
  • How will a scholarship assist you in achieving your educational objective(s)?
  • What is/is your long-term professional goal(s)?
  • What do you intend to do with your degree?
  • How will the scholarship assist you in achieving your long-term career objective(s)?
  • Real-life examples to back up main points



  • A brief summary of your main points
  • Restate your thesis (how the scholarship will help you reach your goals)


How to Begin

The intro is the first section of your essay. Your work toward receiving a scholarship essay, on the other hand, should begin long before you start writing your introduction.

To prepare for the writing process, you must first set aside enough time. Don’t expect to write a flawless essay overnight, so before you begin, make sure you are aware of all deadlines and that you have enough time to work on your paper.


Familiarize Yourself With the Prompt

Scholarship essays can be tricky, which is why you should carefully read them several times to ensure that you understand what is expected of you.

To be considered for a scholarship, you must submit a 400-500 word essay. Your submission should demonstrate your reasoning for why you deserve this scholarship, taking into account the following questions:

  • What is it about this scholarship in particular that you are interested in?
  • What distinguishes you?
  • How do your beliefs align with the interests of the organization?
  • What are your career goals?
  • What are your objectives?
  • What one-of-a-kind contribution can you make to your chosen field of science?


Select a Topic

At this point, keep in mind that the primary goal of your essay is to persuade the organization to fund your education. You must convince them that you are deserving of their financial assistance. This goal should be reflected in your topic.

To assist you in selecting an appropriate topic, ask yourself the following questions:

  • What have you achieved thus far?
  • What sets you apart from the crowd?
  • What have been the most difficult challenges in your life? How did you overcome them, and what did you learn as a result?
  • What are your best qualities?
  • Have you ever had to fight for something? Were you successful or unsuccessful?
  • What are your future hopes and dreams?

Answering these and other similar questions should help you develop some ideas. In addition, here are a few examples of popular scholarship essay topics:

  • Why am I deserving of this scholarship?
  • My Aspirations
  • Goals I Plan to Achieve in the Next Ten Years
  • The Doors I’ve Unlocked
  • What I’m Good At – My Most Significant Achievement
  • My Source of Inspiration
  • The Individual Who Has Influenced My Opinions The Most Powerful Destiny Is In My Hands


Write a Hook

What exactly is a writing hook? It is an opening statement with two goals: to catch the reader’s attention and entice them to keep reading. In a scholarship essay, the hook is critical. Because the committee will be reviewing dozens of articles, it is essential to make your paper memorable, which is where a strong hook will come in handy.

Here are three effective methods for making your first sentence exciting:

  • Question: What helped me realize that I want to help people?‍
  • Quote: “Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.” – Winston Churchill. ‍
  • Statistic: ADHD (9.4%), behavior problems (7.4%), anxiety (7.1%), and depression (3.2%) are the most common mental disorders diagnosed in children aged 2-17 years old.

Now that you’ve got a hook, you can write your intro. Here are a few pointers to remember:

  • Keep it brief and to the point.
  • Don’t forget to include a thesis statement after your hook.
  • Don’t start your argument until you’ve provided the relevant background for the chosen topic.
  • Only offer useful and relevant information.
  • Try to avoid using clichés.
  • Persuade the reader that your essay is worthwhile reading.

These suggestions will assist you in creating an engaging introduction that will draw attention and make your essay stand out.


What Should the Body Include?

The content of your essay should be the most extended section and should provide the scholarship committee with the answers they seek. Since we’re talking about the scholarship essay sample about “why I deserve the scholarship,” here are some ideas for the body of your paper:

  • Talk about some of the difficulties you’ve encountered in your life.
  • Highlight your accomplishments and positive characteristics.
  • Discuss your goals and how the scholarship can help you achieve them.
  • Discuss your motivation;
  • Provide examples from your own life to back up your claims.

The two most important things to remember when writing the body of your essay are to avoid generalizations and make sure that your statements are relevant to the organization that is providing the scholarship.


How to Finish an Essay

The conclusion of your essay is the essential part of it because it determines whether the committee will remember it or if it will be lost among a slew of indistinguishable papers. A firm conclusion is required to stand out from the crowd.

Here are a few suggestions:

  • Reflection – this type of conclusion is ideal for demonstrating personal growth and presenting your shortcomings as stepping stones.
  • The Future Tense – If your essay is about your past or current experiences, this is the conclusion to use. Explain to the committee how your experiences have influenced you and what you intend to do with the lessons you’ve learned in the future.
  • The Cycle – to strengthen your introductory statement, restate it in your conclusion. This method is very effective and can make the reader feel more connected. For instance, if you began by providing statistics on the number of children who require psychological treatment, bring up the same issue in your conclusion for a more substantial impact.


Scholarship Essay Formatting

Formatting is essential when writing any paper. No matter how good the content of your scholarship essay is, it will be useless unless it is appropriately formatted. After all, correctly formatting your paper demonstrates to the committee that you understand and follow given instructions, which is essential in college.

The following are the characteristics of a typical scholarship essay format:

  • Times New Roman font in 12-point size
  • 1″ double spaced margins (top, bottom, and side)
  • Each paragraph begins with an indent.
  • Insert your last name and page numbers (only for long essays) in the top left corner of the page.

Follow the prompts above to ensure that your text is formatted correctly.


Scholarship Essay Tips

Here are a few more pointers to help you write an outstanding scholarship essay:

  • Adhere to a narrative structure.
  • Personalize your paper as much as possible.
  • Before you begin writing, create a detailed outline.
  • Make sure that you are eligible for each scholarship for which you apply.
  • Avoid using cliches.
  • Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there.
  • Make sure that you follow all of the instructions and prompts.
  • In your essay, use real-life examples to back up your points.
  • Maintain clarity and conciseness.
  • To keep the writing eloquent, include transitions between paragraphs.
  • Tell a one-of-a-kind story.
  • Before submitting your essay, proofread and edit it thoroughly.