Applying for scholarships can be stressful and confusing for any college student. However, the financial aid office and many other resources exist to help ease students through the process.

The only way to receive scholarships is to apply for them, and they’re easy to look for. There are a number of scholarship databases that compile many types of private scholarships.

In many of these databases, there is a filter to enter in skills and interests to filter out irrelevant scholarships. This expedites the application process, making applying for scholarships much easier. Going to many different websites helps you cast a wide net to find all the scholarships that may not be found otherwise.

Scholarships outside of the university have their own requirements and stipulations.

However, be careful. Never pay for scholarship searches. The student is receiving money — not spending it. It’s different if mailing an application requires postage but there is never a reason to pay to search for scholarships.

Overlooking smaller scholarships is a common mistake; many people apply for the $10,000 scholarships, but fewer apply for the smaller ones. Even earning $200 of scholarships can go toward tuition, food or rent.

Every year, Weber State University has numerous scholarships that no one applies for. Even if the applicant’s CV or resume isn’t the strongest, if no one else applies, the scholarship goes to whoever applied.

Scheduling meetings with advisers at the colleges as soon as possible is crucial. They will be able to give direction to the best path for obtaining scholarships specific to that college.

Be honest as you apply for scholarships. Don’t exaggerate grades or qualifications. Not only is it dishonest, but if transcripts are requested, they will prove the lie.

Applying for scholarships can be a daunting task, but having a plan to apply will make it less stressful.

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