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Home » Student Services » Scholarships » Scholarships » Financial Aid & Scholarships » How to Apply for Scholarship

Scholarship Process

TAKE ADVANTAGE of the SCHOLARSHIP PROCESS use the tools provided to maximize your potential!

SCHOLARSHIP SUCCESS is being part of the 10 - 15% who are ❝IN❞ every scholarship competition.......NOT just completing a scholarship application.


Identify Scholarships:

Know your assets: Major, General Studies, Gender, GPA, Ethnicity, Minority, Community/College Activities, and Affiliations, Return to College Student, Age, or Employer Opportunities

Four Steps in the Scholarship Process:

Select each of the Steps in the Scholarship Process that you would like to open to HELP YOU understand the ❝SCHOLARSHIP PROCESS❞ or Expand All options on the right side of the screen to expand all steps in the Scholarship Process. Select Other Help ❝A - F❞ options for special scholarship assistance or information as well.

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Step 1. How to Complete a Scholarship Application
  • Print a blank copy of the scholarship application, or each new application type.
  • Read and follow all scholarship instructions/highlight important points on the rough application
  • Completely fill-in by hand the application rough draft
  • DO NOT turn in handwritten applications or completed applications in all UPPERCASE or lowercase,❞ type, UNLESS SPECIFICALLY DIRECTED BY THE SPONSOR.
  • Fill out the Final Application online or by creating textbox for the application (See: How to create textbox for PDF), also spell and grammar check.
  • Print your final application, use a new print cartridge, on regular white paper (2 copies) 1- Send to sponsor 1 - As a reference source
  • Sign and date the final application

How to create textbox for PDF: (Click Here)
Step 2. Write Effective Personal Statement/Essay
  • Read and follow all Personal Statement instructions
  • Answer each question completely, use examples to support your answers.
  • Make sure personal statement conforms to sponsor's requirements
  • Make sure to do a spelling, grammar, punctuation, style check, and Readability
  • Use the ❝Scholarship Essay Writing Resource❞ web page for writing assistance and forthing things to and not write read the Do's & Don'ts guide points.
  • Print your personal statement on regular paper, use a New Printer Cartridge the personal statement must look perfect
  • Sign and date your personal statement
  • Save a copy of your final draft on your computer, disk, or memory stick
    • After printing, place the questions asked on the final draft at the bottom of the document and re-save it to your computer or desired memory location.  Do the same with future questions that are new in future final drafts after printing.
    • This is done so that you can identify the paper and location of the specific questions and answers to be reused.  When scholarships having the same or similar questions are found in the future, applicants may want to slightly change their answers or may be required to make alterations to the existing essay format to meet the needs of the new statement. 
    • This practice allows applicants to maximize their time and efforts when applying for multiple scholarships.  

Review Essay Outlines: (Click Here)

Review Bad Essay Outlines: (Click Here)
Step 3. Get Meaningful Reference Letters
  • Read the application instructions, the types of reference letters are determined by the sponsor.
  • Let Reference know it is best to write a General Reference Letter.
  • Provide general background information to assist those writing a reference letter:
    • Your major, hobbies, interests, facts about yourself, challenges faced/overcome, and goals etc.
    • Write no more than one paragraph (5-8 sentences)
  • Give your references a Thank You card for their reference letter
  • Use only those reference letters that speak well of you and use some of the Background information you provided.
  • Reference letters may be used for up to 9- 12 mo.
  • Send only the number of Reference Letters requested
  • READ all reference letters before you submit your package. Use ONLY those reference letters whose writers used at least part of the Background information you provided them. 
    • Test Your Letter: Read your reference letter with the name of another person in it. If the reference letter still reads or sounds the same, you may want to get a new reference letter. Because you should be able to identify those parts of the reference letter that are SPECIFICALLY from your Background Information.  Points like class work, academics, and feelings are abstract information, although nice to hear they should not be the main focus of your letter as they can be written about anyone.  Make sure your reference letter talks about you.

Review Reference Letter Outline: (Click Here)

Blank Letterhead Document: (Click Here)

Step 4. Mailing the Complete Package
  • Read all instructions, make sure the required parts of the application are in the package.
  • Use a manila envelope to send application packages DO NOT fold application.
  • Mail Scholarship Package As Soon As Possible

Other Help A. - Strong-Clear-Scholarship Videos/Presentations

If this is your first time being in front of a video camera, it can be challenging to make a video.  It is not as easy as it may seem at first glance; so take your time.

Please read the following video instructions prior to beginning your project.  The instructions will help to eliminate many of the small and large mistakes that people make who are unfamiliar with the creation of a video presentation.

Read all video statement instructions prior to participation.

  • Write each script, theme, discussion, act, or presentation completely.  Then rehearse in front of a mirror until you feel comfortable prior to recording. Don't be surprised if this process takes more than a few attempts before you feel comfortable performing the task and before you are able start video recording.
  • Critically evaluate your recording, the sponsor will.
  • Ask yourself: 
    • Did you review the sponsor's hints/suggestions?
    • Does it meet the sponsor'sTIME requirements?
    • Does it meet the subject matter requirement?
    • Is the audio clear? (This is a critical review)
    • Ask yourself:
      • Does the audio flow from beginning to end
      • No poor speech, stuttering, stammering, or long pauses.
      • Do not have anything in your mouth while speaking or hands in front of mouth
      • No inappropriate language, no slang/jargon etc...
    • Ask yourself:
      • Is the video clear?
      • Body gestures (appear comfortable) - No meaningless arm waving, abrupt or jerking hand movements, bad posture, hand gestures.
      • No  hands in pockets, confusing head movements, or nervous blinking.  
    • Ask yourself:
      • Does the written material flow well?
      • You may have presented the material, but ask yourself:
        • Does the material sound NATURAL?
  • Can my project be done better? (Time permitted, before the deadline?)
  • Have the project critically reviewed by a NEUTRAL person before submission
  • Prior to up loading the video ensure it meets the sponsor's online security requirements.  Also, follow all online provider security requirements.
  • FINAL STEP Up load video

Video Presentation Instructions Print (CLick Here)

How to Up Load a Video (CLick Here)

Other Help B. - Writing Community/Institutional Involvement Papers

A select number of scholarship sponsor require that applicant have a "Community or Institutional Activity - Involvement". This means the applicant must be involved or have been involved in activities either in their community or in some types of campus activities. The types of activities is normally  determines by the sponsor, some are very specific, while others are general in nature. It is best to ask the Cuyamaca College Scholarship Specialist if you have questions about your specific scholarship.

Also use the following tools and ideas to help you ensure your paper is as strong and clear as possible.

  • Use the ❝Scholarship Essay Writing Resource❞ web page for writing assistance.
  • Print your Activities Paper on regular paper, use a ❝New Printer Cartridge the activities paper must look perfect.
  • Sign and date your activities paper

If sponsors describe how they want the information provided, makes sure that their instructions are followed in detail. Ensure all papers are proof read by either the Cuyamaca College Professor or you may also contact the Scholarship Specialist to review your writing.

Just as in essay writing a format example is important:

Community or Institutional Activity - Format Example
Other Help C. - Scholarship Sponsor Interview Steps
  • Scholarship interviews are not common, in the average Scholarship Process this does not mean they do not occur.  As they do occur we do want YOU to be ready.  The question becomes How can I be prepared for a scholarship interview? The answer is simple, Go to the Career Center and ask the Career Center Representative for the Tools Assessment for the Interview Software Program.
Other Help D. - Scholarship Recipient Information
  • Sponsors do not always provide complete Award Letters to their recipients 
  • Sponsors will ONLY notify the RECIPIENTS
  • Do not contact sponsors to ask if you have won the scholarship

    • Your first indication you won a scholarship MAY BEthe email you receive from the college scholarship office notifying you that the award is being processed.
Other Help E. - Printable Scholarship Process Instructions
Other Help F. - Contact Scholarship Specialist

For further assistance and guidance in applying for scholarships, please contact the Scholarship Office. We are located in the Financial Aid Office (Building 300) at the Student Services Center. To make an appointment please email or call (619) 660-4537 provide  your Student ID number, please provide your best date and time that you are available.  Walk-in appointments are welcome.

Ernest Williams
Scholarship Specialist
Financial Aid Office
(619) 660-4537

* Cuyamaca College Financial Aid Office does not guarantee the accuracy of translated text through Google Translate. If the information you are translating is not clear, please return to the home page of Cuyamaca College Financial Aid & Scholarships, click "Contact Us," and call for assistance, or email your question to the appropriate Advisor. Cuyamaca College Financial Aid Office disclaims and will not accept any liability for any problems caused by the use of the Google Translate feature.

Last Updated: 10/09/2018
  • Grossmont
  • Cuyamaca
A Member of the Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District