Your New Hangout
If you’ve looked into this for any length of time you’ve likely noticed that quite a number of publicized scholarships are offered only through specific schools to those within them. Further, with fair frequency schools will raise funds throughout the year as committed donors occasionally give unannounced spare change to assist students, often within the discretion of the institution as to recipients and timing.
As such, if you have a short list of schools, make contact with the financial aid offices to ensure you’ve been apprised of any and all available funds for which to apply. Do contact them directly because many of these scholarships won’t appear on any website.
Beyond your initial contact, make sure you check in now and then and let the aid office know of your need. If the school gets some unexpected funds to distribute, sure you’re on their radar—not some generic face among the teeming masses of needy students. Or turn it up a notch and just bother them more relentlessly until they make you go away. Or, like my incredibly bright and plucky sister-in-law, crank your efforts up to 11 and go to work in the financial aid division. As an employee she was always among the very first to know about funds as they came available and as such got not only job income but also a disproportionate amount of donor cash. Fair? Hardly. So what’s stopping you?