Merit scholarships are the best way for many students and their families to lower their college costs. I wrote a piece back in June about the right questions to ask about merit scholarships. But before you can ask those questions, you want to know which schools are most likely to have the money. While I try to be a resource about schools, Wendy Nelson is probably the best resource on merit scholarships. I’ve known Wendy ’round the ‘Net for some time. Now, I invite you to listen to her.
They can search her sites, subscribe to a regularly updated scholarship database, sign up for newsletters, and interact with her in online events. Wendy’s target audience is students and families “caught in the middle,” too well off for need-based aid, but likely to struggle to cover college costs. School counselors and independent advisors, like myself, are also part of her audience.
She covers the pluses of merit scholarships, and cost-based college searches quite well, and keeps the most current information in one place online. No matter whether a student has a 3.0 and no test scores or a 4.0+ with near perfect scores, her resources will help identify schools that are most likely to offer merit scholarships. Those schools might not be “famous names,” but they offer a starting point for cost-conscious parents and students to feel more encouraged about going to college. Wendy become inspired to blog at first, then build an oft-updated database, from helping her daughter on the journey to college. An information technology professional, she has made an amazing commitment to help others on their journey.
While it is good to be cost-conscious, your target schools should also be an academic and social fit. You want to choose schools where academic success and new friendships are more likely to happen. If you enter college undecided on a major, your target school should offer at least three options that you could choose by the end of your sophomore year. While a merit scholarship might save you money over four years, you do not want to invest more time in an undergraduate degree than necessary. Good advising can help you make the right choices, after you feel sure that the costs can work out.
Need help on the journey to college? Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me at 609-406-0062.
Listen to my talk, College Is A Learning AND Living Community, hosted by Dr. Cynthia Colon from Destination YOUniversity on Voice of America Radio!
Listen to my talk, What Exactly Is a Good College? hosted by test-prep experts Amy Seeley and Mike Bergin on Tests And The Rest!
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