The Senior Search For Schools and Scholarships

November 9, 2021

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The entrance of Fair Grove High School.

Fair Grove High School’s class of 2022 is preparing for life after high school and college bound students are searching for universities and scholarships to aid in furthering their education.

Seniors everywhere who are planning on attending college are working on applying for schools and scholarships. However, they often do not know where to start. The college search can be difficult when one does not know where they want to go. There are several online tools and resources one can use to narrow down their search.

Two websites one can use to find colleges fit for you are CollegeVine and College Search

CollegeVine has options to create a list of schools that interest the user. By filling out information such as GPA, ACT/SAT score, and more, CollegeVine can tell the user how likely they are to get into a school. It will declare if a school is a safety, target, or reach school. A safety school is a school that one is almost certain to get accepted to, more so a backup plan. A target school is a school one applies to that will be more competitive to get into based on GPA and ACT/SAT. A reach school is a school that is very difficult to be admitted to.

College Search is a website run through College Board, an organization that is made to assist students in college preparation. College Search helps students find colleges that fit their needs by exploring four categories: location, major, type, and campus life. The website user can use these categories to filter through colleges that they may want to apply to.

When it comes to actually applying for colleges, the Common App is a great resource. The Common App is essentially a mass application for hundreds of colleges around the United States. The student fills out the application and then is able to use the same application for multiple schools. Filling out applications can often be a long, tedious process. The Common App makes this process less so. Not every school accepts the Common App, so students are encouraged to check that the schools they are applying to accept it first.

At Fair Grove High School, counselor Tonya Peck helps students prepare for college. One of the ways she does this is by assisting them in finding/applying for scholarships. Peck stressed the importance of scholarships and shared, “Scholarships are extremely important as any scholarship that is awarded can help with the financial burden that college might bring. Even a small scholarship can help alleviate stress by covering books or fees that a college might have.”

Peck has a five step process that she goes through to help students with scholarships. Firstly, she consults with the student about the automatic scholarships the student will receive from the school they applied to. Secondly, she explores the student’s involvement in places such as church, work, parent’s work, or other organizations that may offer scholarships. Thirdly, she offers scholarship websites. Fourthly, the scholarship search is widened from the Fair Grove area to Missouri. And fifthly, she offers scholarships specific to Fair Grove students.

“Fair Grove has a variety of scholarships specific to Fair Grove students. Our community has been fantastic in supporting our graduates in this way,” Peck explained. “We have 14 different organizations/families that present a scholarship with many of these awarding more than one for their organization.” Peck posts updates on scholarships on the Fair Grove Seniors Google Classroom, which is available to the entire 2022 Fair Grove class.

Paige Robinson (12) is planning on studying Criminology or Business Leadership in college. “I started in September and am slowly going through them. I’ve only applied for scholarships through the colleges right now,” Robinson assessed. Robinson has applied to five schools so far. Kyle Fritts (12) has applied to two different schools and is planning on either studying business or engineering. Kyle shared, “I have applied for a few scholarships, but the major ones have been the Boys State scholarships. I attended Missouri Boys State over the summer and it opened up scholarship opportunities for me.” Both Robinson and Fritts plan on using scholarships to aid paying for school.

There are several scholarship websites that students can find scholarships at, including Fastweb, Bold.org, Scholarships.com, and ScholarshipOwl.

With graduation creeping closer and closer, deadlines for school and scholarship applications grow near. If a student wishes to apply for such things, they should begin the journey. Even if a student struggles with their grades, Peck expressed, “Not all scholarships are based on grades or test scores. Scholarships range from need based to athletic to club/organization specific to community service. There are scholarships out there for any student.”

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