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What Are The Top Scholarships And How To Apply For Them? 

Students in front of NYU, Scholarship

Abroad education comes with its fair share of expenses and the only way to go about it is through education loans and scholarships. Education loans, while covering major expenses, also create a huge debt for the students. Leaving Scholarships to be the best way to fund their higher education. A perfect mix of an education loan and scholarship is the ideal way to balance the expenses and debt.

What are scholarships? 

Scholarships are financial aid awarded to students to help them pursue higher education. The best part about scholarships is that they do not need to be repaid. Scholarships can be merit-based or need-based, depending on the provider and the requirements of the scholarship. They are provided by either abroad universities or external organizations like private companies or state governments. 

A scholarship is a difference between you worrying about loan repayments and getting the most out of your abroad education experience. Winning a scholarship to study in the US is a hard nut to crack and equally competitive but we are here to guide you through the process. 

First, let’s look at some of the top scholarships – 

What are some of the top scholarships for US? 

There are several scholarships available, out of which we are mentioning some of the top ones – 

GyanDhan  Scholarship 

GyanDhan is a one-stop-shop for abroad education. With their extensive tools and services, they make the abroad education experience of a student easier and hassle-free. To further help students with their abroad venture, they came out with a scholarship of INR 1 lakh for one worthy student. The scholarship is a one-time award given at the start of the academic year. Students should note that the application cycle for the 2021-22 academic year has started with a deadline of 31st August 2021. It is a merit-based scholarship awarded to a student with an exceptional profile. 

The Fulbright-Nehru Master’s Fellowships 

The Full-bright Nehru Scholarships are provided to Indian students who are pursuing Master’s programs from the US. The students pursuing a course in the fields of Arts and Culture Management including Heritage Conservation and Museum Studies; Environmental Science/Studies; Higher Education Administration; International Legal Studies; Public Administration; Public Health; Urban and Regional Planning; and Women’s Studies/Gender Studies are eligible for the scholarship. 

Generation Google Scholarship 

This scholarship is awarded by Google to aspiring computer scientists. Awarded to students applying to the US or Canadian universities, the student must be studying Computer Science, Computer Engineering, or a related field. 

Some other scholarships for the US are Aga Khan Foundation Scholarship, Global Study Awards, Inlaks Scholarship, and many more. This list is not exhaustive by any means. But don’t worry. You can use GyanDhan Scholarship Finder and get access to thousands of scholarships and their details in one place. 

Now that you know some relevant scholarships, let’s look at the process 

What should I know before applying for a scholarship? 

Applications for scholarships often confuse students. We compiled a list of common questions that frequently haunt students –

  1. How should I start preparing for a scholarship?
  2. What should I do to get a scholarship for MS in the US? 
  3. Do my percentage of 10th and 12th matter for a scholarship? What is the minimum percentage I need?
  4. Does my undergraduate percentage matter? 
  5. What should be my GRE and TOEFL scores to win a scholarship?
  6. What is the scholarship deadline? What is the ideal time to apply for a scholarship? 
  7. How and where to search for relevant scholarships? 

Did you also find a question that resonated with you? Well, read on further to clear all your doubts about scholarships. So, let’s start.

How should I start preparing for a scholarship? 

  1. Prepare and research – Applying for a scholarship should start with thorough preparation. There are several aspects of a scholarship application such as eligibility criteria, documents, deadlines, etc that should be the starting point of your application process. Make a list of all the relevant scholarships and related information to make the process easy. 
  2. Organize  Now that you have made a list of relevant scholarships, organize them according to importance and deadlines. Further, organize all the documents that you might need to submit along with your application. If you need a Statement of Purpose or a LOR with your application, then work on it beforehand.
  3. Follow-through – Every scholarship will have a different deadline and process. Carefully go through the application requirements and deadlines. It’s even more important to research and work on your application beforehand as you will also be dealing with university admissions.
  4. Apply – Once you have prepared and organized everything, you’ll sail through the application process. 

What should I do to get a scholarship for MS in the US? 

The answer to this question is – excellent preparation. You need to be prepared for every step, every submission, and every interview; you will have to put your best foot forward. 

It starts with thoroughly researching the scholarship program. You should have full knowledge about what the scholarship is about, its eligibility criteria, and what are the qualities that the scholarship committee will look for in a student.  You might not be eligible for all the scholarships as all of them have different criteria, so make sure you fulfill the criteria before you apply for one. Visit various websites to get full information about the scholarship and start on the right note.

A basic requirement for a scholarship is that the student must be an Indian citizen with valid identity proof, a valid passport, and a legal permit to stay and study in the US. 

Do my percentage of 10th and 12th matter for a scholarship? What is the minimum percentage I need?

Most students are under the impression that they need exceptionally well marks in their 10th and 12th, otherwise, they will be rejected. An excellent academic record can only boost your chances of winning a scholarship, but a low score in 10th and 12th will hardly lower your chances. 

Does my undergraduate percentage matter?

A simple answer is yes. If you are applying for a Master’s program, then the scholarship committee will evaluate your undergraduate marks. The marks of your last qualifying examination are taken into consideration. Therefore, these marks are important, but still not the sole deciding factor. 

What should be my GRE and TOEFL scores to win a scholarship?

GRE and TOEFL scores are taken into account while judging a student’s profile. These tests evaluate the student’s caliber to study in a foreign university and a new environment. So, a good score on these tests will increase their chances of getting an apt scholarship.

What is the scholarship deadline? What is the ideal time to apply for a scholarship?

Just like the eligibility criteria, the application process and the deadline of every scholarship will differ. The deadline for a scholarship offered by the university may coincide with the college application. For scholarships offered by external institutions, the deadline will vary depending on the organization and the application cycle. The best way to stay on top of these deadlines is to be organized. Students should be well-aware of the deadlines of both admission and scholarships so as to not miss any important date. 

How and where to search for relevant scholarships?

There are two main sources for scholarships – Universities and external organizations. 

Most US and abroad universities have a provision to help international students financially. So, go through the prospectus and the university website thoroughly. 

The university’s Financial Aid section is where you will find relevant information regarding financial aid, scholarships, bursaries, on-campus jobs, off-campus jobs, assistantships, etc. Go through it carefully.  

For scholarships provided by external organizations like private companies or government agencies, a simple google search can do wonders. Use free-scholarship search sources – websites, free counselors, alumni, etc. The other method to find relevant scholarships is to use the GyanDhan Scholarship Finder. It will list all the scholarships corresponding to your target search. 

What are some useful tips to win a scholarship for US education? 

US education sits quite heavy on the pocket. So, don’t miss a chance to win a scholarship with these useful tips – 

  • Make sure your scholarship application is spotless and error-free. You may not get a chance to rectify any mistake made on the application and even the smallest mistake can cost you a chance to win a scholarship. 
  • The application should be submitted well in advance. Do not wait till the last minute to apply. 
  • The information provided on the application should be correct and true to the best of your knowledge. If at any point the committee comes to know that you have forged information, you will be disqualified. 
  • Some scholarships have provisions that require the student to maintain a certain grade after winning the scholarship. So, make sure you do well in your studies to stay eligible for the scholarship funds. 

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