Cut College Costs! Course for Parents: Day 4

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Lesson 3: 7 Things Your Student Needs in Their Scholarship Profile

Welcome to Part 3!

Before we get started, you should understand that today’s lesson helps set the tone for the remaining lessons.

A Scholarship Profile will dictate how you find and apply for scholarships.

I can say that it’s the thing that will:

  • Increase your scholarship eligibility
  • Create more scholarships for you to apply for
  • Provide materials for your scholarship essays
  • and much more!

This lesson’s information expands upon the foundation that we’ve been building over the past couple of days and, more importantly, will help you look for a few of the most important elements needed to begin standing out from the competition.

To help you know what to look for and where to start, let’s look at the acronym: S.T.U.D.E.N.T.


Your student has to participate in some form of community service or service to others.

It’s becoming harder and harder for students to compete without an element of giving back in their history and/or current activities. Make sure that they are volunteering. Any amount of time counts.


Talents are skills and abilities that have been created and honed over time. I’m sure that there’s something your son or daughter does that can be considered a talent.

From athletics, being an avid reader, speaking, photography, writing, painting, or gaming, talents come in all forms. (Yes, there are many scholarships out there for students that play video games!) Begin to identify their talents as additional scholarship access points.


As we continue, this point will require you to have a heart-to-heart conversation. Your student must clarify why they want to go to college.

Surface level answers such as, “To earn a degree” or “I have no choice” will not get the job done. Be open to and understanding of their honesty. It can be tough for anyone to reveal their dreams and goals. Even if it’s an answer that you are not too keen on hearing, listen.

A question to consider to start the conversation: What does earning a degree mean to you?

For me, earning a degree made me a third-generation graduate of my alma mater. It’ll also mean that I’ll be the first in my family to earn a doctorate degree. Push them to dig a little deeper to uncover what it really means to have the privilege of attending a university.


Here, determine what your student is dedicated to.

Is it teaching others, volunteering at church, family, work, painting, sports, band, writing novels? What is something they care about? What are their passions?

These items may or may not be under Talent.


Next, ask your student about what life experiences have shaped them into who they are.

Did they fall out of their bunk bed, break their arm, and then decide to be an orthopedist? Or maybe you bought them a Lego set and they fell in love with buildings. Whatever the case, there are experiences that have shaped your student.


Following Experiences, we have Need.

How would your student complete their need sentence?

“I need this scholarship because ____________________________.”

Why do they need money for college? What will having the money allow them to do?

Remember, an answer with substance creates results. Even though it may be very obvious to you, students need to elaborate enough to sell themselves to a scholarship committee through making a connection.


Last, we have Twist. A lot of students drop the ball on this one.

Do they have elements within their Scholarship Profile that “spice up” their story?

I’ve worked with students that who have overcome many different obstacles. For example, I’ve had students that faced complications when they were born, whose parents went through a nasty divorce, who’ve overcome learning disabilities, and many other challenging moments.

What’s something that can add a unique aspect to your student’s story to make them stand out?

Today’s Action Item

  • Have a heart-to-heart conversation to assess what areas of your profile your student needs to address.

I know that you may be feeling a little overwhelmed about the amount of work ahead of you, especially if you’re short on time. You may be wondering, “How in the world am I going to sit down and work through all of this with my schedule and theirs?

If that sounds like you, tomorrow I’m going to give you a suggestion to make things easier. But for now, complete today’s action item.

Tomorrow we are going to cover: The #1 Thing You Can Do to Help Your Student with Their Scholarship Essays

Comment below, send me an email, or join us over in the Scholarship Talk Facebook Group. But don’t remain silent because I need to know where you’re struggling and what you’re learning.

I want to make sure that at Scholarship Informer we continue to provide families like yours with the best content possible, so let me know how we’re doing.

I’ll see you tomorrow in Lesson 4 where you’ll start to see things come together even more!

To your family’s scholarship success,