How To Secure MBA Scholarships
The MBA can be an expensive investment. That’s why it’s critical for applicants to get ahead of the scholarship application process to ensure they’re getting the best offer.
Fortuna Admissions recently discussed how applicants can successfully apply for MBA scholarships.
To stay on top of scholarships, it’s important to start the application process as early as you can.
“As soon as you decide to apply for an MBA, start searching for private scholarships,” according to Fortuna. “Since you’ll likely only be enrolled for two years, you have less time to apply than you did as an undergrad (not to mention the hectic pace of your life as you juggle a job).”
Stacy Blackman, of Stacy Blackman Consulting, says applicants should start creating a financial aid plan at least three months before applying.
“You can count on fierce competition for scholarships – AKA free money – so you’ll benefit from having the time to create strong scholarship applications, and from knowing the key deadlines so that opportunities don’t pass you by,” Blackman writes.
Fortuna recommends that applicants be clear about deadlines and ensuring eligibility prior to applying.
“Your time is too valuable—don’t waste your time applying for a scholarship you won’t receive.”
Blackman suggests applicants research the schools they were accepted into to see the scholarship opportunities available.
“Schools that offer you admission may automatically consider you for merit fellowships based on your academic credentials, accomplishments and experience communicated in your application,” she writes. “Some schools may also offer additional fellowships that you can apply for directly through the program.”
Telling a Strong Story
You’ll also have to convince a scholarship committee that you’re worthy of receiving scholarship money. That will all come down to how strong your story is.
“They want to hear about you, so make it personal,” Fortuna writes. “What have you accomplished and how? What are your goals, and why is the MBA vital for this next step in your career? Whatever it is, make sure you answer the essay question that is asked clearly and completely.”
In another piece, Blackman says, applicants should answer scholarships essay questions as thoroughly and succinctly as possible.
“The value of fellowships/scholarships should be fairly straightforward, though you may emphasize either need or merit in your response, depending upon the direction you plan to take in the argument for your own application,” she writes.
If the scholarship is merit-based, it’s important to highlight your achievements.
“With a merit-based argument, you should outline your accomplishments, both academic and professional,” Blackman writes. “Sell yourself as you would in a job interview, and provide solid evidence for your accomplishments as you did in your application essays.”