After you’ve set up an account with a scholarship search system, don’t just apply for a bunch of scholarships once and forget about it! To get the most out of these free scholarship searching resources, you need to regularly check out the results for your profile as new contests and awards are added to the system or reactivated when a new annual program is announced.
So, is January a good time to search for scholarships and fill out applications? Yeah, sure it is – there’s fewer exams, less moving around and travel, and a sort of general calm in the chaos. Why not stay inside and avoid the cold weather and find some money for college one night a week, or make it a goal to spend two or three evenings to find and complete two or three applications. If you did that once every month, I’d say there was a high statistical likelihood that you’d be accepted for an award or two. That means February is a good time, March is a good time…. you get the idea.
As far as contests go, you might as well apply any chance you get. These typically involve a raffle-style selection, and you can recognize them because they’ll have short registrations that require very short essays. There’s probably not much you can do to improve your odds of winning one other than applying for a lot. They’re usually open for one-month intervals, so you should always check your profiles at least once a month to see what new sweepstakes are available.
Remember: When it comes to finding money for college, don’t wait for the “right time.” Any time you’ve got available is perfect! The best way is to be consistent and put in effort throughout high school and college. Sure, a lot of scholarships are just for freshman, but there are still some opportunities available all the way through the degree.