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MIT staff blogger Matt McGann '00

Scholarships by Matt McGann '00

It might seem like you’ve been doing nothing but filling out forms for the past few months. First, for some students, there are early applications to fill out. Then, of course, there are regular applications to complete. And finally, there’s the scrambling to apply for scholarships.

Scholarships are nice. They provide you money for college (offsetting your Self-Help portion of your financial aid, at least at MIT) while at the same time recognizing you for your accomplishments.

Look for scholarships, and try hard to win some. When I was in my last year of high school, I was pretty clueless about scholarships. Ultimately, I did win some awards from local community organizations, but I didn’t put in the effort that I should have for outside scholarships.

If you haven’t already discovered all of the web’s wonderful scholarship resources, what are you waiting for? Two good starting points are Sallie Mae’s College Answer and FastWeb.

Unfortunately, many big scholarship deadlines have passed, but some big scholarships are still open. Today, I’ll highlight a couple programs whose deadline have not yet passed in which MIT students have fared well in the past:

  • The Davidson Institute‘s Davidson Fellows. Davidson Fellows are recognized for “significant work” in science, mathematics, technology, music, literature, or philosophy that “has the potential to make a positive contribution to society.” That recognition takes the form of an award ranging from $10,000 to $50,000 as well as significant media attention and a reception in Washington, DC. Preliminary applications are due between February 15 and March 15.
  • USA Today’s All-USA Academic Team. “Team” members are judged on their academic merit, and the most important factor is “a student’s outstanding original academic, artistic or leadership endeavor.” Winners receive a $2500 scholarship and a nice spread in USA Today. Nominations are due February 22.

These are just two scholarship programs that I wanted to highlight today. But I also wanted to do this post so that you could, in the comments section, tell us about some other scholarship opportunities that you know about. Help your fellow MIT applicant!

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