How to Write a Scholarship Letter as a Student

Most scholarships require students to submit an essay. However, some may ask for a letter of intent or a cover letter instead! Different from an essay or a letter you might write to a friend, scholarship letters want to get to know you and why you should win this scholarship. Here’s a guide on how to write a scholarship letter as a student!

Formatting Your Scholarship Letter

The first step in how to write a scholarship letter is formatting. Try to follow the standard letter format! Start with your name, address, and contact information at the top of your document. Then the date you’re writing this letter. Next, add the contact information of the person or organization you’re sending the letter to.

When beginning your letter, you’ll want to start with “Dear” + the name of the person you’re sending the letter to. If you don’t know their name, you can say “Dear Scholarship Committee” instead!

To finish your letter, end with a closing statement such as “thank you for your consideration”. Then sign your name! It is also recommended to type your name below your signature.

Here’s an image of what a basic scholarship letter should look like!

What To Include in a Scholarship Letter

Your scholarship letter should give the committee an idea of who you are and what makes you an excellent candidate. You can use a more personal tone for a letter than an essay. Here’s a basic format on how you can structure your letter!

Hook

Scholarships often receive hundreds of applications. You want to stand out right away with a hook! Make it personal and something that is unique from the average student. 

Think of something that will capture the reader’s attention and encourage them to keep reading—this could be a personal story or a powerful statement. Give the reader a snapshot of your “character”—what specific event/person/experience has motivated you to be who you are today?

If you can relate your hook to the specific scholarship, that’s even better! This shows that you are familiar with the organization offering the scholarship. For example, if you’re applying for a scholarship provided by a local Rotary Club, you could describe a time you volunteered with Rotary. Or perhaps the organization’s website mentions that innovation is important to them. You could state how your robotics experience allowed you to become an innovative leader in your community!

Your first paragraph should ultimately focus on why you want this scholarship and why you’re a good fit for it. 

Key Experiences

After the first paragraph, you will generally have 1-2 body paragraphs that demonstrate that you’re a great fit for the scholarship. Do this by highlighting your skills, qualities, and experiences related to the scholarship criteria! 

Each paragraph should describe one key volunteer or leadership experience. To fully highlight your involvement, use the STAR structure!

STAR is a 4-part acronym that will help you craft a strong paragraph describing a specific volunteer or extracurricular experience. 

  • S — Situation (who, what, when, where)
  • T — Task (your objective)
  • A — Actions (what you did, how you did it, skills you used)
  • R — Result (qualitative or quantitative proof of your success) 

Repeat this structure in every body paragraph! Using this will make your writing powerful and easy to follow. 

Closing

The closing paragraph should summarize your impact and why you’re the best fit for the scholarship. It’s also a great place to further describe how the scholarship would help you. What are your educational goals? What are your career goals? How will this scholarship help you succeed? Finally, thank the reader for their time and consideration. You can also invite them to follow-up with you if there are any next steps in the process (like an interview for example)!

If you want even more support, GrantMe can help you stand out. We provide personalized scholarship matches, essay editing, and mentorship from past winners to maximize your success. Complete our short scholarship eligibility quiz to learn more about how GrantMe can help you achieve your post-secondary goals. 

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