Types of scholarships

Scholarships are financial assistance schemes offered to deserving students for the purpose of subsidizing their pursuit of a collegiate education. In today’s educational scenario, the scholarships offered by individuals and organizations amount to billions of dollars and make it possible for intelligent students who may not possess the financial capabilities to receive a quality education. There are several types of scholarships available and some amount of research is necessary on the part of the students to understand what kind of a scholarship he/she would be eligible for.

Student need-based scholarships are offered after careful consideration of a student’s current financial status and ability to afford a college education. Such scholarships are commonly offered into the socially and economically underprivileged and also to members from under-recognized or marginalized communities.
Merit-based scholarships are offered in recognition of a student’s consistently high academic performance in high schools or on account of the student’s achievement in athletics, music, dance, art or other similar extra-curricular activities.

There are yet other scholarships that are offered to students who wish to pursue a specific field of study or research. Usually, such scholarships are supported by the relevant industry such as bio-medical research or soil chemistry, nursing and so on.

In some colleges, the college itself may offer a scholarship to very competent students who qualify for the scholarship after an elaborate process of multi-pronged assessments. Obviously, students who wish to study only at a specific college of their choice, are the likely recipients of such scholarships.

Bond scholarships is yet another popular kind of scholarship, where some institutes while offering the student a scholarship also require a commitment that the student will work with them for a stipulated time frame. Scholarships offered for students who wish to study medicine and then practice in rural areas and similar programs offered by the armed forces are examples.

Another commonly used entry point by students for consideration for scholarships is athletic proficiency. Such scholarships are offered to exceptional athletes and sportspersons so that as they continue their education in the institute, they also play on the college team in league games of the respective sports. However, opinion on such scholarships is divided, for there are many who feel that offering such scholarships on the basis of merely athletic excellence may dilute the academic standards of an institute.

Even within these broad classifications of scholarships, there are specific criteria set by each institute which the applicant has to meet in order to be considered eligible to receive the scholarship.

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