A Guide To Writing A Winning Scholarship Essay

Scholarships are a lifesaving aspect for some. But how do you write an essay to earn it?

In 2020, more than 58% of families around the globe relied on scholarships and paid for school fees. That’s why many students revere it and seek to gain scholarships by writing to the people in power.

Now, considering an average scholarship is worth around $7400, earning such a scholarship is not an easy task. So, how do you write an essay that gets you over the line? Today, we’ll understand a few aspects of writing a winning scholarship essay. So, let’s get started.


What Is An Scholarship Essay?

Scholarship essays are a great way to get a scholarship. These are the most common type of essays required in academic and professional writing to earn a scholarship. They typically describe an individual’s achievements, which can be academic or personal.

Some requirements need to be met in order for you to be eligible. You will need to have good grades and show your achievements. An essay is the best way to show your personality, creativity, and writing skills.

Since a scholarship essay is a piece of writing that describes an individual’s achievements, it must feature all that, including a few examples such as:

  • Achievements in the academy and outside of it
  • Problem-solving skills
  • A time when a person stood up and led by example

You can find all these in a good scholarship essay.

Why Do You Need A Scholarship Essay?

Scholarships are a great way to help fund your education. Some scholarships are for certain majors, some for specific ethnicities, and others for people with particular skills. The scholarships can be for any field, from engineering to nursing.

You can find scholarships for your specific interests and career goals. You can also find them for particular skill sets, achievements, and goals in a facet of life. There are many different types of scholarships that you can apply for, and all of them require convincing.

This is where you write an essay about why you deserve the scholarship and then submit it to the scholarship committee. This includes portraying a few things, such as:

  • Why you deserve the scholarship
  • How you’ll elevate the name of the academy
  • Or how you’d serve your particular niche or industry

These are the kind of elements that help the people in power understand if a candidate is worthy of scholarships or not. That’s why a scholarship essay is hailed as the most important writing of a student’s life.

6 Steps of Writing A Winning Scholarship Essay

Writing a scholarship essay isn’t about going the old cliched way and turning it into something emotional. Rather, it’s about writing something logical and reasonable that your reader can relate to.

Now, it’s not bad if it has some emotional value. However, that shouldn’t be your primary focus. To make it easier for you, here are 6 steps you should take to write a winning scholarship essay:

1. Tell Them What They Want To Know

The first step is to understand what they want to know. ‘They’ being the people in power, aka the people who can grant you this scholarship. So, what would make them think you’re worthy of it? Answer these questions yourself:

  • Reminisce a type when you solved a problem in the school, college, or in the neighbourhood
  • Are you a leader or a follower?
  • What are your fellow students’ views of you? What kind of a person do they deem you to be?
  • What are your top qualities?

Answering these questions will give you a good idea of what your essay should be. So, describe yourself properly and tell them what they want to know about you.

2. Establish A Theme

A theme of a scholarship essay is a necessary essential. You might be wondering, how exactly do you set up a theme for such a paper? For example, your scholarship is something related to technology. Then, your essay’s theme should be about how deep you are into technology.

This includes the things you’ve wanted to do, things you want to do, and things you’ve done, i.e., your accomplishments. Give your grantee an idea about why you’re a worthy candidate, and that’s why you’ll need a theme.

3. Write A Strong Intro

The introduction or the beginning of your article needs to be the strongest. A lot of universities and colleges receive hundreds and thousands of letters/essays about granting scholarships.

However, many of them are discarded in the first few sentences because the intro fails to grip the reader’s mind. Make sure you avoid that mistake and write something captivating.

4. Fix The Content Tone

The content tone of your scholarship essay needs to be astute. It cannot vary and certainly cannot be casual or informal. So, how do you ensure it remains that way? Use a paraphrasing tool to rewrite any irregularities.

As seen here, you can pick two of the three content tones to ensure specificity throughout your writing. This will allow you to keep your text’s clear and fluent tone. Here’s an example of how the paraphrasing tool shifts this narrative:

The content in green is the text changed by this paraphraser. So, how exactly did it make it better for a scholarship essay?

  • It made it easier to read
  • It employed a direct content tone
  • It offered more insight, less fluff
  • It used powerful yet simpler synonyms

These factors alone make this text worthy of a scholarship essay.

5. Get A Second Look – Originality

Finally, when you have written the essay, make sure that it’s original, with no similarity to any online source, or else you may impose a negative impression on your evaluators. Therefore, it is recommended for students to check plagiarism before submitting it to maintain academic integrity.

6. Don’t Undersell Yourself

It’s a good thing to be humble, but it’s never good to undersell yourself—particularly in scholarship essays. Universities and colleges grant such scholarships to people who are sure of their abilities and qualities. So, lead with confidence and don’t understate yourself.


These are some of the key aspects of writing a winning scholarship essay. All of them can help you portray your qualities and allow the reader to understand the things that make you an ideal candidate for the scholarship.

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