Get Admitted and Land a Top Job by Winning Scholarships

Want to get a great job while in university? Maybe as a summer research assistant with a top professor, or perhaps in a coveted co-op position in a big company? If so, having one or more scholarships on your record can be a huge benefit.

I was reviewing an application for a competitive summer position this week. One of the first sections on the application was a space for previous awards, scholarships, and achievements.

That's right, one of the first things they want to know is, what are your past achievements?

Employers ask this question because one of the best predictors of future success is past success. They want to "back a winner."

Scholarships are not just about money. A scholarship is a credential. It's a mark of success on your record. It can open doors to many opportunities in the future. This is just another great reason to apply for scholarships!

Competitive admission processes

The benefits don't stop with jobs. Winning a scholarship can also give you an advantage for admission to competitive programs.

If you're thinking that in the future you might apply for medicine, law, pharmacy, or another professional program, one of the best things you can do right now is win scholarships! To get accepted to these competitive programs it helps to demonstrate a track record of success. One of the best ways to demonstrate success is by winning scholarships.

Get the interview and get in the door

Imagine you're in a position to hire someone, or to offer a seat in a competitive program. You're reviewing two equally qualified applicants, but one applicant has several scholarships on their record and the other has none. Which candidate are you more likely to choose?

Receiving a scholarship means somebody's vetted your achievements, which makes the next step — hiring you — that much easier.

Scholarships beget scholarships

And, if you need yet another great reason to apply, here it is: one of the best ways to win scholarships is by winning scholarships.

I've reviewed many scholarship applications, and, just as with job applications, often one of the first questions the funder asks is about your past achievements. Just as a scholarship is a mark of success on a resumé or an application for admission, it also makes a great entry on other scholarship applications. Once you win one, it's often easier to win more. That's why I say "scholarships beget scholarships."

In short, there are many benefits to winning scholarships that you may only come to appreciate a few years in the future. So, go find those scholarships and start applying!

Learn more about mycampusGPS

Janet MacDonald is a former university admissions officer who now helps high school students prepare for scholarships through her company mycampusGPS. She offers scholarship workshops and one-to-one coaching for students and families. Janet has helped Canadian students win hundreds of thousands of dollars for university.

Get personal advice on scholarship applications