So now you’ve sent off your completed application, and you breathe a momentary sigh of relief, before realizing that in many ways the hard work has just begun. Questions are running through your head, like “Did they receive my scholarship application?” “Am I going to be called in for an interview?” And the all-important, “Will I be the lucky student whose awarded this scholarship?” Here are some tips for what to do after your scholarship application has been sent off in the mail:
Scholarship follow up file. The easiest way to track all your completed applications is to set up a portable “file cabinet” that can hold hanging folders. Make a folder for each individual, completed application and stick all the matching paperwork inside. I suggest filing these in alphabetical order for easy reference. Also, remember to mark off on your Scholarship Deadline Sheet that you finished the application and be sure to note the mailing date.
Check in on your scholarship. After about a week has passed, it’s time to check in with the scholarship organization and make sure they received your application. The purpose of this contact is as follows: 1. You need to make sure your application was received. 2. The person who searches out your application to ensure it’s safe arrival is almost guaranteed to glance through the pages to make sure it really is yours. 3. After checking, she will place it back on the top of the stack, where your application may receive even further exposure.
Communication medium. You’re probably asking, which communication medium is best to use to inquire about the safe delivery of your scholarship application? Is email or the telephone best? While it’s easy to hit the “Contact Us” button on the website, speaking to someone is much more personable and memorable. It also allows you to establish a rapport with someone on the scholarship team. You might even get lucky and the person who takes your call decides to look over your application and ask a couple of questions right then and there. That means you just scored yourself a mini-interview!
Find out more about the committee. While calling to verify your applications delivery with the scholarship committee is a great opportunity for the committee to learn a little more about you, it’s also an opportunity to find out more about them. You will want to write down and remember the name of the person you spoke to for future friendliness. It’s also a great time to ask about any timelines that have been established for selecting a winner. Record all the information you learn in your SEP.
Send a ‘thank-you’ card. A week or two after the deadline for submitting application has passed, take the time to send a short “Thank-you” card in the mail. Let them know that you are grateful for their consideration, and also thank them for the work they are doing to make the world a better place. After this, all you can do is wait and wonder.
Importance of following up. You might be thinking to yourself, why is it so important to follow-up on your scholarship application? After all, you don’t want to be nuisance and keep bothering the scholarship committee, right? Wrong! As long as you are friendly and respectful, no one will be upset with your efforts. Making consistent contact with the committee not only cements your name into their heads, but it’s also a demonstration of your proactive spirit and determination to win the scholarship.