Thursday, September 30, 2010

Writing Your First Draft

Prior to writing your first draft, do some brainstorming. Sit down with a blank piece of paper and jot down the names of people or books that inspired you. Mention early influences that led you to your goal. Give some thought to significant events in your life and what you have learned about yourself through these events. Are there beliefs or causes for which you have a passion? Where do you expect to be in five or ten years and what do you envision yourself doing? Be specific in your writing--include details and funny stories.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

New Site

Try to search for colleges and scholarships.

First Paragraph of Personal Statement

Get those creative juices flowing and make that first paragraph compelling. You want to attract the reader's attention and entice him to keep reading. You are attempting to project an image of an interesting person who is worthy of the grant or scholarship being awarded.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Make Your Personal Statement Come Alive

Just imagine for a moment how boring it must be to read one personal statement after another that reads like a shopping list. Instead of simply listing honors, awards or achievements that you included on your application, include brief descriptions of your specific achievements. Keep that in mind, and results will allow the scholarship committee to know you as the deserving candidate that you are.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Competing for Scholarships

Remember, you are competing with many top students who have the same or better qualifications. Your personal statement could be the deciding factor with the judges. Your statement is your opportunity to stand out as an individual. The application form shows factual information, but your personal statement paints a picture of you.

Try to speak from the heart.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Personal Essay

A common mistake that students make is to wait until the last minute to start writing a personal statement. By doing this, you're bound to end up with a weak statement that could negatively affect your eligibility.

It is really important to start writing immediately. Write from the heart and let the reader know who you are.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

On Writing Your Personal Statement

The judges want to know who you are and which educational path you have chosen. Keep reminding yourself that YOU are the one who should receive the award. It is your job to convince them through your personal statement that you are a GREAT INVESTMENT! Believe that the scholarship is already yours, really want it, but write an essay that will make the scholarship committee take notice!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Preparation for Personal Essay

Please come to class prepared to give an oral presentation about yourself. As a listener, you can help by asking questions.

Remember the generic personal essay is about why you are in college; who or what inspired you; why you selected your major; what your short and long term goals are; and to write about any challenge you might have faced. If there has been a huge "bump" in the road for you, what did you learn from it? Has working and giving to others made you a better person?

The judges want to know who you are and why you are more deserving than the other applicant.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Life Planning Class

I have reevaluated posting the codes for the MBTI and the Strong online, and decided to give them out in class.

The Personal Statement

It is time to start working on your personal essay which is the most important document in your application packet. Although I will be giving instructions in the classroom very soon, please start reviewing the questions in the textbook in section two.

As more students take the scholarship class and attend scholarship workshops, they are becoming more sophisticated in the application process--you need to be competitive. You want your essay read and want to be selected as the winner. It is your job to convince the judges that you are the best candidate.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Pathways to Success

The electronic application for the Pathways to Success scholarship will be available the end of November. Will let you know when I have the actual date.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Location of Coca Cola Workshop

The Coca Cola workshop will be held in the Multipurpose Room in the new building (CSSC)--it is on the first floor. Good to idea to reserve a spot with my assistant, Margo, at 760 862-1351

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Coca-Cola All-State Community College Scholarships

The electronic application for this scholarship will be available on Tuesday, September 21,2010. The COD deadline is November 01,2010. A workshop specifically for this scholarship will be offered on October 01, 2010 at 10:00 to 11:00--location to be announced.

Eligibility requirements are:
1. Must be enrolled at a community college.
2. GPA minimum of 3.5 college-level coursework in the last 5 years.
3. Completed at least 36 semester units of college-level credit.
4. Must be on track for an Associate or Bachelor's degree.
5. Must NOT have been nominated previously.
6. College record free of suspension, probation or other serious disciplinary action.
7. Free from criminal conduct.

To access via Google,key in Coca-Cola All-State Community College Academic Team Program

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Next Step

It is time to do follow up on the Letters of Recommendation. Please contact the people who are writing on your behalf. The first student in my class to receive three letters will receive a flash drive. Be sure to notify me by email.

Please set up your new scholarship email account with a professional name and start completing profiles on and Even though I have more faith in local scholarships, it won’t hurt to start exploring some of the most popular sites.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Be Prepared for Class Today

You will NEED your portfolio in class today!

Please check your assignments and come prepared to discuss the differences between the HOPE Scholarship, Opportunity Award, Lifelong Learning Credit and Interest on student loans.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Free Email Accounts

I strongly recommend that you establish a separate email account for your scholarship search. In addition, be sure to select a name that is professional and easy to remember. Too many combinations may be difficult to copy, but it is also easy to make a mistake if it is complicated.

Names like cuteypie, bighunk, sober4 are not only unprofessional, but you might be sending a message about yourself that is not positive. When in doubt, use your name and a number.

Check these sites as possible options for your separate scholarship website:

 Gmail
 AIM Mail
 Yahoo! Mail
 FastMail Guest Account
 Windows Live Hotmail
 Yahoo! Mail Classic

Friday, September 10, 2010

Class Review

The following is the process for recording your scholarships in your portfolio:
1. You'll be using the scholarship organizer, calendar and A-Z index.
2. Read the scholarship eligibility requirements to be sure you qualify.
3. Record the information on the scholarship organizer with black pen.
4. With red pen, record the name of the scholarship on the due date on the calendar.
5. With green pen, record the name of the scholarship three weeks before deadline on the calendar.
6. File the scholarship alphabetically--insert into the sheet protector.
7. Scholarship is now ready for you to complete the application.
8. Be sure to make a copy of each and every scholarship before you submit electronically or by mail.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Portfolios Due Today

IMPORTANT! Bring your portfolio to class today. Instructions will be given on using the system. Remember that last Tuesday was the deadline to either purchase the packet from the Follett bookstore or to organize your own. This class moves very quickly and it is critical to have your materials ready to go.

Directions for assembling your portfolio can be found on my website ( or in the book.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Last Day to Add or Drop

Today is the last day to add a class, but it is also the last day to drop a class. By dropping today, you will qualify for a refund and the class will not show on your transcripts. Also, it will allow a student who is desperately in need of the class and/or units to fulfill his or her educational requirement.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010


Gather up your necessary documents (driver's license, social security, alien registration card, birth certificate) and have color copies made.

Be sure to always keep both the originals and copies in a secure place at home. Identity theft has become a big crime so you need to be deligent.

Monday, September 6, 2010

How are you doing?

By now, you should have completed the following:
1. Submitted a message to both my emails ( and
2. Completed and submitted (to a minimum of three people) your written request for Letters of Recommendation.
3. Purchased your scholarship packet from the bookstore (includes your book, portfolio and binder). OR
4. Put together your own portfolio and binder and purchased your book from
5. Explored;;

Hope you are having a good Labor Day weekend.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Letters of Recommendation

As I mentioned in class, getting your letters of recommendation is one of your biggest challenges so it is very important that you get your requests in as soon as possible.

Instructors are very busy. You will need to remind them constantly that you have a deadline for submitting your scholarship applications.

You will need the following in your packet:
Letter of Request (check the textbook for sample)
Personal Data Form (website)
Scholarship Resume (website)
Unofficial Transcripts (they will be in your folder next Tuesday)
Guidelines for Writing Letter of Recommendation (copy given yesterday in class--the one in the website needs a bit of updating).
Samples of Letters of Recomnmendation (copies will be in your folder next Tuesday)
Two white envelopes (in the scholarship packet purchased from the bookstore)

Have a great long weekend.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Welcome Back to College

I love new beginnings thus, the start of a new semester is always very exciting for me. Welcome to Intro to Scholarships!!!

As I mentioned in class, we start off with a bang so it is important to get going with your request for Letters of Recommendation. The first step is to ask 4 or 5 people if they feel comfortable writing a "wonderful" letter on your behalf. A yes answer requires that you immediately submit a request packet with all of the necessary materials. I will review that in class today, but the directions are also in the book.

It is very helpful to review the archives in this blog for valuable information.