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Scholarship Applicant FAQ's

Q. When is the scholarship application deadline?

A. The deadline is March 1, 2014 by 5 pm Eastern Time.

Q. What are the Scholarship Criteria questions at the top of each application?

A. Each scholarship has different eligibility criteria based upon the wishes of the donor who established the scholarship, and each scholarship application has screening questions that must be answered to determine if you are eligible to apply for the scholarship.  If you cannot answer “Yes” to these screening questions, you are ineligible for the scholarship and are advised not to complete the application. 

Q. I don’t have my Fall 2013 Semester grades yet.  Will you accept a transcript without my Fall grades?

A. No, we will need a transcript that includes your Fall grades in order to consider your application complete.  Until you have your transcript in hand you can work on other parts of your application, as you can save your application as a draft and return to it at anytime.

Q. How do I upload the required documents to my application?

A. If the document is already saved on your computer, you can click the “Browse” button on the application and select the document to upload.  If you have access to a scanner, you can scan the document and then upload it.  If the file size is too large, your scanner may be set at too high a resolution; consider changing it to 150 dpi.  For transcripts and letters of recommendation that may be more than one page, make sure that you upload all of the pages as one document.  If you upload pages individually, the new upload will override the previous upload.

If you do not have access to a scanner, or the file size is too large, consider using the Fax to File feature in the application.  This tool allows you to fax documents to your application for uploading.  Once you are given a toll-free fax number, you have 20 minutes to fax the needed documents for conversion to a PDF document.  Once you are finished faxing you can click the “Finished Faxing” button to see your list of files, which you can then download to your computer for uploading to the appropriate part of your application.  The Fax to File feature is located on the left hand side of each application.

Be sure to save your application each time you upload documents, and always double check your uploads to make sure all of your documents uploaded correctly.

Q. I don’t have access to a scanner or fax machine.  What do I do? 

A. Start by talking to your guidance counselor at school to see if the school has equipment that you can access.  If that is not an option please contact the Community Foundation, as we want to ensure that all eligible students have the opportunity to complete an application and are happy to assist you.  However, do not send us copies of the required attachments, as everything must be submitted online, and hard copies will not be accepted.

Q. Instead of uploading my SAT and ACT scores, can I just upload my transcript since my scores are on the transcript?

A. No, you must upload a copy of your scores, and it is preferable that you upload them as a PDF or JPEG document.  We have volunteer community members who assist us in reviewing the applications, and they need to be able to open and view a copy of your test scores.

Q. How long does my Personal Essay have to be?

A. You have the equivalent of two typed pages available for the essay.  The essay is a very important part of your application, as it helps the reviewers get to know you and can help you stand out from the other applicants. You should use the full space available, and we recommend that you copy and paste from a Word document so that you can check for spelling mistakes and grammatical errors.  You might want to copy and paste from Word for all application questions requiring a written response, as these questions are the same on each application.

Q. Do my letters of recommendation have to be signed and on letterhead?

A. Yes, they do, and if you have more than one letter, they must be uploaded together as one document.

Q. What financial documentation is required for those scholarships for which financial need is a consideration?

A. You must include a copy of your Student Aid Report (SAR) from the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (or FAFSA), which is an application students and their families must complete in order to be considered for federal financial aid, and many states and schools also use the FAFSA as part of their application process for non-federal aid.  The Student Aid Report (SAR) is the report received by the student that summarizes the student’s financial need and provides the official EFC (Expected Family Contribution) number.  You must also include a copy of pages 1 and 2 of your family’s tax return, and both documents must be uploaded together as one document.

Be sure and talk to your parents about the documentation required so that there is plenty of time to gather the information needed prior to the March 1 deadline, as we cannot review incomplete applications.

Q. How will I be notified if I am awarded a scholarship?

A. If you are awarded a scholarship, you will be notified by letter sometime in May.  If you are not notified, it means that you were not awarded a scholarship this year.

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