Scholarship is financial aid provided to a student on a certain basis, usually academic merit. Scholarship money, unlike student loans, does not have to be paid back and they are a wonderful approach to assist students in getting through their education―usually higher education. They are monies awarded to relieve students (prospective and already enrolled) and their families a significant part of the financial commitments of higher education. Scholarships are awarded by different organisations and bodies for both undergraduate and postgraduate studies in colleges, institutes and universities.
Which brings us to the question of what scholarships can be used for. Scholarships are able to provide for a number of costs typically connected with higher learning―from lab fees to books, room and board, transportation, tuition and even more. A scholarship is at times a one-time payment. Other scholarship awards are renewable, they give students funds each academic year or semester.
In some cases, the scholarship money is made in the student’s name and paid to them directly. The money is, in other instances, given to the institution or school of the student. In these instances, the institution is then paid by the student for the discrepancy on any money payable for tuition, room and board, and other fees. In the event the scholarships plus other financial aid are ample to provide for the direct higher education costs, the surplus fund is reimbursed to the student.
How you can spend scholarship money
The time you get the scholarship fund is contingent on the very scholarship you secured. At times you receive the fund in one lump prior to the commencement of school. In other instances, the fund is disbursed in instalments. And at times, a scholarship money may be distributed midway through a semester.
You can spend scholarship checks made in your name on almost anything, yet it would be sensible of you to consider this as an asset and not a license to squander on concert tickets, make-up or video games. The fund is meant to cover school costs. This could be tuition, and it could as well be housing, books, food―you need to be hale and healthy to study―or required resources such as a computer or software.
Certainly, the way you get your scholarship fund may have a bearing on your alternatives for utilising it. Whereas funds from most huge scholarships get sent to your institution directly, certain scholarship funds may be awarded straight to you. I’ve mentioned that your institution may also refund you for scholarship funds not used. If you obtain scholarship money directly, ensure to obey all rules regarding the way you are able―and not able―to use that fund. If you are not sure how to spend the money, you can consult your financial assistance office for direction on the way to use the scholarship fund and what costs can be provided for by scholarship funds. Here are some examples:
This is the fee for attending classes and it ranges from 20% to 40% of the entire budget for being a student for a year at a higher institution. The majority of scholarship funds can be used for tuition together with the other expenses related with higher institution. This is the most important fees for a student in a higher institution and most scholarships cover it partially or fully.
Room and board
For students who are off to a higher institution and will stay in an apartment or a dorm, they’ll certainly incur food and housing expenses. A number of scholarships provide for room and board expenses. Your award documents will provide the necessary details on if your scholarship covers housing. In the event that you are unable to find this information, get in touch directly with the provider of the scholarship and inquire whether or not your scholarship will provide for room and board.
Books and other course materials
A significant sum of money is required to purchase books and other course materials required for studies in a higher institution whether at the undergraduate or postgraduate levels. Scholarship funds can be spent on obtaining books and other supplies. In fact, there are various scholarships that particularly cater for book expenses.
There are other costs connected with attending a higher institution and they may include healthcare and insurance, technology, and transportation. Transportation may include airfare if you are studying overseas and local transportation fare such as bus tickets. Scholarships designated for living expenses might provide for these expenses, but it is essential to know the kind of living expenses provided for by your scholarship funds before you splash it.
Research and lab fees
For physical and applied science students, scholarships may specifically cover the costs of their research and lab fees. This is usually the case in postgraduate studies where extensive research which may be cost intensive is usually carried out. Scholarships may be used to finance even specific research endeavours in the form of grants and fellowships.
The things you can’t use scholarship funds for
Regardless of the sum of scholarship funds awarded to you, each and every scholarship will outline exactly the things the money may be used for. Understanding these regulations is your responsibility. Read the details of your scholarship award thoroughly. Even if living expenses are covered by your scholarship, the award will in some way indicate the kind of personal expenses permitted by the scholarship, such as food or travel.
Keeping your scholarship
Usually, strings are attached to scholarships, such as requirements to maintain a specific grade point average (GPA) or, as mentioned earlier, make payment for certain things to guarantee the scholarship is used for your education. You may bear the responsibility for repaying the money if you expend scholarship funds on stuff the scholarship rules do not approve of or if you fail to honour/meet other requirements.