Siotoh Global Mobility

Common Myths About Scholarships: Debunked!

While trying to get as much information as you could and researching extensively on scholarship information, applications, and processes you may have come across a wide range of “Scholarship tips” and the like. Now not all of these may be right and following false information for something as sensitive as this can turn out pretty badly.

In this article, Siotoh Global Mobility will be shedding some light on a few Scholarship application myths, to make things easier for you moving forward. Stay sharp, read through and if you spot anything you’ve believed before, learn from this.

10 Common Myths About Scholarships – Debunked

Myth 1: Scholarships are only for Academic Geniuses

Reality: While some scholarships do have stringent academic requirements, many scholarships consider various factors beyond just grades. Scholarships come in a diverse array of types and criteria and are not solely limited to individuals with exceptional academic prowess/ achievements. While some scholarships do prioritize academic achievement, there are numerous other factors that scholarship committees consider when awarding funds and there are scholarships that are not even dependent on academics. Examples of both are:

Extracurricular Activities, Volunteer and Community Involvement, Talent and Skills, Passion and Drive, Financial Need, Diversity and Inclusion, Music and Arts, and many more.

So don’t let the feeling of not being academically strong stop you from applying. It’s an asset, but not always a requirement.

Myth 2: Only High School Seniors can Apply for Scholarships

Reality: The misconception that scholarships are only accessible to high school seniors is quite common, but it’s far from the truth. Scholarships are available for individuals of all ages and educational levels. There are scholarships for undergraduates, graduates, and even professionals looking to continue their education or advance their careers. Scholarships cater to a diverse range of students, regardless of their levels.

By dispelling the myth that scholarships are exclusively for high school seniors, you open up a world of possibilities for financial assistance and educational advancement at various stages of life.

student painting - a nontraditional major

Myth 3: Scholarships are only for Students Pursuing Traditional Majors

Reality: Scholarships are available for a wide range of fields, including both traditional and non-traditional areas of study. There are scholarships for STEM subjects, arts, humanities, vocational programs, and more. There are also abundant opportunities for students pursuing majors in the arts, humanities, vocational programs, and more specialized areas.

Research scholarship databases, university websites, professional organizations, and industry-specific sources to find opportunities that align with your major and career goals. Tailor your applications to highlight your achievements, experiences, and aspirations relevant to your chosen field, and don’t shy away from pursuing scholarships that match your unique interests and strengths.

Myth 4: Only Minorities and Underprivileged Individuals Qualify for Scholarships

Reality: While there are scholarships specifically designed to support underrepresented and financially disadvantaged individuals, there are also scholarships open to all applicants. Many scholarships are based on merit, regardless of race, gender, or financial background. There are scholarships available for individuals from a wide range of backgrounds, and they are not exclusively targeted at minorities or underprivileged individuals. This is not to say there aren’t some targeted ones, there are. There are scholarships specifically designed to support these groups and address the need for educational equity, but there are also numerous scholarships that consider various factors beyond financial need or minority status.

Myth 5: Applying for Scholarships is not worth the Effort for Small Rewards.

Reality: That’s a negative mindset to have. Some scholarships may offer relatively modest monetary awards, but the cumulative impact of applying for and receiving multiple smaller scholarships can significantly alleviate the financial burden of education. It’s a misconception to dismiss smaller scholarships as unworthy of the effort. Even smaller scholarship awards can add up and help cover various educational expenses. Applying for multiple scholarships increases your chances of receiving financial assistance, and the effort can pay off significantly in the long run. Every bit counts.

Myth 6: Scholarship Applications are too Time-consuming and Complicated.

Reality: While some applications may require effort, careful planning, and dedication, not all scholarships have complicated application processes. Many scholarships require essays, letters of recommendation, or transcripts, which are common components that can be reused for multiple applications. The perceived complexity can discourage students from applying, but it’s important to understand that many scholarships can be streamlined with careful planning. Here’s an article for a breakdown of how to navigate scholarship applications without getting overwhelmed.

Some scholarship applications might be more time-consuming but many can be completed relatively quickly with careful planning and attention to detail. By breaking down the process into manageable steps, utilizing available resources, and staying organized, you can efficiently apply for scholarships without feeling overwhelmed. Each successful scholarship application brings you closer to potential financial assistance for your education.

Myth 7: You Can Only Win One Scholarship.

Reality: There’s no rule limiting the number of scholarships you can receive. Many students receive multiple scholarships to help cover tuition, books, housing, and other educational expenses. You shouldn’t believe the myth that you can only win one scholarship because of things like:

Diverse Criteria, Multiple Avenues of scholarship sources, Different Focus Areas, Stacking Scholarships, Renewable Scholarships, Varied Application Timelines, Diverse Backgrounds, and Localized Scholarships.

The key to winning multiple scholarships is to be proactive, organized, and strategic in your approach. Tailor your applications to showcase your strengths and accomplishments relevant to each scholarship’s criteria. As long as you meet the eligibility requirements and put effort into your applications, you have the potential to secure multiple scholarships to support your educational journey.

false myths

Myth 8: Scholarships are a One-time Deal and Must be Reapplied for Every Year.

Reality: While some scholarships are one-time awards, many others are renewable for multiple years. Be sure to read the scholarship guidelines to understand if the award is renewable and what conditions might apply. Understanding the different types of scholarships and their renewal processes can help you plan your educational funding more effectively.

We’ll give you two types and an overview of the reality behind scholarship renewability conditions:

One-Time Scholarships: Some scholarships are designed as one-time awards. This means you can receive the scholarship funds for a single academic year or semester. These scholarships typically require a separate application each time you want to be considered.

Renewable Scholarships: Many scholarships are renewable, meaning you can receive the scholarship funds for multiple years without having to reapply each year. These scholarships usually have specific renewal requirements that you must meet to continue receiving the funds.  Renewable scholarships can provide consistent support throughout your educational journey, helping you achieve your academic goals with reduced financial stress.

Renewal Requirements: Renewable scholarships often have conditions you need to fulfill, such as maintaining a minimum GPA, enrolling in a specific number of credit hours, participating in certain activities, or demonstrating continued financial need.

Academic Performance: Many renewable scholarships require you to maintain a certain level of academic achievement, such as a specific GPA. Regularly check your scholarship’s terms to understand the academic benchmarks you need to meet.

Financial Need: Certain renewable scholarships take into account your financial situation and require you to demonstrate continued financial need to qualify for renewal.

Check Deadlines: Even if your scholarship is renewable, there might still be annual deadlines or renewal application requirements. It’s crucial to stay informed and keep track of these dates.

Regular Communication: Stay in touch with the scholarship provider’s office or the financial aid office at your educational institution. They can provide information on the renewal process and answer any questions you have.

If you receive a renewable scholarship, plan and make sure you understand the renewal requirements. This can help you maintain your eligibility and continue receiving the financial support you need.

Understanding whether a scholarship is one-time or renewable is important for budgeting and planning your educational expenses. Be sure to carefully read the scholarship terms and communicate with the scholarship provider or financial aid office if you have any questions about the renewal process.

Myth 9: Athletic Scholarships are the Only Way to Receive Financial Aid for Sports

Reality: While athletic scholarships are one avenue, they are highly competitive. There are also academic and other merit-based scholarships that might be available to student-athletes.

Student-athletes need to research and explore the different options available to them. Athletic scholarships are competitive, and not all athletes will receive full or even partial athletic scholarships. To be on top of this, diversifying your approach and exploring other avenues of financial support can be beneficial. Additionally, discussing your goals and aspirations with your coaches, mentors, and academic advisors can help you discover opportunities tailored to your specific situation and aspirations in the world of sports.

 It's never too late to apply for scholarships

Myth 10: It’s too late to Apply for Scholarships if you’ve Already Started College.

Reality: Many scholarships are open to current college students and even graduate students. It is never too late to start looking for scholarship opportunities to help alleviate the financial burden of higher education. The reality is that there are scholarships available for individuals at various stages of their education, including those who have already started college. It is never too late to seek scholarships to help cover educational expenses. We will tell you some scholarship types that apply here:

  • Transfer Student Scholarships
  • Upperclassmen Scholarships
  • Graduate Scholarships
  • Specific Major Scholarships
  • Continuing Education Scholarships
  • Non-Traditional Student Scholarships
  • Research Scholarships
  • Special Circumstances
  • Unique Talents and Interests
  • Professional Associations

When looking for scholarships as a college student, be sure to make use of College Resources, Department Scholarships, Online Databases, Networking, and Career Services are available.

As we have always said, scholarship availability and requirements can vary widely, so it is essential to research and find scholarships that align with your strengths, goals, and circumstances.

Advice from us: Start early, stay organized, and put in the effort to maximize your chances of receiving scholarship support.

We hope we have been able to shed more light on the issue of scholarships for aspiring or current students, and the SGM team wishes you a successful application(s).


Now that you know what is true and what isn’t, feel free to look into our informative article on how to avoid scholarship scams.

Siotoh Global Mobility recognizes that searching for scholarships can be quite tasking on the mind. To help you further, we offer personalized assistance regarding scholarship searches, school placements, visa acquisitions, and many more related services. Do reach out.

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