Some people might think it’s all about writing ability, but that’s just one part of the equation.
It’ll be work, but this is another reason why it’s so critical to pick the right scholarships to apply to.
If you focus on five scholarships instead of 50, you’ll have far fewer essays to write, and you’ll be able to put your full resources toward each of them.
My dysregulation, stress, anxiety, instability—my obstacles—become music.
I work my tension into minor triads or uncomfortable intervals, possibly a tritone.
My musical expressions, the embodiment of my challenges, have won awards nationally and internationally.
I am an ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composer Award winner. Louis, Honolulu, Canada and Italy, have echoed with sounds of my compositions.Stella Gitelman Willoughby, an incoming freshman at Berklee College of Music, received the Opp U Achievers Scholarship in May 2018. I stumble daily—literally from Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome and seizures, metaphorically from autism, dyslexia, and a mood disorder.Every moment is unpredictable; I balance precariously.Gaining calm and control, I conclude the Largo movement and the music develops into a brighter Allegro, or Vivace.I might boldly attempt triplet passages, with accelerando.A math genius won’t get a scholarship that’s intended for a history buff.A baseball player—no matter how good—won’t get a scholarship that’s intended for a football player. Instead of applying for a slew of scholarships that don’t match up with your particular talents, focus your efforts on the select few that do. Is there anything else that you can discern by reading between the lines?I have received commissions from members of the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra in Canada and had my work played by members of the Hawaii Symphony Orchestra. Since becoming a teen, my parents have instilled in me the need to develop self-advocacy skills, and work toward independence and financially supporting myself. I have already laid the foundation from which to build a career.My pieces have been performed at renowned venues such as Old South Church in Boston and Lincoln Center in New York. For these reasons, I choose to pursue a degree in music composition.No matter what the essay topic is, scholarship committees want to get to know you—and decide whether you’re the person they want to award the scholarship to. If you feel like what the review committee is looking for isn’t what you have to offer, consider finding a scholarship that better matches your qualifications.3. Once you actually start writing, it’s important to follow the formal rules of essay composition. If you don’t, you’re wasting opportunities to convince the review committee that you’re the right person to receive the award.Remember the class you took on how to structure an essay? (And make no mistake, other candidates will be using all of that space to make the case for themselves.)Because scholarships are so competitive, it’s important to do everything you can to distinguish yourself.