Online Journalism Degree Scholarships
Online journalism degree scholarships make it possible to pay for your education, even if you’re already strapped for cash. Whether you’re going to college straight from high school or heading back to school after years of being in the workforce, these programs can be expensive without financial aid. Scholarships are a great way to pay for the education you need to qualify for journalism jobs such as reporting, editing, publishing, and writing. While many schools offer their own scholarships and have extensive programs, there are a wealth of private organizations that look to provide young adults avenues through which to pay for a higher education. While simply receiving money is nice, it can really be a great outlet for building contacts and others to network with.
Journalism is one of the most popular topics when it comes to scholarships and a number of organizations offer opportunities for students. Additionally, since so many journalism students enter into freelance work upon graduating, these scholarships can significantly reduce the debt that will have to be repaid. Here are just some of the groups that have money set aside to help journalism students pay for their education:
- Inter American Press Association Scholarship Fund
- Association for Women in Sports Media
- Dallas-Fort Worth Network of Hispanic Communicators
- Databazaar Scholarship Fund
- Dow Jones Newspaper Fund
- Al Neuharth Free Spirit Scholarship
- The Freedom Forum
- National Association of Black Journalists
- Joanna Bistany Memorial Scholarship Program
- National Association of Science Writers
- White House Correspondents’ Association
- National Press Club
- Ted Scripps Fellowships in Environmental Journalism
- Ohio Newspapers Foundation
- National Press Photographers Foundation
- Native American Journalists Association
- Overseas Press Club Foundation
- Yarka Vendrinska Photojournalism Memorial Fund
Along with this long list of funds and organizations, there are a number of groups who offer general scholarships regardless of your major. Some require that you be involved in an English or writing field, while others are open to all majors. This will greatly open the scope of scholarships available, so be sure to look into this as a viable alternative to scholarships.
With most journalism scholarships, you’ll be required to write an essay based on an annual theme, your life and education plans, or another topic of choice. This essay will put you in competition with other journalism majors (and, in some cases, other students who are majoring in different fields), with just the top essay writers receiving money for college. Your scholarship essays will determine how much money you receive for college, so they need to be extremely strong. Here are some tips for writing the perfect essay:
- Follow the directions very carefully, remembering to send in your application and essay before the deadline passes.
- Write from the heart, making your essay as personal and honest as possible.
- Have a teacher or someone else you trust edit and proofread your essay so you send in a clean copy
- Never plagiarize or lie in your essay.
- Make sure that you answer the question or address the topic clearly and gracefully.
- Focus more on correct grammar and eloquent writing than ten dollar words
Along with organizations, you can find a number of scholarships from both the government and from your online college. Many government departments and related organizations offer journalism or general scholarships to talented students, and schools will often cut your tuition costs in half – or more – if you qualify. In some cases, you don’t even need to write an essay, so there’s no reason not to apply to as many scholarship opportunities as possible. The less you have to pay for school, the more you can focus on your education instead of worrying about bills.
Navigating the Scholarship Process
The rise of the internet has seen a huge restructuring in finding scholarships. While it’s easier to find many scholarships you qualify for, it’s likely that many others will be able to locate these as well. We live in an age of accessibility, one in which you must do more work than simply typing “journalism scholarship” into a search engine to expect to receive any. It’s good to stay active in organizations while preparing to go to school because many have more exclusive scholarships that only employees or their family members can attain. There are numerous scholarship search engines that have more abilities to refine and locate opportunities not available elsewhere. It’s strongly recommended to look for scholarships available from institutions around your community, these are often designated exclusively for those living in the area and gives students a chance to try for scholarships with less competition.
Standing Out From the Crowd
Having a distinct scholarship essay goes a long way in being memorable and increases your chance of successfully attaining the scholarship. While you want to write something that will keep the reader’s attention, you should walk a balance between being eloquent and candid while staying on topic. This is a useful way to keep priorities in check and helps prevent a stale essay that ultimately won’t get selected. Use lighthearted stories that are well written to emphasize these elements simultaneously and develop a lasting impact. It’s definitely better to be too bold rather than write an essay that lacks any “fire” or ambition. Show the reader what makes you worthy of their prestigious scholarship and you will have no problems at all.
Getting Out Debt Free
Almost everyone takes school debt when going to college and it’s one of the biggest factors to influence a good portion of adulthood. Online journalism degrees are already significantly cheaper than traditional college settings, so by optimizing scholarship opportunities, you can much more easily close the gap in how much you have to pay. Once you take into consideration the various ways to make school cheaper, going or returning to college seems much more feasible and less daunting. Additionally, with more and more free content appearing on just about every subject, you can go to college already with a strong working knowledge on the subject matter, which will help you test out of more classes and save more money. The opportunities for success are all around; it’s just about locating the ones that work best for you and putting the pieces together.