Why get a j-o-b when you can score free money with a scholarship? If you're on a free money hunt, let your fingers do the clicking on some Web pages. There are dozens of scholarship sites that list every kind of offer imaginable from your usual straight-A nerd kind of award to money for third-generation Californians with brown eyes whose ancestors mined for gold (okay, we're making that one up).
And your search shouldn't end once you're enrolled as a freshman. Check with your college's financial aid office to apply for upperclassmen awards. "It's easier once you're there to find out about all the weird little things $500 here, $500 there," says New York U. sophomore Sarah Zeitler.
But buyer beware. If a scholarship seems too good to be true, it probably is. Scholarship fraud is becoming a more frequent problem across the country. FinAid, a student scholarship service, offers advice on how to avoid scholarship fraud on their Web site. Be wary of any scholarship that requires an application fee, a search service that "guarantees" a scholarship, or an "advance-free loan" that might never materialize.
FREE MONEY SITES
College Parents of America
Education Services Foundation
Federal Pell Grants
The Institute of International Education
National College Resource Association
Nellie Mae Foundation
Sallie Mae Foundation
The College Board
Student Loan Finance Corporation
Nationally Coveted College Scholarships & Graduate Fellowships
Federal Government Grants & Loans
By Katie Potthoff, Ohio Wesleyan U.
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