Looking for free money for college is going to take as much time, energy and effort as a part-time job. It is worth it.

Begin your scholarship search by talking to friends, family, academic advisors, admissions counselors and financial aid advisors. Investigate all prospective aid resources or sponsors of aid as soon as you identify them.

Tips for Scholarship Research

Time Management & Essays

A scholarship search takes time, energy, and effort. Successful students apply for everything and do not make excuses! You may have to fill out a lot of applications to get one scholarship. It is always OK to ask about scholarships. Don’t be afraid or embarrassed. Finding free money for college will be worth it. Never give up!

  • Schedule time every week to complete and submit applications.
  • Make note of application deadline dates and put them in a calendar.
  • Keep track of what you have applied for and what you should work on next, based on deadline dates.
  • Let someone else read your scholarship essays and give you feedback.
  • Check out our video video on how to write an effective scholarship essay!
  • Thoroughly review your scholarship application before submitting it.  Make sure you did not skip or leave a question blank.  Double check your spelling and grammar.
Find Opportunities Within Your Community

Take advantage of the network you, your family and your friends have developed.

  • If you are still in high school, meet with your high school counselor and ask what scholarships are offered by your high school and the surrounding community.
  • Check with your friends.  What scholarships did they apply for?
  • Read announcements and local newspapers for local scholarship opportunities.
  • Are you active in a club or student organization?  Check and see if they offer scholarships at a local, regional, or national level.
  • Does your church, synagogue, mosque or other religious affiliation offer scholarships?  Ask!
  • Ask University Community - Ask about scholarship opportunities when you talk with Kent State staff, academic advisors, faculty, and other students.  Someone might know about a new or upcoming resource to check out.


Explore Your Professional Opportunities

Similar to exploring options that might bubble up through your personal network, other possibilities will be available through professional connections you, your family and friends have cultivated. As a result:

  • Check with your employer (both students and parents) to see if they have a scholarship program.
  • Are you volunteering somewhere?  Ask if they offer scholarship opportunities.
  • Businesses and industry groups in your major or career field may offer scholarships.  A simple Google search can help you uncover these types of scholarships.  For example, search for “scholarships for aviation students” or “scholarships for human resource management majors”.
  • Research  state and national organizations which may offer scholarships to individuals with your cultural background or personal circumstances.  Google is a great place to start with these types of searches.
  • Register for 1-2 external scholarship search engines.  View a  list of free and reputable search engines!
  • Contact national organizations which may offer scholarships to individuals with your cultural background, personal circumstances, interests and skills.
Motivational Books

Need some additional motivation?  Check out these books:

  • “The Academic Hustle: The Ultimate Game Plan for Scholarships, Internships and Job Offers,” by Matthew Pigatt
  • “Finding College Cash: Proven Ideas to Find Scholarships, Grants and Other Resources to Finish College Debt-Free or Better!” by Steven Roberts
  • “Confessions of a Scholarship Winner: The Secrets that Helped Me Win $500,000 in Free Money for College – How You Can Too!” by Kristina Ellis

How-To Videos

How Do I Accept My Scholarship Award in FlashLine?

Follow the instructions below to review the detailed scholarship eligibility and renewal criteria and to accept or decline your scholarship offer.  Your response will guarantee funding of your scholarship award.

  1. Sign in to your FlashLine account at flashline.kent.edu.
  2. Select “Student” from the menu on the left.
  3. Choose “Finances” and then “Financial Aid.”
  4. Click on “Financial Aid Awards – view, accept or decline financial aid awards,” select the appropriate Award Year and click “Submit.”
  5. Click on the “Terms and Conditions” tab to review and acknowledge that you accept the terms and conditions of receiving financial aid.
  6. Next, click the "Accept Award Offer" tab.
  7. Click on the name of the scholarship and carefully read the eligibility and renewal criteria for that award.
  8. If you agree to the scholarship criteria, choose Accept from the drop-down menu next to each award.
  9. If you do not agree to the scholarship criteria or you will not attend the Kent Campus of Kent State University, choose Decline from the drop-down menu.
  10. You must accept or decline each scholarship award separately. Once you accept or decline an award, you cannot go back and change your response. You must contact the Student Financial Aid Office if you need to change your answer.



How to Complete a Student Online Donor Acknowledgement Form (SODA)
How to Search for Scholarships
How to Write an Effective Scholarship Essay