I Didn’t Get a Scholarship… Now What?
Money should not, under any circumstances, serve as a barrier to education, yet the reality for many students can be quite different. Faced with consistently increasing tuition, student fees, and costs of living, many students find it difficult to imagine how they will be able to afford post-secondary. Scholarships are great ways to fund your education, but they certainly aren’t the only option.
If you applied for a scholarship but unfortunately did not receive one, don’t give up on your education yet. There are a variety of other options available that you may not have thought about. Finding money to go to school may be difficult, but do not let your apparent lack of funds stop you from pursuing your degree.
Here are some of the things you can do if you need help financing your education.
Speak to your parents/guardians. In fact, this is something you should do even if you have received a scholarship! Make your financial situation clear from the start, and see whether your family is able or willing to support you, and in what capacity. See what funds you have available before starting to panic.
Work. Start searching for opportunities to make the money yourself, including part-time jobs, summer employment, or work-study positions. You may not be able to earn the full cost of your tuition, but you can certainly make a dent in it. Keep in mind that most students, even those who receive financial assistance or compensation, take on a job anyway in order to cover excess costs.
Find out about grants and bursaries. Post-secondary institutions typically offer different types of financial assistance. Aside from scholarships, there are probably also grants and bursaries available for students who demonstrate financial need. To qualify for this option, you will likely have to complete a financial assessment according to your institution’s guidelines.
Take on a student loan. It might seem scary to spend money you don’t have, but loans are a reality not only for students, but for individuals later in life (cars, property mortgages, etc.). Student loans are typically offered alongside special benefits, such as reduced interest rates and increased flexibility when paying back the money. In Canada, each province handles student loans differently, so research your situation thoroughly before going to the bank.
If at first you don’t succeed… There should be plenty more opportunities for you to obtain a scholarship once you enter post-secondary. Do your research early, and see what options you have available in later years. If you work hard, there’s no reason why the scholarship board won’t reconsider you for sponsorship in the future.