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Top Myths About Scholarships Parents Should Know

GIIS communications team
Dec 24, 2020

Scholarships are a known means by which students get financial aid to pursue their education. Just because scholarships are popular does not mean everybody understands them well. There are many myths that have slipped into  people’s minds and have tarnished the truth about scholarships.
If you are going to spend your time researching suitable scholarships and applying for them, you need to be aware of the common misconceptions that surround scholarships. The following are the myths you need to debunk and be fully aware of what applying for scholarships entails:

Myth 1: Scholarships are only for bright students

You don’t have to be an academic overachiever to qualify for a scholarship. There are many top scholarships out there that are not based on academic credentials. Some good examples are the scholarships offered here at GIIS Dubai. Most of the indian school scholarships in Dubai focus on other interests and talents of students and do not necessarily look for students who are only good at academics. We offer the Dr Abdul Kalam Scholarship and the 9GEMS Scholarship that value technological prowess and other talents of students, other than academic achievements. 
Looking for scholarships but you do not have the best grades? Worry not. Many scholarships do not require test scores. Some are purely based on the values of the sponsors. You can also be eligible for one based on your artistic talents such as visual arts, music, or even community engagement.

Myth 2: Only the poor are awarded scholarships

Not every scholarship is based on financial needs. Many middle-income students win more scholarships compared to the lower-income students. As it is, many scholarships offered by private institutions are not based on financial factors. Many of them are awarded based purely on merit. If you qualify for one, you will get it regardless of your financial status.

Myth 3: There are millions of scholarships that go unclaimed

This is a myth that came up more than three decades ago. It was based on estimates that could not be verified. It has no connection with winning scholarships to date. If a scholarship is unclaimed, then it is due to issues of eligibility rules such as hometown, specific last names or employer.

Myth 4: Scholarships are only for senior students

You do not have to be a high school senior to get a scholarship. Many scholarships do exist for lower grades students and those in primary school. There are schools, especially private institutions, that offer scholarships for students right from kindergarten to those in grade 12. For example, students from grade 1 to 12 can apply for our 9GEMS Holistic Development Scholarship.

Other scholarships have deadlines every month and peak in certain periods of the year. You do not have to wait until you are a high school senior to think about getting a scholarship. You can end up missing the deadlines. Do your research and apply as early as possible.

Myth 5:Once you get a scholarship, you are good to go

You might be lucky if you get a scholarship that guarantees you money for all your education. This is not the case with recurring scholarships. To remain eligible, you must meet certain conditions every year. There is no guarantee for funds every year when you win a recurring scholarship.  Recurring scholarships will require you to maintain a certain level of academic progress and participate in community events to continue receiving the funds.

Most scholarships pay only a fraction of your full college fees. You will have to meet the other expenses by yourself. Some international scholarships are only applicable for one year. It is essential to understand the type of scholarship you are applying for to avoid inconveniences.

Myth 6: It takes too much time to apply for scholarships

While you might come across scholarships that need you to spend a good amount of time in the application process, we have many more scholarships that are easy and quick to apply. The good news is that the more a scholarship is difficult to apply for, the higher the chances of it getting fewer applicants. You are likely to win if you go for such scholarships. I agree that it can take you several hours to prepare and make a proper application. But this should not discourage you.

There are thousands of scholarships announced every month. If one is consuming too much of your time, you can always leave it and pick another one.

Myth 7: You have more chances of winning a scholarship if you pay a fee

Be careful of scholarships that require you to pay a fee for the application process. Given the many fee scams out there, there is no guarantee that you can win a scholarship if you pay the alleged fee. It is better to look for a free scholarship even if you will be required to submit an essay. This misconception can mislead you and give you false hopes.  

Myth 8: My talents will automatically attract scholarships towards me

Let us face the truth. You are competing for the same scholarships with many outstanding students. Your talent can indeed work to your advantage. But that does not mean that you sit, relax, and wait for funds to come your way. It is high time for you to roll up your sleeves, get into some serious research, and apply for those scholarships. There are many talented students, and nobody will recognize you if you do not take any action.

Myth 9: I will not win; there is too much competition for scholarships

Even though there are many highly-sought-after scholarships, not all of them are competitive. There are scholarships with specific requirements which limit the number of applicants. Be on the lookout for scholarships that require students to be residents of a particular location, have scored certain GPAs, are proficient in a specific subject or are interested in a particular major. If you get one that favours you, go for it. You will have less competition.

Myth 10: Only athletes are eligible to win scholarships

This is a common myth you need to debunk. You don’t have to be an athlete to win a scholarship. Even though many students get to win athletic scholarships, it does not mean that you cannot win if you are not an athlete. Different traits can win you a scholarship. Did you know that you can win a scholarship just for being left-handed? Well, now you know. There are also scholarships awarded for belonging in a specific club or racial minority group. Even fluency in a particular language can earn you a scholarship.

Separating facts from fiction is crucial when looking for scholarships. You do not have to limit yourself by believing in such myths. There are as many scholarships as the people who apply and earn them. Looking for suitable scholarships, applying for them and winning is not as hard as it appears. Thanks to technology and modern platforms which have simplified the whole process of applying for school scholarships in Dubai, you can do it at the comfort of your home. It will take you little effort to get your dream scholarship and make education easier for you and your parents.  

GIIS communications team

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