Scholarships, grants, and other forms of financial aid are an excellent way to fund your higher education, especially when considering studying abroad.
They provide a great alternative to student loans or self-sponsorship, in which case saved up money may be invested into other meaningful ventures or to finance other people's education (two educated people are better than one).
However, the elephant in the room is how to apply for and get one. It's worth noting, at this point, that scholarships come in many different forms; they may be awarded based solely on academic merit, achievement, and potential or this combined with leadership potential and achievement and a desire and commitment to give back to society. They may also be based only on demonstrated need and economic disadvantage. In any case, applying for a scholarship is a competitive matter.
The more competitive the scholarship, the more self-aware and, almost paradoxically, outward-focused one may need to be, and the more rigorous and challenging the application process is. The process can be rewarding.
Different applications will have additional requirements; while some will demand that you write up to five 1000-word essays, others will require that you encapsulate all your ideas, passion, and motivation into a single paragraph.
And a good slogan to keep in mind is "win some, lose some," this will give you the ability to see any failures as redirection and not as full stops to progress. You may be the person that gets picked at first attempt or other times, as with many things in life, it may not go through. The key here is having the grit and perseverance to see you through the number of applications you need to submit before you finally get selected.
Resources exist in abundance to connect opportunities to the people that are willing to jump at them. At the end of this post, I list some of them. It's crucial to do lots of research and give every application your very best shot!
You may even know people who have successfully applied for scholarships, reach out to them, glean all the knowledge and tips and pointers you possibly can from them. We can be both independent and still not shy away from asking for help; when you need it, you'll be surprised how much of a difference it makes, and how willing people are to share their stories and experiences to help you succeed.
Resources that have frequently updated lists of opportunities
2)Scholarships for Development
There's more where that came from, but those should be good enough to get you started!
Happy scholarship hunting, essay writing, and self-introspecting!