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What can I use to make myself a good candidate for a full scholarship?

Hebron8202Hebron8202 2 replies2 threadsRegistered User New Member
Hi, my name is Meti. I live in Ethiopia, Africa. I plan to try for scholarships in the U.S. But my GPA or results aren't that great and I don't have many extracurricular activities. What can I do to raise my chances? because y situation seems really bleak but I have to at last try before giving up.
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Replies to: What can I use to make myself a good candidate for a full scholarship?

  • katliamomkatliamom 12797 replies167 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    It IS bleak, honestly. Scholarships are based on your scholastic work and it seems you think yours "aren't that great." Competition for financial aid (and it sounds like you will need A LOT of it) is fierce, with thousands of top students from around the world competing for the same small amount of money. So be realistic, and focus on your options in Ethiopia because odds are that is where you will remain for your university education.
    That said, to increase your chances of getting financial aid in the US, you must stand out. You can't change your GPA, but if you study hard and do very well on your SAT/ACTs that would raise your chances. (Get a book, use the internet and free online resources to study.) You say you don't have many ECs, which raises the question of what do you do in your spare time? Do you work? Help at home? Without academics-related ECs, you would need to make a compelling case to universities that you're doing important things for your family/community.
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  • Hebron8202Hebron8202 2 replies2 threadsRegistered User New Member
    Thank you so much. I do help at home and I am a member of a humanitarian organization. I can speak Amharic, English, and Oromifa. Would that help? I am also part of the clubs at school. I swim sometimes, but it's just regular swimming and won't help overall. I can try to cram more things this year since I am going to start 12th grade. I had planned to apply after taking my SAT so I hope I have enough time. What kind of activities would give me a higher chance? like learning a language, getting a certificate from IT training...
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  • Groundwork2022Groundwork2022 2104 replies31 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Without perfect (or nearly perfect) grades and an exceptional record of awards and activities, as an international student you really don't have a chance at a full scholarship. If you get excellent test scores, though, there are a lot of colleges that will give you partial scholarships. Even partial scholarships, however, could leave you with $20,000 per year and up still to pay. At this point, additional languages or activities won't help you, because colleges want to see a longer history of those. Honestly your best chance is getting top SAT or ACT scores and researching funding options. You can't get a loan in America without an American co-signor, but perhaps your government or other private groups within your country might offer loans to students studying abroad.

    The other realistic option is to attend college in your home country and do a semester in America.
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  • Hebron8202Hebron8202 2 replies2 threadsRegistered User New Member
    Thank you!!
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