Am I a good candidate for the Gates Millennium Scholarship?

I am graduating in 2016. I’m currently ranked #10 in school out of 495. My college GPA is 3.8 while my official gpa out of 5 is 4.8. My school only offer 2 dual credit so I have 2 college credit and in my senior year I will get 4 more. So I will end up with 6 college credit (maximum my school offers). I take every upper challenged class available at my school (AP). My SATs score hasn’t came in yet but I think I did fairly well.

My family includes 4 and only my dad works, he makes roughly 50,000 a year.

I am a member of national honor society. I am a key club representative. I’m a secretary in student council. A member of Spanish club. I volunteer at my school and such but I don’t have as much community service hours. Maybe only 40.

I have not write my essays but I’m confident that I will make a compelling essay.

Does it sound like I have a real chance with my family income, academic career and all?

No one can tell from your statistics what your chances are for becoming a Gates Millennium Scholar. Since the minimum GPA (unweighted) is 3.3, you do not have to be an academic superstar to win. I do not believe that test scores are considered at all. The only test for eligibility based on family income is that you must be eligible for a Pell Grant. There will be thousands of applicants with excellent grades and lots of extracurriculars. You are only competing against members of your ethnic group. This past year the allocations were: African American and Hispanic American, 350 each; Asian American and Native American, 150 each. That’s a total of 1,000 Scholars.

The factors that make the difference are the essays and the statements from your Nominator and your Recommender. Use the eight essays to tell your unique story, with a special focus on your demonstrated capacity for leadership and service. Be sure to have someone who is highly qualified in spelling and grammar proofread your essays. There are a number of errors or typos in your post.

I have coached about a dozen Gates candidates in the past two years, including five finalists and three winners. I am not connected with the Gates Millennium organization and do not have any special inside information. There is a very helpful Facebook group sponsored by a couple of people who are past winners. I encourage you to join and follow that group. Its name is Gates Millennium Scholars Program Applicant Group 2015-16.