Scholarship donors and their administrators may notice a significant rise in incomplete scholarship applications. Worse, they may also experience an unprecedented drop in submissions. A March 2021 report issued by the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center showed the pandemic has significantly impacted graduating high school students. The report noted a decline in fall college enrollment of 6.8 percent, 4.5 times larger than the 2019 pre-pandemic rate.
So, what can donors and administrators do to raise the number of completed scholarship applications received? Simple, adopt these three fundamental changes to your scholarship application process and watch the number of completed applications soar!
Make Your Application Accessible from Anywhere
One of the biggest reasons scholarship donors and administrators receive incomplete applications is that many still insist on using paper-based applications. If increasing the number of completed scholarship applications is a priority, it makes sense to place scholarship applications where students spend the most time; online.
Placing scholarship applications online allows students to access them at any time and from anywhere. Having unfettered access will enable students to take advantage of small portions of downtime and use it to push their scholarship application forward.
For example, they can use time spent on mass transit, sitting in waiting areas, or short periods between classes at might otherwise be wasted. Each minute harnessed moves the student closer to completing their application.
Cloud-based scholarship management software such as Scholar’s App will empower students with 24/7 access.
Shorten Your Application
Another way to help support students with sending a fully complete application is by shortening the length. While gathering ample information on each candidate is essential, multiple pages of requested information can feel daunting to students.
Consider quality over quantity when designing scholarship application questions. In addition, explore other ways of garnering the applicant information that seems essential.
Instead of having an application with numerous pages, consider allowing students to submit that same information with non-traditional methods.
For instance, instead of several application questions designed to learn about a student’s academic achievements, community involvement, and leadership roles, ask students to send a video that has this same information.
When donors and administrators use a scholarship management system, students can easily upload items such as videos that might otherwise crash a scholarship submission email inbox.
Allow Applicants to Save Their Progress
There is nothing more frustrating than filling out an application and discovering part-way through that there’s no way to save your information. Most people do not complete an application in a single sitting. That’s why it is crucial to provide students with the ability to fill out their applications in intervals.
Scholarship management services such as Scholar’s App make it easy for students to save their application progress and pick up where they left off. Allowing candidates to save their work at intervals translates to more completed applications.
This is another reason why it’s so essential for scholarship donors and administrators to use a scholarship management system as part of their core administration process.
Scholar’s App is an all-in-one online scholarship management solution. Scholar’s App connects donors with qualified candidates. Using a full suite of tools–donors can post listing, receive completed applications, collaborate with reviewers, and send award notifications.
Simply post scholarship listings online, and Scholar’s App will generate more completed applications than any other site.
Using Scholar’s App doesn’t require scholarship donors or administrators to replace their existing website. Scholar’s App can point to a website or host the entire application process.
Boost the number of completed scholarship applications by signing up for Scholar’s App today.