SOS College Resources

How to create your own personalized scholarship search tool

The RSS feed we have installed on SOS College may be nice, but what if you want to get notifications about scholarships from multiple sites? What if you only want to know about scholarships tailored to your specific interests and needs?

Scholarship alerts

Rest assured, there is a free and easy-to-use tool that can help you. It’s called Google Alerts, and it’s about to become your next best friend. Head over to www.Google.com/alerts and try to think of specific search terms you would enter into Google if you wanted information about particular types of scholarships. Start entering them into the interface, adding an alert for each search, as shown in the box above.

What you’ll get in your email inbox every day is a list of Web pages, news items, and other digital notes from around the Web that Google has found which match your search terms. If Google can’t find anything, it won’t send you an email that day.

Again, one cautionary recommendation – use your most specific, narrow searches with this service, the ones that will return only a few results. If your search is too broad, you’ll end up with gigantic emails every day that will take forever to read.

Read All About It

Email isn’t the only way to get scholarship information delivered to you every day. Imagine for a moment that there was a scholarships column in every newspaper in America. It would take you forever to clip out that column from each paper and put them all in a scrapbook, not to mention the tremendous expense of buying all those papers each day. That’s kind of what it’s like to try keeping up with all the news and blogs about scholarships all over the Web.

Happily, services like Google Reader do all the clipping and scrapbooking for you, delivering them in one easy to read window, like your own personal newspaper delivered daily, for free. Here’s how to start “digitally scrapbooking” scholarship information.

Go to Google News (http://news.google.com) and enter one of your scholarship searches there. Scroll down to the bottom of the page, and you’ll find a series of links, including one for Google Reader. Click on it.

You’ll be asked in Google Reader if you want to subscribe to that news feed. Click the subscribe button.

Once subscribed, every time there’s a news story about that scholarship term, you’ll get articles about it that you can read, review, and determine if it’s relevant to your scholarship search or not.

Search for all your other major scholarship searches and add them to Google Reader as well, and you will have your very own scholarships newspaper, delivered to your digital doorstep whenever you want to read it.

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Resources for parents of college-bound students

College Parents of America is a membership organization that provides good advice and insight into college preparation and college success strategies for families.  Go here:

http://www.collegeparents.org/cpa/index.html

This one’s a link to over 40 other links useful for parents. It includes links on financial aid/scholarships, where to find cheap textbooks, career advice, and discount deals for students.  The Scholarship Lady was interviewed for one of their articles.

http://www.wisebread.com/college/college-resources

This site offers a wealth of articles from college parents who share their experiences with other parents. It also contains short videos to watch, a blog, and a “pick of the month” link to an e-book course on money management.

http://collegetipsforparents.org/

College Parenting is a free magazine that parents can subscribe to. They can pull up an e-version of the magazine to flip through, and the site contains several links to campus life information and scholarships.

http://www.collegeparenting.com/

This is another site, geared toward parents, that offers online, specialized guides on specific universities.

http://www.universityparent.com/

A section of CollegeBoard.com is designed specifically for parents. It provides links to scholarship sites and offers a free e-newsletter to parents.

http://www.collegeboard.com/parents/

This is a mental health guide for parents to refer to while their student is in college. Parents can quickly find a doctor located near their student and may join an online discussion forum regarding college health and wellness.

http://www.revolutionhealth.com/conditions/mental-behavioral-health/college-health/parents/mental-health

This one is a section of the U.S. Department of Education site designed just for parents. It includes access to an archive of “Education News Parents Can Use,” videos dating back to 2002. In addition, the site gives links to financial aid/scholarship sites, FAQs, and tips for parents.  http://www.ed.gov/parents/landing.jhtml?src=ln

***Thanks to the Scholarship Street Blog for collecting these resources.***

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SummerTIME

SummerTIME is a summer bridge program for underrepresented college-bound students from LA Unified School District high schools.  Run out of USC’s Center for Higher Education Policy Analysis, the program helps students develop their writing and “college knowledge” to ensure a successful first year.

Writing essays in college can be one of the most demanding tasks first-year students will face.   This program offers an excellent opportunity to gear up for the kinds of writing tasks college will require.

Application deadline: May 15
Program Duration: July 6-July 30th, 2010

(Since the program is offered annually, please check website for updated deadlines.)

Requirements: Personal statement, transcript, and one letter of recommendation.

Please reply to this post with news of similar programs in other parts of the country.

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Lumina

This organization strives to expand access to education beyond high school level, particularly in students of low income and or underrepresented backgrounds. A lot of resources for counselors.

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SOS College is a free online resource designed as a collection of maps for the road to college.
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