Prejudice And Racism

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Focus your essay around the obstacle you've overcome. And don't make it a stodgy, impersonal thing like time management. Folks that give out scholarships do it not only to help someone else with their education, but to feel some noble purpose has been served. Kinda cynical, but true.

The person/people giving your scholarship don't want to hear about responsibility and direction. They want a story, Hollywood style, about a disadvantaged young man or woman who's struggling against the odds, and fighting valiantly to better themselves despite some horrid event in their life. They want to hear about the boy from the impoverished family who slept in a room with their parents and nine siblings and had to endure abuse, neglect, and near starvation, determined to make a better life for his children. They want to hear about the girl that was the target of racism, and told that she'd never be good enough for anyone because of her skin color, and who wants to think of her race not as a handicap, but as a badge of honor. They want to hear about the boy that was molested by a teacher at a young age, and has carried that horrible burden on his
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That said, don't be afraid to wow the reader with some Hollywood drama. Work out the end of the story, and go backwards from there. What do you want to do? If you don't know, pick a possibility. You're not signing a contract saying that if you want to be a doctor because Grandma died in a nursing home that you absolutely, positively will be a doctor. You're describing a motivation and a desired outcome. Our lives take unexpected turns, and the scholarship grantors know that. So, find the outcome first: Doctor, lawyer, physicist, artist, what have you. Then, pick an appropriate obstacle that gave you your drive and determination. The drive and determination ARE there, but you need to convey it in terms that make for a compelling story. If you do it right, you'll convince yourself as well as the scholarship

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