Universities these days are focused on having a diverse community in their programs. They even offer scholarships to ensure it. While it is easy to go about your diversity scholarship application; however, the essay portion can be difficult.
A diverse student body ensures that there are different perspectives in your learning space. This helps students to broaden their knowledge and grow as a person. It also prepares for the global workspace the students might enter after University.
It is through your essay that the scholarship committee is going to decide whether you contribute to this goal. Read on to learn about the best tips for submitting an application for a diversity scholarship.
Understand Your Diversity Statement
In many cases, there is a prompt for your diversity essay. It gives you a direction for your essay. Your application might be rejected if you fail to stick with the diversity statement.
Re-read the statement at least ten times and understand the theme of it. For example, here is a prompt from the University of Oklahoma.
“The University of Oklahoma is the home of a vibrant, diverse, and compassionate University community that is often referred to as ‘the OU family’. Please describe your cultural and community service activities and why you chose to participate in them”.
Here the theme is cultural and community service activities. Your essay should be addressing this theme, and shouldn’t be talking about how you are from a minority community.
Focus On The “Why”
When you are writing your diversity statement, what diversity you bring is important. But, it is not as important as why it matters.
So, rather than focusing on your diverse background, focus on how it shaped you as a person. And, how that is going to benefit the university and the student community.
Tell A Story
Facts are great, but they are not engaging. What keeps people’s attention is a story. Whatever your experience is in this regard, weave a story out of it.
Write it in a way that is easy to read and has a flow of a story to it. Tell them what sets you apart from others. Make sure the beginning of the essay is catchy.
If you can’t write a good hook with your story itself, try using a quote or a saying relevant to your story as the first line. And, if you can’t figure out how to do it, follow this flow.
- How are you different?
- Your experience
- How has that shaped you?
- How does that benefit the university?
Maybe you feel like your story isn’t interesting enough or that you don’t have a story at all. However, it is never advisable to copy or make up stories. The whole idea of these essays is for the scholarship and admission committee to understand you better.
Besides, they have read thousands of essays and can spot a fake one without blinking an eye. So, be authentic and put yourself out.
When you are talking about diversity you need to be sensitive. Talk only about your experience and cite studies to make your point if need be.
But, equating your experiences to others or exaggerating your situation is not going to help. Make sure you are not playing down any community.
Start Early And Proofread Many Times
This is a general tip, but it is equally important to others. Crafting a winning diversity scholarship essay takes time. So, start working on your essay as soon as you get to know if you are eligible for the scholarship.
Proofread your essay many times. Even if you have a great story, grammatical and spelling errors can be a big turn-off. Make sure your essay doesn’t have any of those. Give it to other people, like your parents, teachers, or mentors and get their input.
Follow these tips religiously to write your diversity essay, and the rest of your diversity scholarship application will be a cake-walk for you. Once you are done, sit back and relax until your acceptance letter reaches you.