As you apply for scholarships, you'll find that each organization has different application requirements. Some may only want their application form and nothing else, while others might suggest or even require extra materials like a resume (sometimes called an activity resume). Requirements differ depending on the organization. If you can submit additional documents, include a scholarship resume. It gives the scholarship committee more information about you and why you're the best person to receive the scholarship.
What’s a Scholarship Resume and Why Do You Need It?
A scholarship resume is like your highlight reel. It shows everything you've done in high school, including volunteer work, paid work, and leadership and community engagement.
It's a way to show scholarship committees how actively you contribute to making a difference in your community. A great resume can make a difference in whether or not you receive the scholarship.
When to Start Building Your Scholarship Resume?
Start building your scholarship resume early! Begin in 9th Grade and each year, add new activities, honors, and awards you receive. This resume, similar to the one you may use for your college applications, should include activities and awards from 9th to 12th grades.
For scholarship applications, you'll only need to include significant achievements and relevant activities on your resume. However, it helps to keep a running list of all achievements and after-school activities in a draft resume or Excel spreadsheet for reference. Many high school seniors may forget awards and activities from 9th Grade.
Record your achievements and activities in one document as they occur, making it easier to choose the most relevant ones for your scholarship resume.
What to Include in Your Scholarship Resume
Creating a scholarship resume is all about showcasing your accomplishments, experiences, and extracurricular activities in a clear and organized manner. For example, if you are a club leader or did something extraordinary, put it on your resume. Highlight how you made a positive difference and any awards you received.
While there isn't a perfect layout for a scholarship resume, using a template is recommended for a professional appearance. Regardless of the template you choose, ensure your information is clear and concise, and strive to keep your resume to just one page if possible.
Here's a breakdown of what to include:
1. Contact Information
Start with your full name, address, email address, and phone number. Make sure your contact information is current and professional.
Provide details about your high school, including its name, location, and expected graduation date. Mention your GPA and list any honors or advanced courses you've taken.
3. Extracurricular Activities
Highlight your involvement in clubs, organizations, and activities outside of your regular schoolwork from Grades 9-12. Include leadership roles if applicable. Scholarship committees are often impressed by students who have taken on leadership positions, as it demonstrates their ability to take initiative, inspire others, and make a positive impact. Demonstrating strong leadership abilities can set you apart from other applicants.
4. Community Involvement
Describe any volunteer work you've done in your community. Mention the organization, your role, and the impact of your contributions. Remember to include the dates you were involved.
5. Work Experience
Outline your roles and responsibilities if you've held part-time jobs or internships. Mention where you worked, your position, and the dates of employment. Include the number of hours you worked per week.
6. Awards and Honors
This is an area where you could really stand out from other students. List any academic or extracurricular awards, scholarships, or recognition you've received. This could include being on the Honor Roll, earning a specific club award, or receiving a community recognition. Listing an award, for example, can serve to reinforce your credibility when it comes to your academic abilities, extracurricular involvements, leadership qualities, or other strengths that the scholarship committee may be seeking.
Indicate that you can provide references upon request. Having teachers, mentors, or supervisors who can vouch for your character and accomplishments is a good idea.
8. Hours worked or Volunteered Per Week
Finally, include the hours you committed to extracurricular activities, community involvement, and part-time jobs or internships. This information helps scholarship committees understand the level of your dedication and time management skills. You should include these details to showcase your commitment and ability to balance multiple responsibilities effectively. It also demonstrates your work ethic.
Remember, when crafting your scholarship resume, it's important to tailor it to the specific scholarship or college application you're working on. Focus on the aspects of your background and experiences that align with the scholarship's criteria and requirements. Make your resume clear, concise, and well-organized to make a strong impression on the scholarship committees.
Sample Scholarship Resume
123 Flatbush Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 12345
Brooklyn College Academy, Brooklyn, NY
Expected Graduation Date: May 2025
- Cumulative GPA: 3.75
- Honors/AP/IB Courses:
- National Honor Society
- Honors Roll (Grade 9 – Present)
- AP English Language and Composition (2022, 5)
- AP Calculus AB (2023, 5)
Activities and Involvement
Student Council Vice-President | 2023 – Present (Hours per week: 4)
- Collaborates with the President to create action plan for the year.
- Promotes school spirit and student engagement, including facilitating a monthly student-led assembly and coordinating homecoming events.
Key Club Member | 2021 – Present (Hours per week: 2)
- Actively participates in a range of community service projects, including fundraising and annual food and coat drives to benefit St. Ann's local shelter.
- Participates in volunteer activities, including building a house with Habitat for Humanity (40 hours).
Tutor at Brooklyn Public Library | August 2022 – Present (Hours per week: 2)
- Offers academic support and homework help to elementary and middle school students.
- Notable improvement in students' grades and study habits.
Cashier at BoxLunch | June 2023 – Present (Hours per week: 10)
- Completes sales transactions and responds to customers' queries with a positive approach.
- Handles cash responsibly and provides top-notch customer service.
Awards & Honors
Volunteer of the Year - 2022 (earned the most community service hours at my high school in 2022)
Mayor's Leadership Award - 2022 (one of only five students to receive this award in 2022)
Available upon request.
To summarize, your scholarship resume is more than just a piece of paper; it's a testament to your hard work. Remember, this is your opportunity to paint a vivid picture of your academic prowess, your dedication to extracurricular activities, and your commitment to positively impacting your community.
Starting early and staying organized, tailoring your resume to specific opportunities, and highlighting your leadership and achievements will set you on the path to scholarship success. Remember to showcase your commitment through hours worked or volunteered per week, and always proofread for perfection.
Best of luck on your scholarship journey!