Unusual scholarships going under the radar


Carolyn Stocki / Legacy Media

Most seniors apply for scholarships to obtain financial aid so the price of college admission is lowered.

Many students aim to apply for financial aid in order to further their education outside of high school. However, with the high cost of attending college, funding college with only academic and athletic scholarships proves to be difficult.

There are now scholarships offered to students of duck calling, writing a zombie essay, having a certain height, video-gaming and many other odd scholarships.

Counselor Laura Wendt expresses that though she is unfamiliar with the unusual scholarships, she supports them.

“The unusual scholarships gives opportunities to those students who may have unusual interests,” Wendt said. “Just because they might be unusual, does not mean they do not have merit. Colleges [are not] lowering their standards, they are just reaching out and providing opportunities for all students to receive financial aid opportunities.”

Realizing its merit, one of the unusual scholarships piqued the interest of junior Maggie Martinez.

“The zombie [essay] seems the most interesting since it brings out the creativeness within the student,” Martinez said. “A friend of mine who’s graduated, and is currently attending the Art Institute, applied for the zombie scholarship which was, I believe, a contributor to why she is there.”

But on the flip side, junior Rebecca tabor believes the scholarships are too unusual to be popular for students.

“They will be unpopular because they are really odd and seem a bit sketchy, and just plain silly,” said Tabor. “I think the students who tried their best in school and competed for scholarships may not find this really great like other students may see it.”

Sophomore Hannah McMurray expresses her opinion on why she thinks the unusual scholarships would be popular with most students.

“The unusual scholarships do not revolve around core subjects such, as math or science, so it would be popular with students that might not be talented in academics or in extracurricular activities,” said McMurray. “It offers them a way to earn money in a fun and easy way.”

Others are not as accepting to the unusual financial aids, feeling they carry no benefit for a students’ future.

“There’s a lot of people in the world who work really hard for scholarships,” Tabor said. “And some don’t even earn this great prize because they might not have the right qualifications that the college is looking for. So I don’t like them because they seem to be too easy rather than taking time and working hard for it.”

On the other hand, Martinez could not disagree more that the scholarships are pointless and not fair. And that they are actually very beneficial for people with different types of situations.

“They help give scholarships to those who can’t apply for many scholarships because they aren’t in extracurricular activities,” Martinez said. “They shouldn’t go as far as to make them all unusual, but not so hard as to discourage students for applying. Keeping the challenge high while still rewarding the student for expressing their creativeness should be a priority for any college.”HHH