Southern Oregon University is giving away over 80 scholarships to admitted students from now until March 1 through the Southern Oregon Scholarship Application (SOSA).
The application process includes creating a default profile, then browsing through a listing of SOSA scholarships and applying for individual ones. Many of the scholarships require the completion of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), so it is advised for students to complete their FAFSA alongside other applications.
Christina Negrete, the assistant director of financial aid and a judge for SOSA, said scholarship judges typically look for “…things that stand out. Something that makes us remember your case or what you wrote.”
Negrete also said that she likes “heartfelt stories. A lot of the times students come from multiple different types of backgrounds so sometimes their stories are kind of sad, so that’s hard for us to read; it’s probably hard for the students to divulge also.”
The scholarships are evaluated by a series of committees. Each scholarship is reviewed twice and then is ranked by the combination of scores. The people who review the scholarship applications are a mixture of people from the financial aid department, admissions and academic advisors. Scholarships are reviewed as soon as possible after the March 1 deadline and winners are notified during the summer.
SOSA contains opportunities for all of students. Students often do not apply because they think they cannot receive a scholarship if they are a member of too many majority groups.
Negrete dismisses this fear. SOSA offers many different scholarships for everyone to singles, mothers, and even people who have had an account with Rogue Credit Union for 2 years along with a host of others.
“I really think that it’s a fair mix of just a bunch of different options, there’s something for everybody,” said Negrete.
Negrete also points out that SOSA is a great alternative to scholarship schemes that students often come across on the internet that claim to offer service in exchange for payment.
“Don’t ever pay for anything. You shouldn’t ever have to pay to set up a scholarship,” said Negrete.
The scholarship section of the SOU financial aid website links to many different real and legitimate scholarships outside of SOSA.
“I think that students should apply because the worst that can happen is nothing but you don’t know if you don’t try,” said Negrete. “A couple hundred dollars here and there can really add up and make a huge difference.”
To apply for any of the SOSA scholarships, log on to my.sou, click here, select the sign in link in the upper right hand corner, and then select “sign in with your institution.” This will bring up the general application. After that has been completed, search through the scholarship listings to decide what to apply for. Every individual scholarship has slightly different requirements, so make sure to read the scholarship information all the way through. Good luck!