Financial aid is becoming more of a necessity nowadays with the financial recession taking place. Genuine students in need of help may fall victim to unscrupulous individuals making promises of tuition grants, causing frustration in many potential undergraduate and graduate students. Below is some valuable information about scholarship scams that you will need to know about.
To avoid getting scammed, it is crucial to know how to identify scholarship scams. One important one is paying money to receive a scholarship. Money back guarantees should not fool you into accepting because once you hand over the money, you will never hear from the con artists ever again, and so go your prospects of receiving funding for your education. Legitimate scholarship resources are free to use and do not require monetary registration of any kind.
Statements such as “You will never get this information anywhere else”, “We will do all the work”, or requests for credit card details to complete the deal should be cause for suspicion to the student or parent. These statements among others are usually used to snag students into accepting the easy way to get funding. The truth is that getting scholarships is a slow and difficult process unless one is extremely lucky, and nobody should guarantee any other means at whatever price. More information on how to identify a scholarship scam is available from the Federal Trade Commission website.
You will also need to know the most common types of scholarship scams in order to avoid them completely. Scholarships that ask for an application fee of between $5 and $35, and any other amount for registration should be avoided. This is because the scam artists may give about $1000 worth of scholarship funds to one or two people, then pocket the rest of the amount for themselves.
Considering that such scams receive thousands of applications, the money that it gains from application fees is substantial even after giving out a fraction of it to needy students.
Students should also refuse any offers or messages that say that they have won a scholarship from competitions they never applied for in the first place. These scams occur relatively often and may find the desperate student off guard. Going along with such scams will cost you plenty of money in fictitious processing fees and other expenses that you may give to the scammers. This is only a trick to take advantage of people’s needs and vulnerability.
Free seminars or interviews about how to increase your chances of getting financial aid and other related topics mostly turn out to be scams. The seminars may be free, but the information given is fraudulent, such as scholarship matching services, very high amounts in scholarships and so on. There is more information on popular scholarship scams from FinAid.
The two best tips to avoid getting scammed are doing thorough research, and refusing to get too desperate. The first tip can get you out of plenty of trouble and give you a “nose for scams”. The second tip will help you remain level headed yet hopeful about getting your scholarship. Combined, they will actually increase your chances of getting financial aid because you will only apply for genuine scholarships and your confidence and positivity will attract the scholarships to you.