Biomedical engineering is a tough but rewarding career and the college experience is no doubt just as challenging as the profession, if not more. If you've decided to study biomedical engineering, there are many support resources for you. One of the most beneficial is a scholarship that will help pay for your education. We all know that college is not cheap but it's critical to get a degree. You may think you need a 4.0 GPA to be competitive for a scholarship, but it turns out that there are many scholarships for students who excel in other areas beyond just academics. With the right resume and good writing skills, you may just qualify for a scholarship that sponsors part or even all of your education.
Biomedical engineering scholarships have various requirements for eligibility. Some require outstanding academic performance, while others provide scholarships to those in financial need. Scholarships are often extremely competitive, with some receiving hundreds of applications but only granting several awards. Be sure you only apply to scholarships if you feel you have a good chance. If your academic performance is not above average then try applying for one that has an alternate focus like financial need or community service. For example, the City College of New York offers scholarships for minority students covering full tuition and living expenses for up to four years.
Most scholarships have a formal application page and also require a resume, a personal statement and personal references. Applications can be time consuming but are well worth the investment if you are awarded the scholarship. Applications are usually online but they may require your references to submit letters of recommendation by mail. A personal statement or essay is often required and may have a large bearing on whether you get the award. To improve your chances, try seeking support from your school's writing center to ensure your piece is well written and meaningful.
University sponsored scholarships are offered to students attending a particular university. They can be sponsored by the school itself or by a donor with personal ties to the university wishing to support students financially. Most universities offer substantial scholarship programs for their students. For example, Stony Brook University offers three specific scholarships for their biomedical engineering students. These scholarships can range from $1,000 to $7,500. Students need a 3.0 GPA or higher to be eligible. In order to be competitive, consider getting involved with your school's biomedical engineering society and volunteering your time in research labs. These activities embellish your resume and indicate your interest in the field.
Some scholarships are sponsored by companies or societies and are available to students attending any school. The Whitaker Foundation is a well-known supporter of students in biomedical engineering. In 2013, the Whitaker Foundation is expected to award 120 scholarships to students in biomedical engineering. These scholarships are beneficial because they are not limited to the school that you attend.
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