Home Student & Career Tips How to Write Cover Letter for Scholarships

How to Write Cover Letter for Scholarships

This article contains information on the steps on how to Write Cover Letter for Scholarships.

Cover Letter

Knowledge like we all say is power and in order to get this power, more than half of the world’s popular people have chosen the way of formal education. Gone are the days when the financially disadvantaged in the society see their condition as a reason not to get formal education. In recent times, this gap has been bridged. Apart from the fact that parents struggle to see their wards through school, there is another beautiful opportunity that has made education very easy.

The answer lays in the scholarships and other grants that colleges and universities offer. There are two main types of scholarships:

Merit-based and financial need-based: The merit based means that students need to meet the school or organization’s academic standards to earn a scholarship the Financial need based means that they can receive financial aid because they are underprivileged.

Regardless of the type of scholarship, the fact still remains that winning a scholarship is not easy. Apart from the numerous competitions, there is a very crucial requirement that students need to ace in order to qualify. That is the scholarship cover letter.

A scholarship application cover letter is similar to that of a job application cover letter. It is a letter that the student addresses to the scholarship committee to convince them that they are the best for the scholarship. In it, the student outlines his/her strengths as well as detailed information regarding their curricular and extracurricular achievements.

However, to write a unique scholarship cover letter, there are important things you must not overlook. They are:

1. Why You Deserve the Scholarship

When writing a Scholarship cover letter, don’t fail to pitch yourself, it is a great opportunity for you to tell scholarship-committee why you are aiming for the scholarship or grant.

To capture them more, you might want to talk about your achievements in your previous education level and how it has shaped their character. You can also mention about your plans for further studies, this way, the sponsoring organization/committee can be confident that they are awarding the grant to a motivated individual.

Most importantly, talk about the benefit of the scholarship to you.

2. Being Formal

When writing a scholarship cover letter, you should maintain a formal tone. A scholarship cover letter is a formal document a student submits to a school or an organization. Thus, the tone and the content of the letter must be formal. This implies that you have to use proper language, no slang, no writing in short forms. As much as possible avoid grammatical errors.

3. Be Personal

Scholarship committees ask applicants to provide scholarship cover letters because they want to know them outside of their application forms. Therefore, you do not have to be afraid to get personal in your cover letter because it is a great time for you to add more details to the information in your application forms.

4. Stick To the Context

Schools and organizations will have their own requirements on what they want to see in a cover letter. Therefore, endeavor to take note of such things.

5. Give Your Cover Letter A Unique Visual Format

This is very important aspect of cover letter writing. Some organizations may state how you’re expected to format the letter thou this is rare. However, here is a standard to follow when not given;

  • Set one-inch margins for a good appearance.
  • Left-align your letter
  • Don’t use justification; it’s against the rules of business letter formatting.
  • Use the correct spacing of 1 or 1.15.
  • Double-space between paragraphs. More eyeball friendly white space.
  • Use a digital copy of your handwritten signature in your sign-off in a case you want to appear like a pro. This is optional though.

In this article, we will be looking at how or tips on how to write a Scholarship cover letter.


Writing a scholarship cover letter may seem like an easy task but it can be daunting. After all, it is a document that could make or break a student’s need for financial aid. Therefore, below is how to write a Scholarship cover letter.

  • Review Information About The Scholarship- Giving Institution
  • Contact Details(Header)
  • Salutation
  • Opening Paragraph (Introduction)
  • Body Paragraphs
  • Closing Paragraph
  • Review Your Cover Letter

1. Review Information about the Scholarship-Giving Institution

Many times, the Scholarship giving organizations usually have their own requirements. Thus, the first step to write a good job cover letter is to review the information about the institution and what the scholarship requires.

While or after reviewing, you have and take note of the requirements. This information will enable you to stick to the context while writing.

2. Use a Well Structured Header

This contains your personal details and that of the employer.

At the top of the letter you need to put your contact information followed by the the scholarship organization’s contact information. Your information should include your first and last name, your professional email address, your phone number, etc.

[Your Full Name]

[ Academic Title ]

[ Physical Address ]

[ Phone Number ]

[ Email Address ]

[ Date ]

[ Department / School Head ]

[ Academic / Honorary Titles]

[ Academic Department ]

[ College Name ]

[ Address ]

[ City and Zip Code]


Oparah Chioma

+234-812837 6648


Block 26, Benson Avenue, Lagos, Nigeria


Mrs Stephanie Spencer

XYZ College of Technology, FCT, Nigeria

286B, Brook Avenue.

3. Salutation

This should be a professional greeting that addresses who ever you’re writing to. In many cases the name of the person may be unknown even after several researches.

However, for a formal document like a scholarship cover letter stick with “Dear Title Surname”. Like “Dear Mrs Spencer”. No matter what happens avoid the use of “To Whom It May Concern.” Apart from the fact that it’s old fashioned, it puts you at a disadvantage.

Personalization is a powerful strategy because using a person’s name actually activates their brain and makes them pay more attention.

4. Introduction

This is an attention-grabbing opening which should have at least three paragraphs. The first paragraph is where you introduce yourself and talk about your big achievements that fit the scholarship. Always start with a hook. This is important to engage the reader at the very start. This can be done by starting with a quote or a non-fiction story about you that makes the reader curious as to what next to expect.

5. Body

You have to keep your readers entertained till the end and achieve that you need two middle paragraphs for the body of the letter. Second paragraph should cover why you fit the scholarship while the third paragraph should show your passion and aspirations

6. Closing

Writing cover letter is not much of a big deal. Securing a scholarship interview is. Thus, you need to beat the competition and get in front of the committee for a scholarship interview and the best way to achieve that is to end your cover letter for scholarship with a call to action.

No matter how well-crafted other parts of your letter may seem, concluding without a call to action is an error to avoid. End your letter with a reason for them to contact you. Let the call to action be polite and open ended, suggesting that you are excited to offer more information and that you’re looking forward to talking with them. This is always at the last paragraph of the letter. Use a CTA that must give them a reason to want to meet you and also, endeavour to use the right formal closing. “Sincerely” is always a better option, but there are alternatives regardless.


Can we arrange a meeting, so I can tell the committee how my experience in volunteering and academic coaching of younger students could contribute to the program’s leadership aims?

Best Regards,

Oparah. C

7. Review Your Cover Letter

After writing, it is not enough to use a spell check. There might still be alphabet errors in between. Thus, endeavour to read your cover letter for errors. Here are two quick tricks professional editors use to combat over-familiarity and make good edits:

  • Read it out loud: Doing this will force you to go over every word and punctuation, and also make it obvious when you’ve written a complicated sentence that’s hard to read.
  • Put it in a different font: A new font forces your brain to spot something that looks new, and will help you notice mistakes you would otherwise skim over and miss.

It can be difficult for a person to look at their cover letter objectively. Therefore, it is always a good idea to ask for outside assistance. Since they have fresh eyes, friends, family, or even teachers can be more objective. Thus, after proofreading your cover letter, have someone else double-check it and give a review.


Oparah Chioma

+234-812837 6648


Block 26, Benson Avenue, Lagos, Nigeria


Mrs Stephanie Spencer

XYZ College of Technology, FCT, Nigeria

286B, Brook Avenue.

Dear Mrs Spencer,

Having been accepted to XYZ College of Technology to pursue a Bachelor’s degree in Architecture, I am writing to express my desire to participate in the University Leadership Scholarship Program. As a kid, I’ve had a strong passion for architecture, my favorite world landmark being the Texas pink granite edifice of the State Capitol. I’m particularly excited by the opportunity to join a network of leaders who help to maintain XYZ’s reputation as a world-leading public research university.

My parents came to Nigeria as immigrants and have worked tirelessly in low paid jobs to provide for our family. If I am accepted to the program, I would be the first member of my family to benefit from a college education. My goal is to use my education to give back to the community and world at large. I want to specialize in designing affordable and environmentally sustainable housing. My passion for this field was inspired by my winning virtual city design for the National Future City competition, and I am much aware of the impact of high housing costs and environmental destruction on underprivileged communities.

Servant leadership is the philosophy I intend to follow as a program participant and alumni. I want society to benefit from my education and XYZ to gain prestige as an institution providing innovation for the greater good. This scholarship would enable me to achieve these aims. In fact, my high school principal is an alumnus of the program. She is an inspiration to me and many others, and I hope to follow her example should I be accepted.

Please get in touch to arrange a meeting with me as I would love to tell you more about my upbringing and my desire to give back to my community through my further education.

Best Regards,

Oparah Chioma.

With this article, you should be able to write a standard cover letter that will secure you a Scholarship. However, while writing your cover letter, try to be concise in order not to bore the reader and end up ruining your chances of being hired.

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