Tips to Get Scholarship

Hello, readers! From this third post onward, I’ll (try) to use English since the scholarship I’ve tried were all international or worldwide scale (except LPDP), therefore I hope it could help not only Indonesian people but also international applicants. So in my first post, there is list of scholarship which I’ve applied, i.e. AMASE, FAME, and MaMaSelf (three consortiums in Erasmus+ Joint Master Degree), KGSP, LPDP (Indonesian Government Scholarship for Indonesians), Fulbright, and AAS. If you don’t know what are these grants’ requirements are or which university is available for every scholarship, please kindly search it in google first. If you cannot find about your inquiry, therefore feel free to reach me via e-mail 🙂

For a broad view about Master Scholarship, they all took around half year for a full procedure of enrollment. Therefore, applicants need to be prepared whatever the results are, and do not just try one scholarship! You’ll lose many chances! In my case, I applied for the maximum of 3 consortiums in Erasmus+ Joint Master Degree, and KGSP and the other, all in half year. Yes, it took many efforts, but you could apply for more than 7 grants in that period of time if you are keen on receiving a scholarship. People would say that you are selfish to apply for many scholarships at once, but who knows about our luck or fate? I applied many scholarships to Europe but ended up in South Korea, and I still feel so grateful because I believe that this is my fate. I didn’t take any other applicants’ chance because I get accepted first in KGSP (after rejected by Erasmus+ and LPDP). If you already passed the last round of a scholarship and then still apply because you want to go to a certain country, that’s what we call selfish. But if you still haven’t heard the last results, you could apply as many grants as you could.

So in this post, I try to elaborate the basic requirement you have to do to apply for a scholarship. Confidently say that this will make you get accepted is just overboard. It just depends on each applicant’s effort, luck, and fate. So keep trying, who knows the next scholarship will be your chance! 🙂

  1. English: Learn hard, practice harder

Many applicants asked me whether they should speak English well to get a scholarship or so-so is enough. The answer is quite obvious; you need to practice good English as we need to pass the interview test, though there are some chances to get accepted even with Basic English. I suggest not to play with luck as we don’t know what is ahead, so better to prepare the best as you could.

Practicing good English doesn’t always require you to take extra paid-classes, for me I didn’t take any preparation class because it’s too expensive. Here are some short tips to improve your skill:

  • Love English, therefore you could learn it happily and make it faster to absorb every material.
  • Follow English learning page/account in social networking service (SNS) and read interesting English novel. If you don’t know the meaning, please be curious and look for it. The more you read, the faster you learn.
  • Listen to English song and try to sing it, or watch English movie with English subtitle. I even go to a karaoke days before my IELTS test and watch the entire Breaking Bad serials during my preparation period.
  • Challenge yourself to use English. Made an English speaking club. My friend came with this great idea to hold a colloquium meeting every week where we could present and discuss something scientific to improve our speaking ability (credit to Fauzin Naimah and all colloquium member group). Another option is to join free English speaking club, there are many right now.
  1. Keep good GPA

They are saying GPA is not everything. It’s not everything, but every scholarship requires good GPA! If you are aiming for a scholarship, maintaining good GPA is a must.

  1. Make good connections

If you meet people who are great at your fields, keep good relationships with them. At least, you know where to ask a question if you cannot find it in google. Usually, they also publish some articles about the scholarship they got, so stay updated.

  1. Have good relationship with Prof or Lecturer

From my personal experience, I really encountered great benefits by having good relationships with lecturers in my University (many of my friends also did this). We usually had more chance to join International Conferences held by the faculty or major, even escorted very important individuals in our field of study (including took photos and had dinner together). Hanging around the influential people such as your Prof/Lecturers or their connection will broaden your view about your future career. Even more, you could put that in CV as you’ve joined national or international event held by your institution.

  1. Try as many scholarships as you can

Scholarship application period is usually around the same time, so better to apply those at once. Please keep in mind that every scholarship usually requires 3-5 selection steps, and you could get rejected in every step. So take every chance that’s available for you.

  1. Ask for opinion

Are you currently preparing your motivation letter or study plan? Or even CV and resume? Ask the other opinion about what you write. They could give you the perspective of a reader and provide some suggestion. Do not be embarrassed to make mistake in front of those you ask for help. Great people are busy thinking about their next step, not yours.

  1. Be confident with the path you take

When I applied for scholarships that took almost 8 months after graduation, I felt terrible because many friends of mine already got their first job. This is the time when you put everything in line, like a gambling as you don’t know are you going to obtain the scholarship or not after a half year of waiting. If you really aiming for a scholarship, you should dedicate yourself to it. Because the time people get accepted for a job, in some cases they forget their ambition to continue study. So don’t be swayed by it, it is your life and you decide the future (note: this is high risk, please consider everything first and ask for parents’ permission…)

  1. Get rejected? Great experience!

I got rejected for 3 scholarships already before being admitted to KGSP. I realize that because our first application proposal won’t be that great to grab the reviewers’ attention. But as we keep revising the application proposal, it will get better. Also if you have the chance to have an interview, go for it. That’s a great experience. (Anyway, the quota for Erasmus+ Joint Master Degree is limited, I heard it was around 10 people from worldwide for each consortium per year).

  1. GOOGLE is the source for (almost) everything

If you are looking for a scholarship requirement or guidelines, please do not ask the scholars! It’s something that you could easily find in google. Please do not as if it’s difficult to get accepted because obviously, it is! All scholars were hugely disappointed and irritated every time someone asked them about that. If even something easy you do not put effort on it, how could you pass the selection? There are many people out there who try their best before asking for help, it shows their endurance and perseverance. We hope that you are one of them 🙂

  1. Tough competition, so try your best to grab the ticket

Are you feeling satisfied already by being number 1 in your class or get best GPA in your major? Are you satisfied because you could speak English better than your classmates? No, you should not. We live in the world full of competition. In Indonesian, we call this by: di atas awan, masih ada awan. Keep in mind that there are many other people better than you, therefore you need to constantly improve your skill and ability. They are also aiming for the same scholarship, so be prepared to have your best ammunition before coming to the battling arena.

thanks for reading 🙂

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