How to write a financial need statement for your scholarship application (with examples!)
So you’re applying for a scholarship that asks you about your financial need. What do you say? How honest or specific should you be? What is TMI? In this article, we break down how to pen an awesome financial need scholarship essay or statement.
What to include in a financial need scholarship essay
Template to structure your financial need scholarship essay, introduction: your basic profile, body: your financial situation and hardships, conclusion: how you would benefit from this scholarship, was this financial need essay for a college financial aid application , now, reuse that same essay to apply for more scholarships, additional resources to help you write your financial need scholarship essay.
Many scholarships and college financial aid awards are “need-based,” given to students whose financial situation requires additional support. That’s why one of the most common college scholarship essays is a statement of financial need. This might be very explicit (“Explain your financial need”), somewhat explicit (“Describe your financial situation”), or quite open-ended (“Explain why you need this scholarship”).
In all cases, scholarship providers want to get a sense of your family’s financial picture: what your family income is, if you personally contribute to it (do you have a job?), and how much additional money you need to attend your target college (your “financial gap”).
If the essay prompt is a bit more open-ended (“Explain how this scholarship would help you”), your essay should probably be a combination of a financial need statement and a career goals / academic goals essay. That’s because you want to show how the award will help you financially and in your academic or career goals.
Usually this statement of financial need is a pretty short scholarship essay (150-300 words), so unlike a college essay or personal statement where you have ample word count to tell anecdotes, you’ll likely need to get right to the point.
Be sure to include:
- If you are an underrepresented group at college, for instance, part of an ethnic minority or the first in your family to go to college
- Any relevant family circumstances, like if your parents are immigrants or refugees, as well as your parents’ occupation and how many children/family members they support financially
- How you are currently paying for college, including what you personally are doing to contribute financially (like working student jobs)
- What financial challenges/difficulties your family is facing, for instance, if a parent recently lost their job
- How you would benefit from the scholarship–including your academic and career goals (if word count allows)
Also remember to write in an optimistic tone. Writing about your financial situation or hardships might not be the most positive thing to share. But you can turn it around with an optimistic tone by writing about how these challenges have taught you resiliency and grit.
Give a short introduction to who you are, highlighting any family characteristics that might make you part of an underrepresented group at college.
“I am a first-generation American and the first in my family to go to college. My family moved from El Salvador to New York when I was seven years old, to escape the violence there.”
“I am from a working-class family in Minnesota. My family never had a lot, but we pooled our efforts together to make ends meet. My parents both worked full-time (my father as a mechanic, my mother as a receptionist at the local gym), while my siblings and I all worked weekend jobs to contribute to the family income.”
Dive into the details. How are you currently planning to pay for college? The idea here is to show that you and your family have made a good-faith effort to earn enough money to pay your tuition, but that it has simply not been enough.
Make sure you describe your parents’ occupation, any savings (like a 529 College Savings Account), and any student jobs. You might also discuss any sudden changes in fortune (e.g. parent fell ill or lost their job) that have ruined your original financial plans.
As immigrants with limited English, my parents have had to accept low-paying jobs. My father is an Uber driver, and my mother is a housekeeper. They earn just enough to pay our rent and put food on the table, so I’ve always known they could not help me pay for college. So I’ve been proactive about earning and saving my own money. Since age 11, I’ve worked odd jobs (like mowing my neighbors’ lawns). At age 16, I started working at the mall after school and on weekends. Through all these jobs, I’ve saved about $3000. But even with my financial aid grants, I need to pay $8000 more per year to go to college.
Bring it home by wrapping up your story. Explain how you plan to use the financial aid if you’re awarded this scholarship. How will you benefit from this award? What will you put the money toward, and how will it help you achieve your academic and/or career goals?
Scholarship review boards want to know that their money will be put to good use, supporting a student who has clear plans for the future, and the motivation and determination to make those plans a reality. This is like a shortened, one-paragraph version of the “Why do you deserve this scholarship?” essay .
Winning $5000 would help me close the financial gap and take less in student loans. This is particularly important for me because I plan to study social work and eventually work in a role to support my community. However, since these jobs are not well paid, repaying significant student loans would be difficult. Your scholarship would allow me to continue down this path, to eventually support my community, without incurring debt I can’t afford.
My plan is to study human biology at UC San Diego, where I have been admitted, and eventually pursue a career as a Nurse-Practitioner. I know that being pre-med will be a real academic challenge, and this scholarship would help me focus on those tough classes, rather than worrying about how to pay for them. The $2000 award would be equivalent to about 150 hours of working at a student job. That’s 150 hours I can instead focus on studying, graduating, and achieving my goals.
Sometimes this financial need statement isn’t for an external scholarship. Instead, it’s for your college financial aid office.
In that case, you’re usually writing this statement for one of two reasons:
- You’re writing an appeal letter , to request additional financial aid, after your original financial aid offer wasn’t enough. In this case, you’ll want to make sure you’re being extra specific about your finances.
- You’re applying for a specific endowed scholarship that considers financial need. In this case, your financial need essay can be quite similar to what we’ve outlined above.
Now that you’ve written a killer financial need scholarship essay, you have one of the most common scholarship essays ready on hand, to submit to other scholarships too.
You can sign up for a free Going Merry account today to get a personalized list of hundreds of scholarships matched to your profile. You can even save essays (like this one!) to reuse in more than one application.
You might also be interested in these other blog posts related to essay writing:
- What’s the right scholarship essay format and structure?
- How to write a winning scholarship essay about your academic goals
- How to write an awesome essay about your career goals
- Recent Posts
- Scholarships for Students in Pennsylvania for 2021 - November 11, 2020
- Counselor Starter Guide: How to Use Going Merry’s Scholarship Platform - September 9, 2020
- How to write a financial need statement for your scholarship application (with examples!) - August 13, 2020
Ready to find scholarships that are a match for you?
Don’t want to sign up?
Get an estimate of how many scholarships you’re eligible for, instead. Just answer 7 quick questions. No sign-up required.
- Applying For Scholarships
Financial Need Scholarship Essay Examples (2023)
Jennifer Finetti Oct 2, 2022
Get our best scholarship practices, insights & tips delivered to your inbox
Thank you for subscribing!
Many scholarships are awarded based on financial need. In order to win these scholarships, you must explain the nature of your financial need. In the guide below, we’ll explain how to write these types of essays to increase your chances of winning. Check out these scholarship essay examples for financial need scholarships.
How to write financial need scholarship essays
Here are some tips for writing financial need scholarship essays:
- Maintain a positive tone throughout the essay . You do not want to come across as self-pitying. Focus on ways you learned and grew from past experiences – how they made you stronger.
- Do not diminish other people’s suffering. This is a competition, but that doesn’t mean you should belittle your competitors. In fact, it would be better to say “I know there are many worthy candidates for this scholarship, but…” than to say “I have suffered far more than…” Show respect in everything you write.
- Frame your essay around a specific event. You may add other details if you have space to, but use one experience as the thesis for your essay.
- Avoid controversial statements and opinions. When discussing events from your past, do not belittle someone else or talk negatively about a group of people. You never know who will be reading your essay.
- Tell your story with honesty. Do not fabricate any details to make yourself sound needy. Your past and present circumstances will speak for themselves.
- Don’t try to sound philosophical. Some students will do this because they think it makes them seem smarter, but it rarely has that effect. Focus on proofreading and writing solid content. That is enough intelligence on its own.
- Discuss your career goals, if possible. You may not have room for this if the essay is short. If you do have room though, discussing your career goals will indicate a plan for the future. Review boards reward determination.
You know why you need financial aid. Tap into the key elements of your circumstances and use them to craft the perfect essay.
Many scholarships are awarded based on financial need. In order to win these scholarships, you must explain the nature of your financial need. In the guide below, we’ve provided examples of scholarship essays for financial need scholarships, along with some tips to help you write your own essay.
The fastest path to earning scholarships
Simplify and focus your application process with the one-stop platform for vetted scholarships.
Example 1: “Provide a statement of financial need”
Some scholarships will simply ask for a statement of financial need. There are no parameters to follow. You’re left to write whatever you want. Typically, a statement of financial need is two or three small paragraphs. This will come out to roughly 150-200 words, but it could be slightly longer. Think of this as a cover letter for your scholarship application, highlighting the key elements of your financial need. Don’t build up to the thesis. Get directly to the point.
I am the first person in my family to graduate high school, and thus the first to attend college. Both of my parents dropped out of school when they were teenagers. Because of their limited education, they have always worked in entry-level positions, earning barely enough to put food on the table. My first job I got was at the age of 12 delivering papers, and I have worked hard ever since to relieve pressure from my family. I enrolled in Mississippi’s HELP program during my senior year, which covers tuition and fees at select colleges in the state. I also have a Federal Pell Grant to cover my housing. However, I still need funding for books, supplies, and transportation to campus as needed. I am an engineering student, and our classes come with high fees. My parents cannot contribute to my college expenses, and I cannot work much while I’m in school. This scholarship would help me avoid costly student loans that could take years to repay.
Example 2: “Describe your financial need in 100 words”
This essay is even shorter than the financial need statement. It may be one of several short answer questions you need to fill out. Working with 100 words is tricky. That only leaves room for about 7-10 sentences, depending on length. Make compelling statements using the fewest words possible.
Also note that grammar errors and misspellings will be much more noticeable in this short essay. Carefully proofread your writing before submitting the scholarship application.
I got pregnant and dropped out of high school when I was 15. By the age of 20, I had two more children, and we all shared a one-bedroom apartment. I worked three jobs to pay the bills, but I never earned much. When my oldest started high school, I did the same. I got my GED at 29 and enrolled in nursing school. My financial status has improved now with a GED, but I’m still a single mom with three kids. I want to become a registered nurse to give my children a stable future. I appreciate your consideration.
Word Count: 100
Example 3: “Explain your financial need in 500 or more words”
This scholarship essay prompt is the opposite of the one above. You have much more room to discuss your circumstances. Talk about your family life, your income, and other restraints that contribute to your financial aid . Try not to throw too much in the essay though. You want the information to flow together seamlessly. Edit carefully, and give the readers a full view of your situation.
My name is Brandon Noviello. I am a sophomore on track to earn my Bachelor of Arts in Sociology. I need financial aid because I do not have a family to contribute to my education. I was in foster care for two years before I aged out of the system, and now I am pursuing a degree completely on my own. I was raised by a wonderful woman who didn’t always have a wonderful life. My mother got pregnant after a sexual assault, but she was determined to raise a smart, successful man. She went through an accelerated program to graduate high school before I was born. She devoted the rest of her life to supporting me, both financially and emotionally. My mother’s family cut ties with her the moment she became pregnant. Life wasn’t easy for us, but I never wanted for anything. She always found a way to keep me fed, dressed, and in school. Unfortunately, she lost a long-term battle with depression when I was 16, and I was put into the foster system until I reached adulthood. I did not have a positive experience with foster care, but I admit, I had no desire to. My mother’s passing weighed heavily on my mind, and I felt an overwhelming sense of anger, regret, and frustration. There was one gleam of hope in my experience though. I had a great social worker. I fought her decisions every step of the way, and she still managed to find a family to get me through high school. My social worker was the only person I invited to my graduation ceremony. She helped me realize how much one person’s efforts can make a difference in the lives of others. I was only one of countless children she had helped over the years. I researched how to become a social worker so I could help other children like me. My plan is to work with the Department of Human Services in the foster care and adoption division after I graduate. In order to make my dreams a reality, I need financial aid. I am working as a server to pay for food, utilities, and basic necessities, but I do not earn enough to pay for college as well. I go to school during the day and work at night. Furthermore, I have a maximum Pell Grant to cover most of my tuition, but I still need help with other expenses. I did not do well in high school as a result of my mom’s passing, but I have done well in college. I have a 3.25 cumulative GPA, and I have never made less than an A in a degree-related course. As such, I am committed to being successful despite my circumstances, and I want to help young people find that motivation within themselves. I look forward to working with children and teens in the foster system, so I can be the hope that someone else was for me.
Word Count: 498
YOU SHOULD ALSO READ
How to Write a Great 250-Word Essay
How to Write a Great 500 Word Essay
How to Write a Scholarship Essay Introduction (With Example)
How to End a Scholarship Essay
Who Should I Ask to Write My Letter of Recommendation?
- Scholarship Essay
As a parent who recently helped her own kids embark on their college journeys, Jennifer approaches the transition from high school to college from a unique perspective. She truly enjoys engaging with students – helping them to build the confidence, knowledge, and insight needed to pursue their educational and career goals, while also empowering them with the strategies and skills needed to access scholarships and financial aid that can help limit college costs. She understands the importance of ensuring access to the edtech tools and resources that can make this process easier and more equitable - this drive to support underserved populations is what drew her to ScholarshipOwl. Jennifer has coached students from around the world, as well as in-person with local students in her own community. Her areas of focus include career exploration, major selection, college search and selection, college application assistance, financial aid and scholarship consultation, essay review and feedback, and more. She works with students who are at the top of their class, as well as those who are struggling. She firmly believes that all students, regardless of their circumstances, can succeed if they stay focused and work hard in school. Jennifer earned her MA in Counseling Psychology from National University, and her BA in Psychology from University of California, Santa Cruz.
Related Stories View All
Out of State Scholarships
How to Find and Apply For Scholarships Step by Step
Getting a ROTC Scholarship for College
Get started with scholarshipowl.
Simplify and focus your application process with the one-stop platform for vetted scholarships
Statement of Financial Need Scholarship Essay Example
Tell us about your need for this scholarship.
The value of education is something that I have understood since a very young age. Neither of my parents had an opportunity to attend college, and faced many struggles in their personal and professional lives because of this. They made a commitment early in my life to do everything within their power to instill in me a love of learning and an understanding of the importance of hard work and dedication.
Because of their love and sacrifice over the years, I have been able to devote the time and energy necessary to academic accomplishment even though money has always been tight. In my senior year at XYZ High School, I have a 3.9 grade-point average and have been named Salutatorian of my graduating class. In addition to focusing on my own studies, I also worked as a math and science tutor throughout my years in high school as a way of contributing to my family's budget.
Additionally, I have also been active in my school and community outside of the classroom, serving on the student council as Secretary Treasurer for two years, serving as an officer in the Future Engineers of America chapter at my school, and volunteering at a local Boys & Girls Clubs of America chapter during school breaks.
My family has made many sacrifices to allow me to focus on education throughout primary and secondary school. I now have an opportunity to become the first person in my family to attend college, though I'm in need of financial assistance to realize what has been a long-term goal for me and a dream for my parents.
If selected for this scholarship, I will continue to apply the same diligence to my collegiate studies as I have to this point, making education and service to others my top priority. I will represent your organization well during my years in college and beyond. Thank you in advance for your consideration.
Original Source: College.Lovetoknow
Financial Need Essay: Examples & Writing Guide
Unfortunately, not everyone striving for education can afford it. Some courses are so expensive that even well-to-do citizens need financial assistance. They can write a scholarship application letter or refuse the undertaking. In such a case, students are supposed to submit a financial need essay.
Our specialists will write a custom essay on any topic for 13.00 10.40/page
Funding authorities cannot assist each student. That is why you need to assure them in your statement of financial need that you deserve the scholarship more than anyone else. This article by Custom-Writing experts provides you with a clear structure. Besides, you will see an accurate statement of financial need essay sample.
- ✅ What to Include
- 🚫 Mistakes to Avoid
- 👀 Essay Sample
✅ statement of financial need: what to include.
This type of writing is a statement of a student’s life circumstances . But there is a limited number of aspects that you need to include. Otherwise, the committee will reject your request for financial aid as it will not look persuasive enough. Follow the next five steps to write a scholarship-winning essay. If you will still be unsure of how to write this kind of paper, explore the example in the next section.
- Introduce yourself. Your readers learn about you for the first time. It is polite to tell them who you are . Stress that you are the first person in your family who will attend a college. If you pertain to an ethnic group that may be underrepresented at the college, mention it.
- Explain how you’re now paying for college. Are you working to pay for your studies? Does this work take the time you could spend learning?
- Justify your financial need. Explain why you need assistance and the difficulties you meet in paying for your studies.
- Describe how you would benefit from the scholarship. Will you have to drop out if you are not given the scholarship? What will happen when you receive it? Explain that you will be able to study more if there is no need to work after classes.
- Make a closing statement . Do not beg and avoid being too emotional. Your essay should sound professional. Thank your readers for taking the time to consider your request.
Here, you can read about other secrets of scholarship essay writing .
🚫 Financial Need Essay: Mistakes to Avoid
There are several big mistakes that students can make in their scholarship essays.
👀 Statement of Financial Need: Essay Sample
We hope that this short, but comprehensive guide will get your essay going! Good luck and be sure to check out our blog for more writing tips.
✏️ Financial Need Essay FAQ
There is no universal way to justify why you need money. Every situation is unique. Every person might have their life circumstances. Typically, students apply for scholarships because they can’t work full-time yet. Thus, they cannot afford the desired program.
Two key strategies to ask for scholarship money are those below.
1. Write an impressive motivation letter mentioning your tight budget,
2. Write an application letter describing your tough life circumstances (especially if you have incomplete family, etc.).
For additional details, check examples of such papers online and in books.
Applying for a scholarship implies proving why you deserve this assistance. Demonstrate your strong motivation, your real passion for learning, describe your educational background. If you want to be chosen for the program, take a look at examples and templates available online. You need to highlight your strengths and motivation .
It’s probably a bad idea to begin with the statement of financial need itself. Instead, demonstrate your strong motivation and even passion first. Briefly describe your background and highlight relevant educational and work experience. Acknowledge that financial assistance would help you to develop further.
- Writing a Winning College Scholarship Essay | The Princeton Review
- 5 Ways to Make Your Scholarship Essay Stand Out – U.S. News
- How to Write a Scholarship Essay – Maryville University Online
- How Aid Is Calculated | Federal Student Aid
- Definition of need | Student Financial Aid | University of Missouri
- How need is determined | Student Financial Aid (UWashington)
- Share to Facebook
- Share to Twitter
- Share to LinkedIn
- Share to email
Thank you for the financial need essay writing tips you have posted. They are very helpful! I’ll return to this blog for more useful guidelines for writing papers!
Ha, fully posting! How to ask for money? Yeah, it is a great idea to write a financial need essay in a humorous manner.
Recommended for You
College Personal Statement: Examples (250 Words) & Guide
One day, out of nowhere, you suddenly need to know how to write a 250-word personal statement for a college application. Such pressure would give even great essayists writer’s block. And what exactly are you required to compose? A personal statement is just an essay with a topic that focuses...
Internship Essay: Example & Complete Writing Guide 
Writing an internship essay is a challenging task that plenty of people have to endure. It is essential for gaining useful experience and learning the ins and outs of a given industry. You have probably heard about the “Why do you want this internship?” essay. However, it’s not the only...
Top 10 Easiest and Hardest College Majors in the Country
CChoosing majors in college is a challenge for any student. If you’re reading this, we’re guessing you understand the seriousness and consequences of this decision. Custom-writing experts have compiled the following list of top 10 easiest and hardest college majors throughout the country. Check out our list of college degrees...
Most Strict Colleges & Weirdest College Rules
Do you think 8 a.m. classes are the worst college rule educators could think of? Then keep reading this article by Custom Writing experts! Check the weirdest rules of the strictest colleges in the US & around the globe. As you’ll see, a university doesn’t have to be super religious...
3 Scholarship Essay Examples about Yourself 
“When you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it,” states a famous saying by Paulo Coelho. Now you probably want a scholarship, don’t you? If not the whole universe, at least the Internet helps you achieve this goal, by providing these three amazing scholarship essay...
Apartment vs. Dorm Living – Compare & Contrast
One of the biggest decisions students make when attending college, university, or graduate school is whether to live off-campus in an apartment or whether to live in a dorm room. For those who have the option, though, there are many considerations that can help determine whether apartment living or dorm...
Essay on Reasons Why I Need Financial Aid
Students are often asked to write an essay on Reasons Why I Need Financial Aid in their schools and colleges. And if you’re also looking for the same, we have created 100-word, 250-word, and 500-word essays on the topic.
Let’s take a look…
100 Words Essay on Reasons Why I Need Financial Aid
Financial aid is a big help for students. It helps them to pay for their education. Many students need this help because they can’t afford the cost of going to school.
High Cost of Education
Education is very expensive. Tuition, books, and other school supplies cost a lot of money. This is one of the main reasons why I need financial aid. Without it, I may not be able to continue my studies.
Family Financial Situation
My family does not have a lot of money. We are struggling to pay for daily needs. Paying for my education is an extra burden for them. Financial aid can lessen this burden.
Focus on Studies
With financial aid, I can focus more on my studies. I won’t need to worry about money or get a job. This will help me do well in school.
In conclusion, I need financial aid to continue my education. It will help my family financially and allow me to focus on my studies.
A collection of top essays on
- great personalities
- science & technology
- society & social issues
- sports & education
- environment, ecology & climate
250 Words Essay on Reasons Why I Need Financial Aid
Financial aid is a tool that helps many students attend school when they may not have the means to do so on their own. Here are some reasons why I need financial aid.
The first reason is the high cost of education. Nowadays, going to school is very expensive. You have to pay for books, tuition, and other school needs. Without financial aid, it would be hard for me to afford all these costs.
The second reason is my family’s income. My family does not make a lot of money, and we have many bills to pay. It is not easy for us to save money for my education. Financial aid would be a big help to us.
The third reason is so I can focus on my studies. If I have to work a job to pay for school, I might not have enough time to study. With financial aid, I can spend more time on my school work and less time worrying about money.
The last reason is for future opportunities. Having a good education can lead to a good job in the future. But without financial aid, I might not be able to finish school and get that good job.
In conclusion, I need financial aid because of the high cost of education, my family’s low income, the need to focus on my studies, and for future opportunities. Financial aid can be a big help for students like me who want to go to school but do not have enough money.
Packed in 152 Informative Pages
500 Words Essay on Reasons Why I Need Financial Aid
Financial aid is a big help for many people who want to study but lack the needed money. It can be a lifeline that helps dreams come true. I too, need financial aid for several reasons.
High Education Costs
One of the main reasons I need financial aid is the high cost of education. Tuition fees, books, and resources are expensive. Without financial aid, I may not be able to afford it. Even if my family saves every penny, it might still not be enough to cover all the costs. This is where financial aid can help.
Need to Support Family
Another reason is my family’s financial situation. They work hard to provide for our daily needs. If I go to college, it will add to their burden. I don’t want them to worry about my education costs. Financial aid can ease this burden and let me focus on my studies.
Financial aid can also help me concentrate better on my studies. With it, I won’t have to worry about part-time jobs to pay for my education. This means I can spend more time studying and less time working. I can give my full attention to my studies and aim for good grades.
Opportunity for a Better Future
Financial aid can provide me with a chance for a better future. With a good education, I can get a good job. This can help me and my family live a better life. It can also give me a chance to help others in need.
In conclusion, I need financial aid because of the high cost of education, the need to support my family, the chance to focus on my studies, and the opportunity for a better future. I hope that with this aid, I can achieve my dreams and make a difference in the world. Financial aid is not just about money. It’s about giving students like me a chance to reach our full potential.
That’s it! I hope the essay helped you.
If you’re looking for more, here are essays on other interesting topics:
- Essay on Moving To A New Place
- Essay on Moving To A New House
- Essay on Moving To A New Country
Apart from these, you can look at all the essays by clicking here .
Leave a Reply Cancel reply
Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *
Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.
- PRO Courses Guides New Tech Help Pro Expert Videos About wikiHow Pro Upgrade Sign In
- EDIT Edit this Article
- EXPLORE Tech Help Pro About Us Random Article Quizzes Request a New Article Community Dashboard This Or That Game Popular Categories Arts and Entertainment Artwork Books Movies Computers and Electronics Computers Phone Skills Technology Hacks Health Men's Health Mental Health Women's Health Relationships Dating Love Relationship Issues Hobbies and Crafts Crafts Drawing Games Education & Communication Communication Skills Personal Development Studying Personal Care and Style Fashion Hair Care Personal Hygiene Youth Personal Care School Stuff Dating All Categories Arts and Entertainment Finance and Business Home and Garden Relationship Quizzes Cars & Other Vehicles Food and Entertaining Personal Care and Style Sports and Fitness Computers and Electronics Health Pets and Animals Travel Education & Communication Hobbies and Crafts Philosophy and Religion Work World Family Life Holidays and Traditions Relationships Youth
- Browse Articles
- Learn Something New
- Quizzes Hot
- This Or That Game New
- Train Your Brain
- Explore More
- Support wikiHow
- About wikiHow
- Log in / Sign up
- Education and Communications
- College University and Postgraduate
- Student Finances
How to Write a Financial Aid Statement
Last Updated: February 1, 2023 Fact Checked
This article was co-authored by Michael R. Lewis . Michael R. Lewis is a retired corporate executive, entrepreneur, and investment advisor in Texas. He has over 40 years of experience in business and finance, including as a Vice President for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas. He has a BBA in Industrial Management from the University of Texas at Austin. This article has been fact-checked, ensuring the accuracy of any cited facts and confirming the authority of its sources. This article has been viewed 545,316 times.
The financial aid statement is a simple, short piece of writing that students may include on a financial aid letter, in an essay, or in other communications to a financial aid department. The financial aid statement may not be a full communication on its own, but rather an element of a more complex financial aid appeal. If you need to write such a statement in order to reach out to a university or college's financial aid office, follow some basic steps.
Sample Statements and Things to Include
Writing a Statement of Financial Need
- For example, you could write the following: “My parents moved to the United States from Albania in order to give us better opportunities. As their oldest child, I will be the first in our family to attend college.”
- For example, write something like this: “I have worked to help support my family since I was 16 years old. Currently, I work on the weekends as a waitress to support myself. My parents also give me what they can each month. Since my parents didn’t speak English when we moved here, it was very difficult for them to support our family. My mother worked many hours as a housekeeper in a hotel. They saved what they could, but we do not have enough savings to pay for my college education."
- For example: “My earnings from my weekend job cover my living expenses. I worked extra shifts over the summer and saved enough to pay for a portion of this year’s tuition. However, I am seeking aid for the portion of the tuition I cannot cover on my own.”
- For example: “Receiving financial aid will allow me to focus on my studies during the week without having to worry about earning extra money. I would continue to work on the weekends to cover my living expenses, but I would be able to keep the weekdays free to focus solely on my school work.”
- For example: “Thank you for considering my application. I look forward to discussing my opportunities with you.”
Writing a Statement for a Scholarship
- For example: “I am applying for this scholarship in order to further my studies in education. My long-term goal is to work as an ESL teacher in an inner city environment. My academic, work and personal experiences have lead me to this career goal.”
- For example: “I graduated from my undergraduate institution with a 4.0 GPA. I had a double major of Elementary Education and Spanish, with a minor in Sociology. I applied for and received a prestigious internship working with the state government on developing educational policies.”
- For example: “My parents moved our family to this country from Albania when I was 12 years old. I did not speak any English when we arrived. The ESL teachers in my school helped me to be successful in school, and I want to do the same for other students in my circumstances.”
- For example: “Each summer, I volunteer for the Migrant Workers Education Association in Chester County, Pennsylvania. They service migrant workers who come here from Mexico to work on mushroom farms. We not only link families with community services, but we also tutor children in English and help them learn important school skills that will allow them to be successful in school.”
- For example: “My experiences as an ESL student and an English tutor have taught me the value of helping children to feel successful and empowered. I know the meaning of hard work, and I have learned how to overcome challenges in my own personal and academic life.”
Making Your Personal Statement Successful
You might also like.
- ↑ http://www.bestvalueschools.com/faq/what-is-a-statement-of-financial-need/
- ↑ https://www.goingmerry.com/blog/how-to-write-a-scholarship-essay-or-statement-about-your-financial-need-with-examples/
- ↑ https://www.laguardia.edu/uploadedfiles/main_site/content/supporters_friends/docs/scholarship_personal_statement.pdf
- ↑ https://scholarships360.org/financial-aid/how-to-write-a-statement-of-financial-need/
- ↑ https://custom-writing.org/blog/financial-needs-essay
- ↑ http://financialaid.ucdavis.edu/scholarships/tips/personal.html
About This Article
If you’re writing a statement of financial need, make it personal by sharing information about yourself and what's motivating you to pursue your studies. Try to be authentic, to write honestly about what you've already accomplished and what you hope to do with your education. Use specific examples if you can to reinforce the points you're trying to make. Finally, be sure to start your first draft early enough to get feedback from teachers or advisers and make revisions before you submit it. For more advice from our reviewer, including how to write a statement for a scholarship, keep reading! Did this summary help you? Yes No
- Send fan mail to authors
Reader Success Stories
Feb 6, 2017
Did this article help you?
Apr 5, 2016
Mar 9, 2017
Mar 29, 2017
Mar 22, 2019
- Do Not Sell or Share My Info
- Not Selling Info
wikiHow Tech Help Pro:
Level up your tech skills and stay ahead of the curve
Financial Needs Statement
Writing a financial needs statement.
Many scholarships and college financial aid awards are “need-based,” including many of the scholarships awarded by the Woodland Hills Foundation.
Many of the donors who provide funding for our scholarships have stipulated that their scholarships be awarded specifically to students with a financial hardship or need. In fact, you may be applying for other scholarships, outside of the Woodland Hills Foundation that also require a needs statement. By writing your needs statement for the Woodland Hills Foundation now, you will be providing yourself with a good starting point for other scholarships to which you apply.
What Should Your Financial Needs Statement Include?
If you are an underrepresented group at college, for instance, part of an ethnic minority or the first in your family to go to college
Any relevant family circumstances, like if your parents are immigrants or refugees, as well as your parents’ occupation and how many children/family members they support financially
How you are currently paying for college, including what you personally are doing to contribute financially (like working student jobs)
What financial challenges/difficulties your family is facing, for instance, if a parent recently lost their job
How you would benefit from the scholarship–including your academic and career goals
KEEP IN MIND: THE TONE OF YOUR ESSAY
Remember to write in an optimistic tone. Writing about your financial situation or hardships might not be the most positive thing to share, but you can turn it around with an optimistic tone by writing about how these challenges have taught you resilience and adaptability.
Avoid being overly emotional. Let your tone be professional and polite. The Foundation and our funders have a great responsibility in deciding to whom the scholarships should be awarded. A Statement of Financial Need is one tool we use, and it is up to the student to make it as polished and professional as possible.
Template to Structure your Financial Needs Statement:
Writing your Essay is easier than you might think. Just follow this basic structure to tell your own story and you’re all set!
Who you are (are your parents immigrants; do you come from a single-parent home; do your parents work hard to make ends meet; does your family expect you to pay for your post-secondary education on your own?)
Your Financial Situation and Hardships
Your parent/guardian’s occupations
Any savings accounts you might have
Have you held a job? Are you saving money to continue your education?
Any sudden changes in fortune? Has someone in your family become ill or lost their job?
Any other obstacles to continuing your education
Conclusion: How Would You Benefit from a Scholarship?
How will you use the funds?
Where do you plan on continuing your education? (School name)
What do you plan on studying?
Why/How this scholarship will help (will this scholarship help you go to a school you couldn’t otherwise afford? Will the scholarship help you focus on your studies instead of worrying about a job?
EXAMPLES FOR WRITING YOUR FINANCIAL NEEDS STATEMENT:
1. Introduction: Your Basic Biography
Give a short introduction to who you are, highlighting any family characteristics that might make you part of an underrepresented group at college.
“I am a first-generation American and the first in my family to go to college. My family moved from El Salvador to Pittsburgh when I was seven years old, to escape the violence there.”
“I am from a working-class family. We never had a lot, but we pooled our efforts together to make ends meet. My parents both worked full-time (my father as a mechanic, my mother as a receptionist at the local gym), while my siblings and I all worked weekend jobs to contribute to the family income.”
2. Body: Your financial situation and hardships
Dive into the details. How are you currently planning to pay for college? The idea here is to show that you and your family have made a good-faith effort to earn enough money to pay your tuition, but that it has simply not been enough. Make sure you describe your parents’ occupation, any savings (like a 529 College Savings Account), and any student jobs. You might also discuss any sudden changes in fortune (e.g. parent fell ill or lost their job) that have ruined your original financial plans.
“As immigrants with limited English, my parents have had to accept low-paying jobs. My father is an Uber driver, and my mother is a housekeeper. They earn just enough to pay our rent and put food on the table, so I’ve always known they could not help me pay for college. So, I’ve been proactive about earning and saving my own money. Since age 11, I’ve worked odd jobs (like mowing my neighbors’ lawns). At age 16, I started working at the mall after school and on weekends. Through all these jobs, I’ve saved about $3000. But even with my financial aid grants, I need to pay $8000 more per year to go to college.
“For as long as I can remember, it’s just been my dad, my brother and me. My dad has always worked hard to give us a nice life but there’s also been a lot of times we have had to go without. Two years ago, my dad got hurt at work and hasn’t been able to go back. My brother and I both got jobs as soon as we were old enough so that we could help buy groceries or pay the rent when dad needed help. He always talked about the importance of education, but I will need to find a way to get Financial Aid, student loans and scholarships to help me pay for school.”
3. Conclusion: How you would benefit from this scholarship
Bring it home by wrapping up your story. Explain how you plan to use the financial aid if you’re awarded this scholarship. How will you benefit from this award? What will you put the money toward, and how will it help you achieve your academic and/or career goals?
Our funders need to know that their money will be put to good use, supporting a student who has clear plans for the future, and the motivation and determination to make those plans a reality. Be as clear as you can about your plans.
“A scholarship would help me close the financial gap and take less in student loans. This is particularly important for me because I plan to study social work and eventually work in a role to support my community. However, since these jobs are not well paid, repaying significant student loans would be difficult. Your scholarship would allow me to continue down this path, to eventually support my community, without incurring debt I can’t afford.”
“My plan is to study human biology at the University of Pittsburgh, where I have been admitted, and eventually pursue a career as a Nurse-Practitioner. I know that being pre-med will be a real academic challenge, and this scholarship would help me focus on those tough classes, rather than worrying about how to pay for them. The $2000 award would be equivalent to about 150 hours of working at a student job. That’s 150 hours I can instead focus on studying, graduating, and achieving my goals.”
If you have questions or need additional help, please contact Jennifer Trehar