Have you been asked to pay money to get a scholarship?
If you answered yes, then this is more than likely a scam! Every year, several thousand students and parents are taken advantage of by scholarship scammers. The victims of these scams lose more than $100 million annually. Scam operations often imitate legitimate government agencies, grant-giving foundations, education lenders, and scholarship matching services, using official-sounding names containing words like "Federal," "National," or "Foundation."
How to protect yourself from scholarships scams
The below advice can help you avoid becoming the victim of a scholarship scam.
- If it sounds too good to be true, it more than likely is.
- If you must pay money to get money, it might be a scam.
- Legitimate scholarship foundations do not charge application fees.
- Never invest more than a postage stamp to get information about scholarships.
- Nobody can guarantee that you'll win a scholarship.
- If you're suspicious of an offer, it's usually with good reason. Trust your instincts!
- Spend the time, not the money.
In summary, be wary of scholarships with an application fee, scholarship matching services that guarantee success, or advance-fee loan scams and sales pitches disguised as financial aid "seminars."