Student applicants in short supply for scholarships

By Eduardo Sanchez

Applying for multiple scholarships is made easier through the Los Angeles Community College District’s website, which groups similar applications and carries over responses to other applications.
Magaly Gonzalez of East Los Angeles College’s financial aid office was a guest speaker at Thursday’s Business Club meeting. The meeting focused on the process of applying for scholarships via the online applications.
The Scholarship Manager website was designed to integrate similar scholarships into one application. This helps students apply for multiple scholarships.
“The more applications you do, the easier it becomes to apply and the less time you will spend,” Gonzalez said.
Along with asking for personal information, scholarship applications consist of two to three essays each.
Once a response is saved, it will transfer over to other applications that ask a similar essay question.
Because the website allows only 45 minutes per session, students are recommended to write their essays on separate documents before copying and pasting their developed responses.
Students are encouraged to apply, even if they do not fully meet the criteria, as some scholarships have loosened their requirements in the past.
A previous scholarship required participants to have conducted research but because research was not offered on campus, the award was opened up to students in similar science, technology, engineering and math majors.
Some students who had not applied to this specific scholarship are awarded the money due to the lack of participants.
“We’re trying to make sure that somebody gets awarded because otherwise nobody is going to get awarded and that sponsor money is going to go away,” Gonzalez said.
Gonzalez said a student with a 2.8 grade point average applied for a scholarship that required a 3.0 GPA. Due to the low number of applicants, the student was able to receive the award.
Students should read through the criteria asked before starting on an application regardless.
This allows students to prepare before starting on it. The more professional an application is, the better chance a student has at obtaining the scholarship.
Resources offered to students on campus include the ELAC Reading and Writing Center as well as the Financial Aid Office, which is open at the lab until 6pm with an appointment or via Zoom.
Students with additional questions regarding applications can email
Gonzalez warns applicants to keep in mind the criteria until the day of the award.
In order to be awarded the scholarship, students must meet the requirement of units asked.
Classes that start halfway through the semester count as they are counted as part of the semester. If a student drops a class late after applying and becomes short on the number of units, they will be unable to receive the scholarship.
Students who are part of the California Promise Grant are not prevented from applying to scholarships. Even if students are in their last semester at ELAC, they are still eligible.
There are plenty of scholarships based for transfer students. Students who are not receiving financial aid are encouraged to apply for scholarships as well.
Current scholarships can be accessed through the ELAC student portal via the scholarships page. Once logged in again, the website routes to the district scholarship application page.
The keyboard search bar can be used to filter scholarships and narrow them down by major or by college.
It is important to remember the name of the scholarship as once an application is clicked, the page will reroute to the homepage, where all the scholarships are listed.
Students will have to scroll down until they find the scholarship before they can begin the application.
The current deadline for scholarships is March 20. Scholarship acceptances will resume with new applications for the upcoming semesters.
Additional scholarships that have different deadlines can be found on the Financial Aid page on the ELAC website. Students can also ask the department of their majors for other scholarships they might handle.

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