This time of year is not only the holiday season; it is also full swing into scholarship season. Many 4-H and other scholarships are nearing deadlines or will have due dates during the late winter/early spring time.
There are two very important features to being successful at receiving scholarships. The first is a "duh!" but seriously, one has to apply with a quality application! Too often scholarships go un-awarded due to no applicants or no applicants who followed instructions. In other instances, one could pay attention to detail with cover letters and power statements to out-compete a limited number of other applicants.
Secondly, power statements will be discussed to enhance applications.
Do not use one cover letter for all scholarship applications without taking a small amount time to detail each cover letter to be specific for each scholarship application. The cover letter is an opportunity to provide information specific to objectives that perhaps was not possible given the application's format.
Using power statements (while remaining truthful) is a key to success. For example rather than simply stating "Putnam County 4-H Member for ten years," one could take deeper consideration of the 4-H career to list power statements like the following:
* Exhibited leadership through recruitment of 22 youth to join Putnam 4-H program and 5 other youth to become Junior Leaders during last five years.
* Spearheaded Backwoods 4-H Club carwash to raise $739 for XYZ Shelter which provided 147 meals to homeless individuals during 2008.
Power statements must be prioritized and focused on the key objectives of the particular scholarship. If current or past 4-Her's have questions or would like to have a review of applications, please contact the Extension office.
In no way can this column discuss all of the various scholarships available as high school guidance counselors are a better resource for such information. There are many Indiana 4-H Foundation scholarships awarded each year. For information about these scholarships go to http://www.four-h.purdue.edu and at the search menu find the category of "scholarship" to find forms, requirements, eligibility and other information. These scholarships are due January 15 to the Purdue Extension-Putnam County office.
The Putnam County 4-H Scholarships administered locally by the Putnam County Community Foundation will have application forms posted no later than February 1 at www.extension.purdue.edu/putnam under the 4-H link and will be due April 16. Note this is a change from the past as these were typically due in June! The need to move the date earlier coincides with meeting federal reporting requirements necessary for the Putnam County Community Foundation and facilitates award recipients receiving funds in a timelier manner for their respective college or university. These scholarships include the Brookshire 4-H Scholarship, Darrel Thomas 4-H Scholarship, Putnam County 4-H Livestock Scholarship, and the Putnam County General 4-H Scholarship.
Check our website www.extension.purdue.edu/putnam to view the most up to date info. You can contact the local Purdue Extension Office by calling 765.653.8411 for more information regarding column topics or to RSVP for upcoming events. It is always best to call first to assure items are ready when you arrive and to RSVP for programs. While many publications are free, some do have a fee. All times listed are Eastern Time.
Dec. 29: Junior Leaders Completion Activity, Putnam Co. Museum, 5 PM
Jan. 1: Extension Office Closed for New Year's Holiday
Jan. 6-8: Green Expo- Indiana Convention Center
Jan. 7: Health Motivator Training -- at Extension Office 1:00 PM
Jan. 7: Junior Leader Kick-off, County Annex Gym, 6 PM
Jan. 15: Indiana Livestock Forge and Grain Forum
Jan. 15: Indiana 4-H Foundation Scholarships Due
Jan. 19: Food Preservation Workshop, Putnam Co. Library, 6-8 PM
Jan. 19-21: Horticulture Congress -- Indianapolis
Jan. 24: Deadline for registration for Growing for Market II -- Putnam County
Feb. 13: 4-H Beef Tagging and Weigh-in, Fairgrounds, 9 AM
April 16: Putnam County 4-H Scholarships Due