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How I Got a Scholarship to Study Abroad

As the situation of COVIThe situation concerning COVID-19 is becoming better day by day, and global economics has started recovering. Many of you are now able to fulfill your dream of studying abroad during your university days. While preparing for your application, there will be loads of challenges. The biggest challenge for me was funding for the study-abroad. In this article, I will introduce tips to apply for the scholarship and how I actually got it.

specify the purpose and start Searching

Many students don’t notice that actually, in Japan, there are loads of scholarship foundations that support students to study abroad. Some of them require income restrictions, but others require country-based requirements (for example, the IELTS scholarship supports only students who want to study in the UK) or subject-based requirements such as scholarships for STEM subjects.

So what you need to do is to clarify:

  1. What you want to study.
  2. Where you want to study.
  3. How your study-abroad experience helps your academic, professional, and personal development. 

Once you understand your purpose deeply, this makes your search for scholarship options much easier.

don’t panic with your admin, ask help.

AAfter you decide to apply for one or two scholarship programs, read the application form carefully. Understand the application process until you can explain it to someone else in your own words. Many students make application mistakes because of the lack of understanding of the scholarship program or the lach information in their application form. This may sound cliche, but try to make your application detailed but keep it simple.

The most simple but effective way to improve your application form is to ask someone to read it. It is better if the person is not familiar with your subject area at all. If they are able to understand the contents and feel your passion by reading it, your application is ready to submit.

Another tip for writing the application form is balancing your academic interests and passion, with qualifications, to 7:3. If you concentrate only on your academic interests, it might be difficult for examiners to understand why you need to experience a study abroad. So, try to focus on both your passion and the necessity of studying abroad on your application form.

no better opportunity to show yourself than In AN Interview

If you could successfully pass admin selection (congratulations!), many foundations allow you to show and describe yourself in detail through Interview Test.

This might sound like a nightmare for those who are neither familiar with nor good at interview tests. But if you can nail it, it would be the best opportunity to tell about your passion and confidence to the foundation. I used to be bad at interview tests before, and I didn’t know how to improve my interview communication skills. 

But the answer was quite simple; understand yourself and your study, and be confident in both of them.

Many of you, including me, underestimate our ability and capability, leading to a lack of confidence. Most examiners can easily tell your fear through how you behave. So, the first step to prepare for your interview test is to understand what you want to pursue during your study and how the experience is meaningful for your future. Just understanding such a simple thing will definitely lead to your confidence, and your confidence is the biggest strength that you should show during the interview test. 

own up your responsibility, the next chance is waiting for you.

If you were selected as a scholarship student (again, congratulations!!), please remember to own up your responsibility as a scholarship student and endeavor utmost in your study. This is not a goal but is a start to your life-long journey. I used my scholarship for my study abroad, and the experience led me to an internship opportunity. And now, these experiences led me to study in a graduate school overseas. So, please please please, use the scholarship, and never forget to utilize the experience you get for your next step.

Good Luck!

Yukiko Takei

ICU Japan '22

Hi, I am Yukiko and am currently studying at the University of Gothenburg as exchange student remotely, majoring in public policy.
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