You’ve done your research and found opportunities for a scholarship. In fact, you should have found between 30 and 40 opportunities. If you haven’t found that many, you have not finished doing research, because that’s the number of scholarships available to the “average” student (meaning if you're above average, you should have found even more).
The next step in this important process of getting help to pay for your higher education involves having the application sent to you for completion.
Here is a sample copy of what a letter of inquiry should look like:
YOUR NAME, STREET ADDRESS, PHONE NUMBER AND EMAIL ADDRESS
This information can either be formatted to look like letterhead or written in a professional business manner, which means flush right.
Be sure you are doing this with plenty of time (like six months ideally) before the deadline.
THE CONTACT PERSON'S NAME
THE ORGANIZATION'S NAME
In regard to the contact person and address, your research should have identified this information. If your source of info is more than one year old, double-check that the person still works there and that the address is the same. If your research did not identify a contact person, then address your inquiry letter to the foundation president or board chair.
DEAR MR/MS CONTACT PERSON:
This is a formal business letter and you cannot use a familiar tone, as you would with a friend. Do not address the contact person by his or her first name.
I WILL BE A GRADUATING SENIOR IN (MONTH AND YEAR) AND PLAN TO ATTEND COLLEGE (or the name of the specific college if you know.) I UNDERSTAND YOUR ORGANIZATION OFFERS (A) SCHOLARSHIP(S) TO HELP DESERVING STUDENTS.
In this introductory paragraph you want to concisely identify the purpose of why you're writing.
THIS IS MY BACKGROUND AND THESE ARE MY AMBITIONS.
Now you want to briefly point out that you are a serious candidate for them to consider. Remember to keep in my mind the foundation's or organization's needs. What do they want in an award candidate? Also stay positive in your tone. Don't belittle yourself by saying you believe your ambitions are too big or unobtainable. You want to show confidence because that's the kind of student they can best help.
PLEASE FORWARD ME ANY INFORMATION ALONG WITH AN APPLICATION FOR A COLLEGE SCHOLARSHIP.
This is your call to action, the behavior you want the reader to perform. If it is “sandwiched” between positive things about yourself and a formal professional tone, you will achieve your goal.
IF YOU SHOULD NEED ANY FURTHER INFORMATION, PLEASE CONTACT ME AT YOUR EARLIEST CONVENIENCE.
YOUR TELEPHONE NUMBER
YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS
Be sure to leave a room to add a handwritten signature above your printed name.
Always send letters of inquiry through regular first-class mail unless you have specific information requesting that any and all inquiries be sent via email.
If you don't receive any contact within a month, follow up with either another letter, an email or even a phone call.