This past Saturday at the Chicas Advancing in Media Project, we had a special guest named Liza Montelongo. She has dedicated more than 20 years to working and volunteering in the education and non-profit sector and more recently in local government. In 2009, she started My Scholarships El Paso as an educational program that guides parents and students through the college and scholarship application process.This past Saturday, our team had the great opportunity to interview her. She told us that looking for a scholarship might be a long and consuming process, but the outcome of this is a life changing experience. Here are some of the questions our young reporters asked her:
Q:Why do you think education is important?
A: Education is important because it opens more doors. Having a college degree rather than a high school diploma gives you a better chance to earn more money. People who have a bigger income spend more money in the community and this makes the economy of the city grow as well.
Q:What are your top tips to prepare for college?
A: My top tip would be to start planing for college when you are a junior in high school.That way you have more time to prepare and to look for a college that fits you and your needs as a student. This can be a great opportunity to start looking for scholarships.
Q:What can help you stand out for on a college application?
A: Most schools are looking for well-rounded students. GPA can be a big part of the application, but schools are also looking for a person who is involved in their community. Tell them your story, make them be interested in what you have to say, and show them that you are involved.
Q:How do you find scholarship opportunities?
A: Scholarship opportunities are everywhere! There is tons of money out there for students. It is just a matter of choosing which one you want to go for. Go online and always go to trusted search engines. Not all things on the internet have information that can be trusted. First, start by going to my website. I get tons of information about scholarships around the nation. http://www.myscholarshipselpaso.com
Q:What are your top tips to getting scholarships?
A: Find a school that fits your needs as a student. Apply to all schools you would like to go. Don't stick to your hometown university; go live somewhere else. There are a lot of schools that are looking for Latinas. There are lots of opportunities out of town where would you like to go like New York, Chicago or another place. I have a lot of students
who leave town and go study somewhere else. Make an impression in your essay by letting them know about you and about your career goals.
Q:What makes a strong scholarship applicant?
A: A strong scholarship applicant is that student who is involved in school and in their community. There are thousands of applications, not only yours. You need to show the school you are the best option for that award. What are your interests, hobbies, favorite sport, GPA. It's all about what kind of scholarship you apply for and the type of student you are. Tell them a story they'll never forget!
For more info on scholarships check:http://www.myscholarshipselpaso.com
or add her on Facebook: http://wwww.facebook.com/liza.montelongo