Scholarship Advice

Ildiko Yuryev is OhSNA’s 2015-2016 President and the recipient of over 14 scholarships and awards, including three highly competitive international awards through Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society. Here are her tips for success:

Start small:

A scholarship application is a lengthy process. Don’t seek out the most prestigious scholarships initially, or those offering the most money for your time. Start with local, small, less competitive scholarships, and build up your resume in order to stand out from the sea of applicants for the more selective ones. Lots of small scholarship essays are indeed time consuming, but winning a few small ones adds up to the same amount of funding as being the recipient of a major one.

Stand out from the crowd:

Your bio is the first essay that catches the judges’ eyes. Make sure it stands out. Most applicants have impressive resumes, try to keep up, but be different. I used to answer the biography question “Tell us about yourself” in a third person essay, comparable to an article written about me. It was eye catching, and also confusing on a first look, but it made one read it completely in order to understand how it fits in.

Show passion:

Whatever your passion is don’t be afraid to show it. I shared my deepest thoughts with the judges and gave them permission to publish my story. It brought me several scholarships, two articles in local newsletters, a trip to the national convention and a video interview. Don’t be scared to share about yourself, but do not beg for money.


Do I even have to mention this? Read your essays from bottom up, in order to discover missed errors. Start early and edit constantly all the way to the closing day. Read your answers every second day, modifying them accordingly.

Be active in many professional organizations:

The most highly competitive scholarships inquire about your membership status and accomplishments in the organizations you were part of. NSNA, OhSNA, local student nurse associations, the Honors Programs, Sigma Theta Tau, ONA, ANA are all respected leaders of your area of interest. Join the ones that define you as a person and a future professional, and BE AN ACTIVE MEMBER. Volunteer, volunteer and volunteer with every chance you get.

Give back:

Get involved in your community regardless of the awards you won. Give back to those less fortunate with every chance you get.

Thank you letter:

Do not forget to send a thank you letter right after you have been notified of your winner status. Keep in contact with the sponsors, they would like to know how their donations has helped you achieve your goals.

REMEMBER: Believe in yourself. Doubt kills more dreams than failure ever will. You can’t win unless you applied.

Best of luck everyone!

Ildiko Yuryev, RN, OhSNA's 2015-2016 President

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