In an effort to provide students with information on how to
best present themselves competitively when applying for
scholarships, I am surveying scholarship decision makers on
how they evaluate applications. This survey will help in
determining what kinds of applications are most successful.

Although the results of this survey will be available for sale,
complimentary copies of the scholarship book will be
provided to libraries and community centers in targeted low
income neighborhoods.

Various organizations are being surveyed as to their
scholarship criteria and evaluation methodology.  For each
completed survey, a donation will be made to one of the
selected charitable organizations.  If you have any
questions, please contact Victoria Pilate at
vpilate@victoriapilate.com.
 
Thank you for completing the survey. Your input is valued and appreciated.  The
information collected from this survey will be used to help students.  

If you wish to check with the charity you designated above to assure the donation was
received.  Kindly allow 2-3 weeks for the survey to be processed.   
 
Best Foot Forward Scholarship Survey
Victoria Pilate, Ph.D.
Please enter the
respondent code.
The name of the
scholarship is:
This survey is for the
following organization:
Please enter the
name and email
address and/or phone
number of a contact
person if there are
questions about the
survey.
Background Data
The average scholarship amount for
2005 (or the last year it was awarded)
was:
Is the scholarship's
eligibility for applying
based on:
If the scholarship is based on an overall point or evaluation system, please indicate the
relative value placed on the following factors. (percentages should add to 100; if not
considered, please enter a zero.) If the scholarship is based on these factors but there is no
fixed system, kindly enter a one for each factor that is considered then answer the last
question on this page.
Coursework
Interviews
Essay
Leadership
Letters of
Recommendation
Extracurricular Activities
Test Scores
Grade Point Average
Other, please specify
If you entered other for the previous
question, please describe the
scholarship's criterion.
Please check here if you use the any of the above factors but have
no fixed evaluation method.
Grade Point Average
How important would you rank GPAs?
What is the minimum grade point average (GPA) that you would consider for an
application? Please indicate the relative scale (e.g., 3.2 on a 4.0 scale). If there
is no minimum GPA requirement, please write none.
When evaluating GPAs, do you consider how difficult the coursework was?
Yes
Do you adjust GPAs to eliminate certain coursework? (for example, grades for
physical education, crafts, home economics are not considered)
No
Do you also consider a GPA in the person's field of study? (e.g., GPA in math
courses only for math majors)
Yes
No
Letters of Recommendation
Is a letter of recommendation or a reference required?
If so, how many are required?
If so, how important would you rank letters of
recommendation/reference?
What do you prefer to see in a letter of recommendation?
Whom do you prefer to provide the recommendation or reference?
Students may have an easy or difficult time getting a recommendation from a teacher or
otherwise. Some may get a lengthy review by a teacher; others may get a form letter like
recommendation from a public official. How do you evaluate the recommendation or reference?
Please mail a copy of a letter of recommendation that you thought was
outstanding or otherwise noteworthy. Kindly eliminate any identifying
information.  The mailing address is:  Victoria Pilate, PO Box 75433,
Washington, DC  20013
Coursework
Do you evaluate the application for consideration of the applicant's
coursework?
If you do evaluate the applicant's coursework, what do want to see
in the coursework?
Some schools can offer a better variety of elective courses and/or required
courses.  How do you condition your evaluation of the various applications
when the menu of courses from which a student can select electives is
unknown or the requirements of a school or program are unknown?
Leadership
Do you evaluate the application for consideration of the
applicant's leadership activities?
If so, how important would you rank leadership activities?
How do you evaluate leadership positions? (example is being the president of a 10 member
organization as valuable as being the team leader of a group of 20 for a short-term fundraiser)
What do you consider to be a leadership activity. Please check all that apply.
Being the chair of a committee within a club
or organization including temporary or ad hoc
committees
Organizing a fundraiser or event for an
organization
Counseling others either in a paid or
volunteer position such as a camp counselor
Holding an officer position in an organization
(president, secretary, treasurer, etc)
What do you prefer to see when students describe their leadership roles?
Extracurricular Activities
Do you consider membership in extracurricular activities in
evaluating scholarships?
If so, how important would you rank the importance of
extracurricular activities?
Please describe how you evaluate participation in extracurricular activities.
What are some extracurricular activities that you consider helpful to a scholarship application?
Tutoring peers or younger children
Campus organizations
Mentoring
Volunteer work for nonprofit or public agency
Religious organizations
Working a summer or part-time job
Sports
Other, please specify
Which three of these extracurricular activities are most important in evaluating applications?
Some students are enrolled in extracurricular activities such as second language
academies or math enhancement programs. Some also have taken summer
enrichment programs in the arts. How would you handle or evaluate such students as
compared to other applicants?
Essay
Is an essay required?
How important is a creative approach to the essay? For example some students have written
essays in the form of plays or dialogues. Others have used graphics or written cartoon-strip
essays.
How do you handle errors in punctuation, grammar and spelling?
What essay themes or topics does your organization require for the essay?
{Please choose all that apply}

Please mail a copy of an essay that you thought was outstanding or
otherwise noteworthy. Kindly eliminate any identifying information.
Test Scores
What is the minimum test score that you would consider for an application? Please
indicate which standardized test(s) are used.
What student's leadership or public service activities or values are
Interviews
For what do you look in the applicant during interviews?
What are some questions you ask applicants during the interview?
If you could advise a student who is thinking about applying for scholarships in the distant future,
what advice would you give on improving their competitive ability for scholarships?
For each completed survey, a donation will be made to a selected organization. What nonprofit
organization would you like to receive the donation?
The Book Thing of Baltimore (gives away free books)
Childline (helps child rape victims of South Africa)
Esther Benjamin Trust (helps homeless children and orphans of
Kathmandu Nepal)
Ethiopian Book and Children's Educational Foundation (provides a library
for children and other educational support of Ethiopia)
MSSM Foundation (provides support and scholarships to children of the
Merced, CA, area)
Safe Passage (provides support to children who live and work in a
Guatemalan garbage dump)
School on Wheels (provides books and educational support to homeless
children of Chicago, Los Angeles and Indianapolis)