Often when students have to study at an institution, they usually pay a fee before the semester begins. That’s considered the standard process to secure admission at any institution globally. However, two of the other ways through which students get admissions are through scholarships and education loans. Often students are confused about these things as they don’t know the exact process to get any of these. Don’t fret as this blog will share with you the complete process and the documents you require for an education loan or scholarship.
What is an Education Loan?
Education loans, also known as student loans, are financial assistance provided by banks that help a student pay for their higher education studies. Thus, an educational loan is a financial aid given to students to study at universities and colleges in their country or even abroad.
Many banks provide these education loans at a low-interest rate and even offer flexible terms and conditions. Most importantly, the process is also largely simplified so that a student can quickly get a loan.
What’s A Scholarship?
Scholarships are simply grants that are awarded by institutions, organizations, and governments to support a student’s studies. Students with high caliber and those in need of funds are awarded these scholarships. The scholarships are of various types and they vary from one institution to another worldwide. Every scholarship has an individual process and differential grants based on the type of scholarship. Some scholarships offer the complete tuition fee of a student, while some can be as low as 10 or 15%. Students can even be awarded a scholarship from national or international universities largely based on merit.
How to be Eligible For an Education Loan?
The overall basic loan eligibility criteria are listed below:
- The candidate must be a national of the country.
- Must have a confirmation letter from a designated learning institution.
- The candidate must be of age 18-35 years.
- The course of study must be a diploma, graduate, or postgraduate program.
- Depending on the amount of the loan, the candidate may require a co-applicant with a regular income.
- A good academic record fast tracks the loan approval process.
The banks inform the candidate if there’s any other requirement than these. Based on these factors, a bank decides whether to grant a loan to a candidate or not.
What are the Essential Documents Required For an Education Loan?
The list of documents for loan approval is given below:
- A loan application form is filled and signed out by the candidate.
- Passport-size photographs.
- Copy of the 10th/12th mark sheets or certificates.
- A statement of course expense.
- National identification proofs of an individual.
- Income proof, if any.
- Six-month salary slips of a co-applicant.
- Recent ITRs of the applicant or co-applicant.
How Can I Improve My Eligibility For Bank Educational Loans?
Banks don’t right away grant loans and have an assessment process through which they ensure that only selected candidates get a loan. Here are a few things you can do to ensure that the banks don’t hesitate before granting you a loan:
- Having a solid academic record.
- Scoring high marks in qualifying exams, if any.
- Getting admission to a highly reputed college or university.
- Strong financial background.
- Choosing a course that has a bright scope.
What About Scholarships?
Well, if you’re a bright or talented individual, you can skip through the hassle of an education loan and apply straight for scholarships. These are the common types of scholarships provided:
- Means-Based Scholarships: These are specifically reserved for candidates from economically backward statuses. These scholarships are decided based on a family’s annual income.
- Talent-Based Scholarships: Talent-based scholarships are awarded in the field of arts, music, and literature based on a candidate’s level of aptitude. Similarly, sports-based scholarships are also awarded from sports facilities for candidates exhibiting exceptional skills.
- Merit-Based Scholarships: These are the most common type of scholarships awarded to a candidate based on their marks and financial status.
What Are Some Common Scholarships?
Institutions, organizations, or governments have their scholarships. For instance, in India these are some standard scholarships:
HDFC Educational Crisis Scholarship Scheme:
This scholarship scheme is for students who are going through a personal loss such as the death of a loved one. In times of crisis, this scholarship works as a survival aid for students. Most importantly, this scholarship is applicable for any stream/course so the candidate has flexibility.
Indian Oil Academic Scholarships:
Offered by Indian Oil for technical students, this scholarship is awarded based on merit as well as lack of means. This scholarship is strictly for engineering, medical and management streams.
Stands for Sikh Human Development Foundation, this scholarship is a not-for-profit, social welfare institution to facilitate poor students and help them pursue higher education.
Siemens Scholarship Program:
It is a scholarship program for first-year technical students. An initiative by Siemens India, this is for students with exceptional grades and economically challenged backgrounds.
Sanskriti Pratishthan accepts applications for Sanskriti – Kalakriti Fellowship in Performing Arts. With the aid of intensive workshops, artists develop their skills in their areas of interest.
Where to Search For Scholarships?
Usually, educational institutions offer scholarships. If a student wants to take admission to a specific institution, they must first check if it offers any scholarships. If they satisfy that institution’s scholarship criteria, they can apply for the scholarship.
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Most importantly, governments and organizations also offer scholarships that must be searched by an individual. A student can also register at a government portal for scholarships and look online for trusted websites that provide up-to-date information on scholarships.
Thus, there are your options apart from paying the fee out of pocket. A loan or a scholarship can lighten the burden on a student provided they qualify for it. One important thing, however, is students should be aware of what they have to do to get a scholarship or a loan. Knowledge is power and sources are key, hence, a student should look for trusted sources to know about beneficial scholarships and loans.