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How to Write a Motivation Letter for Scholarships

Writing a compelling motivation letter for scholarships is one of the best ways to win a scholarship award. With this, you can have an edge over fellow competitors.

Motivation letter for scholarships
Motivation Letter for Scholarships

You don’t want your letter to be overlooked right? Or tossed into the trash can? This can be very painful.

But, everyone overlooks a poorly written letter, which means you need to write a motivational letter that expresses yourself, your abilities, and your goals clearly

But, just how do I do that?

If your scholarship entails that you write a motivation letter for it, then make sure you read this article, it will help you write a great motivation letter that will improve your chances of winning the scholarship. 

READ ALSO: How to Write a Winning Application Letter in Nigeria 

What are Motivation letter for Scholarships?

Not all scholarships require that you write a motivation letter. It is often asked for graduate scholarships and seldom for undergraduate scholarships, except in specific professional courses.

Be that as it may, writing a motivation letter for scholarships is like writing a cover letter. It is a good chance to flaunt your professional skills, goals, and educational history. 

A motivation letter is a document that is used by scholarship management to screen candidates who apply. It contains relevant information that can convince anyone that you are the best fit for the award

It is always attached to your college transcripts and whichever documents are required for the application.

If written properly, motivation letter for scholarships can help you scale through the screening process and land you an award. 

Here are the major questions your motivation letter should answer

  • Who are you?
  • Why are you applying for the scholarship? 
  • What skills, and educational background make you a better candidate?
  • How does this education help your future and the future of others? 

However, it is important to note that a good motivational letter is not the only criterion to win a scholarship. If you do not have all the major scholarship documents, you may not be considered at all

Next is, 

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Sections of a Scholarship Motivation Letter

motivation letter

To write a proper type of motivation letter for your scholarship, you need to know its different sections. This knowledge will make it easy for you to write a well-ordered letter.

These are the sections of your letter below

  1. Header
  2. Title
  3. Introduction 
  4. Body of the latter (usually up to four, never less than 3)
  5. Conclusion
  6. Closing salutations

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1. Header

The header is probably the first thing everyone sees in your letter. Although it doesn’t have any compelling information on it, the trick here is to…

…arrange it properly.

Furthermore, it is good to use a letterhead, your name first with other information arranged below.

The header usually carries personal information like

  • Full name (no abbreviation)
  • Email
  • Phone number
  • Address and postal code
  • Other social media address

Always arrange all the information on your header to align on one side. Either you align to the left or align to the right. You can find some header templates and pick the one that suits you best.

2. Title

The title is the next section after the header, it can also come before the header. What you put here is very simple 

“Motivation letter for ______ (the name of the scholarship) scholarship”

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3. Introduction

This is the first paragraph, you begin with a formal greeting then you can continue by saying ” I am interested in the XYZ scholarship or award”. The idea is to show your interest in her first sentence.

You can further write where you got the information from, your educational or work experience, why the scholarship interests you, and why you are applying for it.

However, in a motivation letter, it is better to keep everything concise, anything too elaborate can bore the scholarship board which can make your application to be dropped.

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4. Body of the letter

The body of this letter is divided into three parts. It can be above 3 but never below 3. You can spill these into paragraphs if it becomes too lengthy

Part 1

In this paragraph talk about your educational experience and how it makes you a good fit for the scholarship. 

Also, explain how if given this scholarship  you will bring value to the country which hosts the scholarship you are applying for 

However, remember not to brag or excessively use a particular word.

Part 2

Here, highlight your interest again in the scholarship and make sentences that talk about why you will like to gain admission into their institute.

You can say “Your institution has embraced cultural diversity and the richness of different value systems, hence, this is a perfect place to have a career in public policy”

Every institution wants to be flattered as a great place for learning. However, this should be done with tact, so it doesn’t seem like empty flattery, be sure of all the information before you write.

This is the section in a motivation letter where you show interest in the school as well as the scholarship. Say how the school’s facilities and educational system will help you achieve your goals.

Part 3

Again, highlight your skills and how they will benefit the school, your colleagues, and the resident country.

Also, talk about the programs you will like to develop or the companies you’d like to work in after graduation.

This leads us to the final part.

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5. Conclusion 

Here you have the task to show that if you are given the scholarship you will use it wisely. You should highlight your skills here, but not necessarily educational skills.

Also, express your desire to get the scholarship and end with an assurance that you will use it to the best of your ability.

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6. Closing Salutations

A good closing should use only formal words, your name, and your signature

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Tips to Write a Scholarship Motivation Letter

  • Your letter should link your educational experience and skills to the goal of the scholarship.
  • Do thorough research on the institution you are applying to. This will help you to easily connect to their educational system and write in that direction
  • Review it: Do not submit it immediately after you are done writing, write it earlier and review it, or get someone to review it for you
  • Keep it short. Your motivation letter should not exceed a page.
  • Simple sentences will do a better job. Ambiguity is a turn-off for many people
  • Notice the submission format given. If it is not specified, use the pdf format. Don’t submit a Word document.

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The layout of a scholarship motivation letter

The mistakes made here are the feeling that anything goes. Your letter should be in this format

  • Font 12
  • Line Spacing 1
  • Clear design or no design at all
  • Contrasting text color for your title, if you have a designed header or black text on a white background.
  • PDF format is always best used.

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Samples of a scholarship motivation letter

Motivation letter for Scholarship
Sample of a Scholarship Motivation Letter

November 29, 2022

Micheal Jonah

10 Benin Street

Udu, GA 31302



Dear Mr. Williams 

I am very much interested in the UNVAC graduate scholarship award for management students.

I completed my BSc in Plant Science and Biotechnology at the University of Michigan in 2012 and since then I have focused my interest on this course of study. For my undergraduate studies, I maintained a constant 4.0 GPA as you will notice in the transcript.

With my educational background, industrial attachment (IT) experience as a lab technologist, and work experience as a lecturer assistant. I am able to conduct research in an orderly manner.

With the well-balanced system which your institution provides, its conducive lab, and updated plant culture systems I am assured that I can learn more about genetics, and plant tissue culture. I am focused, self-driven, innovative, and willing to add value to your institution and the world at large.

To date, my professional work experience has been very rewarding.  It is through these experiences I have been able to understand the worth of biotechnology and use my aptitude creatively to aid plant multiplication. I understand research and I am willing to learn and profer solutions to the world.

I would appreciate it if I am called for the interview, a perfect way to increase my zeal for this course

Thank you


Micheal Jonah.

READ ALSO: Scholarship Opportunities in Nigeria

FAQs About Motivation Letter for Scholarships

What makes you the best scholarship applicant?

If you want to be the best scholarship applicant, you will need to highlight a special advantage in your letter. It may be an outstanding GPA, experience or skill.

Why would a scholarship benefit me?

Scholarships provide financial aid to students who win it. Scholarships can be for students in any level. Many offer full financial aid for deserving students.

How do you start a motivation letter for scholarships?

Your first sentence in a motivational letter, should show your interest in the scholarship.

How long should my motivational letter be?

Ideally, a motivation letter should never exceed one page and it can be as short as ½ page long. The key here is to make relevant points, without repetition or story.

Is a motivational letter a personal statement?

If you want you can consider it that way. But remember to put all the relevant information that will help you stand out.

What is a short letter of motivation?

A short motivation letter is a short write-up about your professional skills, experience and goals that make you the perfect candidate for a job.

Scholarship motivation letters can increase your chances of winning a scholarship. Follow the guide given above to write a clear, concise, relevant, and winning motivation letter.


Esther Gad
Esther Gad
I am a freelance writer, who loves to convey information through written contents. I build simple and conversational content tailored to the specific audience which can help industries build customer trust and in long term increase sales