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8 Scholarship Appeal Letter Templates

Scholarships are a means for most college students to cope with high education expenses. Thus, receiving fewer funds than expected or no funds at all is a huge setback for most scholarship applicants. In such situations, candidates are prompted to appeal the awarding committee’s decision through a letter. 

A scholarship appeal letter is a formal document that requests the awarding authority reconsider its decision. It should explain why the initial offer is insufficient and demonstrate why the candidate deserves the amount they are requesting. 

This article aims to educate you on when an appeal letter may be needed and how to write one. The article will also discuss the details necessary for a successful appeal. Additionally, it contains templates for letters to appeal scholarship decisions. 

Download Free Templates

Given below are scholarship fund appeal letter templates:

When Can You Write a Letter to Appeal an Unfavorable Scholarship Decision? 

You might want to appeal your scholarship funding depending on the situation. However, you need to understand that some cases may be considered important and thus have higher chances of being approved than others. Regardless of the case, you must present your case exhaustively and follow applicable guidelines. 

Below are common instances when you may have to write an appeal letter for your scholarship:

  • You can appeal your scholarship offer if your financial situation has changed since applying for the scholarship. Your financial situation can change if your parents become unemployed, divorced, or a serious medical emergency makes you use money set aside for your college tuition fees.
  • Appeals can also be made when you are denied a scholarship yet qualify for one. Your letter can explain your qualifications and clarify why you need financial aid.
  • You can write an appeal letter to request an increase in the amount of the scholarship awarded to you. Such cases typically arise when you make a mistake declaring your income on your FAFSA, which is a requirement before you are awarded a scholarship.
  • Candidates are also allowed to appeal any revocation or withdrawal of a scholarship. The awarding authority can only withdraw a scholarship if you do not meet the required conditions, such as grades. Suppose your academic performance has been affected by a tragic event such as a newly diagnosed illness, the death of a close relative, or eviction. In that case, you can write a letter explaining your situation which impacted your grades, and request that the financial aid is restored.

How to Write an Appeal Letter for Scholarship Funds

You must know how to properly write a letter to ensure that your appeal has merit with the reviewing committee. The letter should be well-structured and objectively written. 

Here is a guide to properly composing your letter:

Address the letter to the right person 

The letter should be addressed to the right person in the college’s scholarship committee or financial aid office. It is inappropriate to address it as “To Whom It May Concern.” The recipient must be properly addressed. You should use their name throughout the letter to personalize your request. Typically, the letter will be addressed to the school’s financial aid director. However, if you do not know the recipient’s name, you should research to whom you should address the letter. This information can be found on the school’s website.

Introduce yourself 

You should start the letter by introducing yourself. This section should contain various information, such as the name of the scholarship and some background information on who you are and why you are writing the application.

Mention some reasons why you deserve the scholarship 

Next, discuss the reasons why you are a deserving candidate. Explain how you are qualified to receive the scholarship. Provide qualities and qualifications to explain that you are a bright student and deserve a chance to finance your education. You can mention your grades or any awards to support your statements.

You can discuss your financial needs and why you are unable to meet them. You can mention an event or circumstances that make it difficult to afford college expenses. Also, mention how financial help will help you achieve your life goals. You should be direct when providing information since the letter should not be longer than a page to ensure it is easily and fully read.

Write about your accomplishments 

To further illustrate your suitability as a candidate for the scholarship, you should state any noteworthy academic or extracurricular achievement you have had since applying for the scholarship. In this section, you can also discuss your excellent grade scores in high school.  

Mention your reasons for the appeal

You may request an increment on the awarded amount or a reconsideration of the decision if the initial application was rejected. Regardless of the case, specify the amount you are requesting. If you need a specific amount to close a financial deficit, for example, to cover tuition fees, specify the amount and type of expense. In case you are appealing a decision to deny you any financial aid, you should request the full amount as mentioned in your original application.   

Thank the recipient 

Lastly, you should end the letter with an appreciation message for the recipient. You can reiterate the purpose of writing the letter and express your gratitude at the end.

Note: Ordinarily, a response takes 1-4 weeks after sending the letter. Factors that affect this timeline are the school’s review process and how close you sent the letter to the deadline. It is always best to contact the school’s financial aid office to obtain a more accurate estimate.

Sample Letter

Jose Hernandez

4400 Palm Beach Avenue

San Diego, NY 28022

 January 5, 2023

Charles Johnson

Director Financial Aid Committee

The University of Charleston 

110 Peach Street

New York City, NY 28022

Dear Mr. Johnson,

I am grateful to have received a $25,000 scholarship fund for the year 2023. I have been accepted to join the University of Charleston, NY, as of February 2023. However, I am still unable to afford living expenses as I come from a single-father family of 5. Two of my siblings are in high school, and my father is doing his best to educate us. This scholarship can help alleviate this financial burden and guarantee that I will finish my education at the university. I cleared my high school education with a GPA of 3.8 and qualified to pursue a bachelor’s in  Production Safety and Control at your university. 

I have completed 100 hours of volunteer work, a requirement to be eligible for the scholarship. As an ambitious student, I would like to seek a $5,000 increment on my scholarship to cover the high costs of living in New York City. An opportunity to go to university is an important step toward my wish to pursue a career in the production industry.      

Thank you for the generous scholarship and the opportunity to study at this great institution. I look forward to starting my campus journey in February, and I sincerely hope you will consider my request.


Jose Hernandez

6 Tips to Write an Effective Letter of Appeal for Scholarship

A letter to appeal a decision regarding financial aid is meant to present your case as adequately as you would in person. To write such a letter, there are certain practices you should observe, including the following:

Be brief and relevant

Ordinarily, the recipient will receive multiple similar applications. So, you should keep your letter brief and direct and focus on the important details first. This way, you will be assured that your letter will be read in its entirety.

Pay attention to the tone 

The tone is a key consideration in formal writing. Therefore, you need to write an objective letter based on facts when presenting your arguments on why you deserve the scholarship. Do not get too emotional, seek sympathy, or get defensive if your scholarship has been revoked. Remain polite, maintain professionalism, and be respectful.

Attach documents 

You will sometimes have to submit certain documents to support your appeal, depending on your situation. If this is the case, ensure that you mention them in your letter and attach clear copies of the documents. Documents are an effective way of persuading the committee. 

Follow guidelines 

Normally, detailed guidelines will be provided regarding appealing the decision when you receive correspondence from the financial aid office. You should review and comply with these guidelines when writing and sending the appeal letter.

Follow up (If the need arises) 

You can always follow up on the appeal letter, especially if you do not receive a response after a week or two. However, you should first verify whether you missed a response. If there is none, then you can seek further information by sending another letter. Do not forget to attach a copy of the original document to instantly identify your letter. 

Use templates

Templates are predesigned documents that contain all the fundamental sections that should be included in a letter. You can thus consult this website to get the templates for appeal letters to use as a guide. You can also download and edit them. Templates thus simplify the writing process and ensure you use minimal time and effort to craft a professional and effective document. 

Frequently Asked Questions

What to do if your appeal is refused? 

Sometimes your appeal may be rejected for one reason or another. In such a situation, you should apply for other scholarships. There are multiple scholarships for funding high school and college education. You can also try Federal Work Study, a program that provides part-time jobs to students to help them with financing their education. Additionally, you can consider federal student loan options before resorting to private donors. 

How to submit the appeal letter for a scholarship? 

You should submit the letter following the university’s guidelines which can be obtained from the official website of the financial aid office. You should then send the letter to the specific person assigned by the institute to receive the appeal letters.

When should you submit the appeal letter? 

The appeal letter should be submitted as soon as you receive the decision from the scholarship authority. To give the reviewing committee enough time to consider it, it is advisable to submit the letter well before the deadline.

Can you appeal for more money from private scholarships?

It is exceptionally unlikely that you will receive an increase in your scholarship amount if it is privately funded. This is because they typically award a fixed amount of funding. Therefore, if you are relying on private donors to finance your education, it is better to apply for more than one scholarship rather than appeal for an increment.

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