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An editorial review, analysis, and commentary of the Scholarships.Com search service
A review of Scholarships.Com
Scholarships.Com: A professional review of Scholarship Search Service Scholarships.Com. In a nutshell, Scholarships.Com is a Scholarship matching service. Scholarships.Com claims that " since 1999, we have helped millions of students, parents and counselors search 2.7 million local, state & national college scholarships & grants worth over 19 billion dollars...". Scholarships.Com claims claims to have a database of at least 1.5 million scholarships as of the time this article was first published.
In order to carefully review Scholarships.Com, we must review Scholarships.Com with the same set of criteria we use for other scholarship search databases. Scholarships.Com makes numerous boastful claims that merit an independent review.
What this Scholarships.Com Scholarship Review Includes
We review their scholarship history, their scholarship creativity, their scholarship published claims vs. documented facts by government or independent agencies, and we review such factors as their Scholarship Yield, Scholarship Quotient, FaceBook habits, their FaceBook likeability, their receptivity to competitive scholarship listing sources, the quality of their scholarship listings, their scholarship advertising claims, their duplicate scholarship listings, their excluded scholarship listings, their association with other scholarship listing services, and the success rate of their scholarship recipients.
What students need to know about Scholarships.Com and Scholarship Search Services
Students need to know that all scholarship search services are not the same, but many rely upon the same database. Scholarship Search services, including Scholarships.Con, do differ from one another in several respects. Some scholarship search services have varying criteria inorder for a particular scholarship, grants, or financial-aid to be included. The "criteria" that is used is arbitrary, capricious, selective, and certainly not uniform. Beware of Scholarship Search companies that create their own so-called "criteria" to justify having a censored scholarship database.
Scholarships.Com was tested in June 2012, July, 2012. Scholarship sponsorrs were recruited to contact Scholarships.Com via their social media channels. Scholarships.Com reportedly either rebuffed their efforts, or incorporating Facebook blocks. Any scholarship search service that blocks, censors, or obstructs the objective of students seeking financial-aid is probably a scholarship search service that you do not want to rely upon.
Scholarships.Com does not publish any Scholarship Yield, or Scholarship Quotient, and neither does it publish any relevant statistical data in regards to its scholarship database other than the general advertising claims that "We're the Best & We're FREE.". That's a great statement, whose value is worthless unless backed by some currency or indisputable facts.
As part of the review of Scholarships.Com, we also review Section 5 of the FTC Act which prohibits the making of false, misleading, deceptive, and/or unsubstantited claims that are unqualified and unconditional.
Why believe this Review of Scholarships.Com
National Academy of American Scholars has been a leader and innovator in scholarship sponsorship, scholarship administration, and scholarship database reviews, and scholarship marketing since 1988. We appreciate the efforts of all scholarship listing services, and scholarship databases, including Scholarships.Com. We sincerely wish nothing but the success of any student using Scholarships.Com.
Nonetheless, this review of Scholarships.Com is for the consumer, and not Scholarships.Com. The fact is that Scholarships.Com is a follower that came AFTER National Academy of American Scholars. National Academy of American Scholars invented the pure, merit-based award, when no other entity even thought of the concept.
When former President Ronald Reagon began lambasting affirmative action programs in the 1980s, and when University students were protesting Admissions' quotas in the 1980's, and when most scholarship programs were based upon ethnicity or demographic requirements, or school choice, National Academy of American Scholars stood apart from the crowd, and boldly announced a new concept.
Through the leadership of our original founder, National Academy of American Scholars created and sponsored the most important, and the most far-reaching merit-based scholarship program in America's history: the Easley National Scholarship program. The Easley National Scholarship is America's original pure scholarship. That fact cannot be erased.
The Easley National Scholarship program promoted the core tenets of American democracy, and what the American Constitution embraces: that all persons should be treated equally without regard to race, income, or social-status.
With our innovative, non-discriminatory, and all-inclusive approach, National Academy of American Scholars was cheered by all levels of government, including the Reagan administration, American Governers, Mayors, Police Chiefs, Churches, FBI agents, U.S. Senators, and persons from all backgrounds, whom promoted the Easley scholarships to their sons and daughters.
Our founder was the first to equate the precious metals of Platinum,Gold, Silver, and Bronze with academic achievement. American Express DID NOT invent this concept,and neither did any Fortune 500 company. Today, many marketing companies and other companies have aped the concept first used by National Academy of American Scholars to market merit-based awards. So, when you see the precious metals associated with a service or product, understand that it was the marketing creativity of National Academy of American Scholars.
Through the wisdom and leadership of National Academy of American Scholars, programs like Scholarships.Com exist and are able to offer similar or copy-cat requirements. Meaning, Scholarships.Com is able to sponsor monthly awards that have no bearing upon an applicant's race, social-status, and income levels.
National Academy of American Scholars has accumulated over 25 years of sponsoring, administering, evaluating, and reporting upon merit-based scholarships, and other scholarships. Consequently, we believe we are well qualified to evaluate, analyze, and review every aspect of Scholarships.Com.
A in depth review, analysis, and media commentary about the Scholarships.Com scholarship search service
To prepare this report, and to ensure that consumers and media analysts understand the nature and scope of this Scholarships.Com Review, it is important that readers understand not only the principle product and services of Scholarships.Com, but that consumers also understand the historical facts surrounding the creation, marketing, partnership, and scholarship listing culture associated with the Scholarships.Com scholarship search services, and why Scholarships.Com sticks out amongst scholarship search service companies.
In order to complete a review of Scholarships.Com, it is necessary for us to be as detailed as possible. This review is by no means a biography of Scholarships.Com, or final analysis of Scholarships.Com. This review of Scholarships.Com will hopefully help the consumer determine if Scholarships.Com is an appropriate scholarship search service to use or is worth the time to complate a registration form. We will use published facts, opinions, and the data supplied by Scholarships.Com to form this review. Let's get started in this review of Scholarships.Com.
Purpose of the Scholarships.Com review.
The purpose of the scholarship review of Scholarships.Com is to assist scholarship seekers and educators evaluate the merits and services of Scholarships.Com. This report additionally concerns the quality, credibility, integrity, and legitimacy of the Scholarships.Com scholarship search service amongst its peers in the scholarship search service industry. We conduct a detailed review of all major scholarship search service companies, and post our reviews without charge on this website. First, lets review and clarify a new term invented by National Academy of Scholars.
We will use the term Scholarship Yield. Scholarship Yield is a term invented by National Academy of American Scholars. A Scholarship Yield is a mathematical calculation using Calculus that helps to determine and measure the robustness of a scholarship database. In simple terms, Scholarship Yield helps to determine if a scholarship database is all fluff and no meat, and whether its data is fresh relative to the population-age it is serving. For the mathematical equation of the Scholarship Yield, please contact an NAAS Specialist.
A total of 49.6 million children attended public and private school in 2003, beating the previous high mark of 48.7 million, set in 1970 when the baby boom generation was in school, claims U.S. Census records.
More than one-fourth of the U.S. population, 72 million people, were in school throughout the United States in October 1999. Of that 72 million, 16 million were in high school,and 15 million were in college.
If we use the figures provided by Scholarships.Com, and their reported claims, then over the span of 10 years, the Scholarship Yield of Scholarships.Com has been flat.
History, Founding, and Business model of Scholarships.Com Search Service.
By its public announcements, Scholarships.Com was admittedly created in or about 1999. According to the Illinois Secretary of State, Scholarships.Com LLC is a registered entity in that state and has a corporate file number of 00305995. The file date is 07/14/1999.
Scholarships.Com has a business model similar to many scholarship search listing companies. The basic business model is that it acts as a lead generator for institutions associated with NASFAA (National Associaton of Student Financial-Aid Administrators). NASFAA is the same organization responsible for the sponsorship of FastWeb/FinAid.
Students are requested to complete detailed forms, and the information supplied by students is thereafter sold or bartered to participating institutions. The scholarship database offered by Scholarships.Com IS NOT an open source database. Students or applicants must be willing to exchange their personal information, login into a secure area, and each student may be bombarded by telemarketers, and inappropriate colleges or universities after registration.
Scholarships.Com Association with Controversial Organizations.
Aside from using a business model essentially identical to FastWeb, Scholarships.Com is also associated with the National Scholarship Providers Association (N.S.P.A.), National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators, and Carnegie Mellon University. All of these entities are also associated with Mark Kantrowitz; Mark Kantrowitz is a former student of CMU; he created the first website for NASFAA; he helped draft the idea for N.S.P.A., and he is one of the original board members of this controversial entity.
With respect to Carnegie Mellon University, consider this quote that appeared on the Scholarships.Com website as of the creation date of this article:
Scholarships.Com relies upon a commendation letter from Carnegie Mellon University, which is the same university that skirted the rules in 1996 and allowed a mere student, Mark Kantrowitz, to run rampant through CMU. Kantrowitz was allowed complete, total, and unfettered free reign of CMU resources and computing equipment. Scholarships.Com should know that under the leaderless ship of CMU, Mark Kantrowitz was allowed to create, host, and use his newly created FinAid.org website on state-funded CMU servers, and use a CMU phone numbers as his business office phone.
Being the "best", as it claims, Scholarships.Com should also have known and researched the facts and circumstances surrounding the person that it has modeled its business after. While staying at the Squirrel Hills CMU student apartments, Kantrowitz crafted himself as a "Financial-Aid Expert" although a detailed copy of his resume revealed that he lacked any degree(s) in Business Administration, or the administration, selection, or sponsorship of financial-aid programs.
Needless to say, when Scholarships.Com uses a commendation or praise letter from the likes of Carnegie Mellon University, then such a communication should be viewed with skepticism. As demonstrated with Mr. Kantrowitz, and its own internal controversies, the credibility of CMU is not very high, and its standards are not comparable with many Division I schools. However, these facts are apparently unimportant to Scholarships.Com.
Furthermore, the published association of Scholarships.Com with the N.S.P.A., is also a red-flag for concern about the Scholarship Yield of its database, and the quality of its scholarship listings. Since its inception and creation, some persons believe that N.S.P.A. has been stacked with persons and institutions connected with NASFAA and/or Kantrowitz. Scholarships.Com apparently was unaware of the fact that the consensus running theory is that the central purpose of the N.S.P.A. is to CENSOR legitimate scholarship information and financial-aid programs and instead to steer students towards entities connected to members of NASFAA or its paid advertisers.
Scholarships.Com apparently did not know that N.S.P.A. has not been viewed by National Academy of American Scholars as a credible and trustworthy institution that has the bests interests of the students in mind.
It is unclear if Scholarships.Com cares about rising tuition costs. However, as a Publisher, my obligation is to report my reviews of Scholarships.Com and to share the facts, and my opinion with the general public. If you ever wondered why your college tuition goes up every year, then keep feeding companies and scholarship search engines connected to N.S.P.A.
Scholarships.Com most likely is not a student of Economic theory. If you are a student of economics, you have to understand how entities interconnected with NASFAA help raise tuition annually, collectively censor information, and inflate student costs, and limit student choices. The $10,000 scholarship you receive from an entity connected to NASFAA or any NSPA member will be wiped out by tuition and other fees.
However, if you are one of those generous students with unlimited amounts of money to waste, and you enjoy seeing higher book and tuition costs, and higher loan fees, then my advice is to continue to feed entities connected to NASFAA/NSPA.
Growth of Scholarships.Com Search Service
The growth of Scholarships.Com is parallel to the growth of the FastWeb scholarship search service, and similar scholarship search services. This should be no surprise since both entities are associated with NASFAA, either directly or indirectly. Entities connected to NASFAA are responsible for the biggest student loan fraud in U.S. history. In fact, the N.Y. Attorney General singled-out NASFAA and its controversial President, Dallas Martin, for creating and allowing a culture of fraud to exist and for its double standard or non-existent standards when it comes to student loan fraud.
The growth of Scholarships.Com has been fueled by members of NASFAA, and its association with N.S.P.A. who in turn recommend Scholarships.Com to its students, and administrators.
Lottery-Style Scholarships Offered by Scholarships.Com LLC
In 1996, Mark Kantrowitz, the reputed co-founder of FastWeb, and its editorial writer, once remarked that certain fee-based scholarships were nothing more than lotteries. Those same scholarships employed a Select Committee, consultants, and required students to write detailed letters of recommendations, essays, and to perform traditonal requirements to be accurately judged as worthy of a merit-based award. Lottery-syle scholarships marketed by FastWeb actually deceive the student into thinking he/she has performed some meritorious work while in reality there is little thought in selecting the winners. Student contestants do as little as merely filling out their name, phone number, and address to enter into a lottery-stlye scholarship contest.
At the same time, of course, FastWeb attacks fee-based scholarships which many consider to be more genuine.
Scholarships.Com relies upon a steady supply of the same scholarships that Kantrowitz formerly denounced, but know relies upon as constant draw to such scholarship search engines as Scholarships.Com.
What Scholarships.Com has avoided, however, is the recipe of serving as a duel scholarship search service and a media critic like FastWeb.
FaceBook Censorship by Scholarships.Com
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