Preparing For College

How to Apply to College · Download the 2015 College Planning Guide


  1. Obtain an application- The career room has many applications that are on file. If we do not have an application you are looking for, you can call, email, or speak with a college representative when they visit Lebanon High School.
  2. Prepare application- Complete all sections of the application. Be sure to read all directions carefully before beginning. Remember to see you counselor if there are any questions you are unsure how to answer.
  3. Attach check
  4. Request recommendation letters if needed and have them forwarded to the counseling office. See page 12 of the College Planning Guide for a recommendation form to give teachers when requesting letters.
  5. Give application and all forms to your counselor or the counseling department secretary. The secretary will prepare your transcripts and your counselor will review you application to see that it is complete.
  6. We ask that you hand in applications to the counseling department rather than sending out the application yourself. When your transcript is mailed from the counseling office we also include a self-addressed post card that verifies that the college admissions department has received your materials. This is an insurance procedure that is rarely needed, but very helpful in the event a college reports that they have not received your application, while we have a record that they have.
  7. Wait to receive a letter from the college reporting that they have received all your materials and that your file is complete. If you do not receive this notice two weeks after completing your application file, see your counselor.


  1. Access the college website and print the application or completely read the electronic application.
  2. Review the application and check that you have all necessary information to complete the application electronically.
  3. Report to the counseling office that you have applied to a college electronically. If you do not report that you have applied electronically, your transcripts will not be sent, and your file will remain incomplete.
  4. Follow up your electronic application with a phone call to the admissions department to ensure that your application was received. This should be done a week after submitting your application.

On campus Application

  1. If you have applied to a college while on a campus visit, please notify the counseling department in order for your official transcripts to be sent. If the application fee has not been waived, please bring in your payment, along with the college address, when notifying your counselor.

College-Bound Athletes

The transition from high school to college sports is no small leap. Just like choosing a college, there are many factors that a student athlete must consider when deciding on a sports program and a coach. In addition, there are policies and procedures that a student must follow in order to be eligible for college athletics.
College Websites. Learn More...

Additional Resources

Technical Colleges and Vocational Tech Schools

Take virtual tours of campus throughout the country via web cams, campus maps, college videos, movies, and pictures

College Prep
Helping students prepare for college

Colleges and Universities in the United States

Financial Aid

PHEAA Pennsylvania Higher Education Aid Association
Takes you through a step by step process of financial aid specific to PA residents.

FinAid has a stellar reputation in the educational community as the best Web site of its kind. It's comprehensive, it's informative, it's objective-and it's the first stop on the Web for students looking for ways to finance their education.

Funding Your Education
Funding Your Education is an introductory publication for students not yet enrolled in a postsecondary school. It provides general information about the Department of Education's federal student financial aid programs and how to apply for them.

FAFSA Online
You can complete the Free Federal Financial Aid Application online. Most people think it is easier than the paper form and the results are returned much quicker.

Financial Aid Information
Learn more about the financial aid process. You can also apply online for financial aid.

Federal Application For Student Aid

Expected Family Contribution (EFC) Estimator

National Student Loan Data System
View information about federal loans and grants you have received.

Financial Aid


We are very fortunate at Lebanon High School to have many alumni and community members that have generously donated their time and money in establishing scholarships for the students at Lebanon High School.

Below you will see listed a collection of scholarship titles and descriptions. These scholarships include Lebanon High School, Lebanon County, Pennsylvania, and national scholarships. Generally speaking, the national and state scholarships are displayed throughout the school year but predominately September through December. The Lebanon High School and Lebanon County Scholarships are made available after Thanksgiving of each year. The deadlines for the state and national scholarships are early in the school year while the state and national scholarships deadlines are in March and April.

All scholarships are available at the scholarship display area that is located at the entrance of the counseling department. All students are encouraged to check the scholarship display weekly for new applications. In addition, scholarships are advertised during morning and afternoon announcements and in the "Cedar Guide", the counseling department's monthly newsletter. We have also included a list of scholarship search websites and links concerning scholarship scams to avoid.

Scholarship Search Web Sites

United Negro College Fund

The United Negro College Fund has a database of over four hundred scholarships. Students can search the web site, review application criteria, procedures, deadlines and apply on-line.

Scholarships 4u allows students to search for scholarships using several categories including college majors, athletics, religion, culture heritage, and many more.

Collegeview provides scholarship searches, financial aid information, college and career information.

Recommended by more than 18,000 guidance counselors and financial aid officers, FastWeb is the most trusted college resource on the Web. Last year, one of three college-bound high school seniors used the site, and more than 17 million students have used FastWeb since its launch in 1995.

FastWeb lets students create a personalized profile that can be matched against our expansive databases of colleges and scholarships. As the oldest and most popular free online scholarship matching service, our database has over 800,000 scholarships totaling more than $1 billion. FastWeb also notifies students when new scholarships are added and application deadlines are approaching.

But FastWeb is about more than scholarships. For students searching for a college, FastWeb can match their background with two- and four-year colleges across the country. Within minutes, our comprehensive college database gives students a list of schools matching their preferences and a complete profile of each school. Students can also sign up to be recruited by colleges

Welcome to the College Board's Scholarship Search!

We created this online tool to help you locate scholarships, internships, grants, and loans that match your education level, talents, and background. Complete the brief questionnaire and Scholarship Search will find potential opportunities from our database of more than 2,300 sources of college funding, totaling nearly $3 BILLION in available aid!

Keep in mind that the more personal information you enter, the better the odds that Scholarship Search will be able to match you to financial aid sources. So don't be shy and be sure to complete all the sections of the questionnaire.

NextStudent offers a comprehensive set of tools and resources to make college funding simple, including an interest-rate calculator, information on federal and state programs, a glossary, FAQ, "Top Tips" and more. We at NextStudent strive to offer the best and most comprehensive aids to assist you in exploring the financial aid process.

Scholarship Searching Made Simple
Powered by Pinnacle Peak Solutions' "Scholarships 101."

This valuable tool allows you to enter your (or your student's) personal and academic information into a scholarship search engine that searches our database of more than 9,000 funding sources comprised of more than 700,000 individual awards, and selects those awards matching the student's profile. It provides each funding source's eligibility requirements, due dates, number of awards, award amounts, and contact information.

Some helpful tips for your scholarship searching:

  • Search more than once and come back often - awards change and new ones are added.
  • "What if" your search (for example, a student may have an SAT score of 1100 right now, but "what if" they retested and scored higher).
  • Students should not limit themselves in their academic majors. Select multiple majors to see what's available.
  • Always select "No Academic Major" first search. Some scholarships do not require students to pursue any one specific major. They simply award scholarships based upon the student's desire to attend college - regardless of his or her intended major.

The World's largest and oldest private sector scholarship database. 20 years of Scholarship Research, Constantly updated. is the Internet's premiere free college scholarship search engine & financial aid resource, connecting students and parents with financial aid opportunities. Our search engine matches your profile with our database of college scholarships. Search results include award summary and a custom application request letter.

College scholarships provides links to several scholarship search web sites.

With over 200,000 scholarship awards in our database, you are sure to come up a winner! We know how hard it is to find funding for school, that's why we created AbsolutelyScholarships. We make finding free money for school easy. Plus, we let you search across two of the most comprehensive scholarship databases available.

At AbsolutelyScholarships, you will get twice the data, but only spend half the time. Remember, don't pay a fee for what you can find here free!

A listing of over one hundred minority scholarships.

Scholarship Search Advice
Start Locally!
You are going to have the greatest success finding scholarships by starting with your parents, your employers, and your local organizations. You also increase your odds of actually winning a scholarship by hitting your local organizations first. You may only be going up against a few other local students, versus the entire student population of the country. When you hear "pay-for-search" scholarship search firms boast about "obscure" scholarships, this is what they are talking about. When you hear things like "75% of all private financial aid went unclaimed last year" they are talking about financial aid offered by employers to their employees most of the time.

Employers. Have your parents ask their personnel administrator if their company offers any sort of financial aid, tuition reimbursement, or scholarships, for employee's children. Most major companies do offer this benefit. (Some are listed here on FreSch). If you have a job, ask your own company if they offer this sort of benefit.

Volunteer work. Have you done any volunteer work? Perhaps at your local hospital? Do you help out at the food bank? Are you involved with the Girl Scouts or Boy Scouts? All are excellent sources.

Organizations. What professional or social organizations are you or your parents involved with? 4H, JayCees, Lions Club? Association for Internet Addiction? You name it. If you or your parents are a member of an organization, ask them and see if they offer any kind of scholarships. If you are NOT a member of any organizations, the next thing to check with is organizations that represent what you are planning on studying. Many such organizations offer scholarships to students who are studying what they support, even if you are not a member. For example, the American Medical Record Association offers several scholarships for those planning on making a career in Medical Record Administration, but there is no requirement you be a member. Many organizations that do permit non-members to apply for scholarships, however, do expect you to join the organization after receiving the scholarship.

Unions. Are you or your parents a member of a Union? All the major labor unions offer scholarships for members and their dependent children (AFLCIO, Teamsters, etc.)

Church. Check with your church. Your local parish may or may not have any scholarships for their members, but the Diocese or headquarters may have some available. And if you have been very active in your local church, they may be able to help you in other ways.

Chamber of Commerce. Check with your local Chamber of Commerce. Many offer (usually small, less than $500) grants to students in the community, especially those planning on careers in Business and Public Service. Even if they do not offer any themselves, you can usually get a listing of members, and many of them may offer small scholarships to local students.

High school. This is really obvious, but surprisingly enough, many students don't bother to check with their High School Guidance Counselors, Principles, Teachers, and other administrators. Many high schools have scholarships specifically for their own students.

Take the PSAT! While you are in high school, you will be offered the opportunity to take the PSAT test, usually in your Junior year. I strongly suggest you take this test!! Not only does it help you prepare yourself for the SAT later on, many National Merit Scholarship Programs are determined by the scores you receive on the PSAT test. Some private scholarship programs require you to take the PSAT.

Your College or University's Financial Aid Office. But don't expect them to be all that helpful. Many are staffed with students just like you, on work study programs. Many offer access to computer databases (often for a $5 or $10 fee), have a collection of books with sources, and will have a bulletin board with posted notices of scholarships. But you are in competition with every other student in the school for those same funds. While the Financial Aid Office is a MUST to check for assistance, do not expect them to hold your hand. The burden is on YOU to find the funding.

On the other hand, once your financial aid office has offered you a "financial aid package," don't hesitate to question it. Think they overestimated your family's income? Think they are offering you too little? Ask, and negotiate with them. Remember... MOST financial aid packages are going to be VERY heavy on loans. Do what you can to get them to offer you more "free" money and less loans!

The Chairperson or Head of the Department at your school. This is an often overlooked area to find scholarship information. Once you are in school, check with the head of the department you are studying in. They may have information available on scholarships and grants, possibly even internship opportunities, that the financial aid office does not have.

The Library. Another really obvious source! Ask the librarian to help you research sources of scholarships. The librarian at my local library gave me probably the very best suggestion I ever had when I was looking for scholarships. She gave me a Directory of Associations! This book which I cannot remember the name of, listed every kind of non-profit and professional organization in America and suggested I write to all the organizations that had something to do with my field of study (which is computer programming). I mailed out requests for information to 37 organizations, received 32 responses and eventually, received a $250 grant from one of them. (I did not know it at the time, but this was the start of FreSch!)

The Web. But be prepared to spend A LOT of time! Hit the major search engines, and run searches on scholarships, financial aid, organizations, colleges, universities, grants, anything you can think of. On the keyword of "scholarships" expect to find one in thirty hits are for scholarship search services that charge you a fee.

Newspapers. Read your local newspaper every day-especially during the summer, watch for announcements of local students receiving scholarships. Find out where you can apply for the next year for that same scholarship. Watch also for actual announcements of local firms and organizations offering scholarships. If your local newspaper has a "library" (most do) ask the librarian at the paper to help you find scholarship information posted in the newspaper in past issues. Do not expect to find much information from your local newspaper, but it is another source.

Yellow pages. Find out if any professional or social organizations have a chapter in your city. Call them and find out if they offer any scholarships, both nationally and locally. You may even want to check with major corporations in your area.

I hope this helps you find scholarships you can apply for. Let me know if you have any other ideas and I'll add them here!

by Laura DiFiore, with thanks to Jason Evans, Rebecca Stubbs, Lisa F., Pamela Tate, Debbie, and Christa

Beware of Scholarship Scams
There are six signs a company is running a scholarship scam, according to the Federal Trade Commission:

  1. "The scholarship is guaranteed or your money back."
    Companies cannot guarantee scholarships, and refunds often have conditions that make the money impossible to get back.
  2. "You can't get this information anywhere else."
    Most university scholarship offices have a list of available scholarships.
  3. "May I have your credit card number to hold the scholarship?"
    Sometimes companies charge credit card or bank numbers without permission of the account holder.
  4. "We do all the work."
    Scholarship applications contain information to which only the person applying should have access. Students must apply for their own scholarships.
  5. "The scholarship will cost money."
    Students should not pay companies that claim to hold a scholarship. Free money doesn't cost anything.
  6. "You've been selected by a national foundation."
    This almost always is a gimmick. Advertisements that claim students have won contests are gimmicks, too, especially when the student never entered a contest.
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