Scholarship Timeline

Learn the steps of the 2021 Community Foundation of Macon County scholarship process.

The CFMC scholarship application opens January 1, 2021 and closes at 11:59pm on March 1, 2021.

Before the application

Step 1: Complete the FAFSA

October 1

Visit https://studentaid.gov/articles/things-you-need-for-fafsa/ to read about how to prepare for completing the FAFSA. After preparing, complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid at https://studentaid.gov/h/apply-for-aid/fafsa . Note: You will need the Student Aid Report (SAR) (approximately 7 to 8 pages) in a PDF form to upload to your scholarship application within the financial information section. The earlier you apply the more grant money you will possibly receive. FAFSA opened October 1, 2020.

Step 2: Start thinking about letters of recommendation

November 15
You will need two letters of recommendation to apply for CFMC scholarships.

  • One from a teacher at your high school
  • One from a community member (clergy, employer, high school counselor, etc.)

Ask early to allow time for your references to complete the letters of recommendation. You will be asked to upload these letters in a PDF form to the application. Letters from relatives are not accepted.

Step 3: Learn of other scholarship opportunities

November 20
Visit your high school counselor to ask for a list of scholarship opportunities available for students within your school.

Step 4: Make a list of extracurricular and community service activities

December 1
Make a list of your involvement with sports, clubs, community service activities, and work. Make sure to note when you were involved, if you held a leadership position, how many hours you spent at each, and if you have accumulated more than the required amount of community service hours for graduation.

Step 5: Collect your academic information

December 7
You will need the following information to complete the Academic Information section of the application:

  • Request from your counselor your academic transcripts through seventh semester for high school seniors (includes first semester senior year). College students need college transcripts only.
  • SAT or ACT or both scores uploaded
  • Cumulative GPA
  • Your major/field of study you plan to pursue
  • Name and approximate cost of attendance for the college/university you plan to attend

Step 6: Begin drafting essay responses

December 14
Each scholarship application requires an essay to be written. Each scholarship requires an answer to the following prompt:

  • Please write a one-page response answering the following questions: What are your educational goals and how do you hope to achieve them while attending college? What are your long-term or career goals/plans and what steps will you take to achieve them? What personal characteristics or experiences qualify you to receive a scholarship?

Specific scholarships may require an essay in addition to those listed above. Scholarships which require further essays may be found on the essay page of the application.

During the application process

Step 1: Create an account on the scholarship application portal

January 1
Visit maconcountygives.org and click “Scholarship Application Portal”. On the log on page, click create new account and fill in your personal information to create your account.

Step 2: Complete the eligibility form

January 1
The eligibility form will automatically match you with every scholarship for which you qualify. You must fill out an application for each scholarship, however you can copy your application answers into each separate scholarship application.

Step 3: Complete the personal and academic information sections of the application

January 1

Enter your personal information (email, county of residence, contact information) and academic information (collected in During the Application Process - Step 2). Your email should not be your high school email account because we may need to contact you after graduation.

Step 4: Complete the extracurricular activities and financial information sections of the application

January 10

Enter your list of extracurricular and community service activities (collected in Before Completing the Application - Step 4). Upload your FAFSA Student Aid Report (SAR) into the application and enter your Expected Family Contribution (EFC Number) which is located at the top of your SAR.

Step 5: Enter essay responses

January 20
Paste your essay responses into the application. Be sure to check if a scholarship requires another essay in addition to the prompts listed above.

Step 6: Upload letters of recommendation

February 15
Upload one letter of recommendation from a teacher at your high school and one from a community member.

Step 7: Copy application into scholarships you qualify for

February 20
Copy your application responses for each scholarship you matched with.

Step 8: Submit your applications

February 28
After reviewing all items on your applications for completion and accuracy (did you double check your essay prompts?), complete the electronic signature, enter the date, and submit.

Prior to the deadline, the scholarship coordinator will review your submitted application and contact you if there are concerns. Also, if you have questions regarding your application, please contact Kathy Carter, Scholarship Coordinator, at 217-220-1363.

Step 9: Application deadline

March 1
You must submit your application(s) by 11:59pm on March 1, 2021. No late applications will be accepted.

After the application deadline

Step 1: Scholarship committees and reviewers go to work

March 2
Nearly 100 volunteer committee members will read and score the applications during the review process. The committees will submit their reviews of each application by mid-March.

Step 2: High school guidance counselors notified of scholarship recipients

End of March-April

High school counselors will be notified regarding the scholarship recipients. Scholarships will be presented at the high school award ceremonies in May. College students receiving scholarships will be notified by letter in June. In addition, high school students not receiving a scholarship will be notified in June.

Step 3: Scholarship awards reception - first Sunday of June

CFMC will invite donors and scholarship recipients to gather for a scholarship reception. During this event information regarding how to receive scholarship monies is discussed.

Step 4: Checks are mailed to colleges/universities

July-August
CFMC will mail a check directly to your college/university provided all prerequisite steps are completed by the recipient.