How to get yourself a YNPN conference or workshop scholarship

main.jpgThe scholarships that YNPN offers are some of the best benefits we provide our members, and we want to make sure that our members are able to take advantage of these opportunities. Have you ever applied to a YNPN-TC scholarship for a Minnesota Council on Nonprofits (MCN) conference or a MAP for Nonprofits workshop? Have you been frustrated because you’ve applied multiple times and haven’t been awarded one? This blog is where you’ll get all the info you need (straight from the scholarship administrator) to understand our scholarship process and hopefully improve your chances of getting a scholarship the next time around. Here’s what you need to know:

The scholarship process is competitive.

In partnership with MCN, YNPN-TC offers TEN discounted scholarships to the following conferences each year:

  • Technology and Communications Conference
  • Nonprofit Essentials Conference
  • Leadership Conference
  • Annual Conference

In addition, MAP for Nonprofits offers a very popular workshop titled High Impact Leadership through Emotional Intelligence three times a year that has drawn the attention of nonprofit professionals from all sectors. It sells out every time but we’re lucky enough to be able to offer TWO free spots for each workshop.

With only 10 spots for each conference, we get at least 30 applications each round, giving you a 1 in 3 chance of landing one of those 75 percent discounted scholarships. We also get about the same number of applicants for the workshop scholarships. So, it’s even more difficult to secure yourself one of those seats without paying the $90 fee that MAP charges.

Given the competitive nature, applications are vetted. (It’s not a lottery like some people might think.)

Each round, we can have anywhere between 3-8 vetters who volunteer to read and score each application. Vetters can be board members or anyone on my scholarship vetting team. You can be a scholarship vetter too! Just fill out our Volunteer Interest Form

Applications are scored on a scale of 1-10. The applicants with the highest average scores once all scores have been entered are the recipients.

Here’s how to get higher scores

The number one thing we’re looking for in our applications is THOUGHTFULNESS. We want applicants who have actually taken the time to reflect on how these opportunities will be beneficial to their professional development. 

Some things for you to consider: Have you taken a look at the schedule of events? Are there workshops that excite you? Is there something in particular that you want to learn about? Is there a specific topic that will push you outside of your comfort zone? Or is there one that will expand your existing knowledge or expertise? Are there presenters that you want to meet? Or are you excited about the keynote speaker?

These are all questions we hope that you’ll be able to answer in your application. We also want to know why these things are important to you. How will these this opportunity make you a better professional?

Other ways to improve your chances

  • You can’t win if you’re not in the game. Make sure become a member (it’s free) so that you’re on our email list and get Member Benefit Alerts about our scholarships.
  • Visit the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits and MAP for Nonprofits websites so you know when conferences/workshops are coming up. That way, you can plan on applying to the conference that most interests you. P.S. You should check out their websites anyway! They provide great resources and relevant training. Did you know that, as a YNPN-TC member, you can sign up for an individual, discounted membership to MCN if your organization isn’t already a member? It is just $15! If you’re interested in that, email us at [email protected], and we’ll get you the special sign up form.
  • Like us on Facebook. Follow us on Twitter. Join our LinkedIn group. We use social media to get the word out about scholarship opportunities too!

Any final questions?

Contact me at [email protected]

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