#128 Winning College Scholarships: Expert Tips with Dave The Scholarship Coach

In this episode, Lisa and Dave discuss:

  • How Dave’s son graduated from college debt-free by earning over $50,000 in scholarships
  • The three main categories of scholarships.
  • How to uncover private scholarships. 
  • A step-by-step guide for your teen to become a better scholarship applicant. 
  • Why you should begin looking for scholarships as soon as your student is entering high school (or no later than the beginning of their junior year). 


Key Takeaways: 

  • Merit scholarships are offered by colleges and universities based on your student’s talents and achievements. 
  • Need-based scholarships are entirely based on a family’s income and assets. Many families are surprised that they don’t qualify for these scholarships. 
  • Private and outside scholarships are offered by third parties, often private companies or philanthropic organizations. Many students will find more success with these scholarships than with others as they do not have the same requirements as a merit or need-based scholarship. 
  • Students can begin earning scholarships well before their senior year. Your student can also apply for scholarships throughout college. 


You should not rely on merit aid if you want your student to get through school debt-free or with as little student loan debt as possible. Now, you want to take advantage of it when it’s there, but you definitely want to look at the other two categories, the need-based if you qualify (most people don’t), so that leaves the private scholarships. And that’s where a lot of people are just missing the boat.” – Dave Peterson


About Dave Peterson: 

Dave Peterson, aka Dave The Scholarship Coach, is a father who was scared to death at the thought of paying for his son’s college degree, and even more worried about his son being burdened with student loans. So, he educated himself on the world of scholarships and coached his son to win nearly $100,000 in scholarships. Now his son is a debt-free college graduate!  

Because of his son’s success with scholarships, people started asking him for advice on how their children could win scholarships. These questions prompted Dave to start NoDebtCollege and his flagship program, Scholarship GPS, where he coaches families to their own debt-free college degrees. 

Dave also has a podcast and blog called “Your Daily Scholarship,” where he features scholarship opportunities and interviews with experts from the college-prep landscape.


Episode References:


Get Lisa’s Free on-demand video: How-to guide for your teen to choose the right major, college, & career…(without painting themselves into a corner, missing crucial deadlines, or risking choices you both regret). 



Connect with Dave:

Twitter: twitter.com/DaveTheScholar1 

Instagram: instagram.com/davethescholar1 

Facebook: facebook.com/profile.php?id=100080949485476 

Newsletter: nodebtcollege.substack.com 

Podcast: nodebtcollege.podbean.com 

Website: www.ScholarshipGPS.com 


Connect with Lisa:

Website: flourishcoachingco.com

YouTube: youtube.com/@flourishcoachingco

Instagram: instagram.com/flourishcoachingco

LinkedIn: linkedin.com/company/flourish-coaching-co

Access the episode transcript here