Scholarship opportunities can be the golden ticket to an education for many students. They can also serve as extremely valuable leverage for schools to secure great applicants and hit enrollment, yield, and diversity targets.
However, as schools and scholarship committees are aware, the current system is far from perfect.
To begin, grades alone are rarely enough to justify deserving recipients. Selection committees need to see something more, such as a personal essay or even an interview, which can complicate the process and delay the decision-making process causing schools to lose prospective students to competitors.
For private scholarships outside of the program’s regular scholarship budget, hundreds of thousands of dollars in unclaimed scholarship money goes to waste each year because applicants either don’t know about the award or they aren’t willing to put in the tedious work required for the application.
At Kira, we believe there’s a better way.
Using Kira, scholarship and admissions teams can collaborate to flag high-potential applicants quickly and easily in the platform. Kira’s timed video and timed written assessments also serve as a more authentic indicator of a student’s potential and the assessments are easier and more fun for applicants to complete.
You will get a more authentic view of each applicant
For the scholarship committee, you can get a glance into students’ passions and hear their authentic voice come through in just a few minutes rather than through a 2,000-word polished essay.
Essays aren’t necessarily the best way to evaluate every applicant for every field of study. While strong communication skills are vital important across the board, strong essay-writing ability is not. With Kira, everyone has the same opportunity to succeed within the same timeframe. Applicants don’t need to be talented creative writers to articulate their intent in a 90-second or two-minute video response.
Evaluate soft skills, passion, and voice by seeing and hearing from a student to get a more authentic view that’s not limited by the constraints of an essay.
You can accelerate the process to secure high-potential applicants
Reduce the communication required between the admissions and scholarship offices by flagging students who have applied to your program earlier in the process. As soon as you review a Kira response that indicates a strong applicant, you can invite colleagues on the scholarship and financial aid to see the candidate and start putting a package together sooner.
Stop missing out on exceptional applicants by waiting until it’s too late to deliver scholarships to your top students.
You can still evaluate written responses, but now in more ways
For any scholarships that need to assess written communication aptitude, there are two different options within Kira. Using timed written assessments give applicants on ‘on the spot’ prompt to complete an essay question in a given timeframe (say 10 minutes). For teams who want to see polished and prepared essays, their applicants can upload attachments, such as prepared essays, to go alongside their timed video responses and the materials can all be reviewed in one place.
You will make your scholarship application easier and more enticing
Evaluating scholarship recipients with Kira may help increase your application completions. Because of the single take nature of Kira responses, it takes less time to complete a series of video responses than to prepare an essay, review it, over analyze it, and get teachers, parents, or consultants to give feedback. While a student may spend three weeks perfecting an essay, they can complete a few timed questions in around 30 minutes.
As scholarship seekers are used to seeing the ‘1000-word essay’ demand next to substantial prizes, you can stand out from the other awards by requiring video submissions.
Your applicants are likely to prefer the new experience. They do on the admissions side: We surveyed college applicants from over 100 programs who used Kira’s timed video assessments to apply for admission and over two-thirds of these applicants preferred completing a video response to writing an essay.
You will make it easier for your team to collaborate and save time
Your entire decision-making committee can use Kira for on-demand reviewing with built-in rubrics, whenever and wherever it’s convenient. Kira provides an overall average score if multiple members of your team review the same applicant, so you can see who the top performers were across reviewers without bias or favoritism. On an individual level, reviewing timed video responses will take under 10 minutes per applicants, which presents significant time savings in comparison to a 1,000 or 2,000-word essay. This can save so much time and even eliminate unnecessary committee meetings.