How to write a Motivational Letter for a Bursary Application

A motivational letter is an important part of a bursary application. A bursary is a financial award in form of a grant for students who can’t afford their tuition fees or those that have an excellent academic record.

Bursaries are awarded to successful students based on different criteria like financial background, academic performance and other attributes. It can be a full bursary or partial bursary.

Writing a compelling motivation letter is very important because there are other applicants that are applying for the same bursary. Be honest in your application and give a good first impression.

In the motivation letter, state why you are in need of financial support, why they should choose you over others and how you will contribute to your community after your study. State your goals and accomplishments as well as the description of your credential.

Make sure your motivation letter is well-formatted and free of errors. The bursary board will use this letter as part of the criteria to select eligible candidates based on their requirements.

bursary motivational letter

Top tips for writing a Bursary Motivational Letter

  • Be genuine when describing your financial need
  • Be sure to include both the institution and course you are in
  • Describe the goals you have (educational and future career prospects)
  • Make the letter personal and not generic
  • Ensure the recipient that you will meet all the requirements of the programme
  • Use language that is professional and polite
  • Be sure to include your necessary academic results and documents
  • Enclose both the application form and its supporting documents
  • Keep a formal tone with all your content
  • Be precise


How to write a Bursary Motivational Letter

When starting your letter, make sure you put the address of the bursary provider at the top left corner, including the date you are applying, your name and contact details.

Start your letter with any of the following:

  • Dear (Name of the person reading the application, if known)
  • Dear Sir/ Madam
  • To whom it may concern

In the first paragraph, state your reason for applying for the bursary program in 2 to 3 sentences using a thesis similar to the following: “I am applying for the [Bursary Name]to help fund my study in [course of study] at [institution], for the [course year study] academic year”.

Elaborate more on your personal achievements, education, current studies, future plan and how you want to impact your community in the second paragraph. Make sure the second paragraph is not more than 3 sentences.

The third paragraph is where you will talk about your career plans and explain how your education will have an impact on you. Talk about your personal goals and explain how the bursary will aid you. You can briefly include the reason you need the bursary.

The third paragraph is the paragraph that is a little longer of all.

The final paragraph should be short and it is where you will state your gratitude for the opportunity given to you.

Finally, sign your letter, “Sincerely, (your name).”

Additional tips for writing a Bursary Motivational Letter

  • Be brief but ensure that you cover as much as you can.
  • Don’t use superfluous words (really, just, etc.) Modifiers, which effectively convey your thoughts, should be used in their place.
  • Make your letter unique by mentioning plans to work for particular organizations or to address any issues you may have had.
  • Ensure the committee that the funding will contribute to a bigger and better plan.
  • Make sure your writing is professional but not robotic or stiff; write as though you were speaking to the professor or employer in person.
  • Consider why you need the money and the opportunity; if you genuinely believe in yourself, it will be much simpler to express that in your letter.


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