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  • Human Development Report 2016: Human Development for Everyone

    Stockholm, 21 March 2017 – Despite outpacing global human development growth rates over 15 years, sub-Saharan Africa remains burdened by the world's most uneven distribution of development gains, with women, girls, people living in rural areas, migrants, refugees and those in conflict-affected areas systemically left behind. Gender inequality remains a serious challenge to human development in the region.

    These are among the findings of the Human Development Report 2016, entitled "Human Development for Everyone‟, released today by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

    The report finds that although average human development improved significantly across all regions from 1990 to 2015, one in three people worldwide continue to live in low levels of human development as measured by the Human Development Index (HDI). The HDI is a summary measure of average achievement in key dimensions of human development: having a long and healthy life, being knowledgeable, and enjoying a decent standard of living.

    Despite improvements in sub-Saharan Africa over the past two decades, almost 60 percent of people still experience deprivations in these three areas. Around a third of children under the age of five are malnourished and affected by stunting. Over 35 percent of adults are illiterate. Some 70 percent of working adults earn less than $3.10 per day.

    “The world has come a long way in rolling back extreme poverty, in improving access to education, health and sanitation, and in expanding possibilities for women and girls,” said UNDP Administrator Helen Clark, speaking at the launch of the Report in Sweden‟s capital Stockholm today, alongside Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven and the report‟s lead author and Director of UNDP‟s Human Development Report Office, Selim Jahan.

     

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  • Ethiopia: African governments learn to block the internet

    Internet blocked in Ethiopia

    For authorities in a country that has seen just one president since 1986, the critic who goes by Tom Voltaire Okwalinga is an example of the threat some African governments see in the exploding reach of the internet — bringing growing attempts to throttle it.

    Since 2015 about a dozen African countries have had wide-ranging internet shutdowns, often during elections. Rights defenders say the blackouts are conducive to carrying out serious abuses.

    The internet outages also can inflict serious damage on the economies of African countries that desperately seek growth, according to research by the Brookings Institution think tank.

    Uganda learned that lesson. In February 2016, amid a tight election, authorities shut down access to Facebook and Twitter as anger swelled over delayed delivery of ballots in opposition strongholds. During the blackout, the police arrested the president’s main challenger. Over $2 million was shed from the country’s GDP in just five days of internet restrictions, the Brookings Institution said.

    The shutdowns also have “potential devastating consequences” for education and health, says the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, an organization founded by a mobile phone magnate that monitors trends in African governance.

    As more countries gain the technology to impose restrictions, rights observers see an urgent threat to democracy.

    “The worrying trend of disrupting access to social media around polling time puts the possibility of a free and fair electoral process into serious jeopardy,” said Maria Burnett, associate director for the Africa division of Human Rights Watch.

    In the past year, internet shutdowns during elections have been reported in Gabon, Republic of Congo and Gambia, where a long-time dictator cut off the internet on the eve of a vote he ultimately lost.

    In Uganda, where the opposition finds it hard to organize because of a law barring public meetings without the police chief’s authorization, the mysterious blogger Okwalinga is widely seen as satisfying a hunger for information that the state would like to keep secret. His allegations, however, often are not backed up with evidence.

    It is widely believed that Uganda’s government has spent millions trying to unmask Okwalinga. In January an Irish court rejected the efforts of a Ugandan lawyer who wanted Facebook to reveal the blogger’s identity over defamation charges.

    “What Tom Voltaire Okwalinga publishes is believable because the government has created a fertile ground to not be trusted,” said Robert Shaka, a Ugandan information technology specialist. “In fact, if we had an open society where transparency is a key pillar of our democracy there would be no reason for people like Tom Voltaire Okwalinga.”

    In 2015, Shaka himself was arrested on suspicion of being the blogger and charged with violating the privacy of President Yoweri Museveni, allegations he denied. While Shaka was in custody, the mystery blogger kept publishing.

    “Who is the editor of Facebook? Who is the editor of all these things they post on social media? Sometimes you have no option, if something is at stake, to interfere with access,” said Col. Shaban Bantariza, a spokesman for the Ugandan government.

    Although the government doesn’t like to impose restrictions, the internet can be shut down if the objective is to preserve national security, Bantariza said.

    In some English-speaking territories of Cameroon where the locals have accused the central government of marginalizing their language in favor of French, the government has shut down the internet for several weeks.

    Internet advocacy group Access Now earlier estimated that the restrictions in Cameroon have cost local businesses more than $1.39 million.

    “Internet shutdowns — with governments ordering the suspension or throttling of entire networks, often during elections or public protests — must never be allowed to become the new normal,” Access Now said in an open letter to internet companies in Cameroon, saying the shutdowns cut off access to vital information, e-financing and emergency services.

    In Zimbabwe, social media is a relatively new concern for the government following online protests launched by a pastor last year. Aside from blocking social media at times, the government has increased internet fees by nearly 300 percent.

    In Ethiopia, where a government-controlled company has a monopoly over all telecom services, internet restrictions have been deeply felt for months. The country remains under a state of emergency imposed in October after sometimes deadly anti-government protests. Restrictions have ranged from shutting down the internet completely to blocking access to social media sites.

    Just 30 days of internet restrictions between July 2015 and July 2016 cost Ethiopia’s economy over $8 million, according to figures by the Brookings Institution. The country has been one of Africa’s fastest-growing economies.

    Ethiopia’s government insists social media is being used to incite violence, but many citizens are suspicious of that stance.

    “What we are experiencing here in Ethiopia is a situation in which the flow of information on social media dismantled the traditional propaganda machine of the government and people begin creating their own media platforms. This is what the government dislikes,” said Seyoum Teshome, a lecturer at Ethiopia’s Ambo University who was jailed for 82 days last year on charges of inciting violence related to his Facebook posts.

    “The government doesn’t want the spread of information that’s out of its control, and this bears all the hallmarks of dictatorship,” Seyoum said.

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  • Ethiopia: Government failures to blame for dozens of deaths at rubbish dump - Amnesty

    The death of more than 60 people in a landslide at a vast rubbish dump on the outskirts of the Ethiopian capital over the weekend is a clear case of dereliction of duty by the Ethiopian authorities, said Amnesty International today.

    Dozens are still missing since the landslide at the 36-hectare Repi municipal dumpsite in Addis Ababa on 11 March, and many families have been left homeless after their makeshift houses were buried under tonnes of waste.

    “The Ethiopian government is fully responsible for this totally preventable disaster. It was aware that the landfill was full to capacity but continued to use it regardless. It also let hundreds of people continue to live in close proximity to it,” said Muthoni Wanyeki, Amnesty International's Regional Director for East Africa, the Horn and the Great Lakes. 

    The Ethiopian government is fully responsible for this totally preventable disaster. It was aware that the landfill was full to capacity but continued to use it regardless

    Muthoni Wanyeki, Amnesty International’s Regional Director for East Africa, the Horn and the Great Lakes

    “These people, including many women and children, had no option but to live and work in such a hazardous environment because of the government’s failure to protect their right to adequate housing, and decent work.”

    Now in its fifth decade, Repi – also known as Koshe, which means “dust” - is the oldest landfill in Addis Ababa, a city of more than 3.6 million people. More than 150 people were at the site when the landslide happened. Many of them had been scavenging items for sale while others lived there permanently, in unsafe makeshift housing.

    “The government must do everything in its power to account for all those who are missing, provide survivors with adequate alternative housing, and safe and healthy working conditions,” said Muthoni Wanyeki.

    “It must also ensure that a full-fledged inquiry is held to determine the specific causes of the landslide, and hold the individual officials responsible to account.”

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  • Ethiopian journalist Anania Sorri released from prison

    (CPJ) New York, March 13, 2017–Authorities responsible for overseeing implementation of Ethiopian’s state of emergency today released Ethiopian commentator Anania Sorri.

    Anania told CPJ he was released unconditionally today, four months after his November 17, 2016, detention without charge under a state of emergency the government declared the month prior. He told CPJ that he planned to continue writing. Anania posts critical commentary on a public Facebook page followed by some 11,000 people.

    “Today’s release of Anania Sorri is welcome news,” CPJ Africa Coordinator Angela Quintal said. “We urge Ethiopian authorities to free all other journalists and bloggers still imprisoned simply for doing their jobs.”

    After Seyoum Teshome and Befekadu Hailu, Anania was the third Ethiopian journalist to be released since December 1, 2016, when CPJ last conducted its annual census of journalists jailed around the world.

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  • Inside Addis Ababa's Koshe rubbish tip: where hundreds literally scratch a living - The Guardian

    My first sight of Koshe, Addis Ababa’s giant 50-year-old landfill site, is from the highway. It runs alongside it, and away from the road as far as the eye can see: a giant, murky, grey-brown raised area of partially decomposed rubbish, with occasional bright specks of colour. As my hopes rise from having found it, my heart sinks as I try to take it in.

    The interpreter I have engaged for this mission through my contacts, a junior academic at Addis Ababa University, is not keen on going ahead. Leaving the taxi and crossing the highway by the bridge, I try to absorb the panoramic view afforded by this elevated viewpoint over the highway.

    This 36-hectare site – shrinking as the city attempts to regulate it – is patrolled from the air by large vultures, diving into the rubbish. Motley crews of wild dogs gambolling and snatching at the soft ground patrol it at ground level. Smoke rises in several places, adding a layer of haze to the murky colour scheme. Yellow bulldozers nose the heap and shift and level it; municipal rubbish trucks and flatbed trucks with skips arrive from all over the city and discharge their contents.

    Between the dogs, the birds and the machines there was something else, something I could only slowly take in: 200 to 300 people, dressed in the same murky hues as the rubbish dump, backs bent, hooks in hand, were working on its surface.

    Feeling queasy I walk towards the end of the bridge. In order to reach the steps and the rubbish, I must walk past three young men who are using the vantage point of the bridge for surveillance and information gathering. In an unspoken negotiation I don’t understand, they take in my camera, and my shoulder bag containing digital recorders and money, and let me pass. This silent confrontation, between the comforts of my world and the difficulties of theirs, only further develops my anxieties.

    Descending the steps, I walk to the edge of the dump where I am met by the site supervisor and his aides. They want a stamped authorisation of my visit from the relevant municipal department. What looks like a vast area, open to the surrounding countryside, is as closed to me as a Korean petrochemical plant. I turn back and head into the city to secure the relevant authorisation.

    Trash talks

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    The city dump is an inventory, of a kind, of its material life. Addis in rubbish is not London or Moscow in rubbish. Rubbish provides a crude and deeply flawed account of cities and their social, political and economic contexts. Rubbish displays social, material and income differences.

    Indeed, some people’s rubbish provides others with the fabric of their everyday life. Maybe this is the best way to think about Koshe – as a redistribution centre which indexes the differences between people’s life-journeys, refracted through material cultures at their point of disposal.

    Not just the content, the handling of rubbish displays cities too. How cities deal with their rubbish reveals them. It is a major challenge for municipal authorities in Addis, who are only able to deal with two-thirds of the rubbish, distributed in collection points all over a city that is fast expanding – leaving the rest to private contractors and the age-old informal dumping practices on streets and in rivers. Thus rubbish provides a visual commentary on urban citizens’ behaviour as well as the efficacy of municipal governance.

    Scratching a living

    Getting myself into the rubbish is a story of municipal offices cluttered with old computers, fans, desks, officials and permissions. It is about writing a letter in Amharic explaining what I want to do and why. It is about waiting until the electricity comes back on and we can photocopy my university ID. There are phone calls to the landfill site and arrangements are made. Everybody is charming. I’ve come from London to take a look at the rubbish. Why? I am following a piece of plastic around the world. Really! First world problems!

    I go back to Koshe – which means ‘dirty’ in Amharic – and hand over the necessary papers to the site supervisor, in his makeshift office at the roadside of the dump. Minutes later, I am scrambling after him, out on to the rubbish heap, navigating around the dogs which I fear, and the areas where it is soft underfoot and I sink up to my knees. My stomach is churning with fear. My interpreter and I are using Olbas oil to mask the smell.

    We stop north of the main road, where it is firmer underfoot, in the area where the activity is concentrated. This is the place to which the municipal authorities and the site supervisor direct the trucks to dump their loads. A single white towelling slipper, with the Hilton Hotel logo on it, stands out in the grey-brown mush.

    A group of 'scratchers' from the Koshe dump.

    A group of ‘scratchers’ from the Koshe dump. Photograph: Caroline Knowles

    This area is a hive of activity that peaks to a frenetic pace with the arrival of new loads, and then falls away, leaving a more continuous stream of slower activity, and a legacy of dust and smoke that gets in everyone’s eyes.

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    As rubbish trucks turn off the main road on to the edge of the site, a group of five or six young men jump on the back and ride to the dumping area with it. This puts them at an advantage for grabbing the best items as the truck discharges its load onto the tip, but not without risk. The mechanism that crushes the rubbish occasionally catches a young man in its deadly and disfiguring grasp.

    As the young men jump off with the rubbish and begin picking items that catch the eye, the line of men and women, that has formed along both sides of the truck, spring into action, grabbing items and stashing them in woven plastic sacks. These are held tightly in one hand; in the other a homemade metal hook with a white handle, used to grab and dig into the grey-brown surface of the heap, is held. This hooked instrument earns the pickers – sometimes referred to as scavengers – the name ‘scratchers’.

    The moment of discharge unleashes a tense scramble for the most valuable items; a competition in which masculine physical strength prevails, and young, agile, women put up a good fight. Scratchers then go on searching, or rest until the next truck arrives, or regroup around the bulldozers unearthing new bounty. The social and material relationships of the dump demand skilled navigation.

    From the vantage point of the dump, the scratchers rework the geographies and hierarchies of the city. The tensest flurries of competitive scratching accompany the arrival of trucks from the most affluent areas, with the best rubbish. The Bole area, with its upscale detached housing, mall, hotels and the international airport, sends the most prized items, the cast-offs of affluence, including waste airline food in large green plastic bags, to the dump. Scratchers collect the food discarded by airline passengers for themselves, leaving a large pool of bright green plastic bags, which attracts a herd of goats.

    Rubbish from the central part of the city, from international hotels, the African Union HQ buildings and the embassies, is similarly sought after, and monopolised by the fittest young men. Scratchers recognise the sources of rubbish from the colours and types of trucks used by the different sub-cities and private contractors. And they recognise the drivers and their helpers, who regularly work the same areas. The discarded traces of the city’s more affluent lives, especially foreign residents and visitors, most animate the dump. Rubbish logs social inequalities in cities and provides a minimal redress.

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    The dump has temporal rhythms. Scratchers know what time the trucks arrive from different parts of the city. From 8am through the morning is the busiest time. The dump is geared to municipal collection and transportation. By 5pm things are dying down as the trucks stop for the night, and the scratching continues with fewer scratchers at a slower pace. Bulldozers moving stuff around and digging into the surface of the dump also provide new scratching opportunities, and a lively crowd gathers around them. Scratching is a 24-hour activity, with people arriving after their working day is over. Some scratchers work throughout the night wearing torches attached to headbands. Scratching it seems is a (stigmatised) way of life as much as a way of getting by.

    Within the urban geographies of affluence, materials establish another set of hierarchies. Scratchers search for anything they can use for themselves, or resell. Materials have a value in recycling, providing an afterlife for discarded objects. Metals, including nails, are the most valuable booty, and men dominate this, although a few women have ventured into metals too. Wood has value as firewood. Tourist clothes and shoes can be cashed in at the Mercato salvage section. Some scratchers just come to eat.

    But plastics are the most ubiquitous material on the dump, and among plastics, water bottles the scratchers refer to as ‘highland’, after a popular brand of bottled water, dominate, and in this niche women prevail.

    Scratchers specialise in different materials: some searching for metal, while others target paper or plastic bottles. Photograph: Caroline Knowles

    Scratchers specialise in particular materials. Specialisms result from advice from experienced scratchers, from serendipity, or from knowledge of shifting recycling prices, gathered at the edge of the dump. Here materials are counted or weighed, and turned into cash, with the agents from factories using recycled materials.

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    A pile of white dusty material arrives from the leather factory. The dogs take up residence. They are ejected by a group of men, who have decided that this is a good place to sit, while waiting for the next truck.

    In their working clothes – they scrub up outside of work and look completely different – scratchers are dressed similarly and grimily, making them the same colour as the rubbish heap. Men wear trousers, shirts and tee shirts, baseball caps and sometimes hoodies to protect their heads from the sun. Women wear scarves and baseball caps, skirts, trousers, t-shirts and blouses. Some carry infants on their backs. All wear sturdy shoes, often trainers.

    The scratching population numbers 200–300, but expands after holidays with casual pickers. More women than men do it by a ratio of about three to one, and, while people in their 20s and 30s predominate, ages range from teens to seniors. Most live in the villages around the dump in simple, rusted, corrugated iron dwellings, sometimes with satellite dishes. Rubbish has provided a source of local employment and subsistence for generations over its 50-year history, and is firmly embedded in local calculations of subsistence and accumulation.

    About 50 scratchers live in cardboard and plastic makeshift shelters off the edge of the dump, safely away from passing vehicles and next to a pen full of pigs. The rubbish sustains rural arrivals, for whom it works as a gateway to the city, as well as long-term residents, whose rural routes have settled into the past, making them locals.

    The ministry and its field agents say that the rubbish dump is a source of dangerous working practices by people who, like the rubbish they sort, are consigned to live beyond the limits of civic life. A litany of accidents, deaths and disfigurements as scratchers take risks to recover value, are recited by the site supervisor:

    Food comes from some place and a guy is going into the truck and he is injured and they take him to hospital but he died. Also someone else lost their legs in an encounter with a bulldozer. Two months ago a man who jumped in the truck dropped off when it broke. In recent accidents, two were women. The bulldozer operator has a lot to do to push the garbage. If they see something they want when the bulldozer moves the garbage, they don’t think about their life.

    In living beyond formal systems of governance, this city suburb of rubbish is more like the Somali borderlands, patrolled by contrabandists and gunrunners, than a part of the city. There is a police station nearby, and policing and the justice system are slowly taking back the dump from a parallel system of authority, a mafia of five ‘big men’. The big men control access by scratchers in exchange for fees, making themselves wealthy in the process. But recently, some of them have been imprisoned, shifting the balance of power towards the authorities.

    Once far away, a place outside of the city, outside systems of formal employment, taxation, law and municipal governance, Koshe is now on the edge of a city that has grown to meet it in what are fast becoming its upscale southern suburbs. A new development of large detached houses nearby anticipates this future – new housing for those in a position to benefit from rising prosperity, and a consequent shrinkage and rehabilitation of the landfill site. These changes have far-reaching consequences for the scratchers of Koshe.

    This is an extract from the new book Flip-Flop: A Journey Through Globalisation’s Backroads by Caroline Knowles (Pluto Press, £18.99). It can be purchased here

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  • The athlete who loses consciousness when she runs

    Among the pack of runners one moment, collapsed on the ground and frothing at the mouth the next. For a short time she is lost to the convulsion and then she scrambles to her feet and sprints away. Katie Cooke will not let epilepsy get in the way of a race.

    The 19-year-old student from Cherrywood, South Dublin, has what her specialist doctor calls the "Arsenal of epilepsy" and contends with up to 15 convulsions a day which render her unconscious.

    "Your whole body is shaking, you can feel your muscles jumping, it feels like everything has been sucked out of you, you can't breathe," she says.

    "Every single day you lose control."

    Despite having to cope with multiple seizures when she runs, Cooke has won prestigious events including her age group in the Dublin City Marathon and she runs 5km in under 17 minutes. She can often be seen pounding the streets with her running partner, Dr Colin Doherty, who also happens to be her consultant neurologist. Read more:

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  • Ethiopia | 46 killed, dozens missing in Ethiopia garbage dump landslide

    A mountain of trash gave way in a massive garbage dump on the outskirts of Ethiopia's capital, killing at least 46 people and leaving several dozen missing, residents said, as officials vowed to relocate those who called the landfill home.

    Addis Ababa city spokeswoman Dagmawit Moges said most of the 46 dead were women and children, and more bodies were expected to be found in the coming hours.

    It was not immediately clear what caused Saturday night's collapse at the Koshe Garbage Landfill, which buried several makeshift homes and concrete buildings. The landfill has been a dumping ground for the capital's garbage for more than 50 years.

    About 150 people were there when the landslide occurred, resident Assefa Teklemahimanot told The Associated Press. Addis Ababa Mayor Diriba Kuma said 37 people had been rescued and were receiving medical treatment. Dagmawit said two had serious injuries.

    Many people at the landfill had been scavenging items to make a living, but others live there because renting homes, largely built of mud and sticks, is relatively inexpensive.

    An AP reporter saw four bodies taken away by ambulances after being pulled from the debris. Elderly women cried, and others stood anxiously waiting for news of loved ones. Six excavators dug through the ruins.

    "My house was right inside there," said a shaken Tebeju Asres, pointing to where one of the excavators was digging in deep, black mud. "My mother and three of my sisters were there when the landslide happened. Now I don't know the fate of all of them."

    APTOPIX Ethiopia Deadly Landslide

    The resumption of garbage dumping at the site in recent months likely caused the landslide, Assefa said. The dumping had stopped in recent years, but it resumed after farmers in a nearby restive region where a new garbage landfill complex was being built blocked dumping in their area.

    Smaller collapses have occurred at Koshe — or "dirty" in the local Amharic language — in the past two years but only two or three people were killed, Assefa said.

    "In the long run, we will conduct a resettling program to relocate people who live in and around the landfill," the Addis Ababa mayor said.

    Around 500 waste-pickers are believed to work at the landfill every day, sorting through the debris from the capital's estimated 4 million residents. City officials say close to 300,000 tons of waste are collected each year from the capital, most of it dumped at the landfill.

    Since 2010, city officials have warned that the landfill was running out of room and was being closed in by nearby housing and schools.

    City officials in recent years have been trying to turn the garbage into a source of clean energy with a $120 million investment. The Koshe waste-to-energy facility, which has been under construction since 2013, is expected to generate 50 megawatts of electricity upon completion.

    Ethiopia, which has one of Africa's fastest growing economies, is under a state of emergency imposed in October after several months of sometimes deadly protests demanding wider political freedoms.

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  • The 10 best sites to look for scholarships

    With a new semester upon us and our bank accounts drained from holiday shopping and much-needed nights out, scholarships of any amounts can certainly come in handy.

    Here are the 10 best sites for searching for scholarship cash — along with one scholarship from each to get you started!

    1. Zinch.com

    Zinch is a college students one-stop-shop for scholarships that are creative, easy and fun to apply for and win. To apply for scholarships via Zinch, you’ll have to create a username and profile that will help the site find scholarships that are specifically relevant to you! One of Zinch’s most popular awards is the Weekly Three Sentence Essay Scholarship, where applicants must generate a 280-character essay (that’s only two tweets!) while vying for $1,000 of cold, hard cash.

    Visit Zinch.com for more scholarships.

    2. Fastweb.com

    Fastweb is another terrific, free resource where you’ll find thousands of scholarships at your fingertips. Not only does Fastweb offer a massive database of monetary awards, but it also features helpful career planning services and learning tools for its registered users! One of Fastweb’s most recently featured scholarships is the “Natural Disaster” PSA Video Contest, a $3,000 scholarship offered to creative undergrads with an eye for cinematography and knowledge of the consequences of natural disasters.

    Visit Fastweb.com for more scholarships.

    3. ScholarshipPoints.com

    You know how you always seem to receive a new, complimentary gift after so many purchases at that favorite beauty counter of yours? ScholarshipPoints works the same way! Well, kind of. The site’s users rack up points through a rewards system, making them eligible for different scholarships according to how many points they have earned. Members can earn points through fun, day-to-day activities like reading blogs, taking quizzes and playing online games. ScholarshipPoints offers a rolling, monthly $1,000 for its members and a quarterly $10,000 scholarship . Join today and start earning your points!

    Visit ScholarshipPoints.com for more scholarships.

    4. Cappex.com

    You may remember being advised by your high school guidance counselor to make a Cappex account to help narrow down your college search, but don’t delete that online profile just yet! The site is still helpful during our undergrad years, offering ample scholarship opportunities and financial advice. Once we’re undergrads, Cappex graciously bumps us up to “College Pro” status, where we’ll be eligible to apply for a $2,500 College Pro exclusive scholarship! Don’t wait, and check out all of the fine print of the Cappex College Pro scholarship today.

    Visit Cappex for more scholarships.

    5. Scholarships.com

    A no-brainer of a URL, are we right? Scholarships.com is a wonderful resource for college students who aspire to kill two birds with one stone—the site finds both scholarships and colleges that are perfect for you! If you’re looking to transfer to a school that is dying to recruit you and offer you scholarships, this is the site to visit. The site allows you to pinpoint specific scholarships by your major, year in school and location, increasing your chances for receiving awards and saving you tons of time. For meticulous proofreaders and aspiring editors, you may want to check out the Proof-Reading.com Scholarship Program featured on Scholarships.com! Although an essay is required, the $1,500 you could earn is definitely worth the time spent behind the keyboard.

    Visit Scholarships.com for more scholarships.

    6. College Board's Scholarship Search
    Offering 2,300 sources of financial aid and over $3 billion in scholarship awards, the College Board's scholarship search resource could put you on the right track to financing your education—and fast! To start your search, be sure to fill out the detailed questionnaire on the site to narrow down specific awards that satisfy your financial needs. While you're browsing the College Board's scholarship selection, see if you're eligible to apply for the Coca-Cola Community Colleges Academic Scholarship! If you're at a small, local school this $1,000-$2,000 award could be right up your alley.

    Visit the College Board for more scholarships.

    7. NextStudent.com
    Formerly known as Scholarships101.com, NextStudent is an online leader in helping undergrads pay for college tuition, books and more. Like most of the aforementioned sites, NextStudent requires its students to set up a user account complete with details like school year, location and major to pinpoint scholarships for you! One of the scholarship matches that NextStudent found for me? The Stephen J. Brady STOP Hunger Scholarship, a $5,000 award available to any undergrad who has performed community service in the last 12 months, namely in the areas of food service.

    Visit NextStudent.com for more scholarships.

    8. StudentScholarships.org
    StudentScholarships.org is much like NextStudent.com, serving as a powerful search engine for finding relevant scholarships for undergrads. This site is also helpful because it features career profiles for many fields of study, giving its users a good idea of expected salary and job opportunities after graduation. Check out the Dr. Aura-Lee A. and James Hobbs Pittenger American History Scholarship, a $8,000 scholarship (with $2,000 paid annually through a four year college career) if you're a collegiette™ interested in American History and Government!

    Visit StudentScholarships.org for more scholarships.

    9. ScholarshipExperts.com
    This site boasts that it is "fast, easy and free" which is certainly true! ScholarshipExperts.com is yet another great resource for scouring the Internet for great monetary awards during your undergrad years. Check out the "Courage To Grow" scholarship on the site, which awards eligible undergrads one $500 scholarship every month.

    Visit ScholarshipExperts.com for more scholarships.

    10. SuperCollege.com
    Last, but not least, we have SuperCollege.com! This site is an online database of scholarships, grants and fun contests for undergrads to enter and (hopefully) win. On top of offering great scholarships, SuperCollege also offers no-nonsense guides for collegiettes™ like "How to Write a Winning Scholarship Essay" and "More Easy Ways to Save Money in College." For creative collegiettes™ who are savvy with videography and have a way with flashcards, be sure to check out SuperCollege's Flashcard Scholarship worth $500!

    Read more »
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