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Academic Success & Priorities

In the United States, school is supposed to be the number one priority for everyone until the age of 18. We sit in the classroom for at least 7 hours a day in elementary, middle, and high school to learn material that will supplement our growth. We have a choice to make once we complete our secondary education and cross the stage.

What do you want to do with your life, and who do you want to be? Will you go to college for a degree, enter the workforce immediately, or take some time to explore the world? 

If you choose to go to college and would like to graduate debt-free, contact us so we can help you. We will teach you how to earn scholarships to graduate debt-free, but that means school has to be a priority.

How do you make school a priority? You have to identify what’s most important to you and what else is consuming your time.

Download a copy of Dough 4 Degrees’ Priorities & Goals and print the PDF. Fill in the document by using the example on the second page. Once you fill in your copy, hang it up so you will see it every day. Allow it to remind you of what comes first and why you do what you do.

Why should you do this? Everyone has more than one thing to do, but knowing why you’re doing it will help you keep the end in mind. It is important to know what you’re working toward and how you want it to impact you.

Email us a picture of your priorities & goals or paste one in the comments. We would love to hear how this material helps you.


Connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and YouTube for more.

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Our September 2018 Events

Update as of September 20, 2018: Radford University’s Career & Talent Development Center has postponed their 2018 JumpStart Career Development Conference “in an effort to positively impact a broader number of students.” We hope to collaborate with them once the new date is announced.

Visit Radford’s site if you would like to learn more.


We have been on the move recently and we’re not stopping anytime soon. In the next two weeks, we will present our Scholarship Quick Start three different times. Learn more about our presentations and submit a booking request form to bring us to your area!

Thursday, September 20, 2018: Innovate Living-Learning Community, Blacksburg, VA

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Saturday, September 22, 2018: Radford University, Radford, VA

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Saturday, September 29, 2018: Prince George’s County Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., Springdale, MD

Sept. 29, 2018 - MD

Connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and YouTube for more.

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Free money anyone?

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is a major key to earn scholarships. It is a federal document offered by the U.S. Department of Education to help students apply for financial aid. When you submit your FAFSA you unlock a multitude of doors to free money offered by the government, institutions, private and public organizations.

This week we shared different approaches to preparation and encouraged you to prepare to submit your FAFSA now! The 2019-20 FAFSA opens on October 1, 2018.

Our #MindsetMonday this week was “I will earn free money.” Do you enjoy free money? We believe everyone does and millions of dollars of it are available to students who choose to pursue them. Start by submitting your FAFSA!

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Many scholarships require proof of submission of the FAFSA because it will help confirm your financial need. However, don’t let that discourage you if you don’t think you have a need. There are scholarships available that aren’t need based (i.e., merit-based scholarships).

Take these strategic steps as you prepare to submit your FAFSA.

  1. Visit the FAFSA website. Browse the many resources they have to help students succeed before, during, and after college.
  2. Create Your FSA ID. It’s the best way to access your personal information when the FAFSA opens. Keep your login in a safe place.
  3. Read about the FAFSA process. This infographic contains information about preparing for, filling out, and processing the FAFSA.

Dough 4 Degrees is invested in your success and financial freedom. We want you to attend the college of your dreams and graduate debt-free.

Take a look at our best-selling product, our Scholarship Success Program, where we teach students how to earn scholarships to avoid the student debt epidemic.

Connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and YouTube for more.

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Cost of Attendance

This week’s social media series was about cost of attendance.

It is a fact that the cost of college is on the rise. Today, students are taking out loans quicker than they consider applying for scholarships. Take a look at our Monday post to learn how much debt the average student has after graduation.

At Dough 4 Degrees, we believe you can go to the college of your dreams and graduate debt-free. How? By utilizing the tools and resources we provide to earn thousands of dollars in scholarships. Our best-selling product, our Scholarship Success Program, will help you earn the scholarships you need to succeed during your college career.

Throughout this week, we also shared an equation to help students use their cost of attendance and free financial aid to determine how much money they will need to graduate debt-free. Check out our video for an example you can use now.

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There are plenty of resources you can use to find the money you need to avoid the student debt epidemic. We encourage you to start with the scholarship databases below. Scholarship databases are home to millions of dollars in scholarships that are matched to you automatically after you create your profile.


Stay tuned for next week’s social media series where we will teach you how to prepare to submit your FAFSA! Connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and YouTube for more.

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Imagine Your Scholarship Success

Have you seen our posts this week about how you can imagine you scholarship success? We’ve released content on Facebook, TwitterInstagram, LinkedIn, and YouTube.


In 2018, we are releasing a weekly social media series to help you with your scholarship success. Each week has its own focus and is broken down strategically each day. Here’s the break down:

#ScholarshipSunday: Sets the tone for the week by sharing the mindset, tip, and strategy.

#MindsetMonday: Identifies our mindset to accomplish this week’s goal.

#TrainTuesday: Specifies the “muscle” we need to train this week to achieve our goal.

#WisdomWednesday: Provides insight into the week’s focus.

#TipThursday: Explains the tip for the week.

#FocusFriday: A reminder of this week’s focus.

#StrategySaturday: Relays practical advice to help you finish the week strong.

All of the information we provided for imagining your scholarship success is on Facebook, TwitterInstagram, and LinkedIn. Imagining your scholarship success is the first step to a debt-free degree.

Take a look at our #MindsetMonday video below.

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Don’t Agonize, Organize

Put your mind at ease by organizing your scholarships.

The scholarship process can be complex and overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. You can make smart decisions on a daily basis to reduce your stress and increase your success.

This blog post addresses the “Organize” portion of our weekly scholarship schedule. You can download a copy at http://tinyurl.com/zo92se8.

scholarship_weekly_scheduleSo, how do you organize your scholarships? It’s simple. Use the tools around you. Read the bullets below for more information:

  • Use your phone: Add all upcoming scholarship deadlines to your calendar with reminders. You usually have your phone with you at all times anyway. This will help you complete all supplemental materials before the deadline.
  • Create a spreadsheet: Use Google Sheets or Excel to see all of your scholarships. Make sure you include pertinent information such as, deadlines and links to the application.

We hope this week’s post helps you in your scholarship journey. Return next week for details about the “Research” phase.


Want more scholarship success content? Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Enroll in blog post notifications by submitting your email address under the “Follow Blog” sidebar of our site.

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Plan to Succeed

Last week we shared our weekly scholarship schedule with you to help you structure the time you devote to scholarships. View a downloadable copy of our weekly scholarship schedule at: http://tinyurl.com/zo92se8.

scholarship_weekly_scheduleFor the next six weeks we will teach you how to use each “Task” to your advantage. The focus of this week’s blog is “Plan.”

The plan stage is all about selecting the resources that will help you earn the funds you need.

Resources are everywhere. Your local guidance counselor is a resource. Your parents/guardians are a resource. Your network is a resource. And of course, the internet is a resource.

Click the links below for a few national resources:

The plan stage can be completed during a 10-minute break. Your objective is to select the resources you will use in the remaining tasks. Remember, you’ve got this!

See you next week for details about the “Organize” task!


Want more scholarship success content? Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Enroll in blog post notifications by submitting your email address under the “Follow Blog” sidebar of our site.

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#DebtFree17

Welcome to your year of excellence! 2017 will be the year you build another ladder to success.

Dough 4 Degrees will continue to serve as a source of education and inspiration for you through blogs, videos, and social media posts. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram @dough4degrees to see our content on your timeline. Enroll in blog post notifications by submitting your email address under the “Follow Blog” sidebar on our site.

Our goal at Dough 4 Degrees has always been to teach students how to earn scholarships to enable them to graduate debt-free; which is why we have developed #DebtFree2017. The content we share using this hashtag throughout the year will advance you to a new level, making the process easier and more enjoyable for everyone!

Let’s succeed together in 2017!

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#CampusChat on 11.03.16

Join one of the “longest-running higher-education chats” on Twitter Thursday, November 3, 2016 from 9-10pm EST.

Our founder, Danielle Jeffers, will be sharing tips on how to “Own the Scholarship Application Process.” You can join the conversation hosted by Smart College Visit by using #CampusChat.

Smart College Visit (SCV) is an asset to all students and families who are transitioning from high school to college. SCV is known for the wealth of knowledge it shares via blog posts, social media, and interviews. Click this link to learn more.


See you tomorrow via Twitter! Follow Danielle @djeffers_ and SCV @collegevisit! Don’t forget to use to #CampusChat to join the conversation!

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You’re in Charge of Your College Experience

ATTENTION: ALL COLLEGE STUDENTS!

Your college career can be the launching pad for the rest of your life. It can be the best four years of your life or the beginning of unforgettable memories. The choice is yours.

We all have dreams, passions, and magic within us. Fulfillment surfaces when we explore them without seeking approval from other people. Do what you want to do! Explore and follow your dreams! You have four years to change your life and improve the world, make the most of it.

You will stumble, fall, and even get off track, but don’t let it stop you. Learn from it, shake it off, and keep moving forward. If you choose to stand still, you’ll never know what lies ahead.

Balancing school, extracurricular and co-curricular activities, a social life, and maintaining relationships is not easy. It requires practice and improvement, but it can be done successfully.

College is one of the best times to find yourself and establish confidence that allows you to limit the influence of other people’s plans for your life. I’m not telling you to completely dismiss everyone’s opinion, but don’t let them override your dreams.

You are the in charge of your college career. You control what consumes your time and energy. You dictate how every waking second, minute, and hour is spent. Make the best of it!

Read the bullets below for a few principles I’ve adopted during my undergraduate college career:

  • Immerse Yourself in Your Interests: Join that club or organization that you enjoy following from a distance and yearn to become a member of.
  • A Greater Network Means a Greater Net Worth: Life is about who you know and who knows you. Relationships are essential.
    • I adopted Justin Graves’ personal goal of meeting one new person every day. (He’s a Hokie!)
  • Give It All You’ve Got: Make a decision and give it your all. No regrets.
  • Operate in respect: Respect everything and everybody.

Take control of your college career and inspire others to do the same. Thanks for reading!

– Danielle


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