How To Apply

What should I put on the resume page?

The Resume page of your application is an opportunity. Why? This page is where you distinguish yourself from your GPA. On your resume page you want to provide what sets you apart. When filling out the tables on this page, think "what makes me unique?" Many resume pages are limited. Because of this, enter events and awards that are most important to you. Generally, most recent events are stronger than those that are older. Additionally, events or practices you have been a part of a long time will have more weight than those you only participated in for a brief time. Please use your best judgement when entering resume information.

How do I save my application/recommendation to come back later?

While filing an ISTS online form, you can save your form for later. Every time you change pages of a form, the website saves your information. Even if you are on a one-page form, you can click the tab at the screen to trigger the save function. Additionally, any time you click Submit the form saves. Don't worry! You can still come back and keep editing it until the form deadline. Clicking submit multiple time only saves the new version of the form. This will not duplicate your application.

What do I put on the eligibility page?

ISTS uses the eligibility page to verify applicant eligibility for an award. The employee may either be the applicant or the applicant's parent/guardian or other family member. When you fill out this page, make sure this is information that the relevant employer can check. Contact and address information should refer to business locations rather than personal. Employees should feel free to reach out to their employer to clarify what information is best to use.

What school do I list in the college/university section?

The institution you list in this section should be the institution you plan to use the scholarship/award at if you are awarded. It's okay if you haven't made your final choice. Enter your first choice. If you are awarded, you can update this information later.

What GPA do I list in the College/University section?

If you have indicated you will be a sophomore or higher in the coming fall term, you will be prompted for a college/university GPA. List your most recent cumulative GPA in this section. If you will be moving to a post-graduate program in the fall and do not yet have a GPA for that program, please list your undergraduate GPA in this section.

How do I list my high school if I attended outside the US?

For international high schools, choose an “Armed Forces” option from the High School State dropdown menu. Select the option that best fits the area of the world where your high school is located. You will then be able to select “Not in list” for your city and school name, and enter them manually.

What special courses do I list?

The application provides you a section to indicate the total number of higher level courses you have taken throughout your high school career. This includes any higher level course taken from start of Freshman year to the end of Senior year. Please only list classes that apply. If you have taken a higher-level course style that is not prompted by the application, such as dual enrollment, these cannot be reviewed in this section. Your transcript must show these courses for them to be reviewed. For example: For the AP section, if you have taken AP Bio, European History, and Calculus I, you enter "3" for 3 AP classes taken.

I cannot add any more rows on the Resume page. What do I do?

The resume page can limit the number of items you enter in a certain list. Please make sure that you enter the items you feel are most valuable to the application you are filing. You can click the Edit button next to the row to update its contents.

How do I indicate row order in my table?

There is not an easy way to move table rows at this time. If you need items considered in a specific order, please number the items by placing the number in the first table column for each row so that it appears similar to the following: "2 - Event A" "1 - Event B" "3 - Event C" etc.

Do I need a supplement code or a program key?

It depends if you are an applicant or not. Applicants or students wanting to apply for a scholarship would need a program key, while recommenders, nominators and the like would need a supplement code. Our clients provide program keys for their programs on their website. Applicants generate supplement codes from their applications when applying. Don't have the program key? Send an email to with the name of the scholarship to which you want to apply. Our team will get you the key you need! Please note that a request for a list of keys or all scholarships we administer cannot be provided.

Can you help me find a scholarship or financial aid?

If you are asking about scholarships or financial aid in general, we are not the correct source. While we are unable to provide a list of our clients or the programs we manage, there are thousands of scholarships and educational grants available with a variety of eligibility requirements. We recommend the following free websites to enhance your scholarship search: ISTS is not associated with these sites; however, some of our clients utilize these outlets to promote their programs. Your local community foundation is another great resource for financial aid. Many community foundations administer scholarship programs and memorial funds targeting specific high schools, communities and fields of study.

Why does it say I'm ineligible?

Some applications verify your eligibility immediately after using the Program Key.  You will not be able to proceed to the application unless all responses provided meet the application criteria. If you believe you reached this notification in error, please double check the eligibility criteria for your program and try to apply again.

What is a program key?

A program key is a string of letters (it is not case-sensitive & may contain numbers) that allows access to an ISTS-managed scholarship program on our website.

If you reached our website through your scholarship provider, your key was automatically entered after you created your account.

Don't have the program key? Send an email to Please remember to include the name of the scholarship. Our team will get you the key you need! Please note that a request for a list of keys or all scholarships cannot be provided.

How strict is the deadline?

Applications to scholarship programs must have a closing point so that all applicants can be considered by the selections committee and awards can be determined. Most ISTS programs close at 11:59 PM Pacific time on the posted deadline day. Check your application Welcome page to be certain of your deadline. Once a deadline has passed, your online form will close, resulting in a Read Only status. You will no longer be able to upload supporting documents. Any documents you have already uploaded and that are "Processing" may still update to "Accepted" status within seven (7) business days of the deadline. Any required supplement forms often have their own separate deadline listed on their page of the application. As ISTS is only the administrator for a program established by our clients, we cannot offer deadline extensions.

Can only one student in my family apply?

No. If your household has multiple eligible applicants, each is welcome to apply using his or her own ISTS account which requires a separate account email address. It is impossible to file an application for multiple students under a single account. Additionally, applications are reviewed name-blind.

What does "Read Only" mean?

A form in Read-Only mode has been closed. Typically, this is because the application deadline has passed or the application is otherwise not being offered any more. Once a form is in Read-Only mode, you will not be able to make any changes, but if your application was completed, you will move forward into award selections.

What happens if I'm a semi-finalist?

Some Scholarship programs have two application periods where only a certain number of applicants move on to the next stage. If you are selected as one of those lucky few, you will be notified via email to your account email address some time after the initial application deadline with instructions on how to proceed with the next part of the application. Instead of using a program key, which starts a new application, a semi-finalist application link will appear below your initial application on your ISTS home page.

How do I apply?

Though ISTS manages hundreds of scholarships, many of them have similar processes for application. Here are a few items you may have questions about: