:Mindset / Success and goal setting

Carlynn Greene is bridging the gap to higher education

Carlynn Greene scholarship guru Carlynn Greene scholarship guru

The following is a guest feature from Carlynn Greene, Teachable creator, scholarship guru, and graduate-school student. Her courses help individuals find, apply for, and win scholarship money. She’s got four courses in her Scholarship Guru school for students to choose from and spoke with Teachable about what it means to be a Black entrepreneur, creator, and scholarship guru.

A personal origin story

I am currently a public relations student in grad school, and a content creator and influencer primarily on TikTok and YouTube. I specialize in giving students scholarship advice because I personally have won 30 scholarships for my own education. I’m debt-free for both degrees in undergraduate and grad school. And I’m just doing my part to teach others how to emulate my results and graduate debt-free too.

Making the grade

So what inspired me to create my online course? Well, first, let me break down what my online course looks like. It’s titled “The Scholarship Algorithm” and is broken up into four parts. The first part talks about how to find scholarships you’re more likely to win. The second part is optimization and organization, so you can speed up the process and be more organized. The third part talks about writing your scholarship essay, which is the most important part of your application. And then the fourth part is actually filling out the overall application. How to use psychology to win, aceing scholarship interviews and recommendation letters, all these different elements that go into a winning application. So that’s what the course has, and [it] also has some other bonuses and handouts and printouts that you can use to really help with your process.

Bridging the gap

As far as creating this course, I really wanted to create something that had a step-by-step guide and process on how to win scholarships. Because if you went to high school that was like mine, they didn’t really teach me how to go about scholarships. They taught me about college admissions and the FAFSA, but never about scholarships.

So I really wanted to create something specifically for this. And the students who I’ve been able to mentor over the years, who have won millions of dollars in scholarships, many of which also have full rides, they also went to high schools that did not teach them about scholarships. So I’m just trying to bridge the gap there.

The inspiration

When I was a senior in high school, I won a scholarship from a hospital that I had been volunteering at for years. And my mom saw that I won. And she had a very emotional reaction to it, because she had this preconceived notion that she was going to have to take out some parent loans. And I would take out some student loans just to pay for my education. But all these scholarship checks kept coming in the mail, back to back to back. And so upon seeing her emotional reaction to that, I was like, “You know what, let me just go ahead and create a platform to teach others how to emulate my results so that they too, can be debt free.”

Becoming a Black entrepreneur and creator, and The Scholarship Guru

Now, as far as what motivated me to become a creator, I already have a background in media arts and broadcast journalism, that’s what I studied during undergrad. And right now I’m studying public relations. So I always wanted to create content. I always wanted to be in front of the camera, editing videos, doing all that. So integrating that with what I do to help people with financial aid is right up my alley.

As far as what it means to me to be a Black entrepreneur, it’s so important. [There are] socio-economic disparities that exist between the Black community, the white community and other communities, where Black people simply do not make as much money. So I’m trying to bridge the gap.

Black women now hold the highest percentage of higher degrees in education [as a demographic]. However, at the same time, we also owe the most student loan debt.

So I’m really trying to lessen that by helping people with scholarships. Not only for the Black community but also other communities. I have helped students across the globe from various backgrounds. The very first student I helped win a scholarship was actually an international student from the DR Congo in Africa. [I’ve helped] some other international students like students from India, and another one from Singapore, Germany, and various other demographics across the U.S. So what I do is all encompassing and can help just about anyone no matter where you’re from—and even no matter your study concentration. I studied, media arts or Liberal Arts category. But students who are down the STEM path or accounting, law, medicine, they have also been able to win using my tips.

“Teachable chose me”

Teachable actually chose me. They reached out to me via email saying, “Hey, would you like to put your online course on our platform?” and my online course was already on another channel. However, there wasn’t as much communication going on [with that other platform.] And because of that I wasn’t really that motivated to really promote it. I actually felt kind of self-conscious to promote it because I didn’t like the idea of charging people all this money just to enroll in my online course. But Teachable really helped with building my confidence and has been there every step of the way.

Shout out to Monique again, she is amazing. She really helped with this process, giving personalized sessions and tips and all that. My favorite feature on Teachable I would say [is] how they partner with Discover. I’ve had two webinars with Discover which were very successful. I had several people enroll in my online courses after those free webinars. So that was a great experience.

Looking to create your own course?

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Author: Carlynn Greene, Carlynn is a broadcast journalism student studying at the University of North Texas in Denton (UNT). She aspires to one day be a show and/or news producer, create her own talk show, and eventually own her own media company. When she’s not in school, she’s helping other students find scholarships with her online course, The Scholarship Guru.

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