$1,500 Massage Student Scholarship

At MBLExGuide we strongly believe in education and helping new massage therapists succeed. We know that completing a professional massage therapy training program can be challenging and require sacrifices.

As strong advocates for healthcare and wellness education, we are proud to give back to the massage and bodywork community and assist aspiring massage therapists on their journey.

2019 Semiannual MBLExGuide Scholarship

This scholarship is available to any massage student currently enrolled in an approved entry-level massage therapy training school or program in the US (see eligibility requirements below). One winner will be selected and awarded the $1,500 scholarship. All eligible applicants who submit an essay or video that meets the entry guidelines will receive a free 2-month membership to MBLExGuide.

Applications must be received by February 15, 2019

Application Process Will End In:


How to Apply

Review the eligibility criteria to ensure that you are eligible to participate with this massage therapy scholarship program. Choose one essay or video topic from the list below. Create the essay or video following the submission guidelines detailed further down on this page.

Complete the scholarship application form and upload your entry in the correct format as instructed on the application page. 

*Remember: This is a merit-based scholarship rather than a need-based grant. The winner will be selected based on the quality and creativity of his or her entry. As you will see from the available essay and video topics, this scholarship is focused on creating content that will be both interesting and useful to others. See further down this page for a list of evaluation criteria. 

Written Essay

Massage students who choose to complete a written essay may select from one of the following essay topics (be sure to read the essay guidelines).

  1. Describe the most clinically interesting client that you have worked with so far. Create a case study that includes details about why this treatment was interesting, any challenges you faced, and what you learned in the process.
  2. Share your story. This could include writing about why you chose to become a massage therapist, and the most interesting things that you have learned in massage therapy school so far. You could also discuss any advice that you would give future students who are about to begin a massage training program.
  3. Write an in-depth article on one specific topic that is covered on the Massage & Bodywork Licensing Exam (MBLEx). Here are a few examples:
  • An article on the massage client assessment process.
  • Treatment guidelines for a client with a specific pathology.
  • A detailed massage student tutorial on sensory nerves, synovial joints, or fascia (for example).
  • A discussion of business practices related to massage therapy.

Video Entry

Massage therapy students who are skilled at giving presentations and creating videos may create a video entry for this scholarship. Applicants may choose from one of the following video topics (be sure to read the video guidelines). 

  1. Select a specific topic that you have studied in your massage education program and create a video of you teaching this subject (you do not have to give the presentation to an audience, just create a video presentation). Make sure to choose a topic included on the MBLEx. For example, you could create a demonstration and explanation of how to perform standing posture analysis, or how to assess ROM at different joints of the body, or demonstrate correct application and body mechanics for specific massage techniques, or appropriate draping techniques for each position. 
  2. Create a video of yourself talking about what excites you most about a career in massage therapy.


In order to be eligible to apply for this scholarship, massage therapy students must meet all of the following criteria: 

  1. Students must be currently enrolled in an approved entry-level massage education program in the US. The massage program must meet all their state licensing requirements that enable graduates to apply for a state massage therapy license after completion of the program. This includes meeting the minimum number of hours and any state curriculum requirements necessary for licensing.
  2. The student must be in good standing with the school and passing all classes. 
  3. Proof of current enrollment must accompany your scholarship entry.
  4. Applicants must complete one essay or video following all entry guidelines. 
  5. Previous winners of the MBLExGuide Scholarship are disqualified from applying again.
  6. One entry per person. 

Frequently Asks Questions

Q: How do I verify that I am a current student at an approved school?

A: There are 2 ways to verify your current student status and therefore eligibility for this scholarship program:

  1. Send an official school transcript with your entry. It must be dated within the past 30 days and must include an expected graduation date.   Or:
  2. Send the contact information for your massage program director or administrator so that your current enrollment can be verified.

Q: I will graduate before the scholarship submission deadline. Am I still eligible to enter?

A: Recent graduates of approved massage therapy programs are eligible to participate as long as they have completed their program no more than 60 days prior to the date they submit their entry. 

Q: What formats should my essay or video be saved and uploaded in?

A: Written essays can be uploaded on the application form as a MS Word document. Video entries need to be emailed to scholarship@mblexguide.com using Google Drive or Google One, in order to handle the larger file size.

Q: When will the scholarship winners be announced?

A: The winning entry will be announced approximately 30 days after the scholarship entry deadline. 

Q: When and how will the scholarship be awarded?

A: The winner will receive a single scholarship payment in the form of a check within 30 days of announcing the winner. This check will be mailed directly to the winning student. The school’s financial aid department or administrator for the winning participant will also be notified when the funds have been issued. 

Q: Can I submit multiple entries for this scholarship?

A: No. Only one essay or one video will be accepted per student.

Q: Can I create a video entry with a classmate as a team effort?

A: The assignments are designed to be completed by an individual. However you can receive help from classmates, friends or family to produce a video entry. In fact, many video topics may require the assistance of a volunteer, such as in the example of demonstrating assessment or treatment techniques. There can only be one student name on the application form though. And if this entry wins, the scholarship will be awarded to the person who is named on the application. 

For Schools:

To inquire about getting your school approved for the Massage Therapy Student Scholarship, or for assistance promoting this scholarship to your students and potential future students, please fill out the contact form below and we will contact you. 

All schools must be in the US and accredited or approved by an appropriate regulatory body to provide initial massage education that meets their state massage therapy or bodywork license requirements. 

Essay Guidelines

  1. Written essays must be between 1,000 and 2,000 words
  2. Only essay entries on the topic choices as described above will be accepted.
  3. Only original essays written by the scholarship applicant will be accepted. References should be properly cited. Any plagiarized entries will be disqualified. 
  4. Do not use any real client names. Instead, use a pseudonym to protect client confidentiality.

Written Essay Evaluation Criteria

Essays will be evaluated and scored based on the following questions:

  1. Was the topic chosen from the available list of topics?
  2. Were all writing guidelines followed?
  3. Is the essay interesting and enjoyable to read all the way to the end?
  4. Is it useful? Would another massage therapy student benefit from reading it?
  5. Did the essay go beyond the basic and superficial level?
  6. Was the essay proofread to correct any spelling or grammatical errors?
  7. If applicable for the topic, are there credible references included? Are these references cited correctly?

Tips on Writing a Better Essay

Investing the time and effort into writing an awesome scholarship essay will improve the overall quality and chance of winning dramatically. Here are a few tips on how to create a better essay. 

  1. Don’t wait until right before the deadline to start working on your essay. Start as far in advance as possible. 
  2. Spend a few hours just brainstorming ideas for your essay topic. Choose the main essay topic that resonates with you the most. Then take some time to reflect on your unique experiences that will help your essay to be original and interesting.
  3. In order to make the essay more readable, keep the paragraphs fairly short, and include some subheadings. When structuring your essay, think blog post style rather than dry textbook format.
  4. Find ways to make your essay interesting. This could mean including elements of storytelling into your essay if that makes sense for your topic. People love reading about other people’s first hand experience.
  5. Imagine that you are writing this essay for a specific friend who is going to read every word. Write in a way that connects with your reader. Make it personal and engaging.
  6. Don’t try to write it all in one day. Coming back to work on an essay after getting your mind off it for a while will usually result in some fresh insights that make for a better final result.
  7. Edit your work. Cut out the fluff. Clarify any confusing sections or awkward wording. 
  8. Proofread the final draft. Be consistent with font type, size and spacing. Use spellcheck. 
  9. It also helps to print out the final draft on paper when proofreading. Reading your essay out loud will help you to notice errors that you may have previously overlooked. 
  10. Have someone else read it too. It’s easy to overlook our own errors after re-reading your own writing. Having a teacher or someone else proofread your work will help to catch errors you miss, or give you other ideas on how to improve your essay. 

Video Guidelines

  1. Only video entries on the listed topic choices will be accepted.
  2. Videos should be about 5 to 10 minutes.
  3. Do not use any real client names. Use a pseudonym to protect client confidentiality.
  4. No videos made while driving will be accepted.

Video Evaluation Criteria

Videos will be evaluated and scored based on the following questions:

  1. Was the topic chosen from the available list of topics?
  2. Were all video guidelines followed?
  3. What was the level of depth and detail of the presentation? 
  4. Did the presenter demonstrate a thorough understand of the topic, that went well beyond common sense? 
  5. Was the video interesting to watch all the way to the end?
  6. Is the video useful? Would another massage therapy student benefit from watching it?

Tips to Create a Better Video

Creating a video entry can be fun and offer more opportunities to include your creative flair. There are some things that you should consider that will affect the overall quality and appeal to your video. Here are a few tips on how to create a better video entry. 

  1. If you decide that you want to make a video entry for your scholarship application, first decide on which of the main two video topics that would be most interesting and fun for you to create. Then take a few hours to brainstorm 10-20 possible subjects to present on. Finally pick the one that resonates with you the most. Choosing a topic that you are genuinely interested in and excited about will make the project more fun, and will make the end result much better.
  2. Think about the intended audience based on the topic you choose. If you are creating a video where you are teaching a 5-minute lesson on posture analysis, then the audience will likely be other massage students. If your topic is on why you chose to become a massage therapist or what skills make you good at it, then your target audience may be people who are considering massage school, or even potential clients. 
  3.  Start creating your presentation or script by coming up with the main points, then work out the details.
  4. Do not read your script during the presentation. Memorize the talking points so that you can speak more naturally.
  5. Run through your presentation a few times before even turning the camera on. This will save you time by reducing the amount of editing. Pay attention to the flow and pacing of the presentation. 
  6. Set up a good location to record the video. Choose a place that has good lighting and no background noise. Make sure the background is clean and professional. Please do not record your scholarship video in your bedroom. It would be better to use an empty classroom at your massage school. 
  7. Use a tripod when recording the video. You do not need to purchase a camera to create this video. Many smartphones such as the iPhone and Samsung are capable of producing an excellent video quality. As an alternative, you can borrow a camera or recruit a friend with a camera to help you record your video. (If you have no access to any recording equipment then it would make more sense to just write an essay.)
  8. Good audio quality is just as important as the video quality. If you record the video in an empty classroom, try to find a room that does not produce an echo. A lapel mic (lavalier mic) will often produce a much better sound quality than the built-in mic on a phone or camera. Test your camera or phone at the location you intend to record to see what the audio quality is like. If you decide to record your video outside, do so on a day that is not windy. 
  9. Use visual aids if appropriate for your video. This could include using things like the whiteboard, skeleton, or other teaching aids. Whatever makes sense for your presentation. Most massage schools will allow you to use their teaching tools, which is another reason to consider recording your video entry in an empty classroom.
  10. There’s no need to purchase video editing software. There are plenty of free video editing tools online that you can find by a quick Google search. Applicants may also receive technical assistance from friends for the production or editing of the video. You may even be able to record your presentation in one take so that you don’t need to edit it at all.

Additional information

If you have further questions or would like to receive more information about this scholarship opportunity, please contact us using the contact form, or you can send an email to scholarship@mblexguide.com. 

About MBLExGuide

MBLExGuide is committed to helping massage therapy students pass the MBLEx. We focus on providing practice tests and quizzes, useful guides and study strategies.

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Printable Flyer

This PDF flyer is ideal for posting on bulletin boards in classrooms and other student areas. It can also be emailed to students and other massage instructors, and shared on social media.