Grants Can Help Pay College Tuition
Applying for Grants
It isn’t easy to find money to pay for college, but it’s also probably not as hard as you think. Grants are free money you won’t need to pay back, and almost everyone is eligible for grant funding. You need to do careful research to know your exact funding eligibility. Grants will range from a couple hundred dollars to a free ride at some institutions, so you won’t want to skip this opportunity.
The first step in applying for most grants, particularly federally-funded awards, is filling out a Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA. That application will come up with your Expected Family Contribution (EFC), which will determine what the government expects you to come up with as far as financing your education. The results of your FAFSA, which you’ll see on the Student Aid Report (SAR) sent to you, will give you a better idea of grants you could receive from the government, the state, and your intended college. Some state-sponsored or college-based grants will require additional applications for their grant funding, as many have academic requirements outside of any need-based qualifications. Pay attention to the details of each award you’re going for so that you don’t submit an incomplete application, as grant funding waits for no one. Funding levels of federal grants in particular change annually, so it is advisable to apply as soon as the applications are available.
The neediest students will be eligible for the most grant funding on the federal level. Federal Pell Grant recipients, for example, take into account both the student’s and that student’s parents’ income levels.
While the vast majority of grants are need-based, some may pay more attention to specific student characteristics over others. The most popular grants are broken down by the federal, state and college level, but many private organizations and local groups have grant funds set up to help you get to college. Grants are very specific, so take care to find grants specific to you and always read the fine print!
The money is out there; let our staff help you find what you need!