College grants generally don’t need to be repaid and this is why they are sought after by college students. This type of financial aid really takes the pressure off – it negates the need to come up with money for student loan payments in the future.
Some college grants are big enough to cover the entire cost of tuition and related expenses, while others will pay part of the cost of tuition and related expenses. If you’re interested in accessing a USA college grant, you’ll benefit from getting the hard facts about this type of “gift aid”.
We are here to tell you what you need to know…
How Are Grants Allocated?
These grants are typically given to students who are in need. In other words, you’ll need to demonstrate a financial situation which leaves you without enough money for tuition and related expenses. In this important respect, grants differ from scholarships.
Scholarships are generally awarded based on academic merit and/or extracurricular achievements (such as sports prowess and/or contributions to the community). This can be a very good thing, as students who don’t have the highest grade point averages may still qualify for college grants.
Usually, grants of this type come via the federal government. However, they may also be given out by state governments and colleges/career schools. As well, private or non-profit organizations may offer grants to applicants who qualify. Before applying for a grant, do some research in order to establish whether or not you are eligible for specific college grant programs and then apply for the ones that you are eligible for!
It’s really important to fill out grant applications properly and then get them in on time. For this reason, you’ll need to start the process of locating grants and filling out applications ahead of time. This is the best way to boost your chances of getting a college grant.
Some programs do require payback of some or all of a grant, while others require no repayment at all. Grant terms and conditions should be detailed at the websites of organizations or government departments which offer such grants. Be sure you understand your responsibilities before you accept a grant. Read the fine print in order to know what you are getting into.
In general, when a grant needs to be repaid, in part or in full, it’s because a student doesn’t stay in school. Dropping out may mean that you need to repay your college grant, which is fair enough.
Discover Types of Federal College Grants
The United State Dept. of Education provides an array of federal grant options to students who are enrolled in four-year college programs or university programs. Students who attend community college or career school will also have access to grants which make it easier to pay for their post-secondary educations.
The main forms of grants available via this government department include Federal Pell Grants, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants, Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education and Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grants.
Now, let’s look at some details about each college grant type, in order to help you gain a deeper understanding of what these grants are and whether or not you’ll be eligible to apply for one or more grants for college.
This type of grant won’t have to be repaid and it will provide a student with up to $5,775.00 per award year. The amount of money that will be granted will depend on a student’s financial circumstances, whether he or she attends school full-time or part-time, how much tuition costs and how long the student plans to attend. To apply for a Federal Pell Grant, access the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) online.
Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants
This grant is known as FSEOG for short and students apply for it via the FAFSA. Once an application is completed and submitted, a college will decide how much financial help is appropriate. Students who are most in need and who will receive Pell Grants will typically be first in line for Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants.
This program is run via financial aid offices at affiliated schools – it’s all about campus-based financial assistance for students. You’ll need to check with your college or other post-secondary educational facility in order to see if it is involved with the program.
Assistance will vary between one hundred dollars and four thousand dollars.
Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education
This grant offers up to four thousand dollars per annum and it’s available to those who are finishing (or plan to finish) courses which are necessary in order to pursue teaching work in the future.
If you’re approved for this grant, you will need to sign a special agreement “to serve”, which means that you’ll agree to teach in a high-need area, at the elementary or secondary school level, or at an educational service agency which provides services to families in need, for an least four years, within eight years after completing your courses.
Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grants
This grant provides money to students in colleges or career schools. Money must be utilized in order to pay for tuition and other educational costs. In order to qualify for this type of grant, you’ll need to display ineligibility for a Pell Grant, based on your Expected Family Contribution and you’ll also need to prove that your mother, father or guardian served in the American armed forces and perished as a result of his or her military duties in Iraq or Afghanistan, after 9/11.
You must also have been 24 or younger when you lost your parent or guardian. Maximum awards for this grant are $5775.00.