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Different Types of Financial Assistance for Students to Consider

Student Loans November 9, 2012

The cost of attending college continues to increase and that can be frustrating, but without a good education it is difficult to get a good job that pays well. Exploring the different forms of financial aid is a good way to help you pay for college. There are assistance offered than you might notice.

It is a great idea to get a head start and complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form. This can be completed online and helps to determine if the student will be eligible for any Pell Grants from the government to attend college. Students under the age of twenty-two will need to complete their information along with their parent’s information. You need to have your completed income tax forms from the previous year to complete the FAFSA.

Many scholarships offered are on a need based and they will require you to complete the FAFSA. If you live in a low income household then this is a terrific way for you to get additional funds to apply towards college. There are plenty of colleges out there that will provide you with scholarship for college. They are based on essays, GPA, field of study, ethnicity, and leadership.

They will take  a close look at your skills and other factors; you can start matching your credentials to those scholarships that are offered. If you are in high school, talk to the counselor about what is available. You can check online and check with the school that you plan to attend.  To help increase your chances of receiving a grant, look for those that are unique. For example, some of them offer grants to those that are first generation college students. Others offer to those who are under a certain height or over a given height. If you are left handed, there are some scholarships with that requirement. The idea is to ask for those grants that will have fewer applicants.

Work study programs are offered at the school you plan to attend. This is a type of financial aid that can provide you with some work experience. For example, you may work in an office on campus doing maintenance around the school, working in food services, and more. These experience looks great on your resume when you seek employment and it helps fund your college education.

If you are employed, find out if your company offers tuition reimbursement to help pay for school. This is a financial assistance that is often overlooked. Your employer may require you to sign a contract stating you will remain with the company for a given period of time, if they provide you tuition reimbursement. Make sure you understand all of the requirements before you accept the funding they offered.

Student loans are a source of financial aid, but you should consider this last. Student loans have to be paid back while these other funds for college do not. The last thing you need is to complete school and be in debt. If you do need to obtain student loans to pay for college, only borrow what you need.  Do not be enticed to borrow the maximum amount that they offer.  Explore all of these types of financial aid, so you’ll be able to attend college where you want and for the program you are interested in. Pay attention to the requirements for the funds, deadlines, and make sure you examine plenty of options. If you are determined to go to school, there is money out there to help make it happen!

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