Federal Direct Plus Loans For Parents
Like the name says, this loan is intended for parents to take out on behalf of their child. That is, the loan will be in the parents name.
Unlike some of the other loans, there is no fixed dollar amount on a Parent PLUS loan. The maximum you can borrow is the cost of attendance minus any other financial assistance received.
Applying For College Grants
To ensure you get all the financial aid youre entitled to, follow these three steps:
If you need additional financial aid to cover your education costs and have exhausted grant and scholarship awards, federal student loans can be a useful tool. They tend to have lower interest rates than private student loans, and have benefits that can make repaying your loans more manageable after graduation.
Federal Sources Of Financial Aid Per Year
Federal financial aid programs are provided through the U.S. Department of Education . Congress votes on how much money each program receives every year, and what the minimum and maximum amounts of financial support can be.
This grant has specific rules about working in certain fields and following certain classwork paths to become a certified teacher upon graduation. If you do not meet these standards, your grant will be revoked, and you may have to pay some or all of it back.
- Student loans: There are several loan programs provided by the federal government, including:
- Direct subsidized loans
- Direct PLUS loans, both for graduate students and parents with dependent undergraduates
- Direct consolidation loans
Loan amounts vary based on several factors, like:
- Whether you are a dependent or independent undergraduate student
- Whether you are a graduate or professional student
- Whether you have defaulted on student loan payments in the past
- Whether you have a significant financial need, qualifying you for subsidized loans
How much you can take out also depends on your academic year in school. Here are the current amounts set by the federal government:
You may also qualify for the federal work-study program, which helps you find a job, either on or off-campus, and pays you upfront so you can apply the income to your education costs. The amount you receive through this program varies by school.
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What Are The Different Types Of Financial Aid
When looking at financial aid, its important to get a better understanding of the different types. There are two main kinds of financial aid: need-based and merit-based.
Need-based Aid:Need-based aid is exactly what it sounds likeits based on your financial need and is calculated using the FAFSA. There are a couple of types of need-based aid: federal grants, institutional grants, loans, and work-study.
Merit-based Aid: Merit-based aid depends on your academic and extracurricular achievements with no regard for financial need. By building a strong academic and extracurricular profile, you can increase your chances of receiving this type of aid.
Who Can Apply For A Cal Grant
There are several requirements for Cal Grant eligibility. In addition to submitting a FAFSA and verified Cal Grant GPA by the deadline, students must meet the following requirements:
- Be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen
- Be a resident of California at the time of high school graduation
- Have a social security number
- Attend a qualifying California college, university, career or technical school
- Not have a bachelors or professional degree with the exception of Cal Grant A and B extended awards for teaching credential programs
- Have financial need based on college costs
- Have family income and assets below established ceilings
- Meet any minimum GPA requirements
- Be in a program leading to an undergraduate degree or certificate
- Be enrolled at least half time
- Have registered with the U.S. Selective Service
- Not owe a refund on a state or federal grant, or be in default on a student loan
- Applicants have one year after graduating high school to apply for a Cal Grant.
Cal Grants provide financial assistance for students continuing into higher education roles. Cal Grant recipients are seeking these academic credentials:
- Bachelors Degrees
- Occupational Certification
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Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant
The Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant is awarded to undergraduate students with exceptional financial need. If you qualify, you may be eligible to receive up to $4,000 annually .
Funds depend on the availability of the school. Not all schools participate in this program. Check with the financial aid office at your school for more information.
Find Out What’s Available And Determine What You Can Pay Back
There are limits to almost everything in life, including how much you can borrow on student loans. Student loan limits are based on a variety of factors, including the type of loan , your year in school, and how much it costs to attend your school of choice.
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What Are The Differences Between Grants And Scholarships
Both scholarships and grants are forms of gift aid. This means, it is money you can use for college that you do not need to earn or repay. Either a grant or a scholarship may help you answer the question how can I pay for college without going into debt? But the terms are not interchangeable.
Grants are usually awarded based on student financial needs. Popular grants that college students apply for are available through:
- Federal government
- State/local governments
- Colleges, universities, career schools
Scholarships are usually awarded based on student merit like academic, athletic or artistic talents. Many scholarships are available through:
- Private or community foundations
- Nonprofit and for profit corporations.
Institutional Grants For College
In some cases, your school may offer education grants directly to students .
As with state and federal programs, these grants exist to help students with a high level of financial need. Typically, filling out the FAFSA is sufficient to determine your eligibility. But some schools may require additional paperwork.
For instance, take a look at the CSU Tuition Assistance Grant.
This program uses a combination of federal, state, and institutional grants to cover 50 to 100 percent of a students share of base tuition.
To be eligible, a student needs to be a Colorado resident, enroll full-time at CSU, complete the FAFSA, and fill out a one-time institutional aid application.
As with state and federal grants, your colleges financial aid office is your best resource for finding institutional grants.
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Consider State Grants To Pay For College
After you have gone through all of your federal grant options, consider state grants by contacting one of the state grant agencies provided by the Department of Education.
We also have put together this ultimate guide of Financial Aid and Student Loans By State, which includes any grants offered by your state. Just click your state and see what’s available.
Types Of College Grants
The first step in applying to grants for college is understanding the different types. There are grants to help cover financial need or specific to demographics, major or location. Federal and state governments as well as schools and private institutions all have different kinds of grants for college students.
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Get The Grants You Need To Afford College
I hope this article has helped you understand the various grants for college .
If you take away nothing else, remember to fill out the FAFSA early! Funds for some of these grants are limited, and filling out the FAFSA as early as you can increases your chances of getting the maximum possible grant amount.
Not eligible for grants? Check out these other ways you can pay for college:
Pell Grant Eligibility: What If I Dont Qualify
After reading this article, you now have all the information you need about the federal Pell Grant. Basically, its the governments version of free money for college!
The good news is theres no special application process to determine Pell grant eligibility. All you need to do is fill out your FAFSA which youll need to do anyway before starting college and youll automatically be considered for a Pell Grant.
If for some reason you dont qualify, dont worry. You can still achieve your goal of higher education. There are plenty of other ways to help pay for your college tuition and living expenses.
We know how stressful it is to think about how youre going to pay for college. Thats why weve created this website to help you understand all the different options that are available to you. Stay right here and keep browsing our site for more helpful information about grants, financial aid, budgeting for college, and much more!
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S To Apply For College Grants
If you havent already, complete the FAFSA to apply for federal grants and other aid, including work-study programs and federal loans. Fill it out as soon as possible, because some schools award aid on a first-come, first-served basis.
Search for private grants and scholarships using the U.S. Department of Labor’s free scholarship search tool.
Review your financial aid award letter from each school you’re considering. Each letter will list the grants, scholarships, work-study programs and loans youre eligible for. Accept all the grants and scholarships youre offered before taking out any student loans.
About the author:Anna Helhoski is a writer and NerdWallet’s authority on student loans. Her work has appeared in The Associated Press, The New York Times, The Washington Post and USA Today. Read more
How To Get Grants For Living Expenses During College
- How to Get Grants for Living Expenses During College
With the average cost of college rising, ranging from $20,000 to more than $50,000 per year, it can be hard to pay for it all out of pocket or even obtain a student loan. Tuition, school fees, books, and supplies are only part of the costs of attending school. Room and board expenses often make up half of the total cost of attendance .
Grants are a form of gift money that students dont have to pay back. Grants can be used to pay for living expenses, as well as college tuition. Many grants take into account all possible college expenses and will pay out a flat rate, often directly to the student, to support them while attending college. Some grants will pay money directly to the school for tuition and fees and then provide the student with a housing allowance and money for supplies and books.
Grants are offered through federal and state governments, as well as schools. They are also offered by private institutions, nonprofit organizations, and individuals. Each grant will have its own set of particular criteria on how it is to be paid out and what the money is able to go toward.
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What Is A Grant For College
Grants for college are a form of financial aid that does not usually get repaid. They cover a variety of education-related expenses, such as tuition and fees, room and board, and books and supplies.
Grants along with scholarships are often called gift aid, or free money for college, but they are not the same. Scholarships are awarded for merit or talents, while grants tend to be given out based on financial need, although sometimes merit can come into play.
When it comes defining that need, the best thing to do is to take a closer look at the types of grants available.
Grants For Women Going Back To School
There are excellent grants and scholarships for women who wish to return to school. Apart from the federal government, several private organizations can help adults make a college career. If youre a woman attending a full-time program, these are the programs you can benefit from:
The American Association of University Women Scholarship: You can apply for these student grants through their state and local branch offices. The amount that returning students get also varies depending on your region.
The Philanthropic Educational Organization: The organization offers need-based and merit-based scholarships, grants, and student loans to women. Their financial assistance program is well-suited for women who are about to finish high school.
The local chapters of the organization decide the money a student would receive depending upon the region and the program they enroll for.
The Talbot Scholarship Foundation: Women who wish to go to college in the US or Canada and need help to pay for college can apply for this scholarship. You must complete at least two semesters in an undergraduate program to apply for this program.
The Emerge Scholarship Fund: This fund provides grants and scholarships to women who terminated their education due to financial reasons and wish to return to schools to complete their higher education.
These are merit-based awards, especially for women who have given back to their communities.
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What Are Plus Loans
These are federal direct loans that are made to parents of dependent undergraduate students, as well as to graduate or professional students enrolled in school at least half time. PLUS loans don’t have a cap on the amount that can be borrowed, but you can’t borrow more than the cost of attendance at the specific school youor your child, if you’re the parentsare attending. This kind of loan does have drawbacks, so research them carefully.
The Most Generous Federal Grants
- Pell Grants. The big player in the federal grant scene is the Pell Grant, intended for families with exceptional financial need. The maximum award for the Pell Grant for the 2018-2019 award year is $6,095. How much you can get depends on your Expected Family Contribution , your costs to attend school, and whether you are a full-time or part-time student. Students can receive Pell grants for a maximum of 12 semesters.
- FSEOGs. Colleges award Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants to students with the lowest EFCs. Average loan amounts vary from college to college, usually anywhere from $100$4,000. Not all colleges participate in the FSEOG program. Once the college has depleted its FSEOG funds, it can’t make further awards that year.
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Federal Direct Subsidized And Unsubsidized Loans
If you’re eligible, both of these federal loans can help you pay for college.
The government pays your interest on a Direct Subsidized Loan while youre in school, for the first six months after you leave school, and during a period of deferment.
If you dont qualify for a subsidized loan, you may be able to receive funds through a Direct Unsubsidized Loan. But with this loan, the government does not pay your interest. You are responsible for paying the interest during all periods.
This table from the U.S. Department of Education includes maximum yearly amounts for each type of loan. You’ll see the total for both subsidized and unsubsidized loans.
College Grants Vs Scholarships Whats The Difference
Scholarships and grants for college both represent free money to pay for an education that generally does not have to be repaid. Dropping out of college or switching to part-time enrollment are a couple of exceptions that may require paying back a grant or scholarship.
Grants for college students may come from the federal and state government, private organizations, nonprofits, or colleges. Generally, these financial gifts are awarded on a basis of need. However, some college grants may incorporate demographics and a specific academic discipline in their selection criteria.
Scholarships may be awarded based on a students financial need or merit. Besides academic performance, merit can be defined by athletic ability, leadership skills, community service, or other character traits and activities.
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Law Enforcement Personnel Dependents Grant Program
The Law Enforcement Personnel Dependents Grant Program provides educational grants to spouses and dependents of several classifications of law enforcement professionals who have been killed or have become totally disabled as a result of an accident or injury caused by external factors incurred in the performance of their duties. These groups include:
- California peace officers
- Department of Corrections and California Youth Authority employees
- Permanent/full-time firefighters employed by public entities.
To qualify under the definition of peace officer, the primary duty must be enforcement of the law in the following categories:
- Port wardens or officers of the LA Harbor Department
- Inspectors or investigators of the District attorneys
- Designated Department of Justice personnel
- The Highway Patrol
- State university and college police
- Designated personnel of the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation
- Designated personnel of the Department of Fish and Game
- Designated personnel of the Department of Parks and Recreation
- Designated personnel of the Department of Forestry
- Designated personnel of the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control Applications for the LEPD Grants are accepted throughout the academic year and match the amount of a Cal Grant award.
A complete package includes:
- A copy of applicants current Student Aid Report which is generated after filing a FAFSA
- Birth certificate if applicant is a dependent