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  • Federal Financial Aid

    There are many sources of federal financial aid available to students seeking a college education and beyond. Start looking into the various options for federal financial aid early in your high school years to ensure the most options are available to you. It's helpful to understand the eligibility and application requirements for federal financial aid early on to make sure you don't miss any deadlines and that you direct your efforts toward the types of aid you're most likely to receive.


  • Federal Work Study

    Along with grants and loans, the Federal Work-Study program can be an important part of the financial aid picture as you look at ways to pay for college. Under the FWS program, undergraduates are paid an hourly rate that is equal to at least the federal minimum wage. The number of hours you work and time of day will depend on your total FWS award amount, class schedule, and other factors.

  • Scholarship Basics

    In addition to grants and loans, scholarships can be a vital part of your financial aid package to help you pay for college. Like grants, scholarships offer the attractive advantage of not requiring repayment. When starting your scholarship search, start with your college’s financial aid office to see what scholarship awards are available. Often, scholarships will be based on merit (requiring a certain GPA or excellence in a sport or other extracurricular activity); need, helping to offset the costs of tuition and education expenses for students whose family financial contribution is low; or ethnicity, offering awards to students based (at least in part) on ethnicity, national origin, or religion. Often, scholarships are based on a combination of these factors.

  • Federal Loan Basics

    Along with grants, scholarships, and other community-based fundraising efforts, federal student loans are a very important part of the overall financial aid picture and can play a vital role in helping students pay for college and graduate school. Unlike grants and scholarships, federal student loans must be repaid--either directly to the college or to the U.S. department of education--usually with interest and sometimes with additional fees. Nevertheless, the federal student loan program make it possible for far more students to attend college and graduate school than otherwise would have the financial means.


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