Applying for Financial Aid Grants Such as the Pell Grant

October 19, 2011

Education grants provide financial assistance for anyone to go to school. Like scholarships, a grant offers assistance to students who meet certain requirements, which change depending on the type of grant that you apply for. Most grants are offered through the government such as the Pell Grant. Other grants are based solely on need and enrollment status.

When applying for a grant, you first want to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid through the government website. This is a lengthly application process with specific deadline dates, so always check the website to apply early. You also need to apply for a pin before being able to start an application. As you fill out the application, you will see questions about your social security number, taxes and income, and if you are under 24 or filing as a dependent, you will also have to fill out tax information for your parents. These factors determine your financial need.

Your school will inform you of your financial aid information once it has been received through FAFSA. There are four types of federal grants that you may receive, these include:

  • Federal Pell Grant
  • Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)
  • TEACH Grant
  • Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant

Federal Pell Grants are solely based on your need, cost of aattendance, enrollment status and attending school for a full academic year. You can only receive up to two Pell grants per year. Only one school at a time may award a Pell Grant to you. You may only receive a Pell Grant for up to 18 semesters.

If you have exceptional financial need, then you will also qualify for a Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant. These grants are awarded to undergraduate students that have the lowest expected family contribution. The amounts range from $100 to $4,000 per year depending on your EFC. If your school has less funding for you, you are also more likely to receive this award. If you believe that you should have this grant, your school may not participate in the FSEOG program, which means that you should contact your college advisor or financial aid department.

Students planning on becoming teachers may also qualify for the TEACH grant. These grants offer up to $4,000 per year. However, you must qualify for a Pell Grant and sign an "Agreement to Serve" that promises to teach full time in a high need field at a low-income school or educational service agency to receive the grant. The amounts convert to a direct unsubsidized loan if you do not adhere to the service obligation.

If your parent or guardian was a member of the U.S. armed forces and died as a result of service performed in Iraq or Afghanistan after September 11th, 2001, and you do not qualify for a Pell Grant, then you are eligible for the Iraq and Afghanistan Service grant. You must be under 24 years of age to receive this grant and enrolled at least part-time in college.

Other grants may be awarded by your college based on your parental status. For example, single mothers often receive special grants to go to school. The best way to apply for a grant at your school is by contacting the financial aid office or talking to your college advisor about financial assistance programs that you qualify for. Other grants require a certain grade point average, but not all grants are based on your academic performance.

EducationGrants for school

Whether you’re on your way to school for the first time or thinking about finishing up a degree you should explore your options when it comes to obtaining Grants for School.

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