All college-bound seniors are encouraged to apply for financial aid even if they think they don’t qualify. Many factors besides income are taken into account to determine eligibility. By submitting the FAFSA, students will be considered for federal and state grants, loans, work study, and college-based aid. Colleges use the FAFSA to award their own grants and scholarships.    

Your journey will start with filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Everyone who is applying for financial aid must complete the FAFSA. The application and worksheet are available online.   Complete the worksheet first, then use it to fill out the online form.

Your FAFSA will help you determine your financial need – based on a college’s cost and your Expected Family Contribution (EFC).

Types of Financial Aid
There are many different types of financial aid out there.  Four of the most popular types of financial aid are:

  • Grants – Students do NOT have to repay grants.  They are typically given for athletics, academics, special talent, need-based, etc.
  • Scholarships – Students also do NOT have to repay scholarships.  Scholarships can be awarded for athletics, academic excellence or special talent.
  • Loans – These must be repaid.  There are two types of loans: federal student loans and private loans.
  • College Work Study – Work study allows colleges to hire students for employment to pay their own way as they attend college.  You do not repay the money earned.

The websites below provide information and resources to help you understand the financial aid process.