Getting Financial Aid Part 1: Grants, Needs, and Eligibility
In part 1 of our ongoing series on getting financial aid, we look at government-funded grants and help you determine what you qualify for.
Grants basically boil down to free money; state and federal governments give eligible students money for tuition, which does not have to be repaid. Sounds awesome, but first you have to demonstrate eligibility and financial need. Additional requirements vary from state to state, but the basic requirements to receive state and federal grants come down to individual and economic status:
- US citizenship, or eligible non-citizen status.
- (For males 18 and over) Selective Service registration
- High School diploma or GED
- Enrollment in a degree or certificate program either online or campus-based
The greater your financial need, the greater your eligibility for state and federal grants. Financial need is determined by your family income minus tuition expenses. You will need to provide this information when applying for a grant. You can get an idea of what your needs will be by using the US Department of Education’s budget calculator: