Do you dream of going to college, but do not have the money to pay for tuition? You may qualify for grants for college through various sources that can assist you in making your dream a reality. There are three basic types of college grants:
A Pell Grant is money the federal government provides for students who need it to pay for college. Pell Grants are limited to students who fall within a low-to-moderate income level. This is a college grant and does not have to be repaid as long as the funds are used for the intended purpose. In some cases restrictions may be placed upon the grant, giving the recipient a limited amount of time to utilize the funds, a specific university or college to attend, or the requirement of passing classes. These grants for college are one of the two most common types of college grants and are often applied for through the student’s chosen university or college’s financial department. Staff will assist students in filling out the proper paperwork and submitting the application to the appropriate agency.
The second most common type of college grants are scholarships. A scholarship is an award of funds to pay for tuition and in some cases books, room and board, etc. Scholarships are awarded on various criteria usually reflecting the values and purposes of the donor or founder of the award. Most students are aware of college grants being awarded in the form of scholarships, when they excel academically or athletically. The reality is that scholarships are out there for all types of students. Foundations offer students college grants for various reasons. Sometimes the criterion for applying is the student’s choice of study or career. Foundations award grants based on the donor or founder’s preferences, which is why the criteria for awards differ in each situation.
Corporate sponsorship is the third form of college grants. In this instance, a corporation will either offer existing employees the opportunity to further their education or will offer a college grant to a student in order to secure a future employee. The restrictions on corporate sponsorship are placed on the college grant by the corporation to guarantee a benefit to both parties. An existing employee would usually be required to choose a study subject that pertains to their current field of work, and the employee must remain an employee for a certain number of years or else the funds must be repaid.
Finding information on college grants can be time consuming and challenging, but the award of a grant makes it worth overcoming the obstacles. For scholarships the best place to begin searching for funders are libraries, school counselors, teachers, universities/colleges, and various community organizations. After the college grant opportunity is identified, make sure you follow the requirements of the application carefully. If you are not awarded the first grant you apply for, try applying for another one!