Every high school student is faced with the decision of whether to attend college after graduation. For some students the decision is fairly easy with parents or grandparents paying the tuition cost for a postsecondary institution. Do you wish to attend college, but cannot due to cost? There may be tuition grants available for you. The two most common types of tuition grants are Pell Grants and Scholarships. Understanding the difference between the two tuition grants is the first step in deciding which grant to pursue.
>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 tuition grant and does not have to be repaid. In some cases restrictions may be placed upon the Pell grant giving the recipient a limited amount of time to utilize the funds, a specific university or college to attend, and the requirement of passing classes. These tuition grants are one of the most common 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 tuition 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 tuition grants being awarded in the form of scholarships, if students excel academically or athletically. The reality is there are scholarships out there for all types of students. Foundations offer students tuition grants for various reasons. Sometimes the criterion for applying is the student’s choice of study or career. Foundations are able to award tuition grants to students based upon the donor or founder’s preferences, which is why the criteria for awards differ in each situation.
Finding information on tuition grants can be time consuming and challenging, but the award of a tuition school 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 tuition grant opportunity is identified, make sure to follow the requirements of the tuition grant application carefully. If you are not awarded the first tuition grant you apply for, try submitting for another one!