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A Students Guide To Federal Grants

Aug 17, 2007
Paying for university or college is one of the most valuable investments you can make in your life. As you know, however, it is also one of the biggest investments too. For this reason, good financial planning well in advance of attending the university of your choice is essential. You will want to create a budget and consider everything - not just tuition but also reasonable living costs. Unfortunately, sometimes budgeting simply isn't enough - and that's where federal grants come into play.

1. Grant Or Scholarship - What's The Difference?

The main difference between a grant and a scholarship is that a scholarship has far more restrictions placed upon it than a grant. Both grants and scholarships are non-repayable, that is, unlike a loan you don't have to pay them back when you are done your schooling, which basically means you're getting free money. So if at all possible, try to get a grant or a scholarship. Scholarships are for specific academic or athletic categories, whereas grants are awarded primarily on financial need only.

2. Raising Your Chances

There are a few things you can do to raise your chances of being eligible for financial assistance. The first and most important thing you can do is get good grades in school - good grades not only might qualify you for a scholarship, but they also make your chances a lot better of being accepted to the university of your choice.

3. Grants To The Rescue

Of course, what if you're not as smart as those students? What will you do to get into college by not spending a lot of money? The government can provide you money for college students who are in need of financial aid. This is called the Free Application for Federal Student Aid or FAFSA. This is a form of grant that will determine how much your family's financial strength is. You can fill out a FAFSA form in your school or via the internet in the FAFSA website at www.fafsa.ed.gov - Not only students who have financial difficulty should do this but everyone should do it. This will substantially decrease the amount you will spend to pay for college and can lessen the burden for your parents.

4. Have The Following Information Ready

- Social Security Number
- Latest W-2 forms and other records of money earned.
- Federal Income Tax Return of your parents.
- Permanent Residence Card if a non US citizen.
- Drivers license
About the Author
For more great federal grant related articles and resources check out http://grant4u.info
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