Types of Financial Aid
Financial aid comes in the form of scholarships, grants, and loans. Money received through scholarships and grants is financial aid that never has to be repaid. Grants, usually from the federal government, are based on financial need. Scholarships are usually based on academic performance and come from a number of different sources.
Loans are money that you borrow and then pay back over time. Unlike a car loan, you don’t start paying right away. Your loan is on hold until after you are no longer in school. The federal government operates several student loan programs.
Most student financial aid comes from federal sources. The following information provides a brief overview of federal grants and loans.
Student Aid on the Web: A good place to start. This site offers a comprehensive overview of the federal financial aid process and options available to you.
Specific federal student aid programs:
- for qualifying undergraduates pursuing their first bachelor's degree
- requires demonstrated financial need through the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)
- do not have to be repaid
- $5,550 maximum per award year
- for part-time and full-time students who are eligible (requires demonstrated financial need)
- must be repaid, but you are not charged interest while in school
- up to $8,500 maximum per year (depends upon grade level)
- for any part-time or full-time student
- must be repaid with interest (interest accrues while the student is in school)
- up to $20,500 maximum per year (depends upon grade level)