Many students who are entering college are in desperate need of scholarship or grant money in order to meet the costs of paying college tuition. While there are various forms of student loans that can be available, there are those who fear that acquiring a large sum of debt will be problematic upon graduation, as many graduates are currently seeing firsthand. With the job market being in such a pitiful state, many college graduates are exiting school with a large amount of debt and few employment opportunities that will afford them the means to pay off college loans.
While incoming freshmen may enter a better job market upon graduation, many parents and students alike are concerned over the future of the economy and job market. While certain college majors may provide more opportunities than others, overall, college students are looking for scholarship and grant aid that can help them pay college tuition costs without acquiring any debt. Scholarship and grant financial aid funds are free money given based on a variety of reasons and do not have to be repaid, so it’s understandable that these forms of financial aid are highly sought out.
There have been reports that have mentioned college tuition costs are on the rise, and for some universities these costs are up 15% or more. However, there are schools that are promising more aid or less loans, but just as many individuals and businesses took a financial hit during the recession, colleges are not able to offer as many forms of financial aid to students.
For this reason, many incoming students, and current students as well, have been seeking out scholarship and grant opportunities. While scholarships are numerous and can come from a variety of sources at local, state, or federal levels, popular federal Pell grants are often also used by students to help meet college costs. There is also some hope on the front of federal financial aid since federal student lending is now made directly from the government and will not pass through a third-party financial institution.
It’s hoped that these changes in student loan laws will free up more money to offer more free federal financial aid. However, a student who is seeking some form of financial aid to pay their college costs may have a variety of options. While, depending upon one’s chosen school, there may be options from a university for financial aid, there are also scholarship opportunities online. A good high school guidance counselor often has information on scholarships for which students can apply, but there also endless scholarship opportunities for high school seniors, minorities, mothers, and military personnel, just to name a few. While most of these scholarships are merit-based they can be awarded for individuals who are pursuing a certain degree in college or a specific career after graduation.
Federal Pell grants are a wonderful source of free government aid to low income college students who may be unable to afford any of the costs that come with attending a university. Students can fill out a FAFSA form which will determine their eligibility for this financial aid that can be beneficial to students from low income families or who have a low income themselves.
While there is no guarantee in scholarships and grants, as obtaining types of financial aid can be quite competitive among college students, those who put in the time and effort to research scholarships and grants specific to their college wants or career goals may find funding to fully pay their way through school without incurring any college debt.