Finding the right FINANCIAL AID for College

Friday, March 14, 2008

Financial Aid for College

Family budgets are often tight, and when children mature to the age where they are selecting colleges, costs play a big factor in determining the best way to go at this stage of life. If you have already been actively planning and saving, keeping your student’s GPA High, and have spent loads of additional time working with our Tri-Ed Tutors preparing for the SAT, your child should already be well on their way to obtaining a scholarship at the university of their choice. However, with competition to get into college and scholarship funds not always stretching to cover quite enough of the financial crunch, it is important to consider public grants and student loan funds.

For more information about getting financial aide to help pay for college, whether it be for a community college AA or AS degree, to a four year state or private Ivy League university for a BA or BS, or to take the next step towards that Masters or PHD program for yourself or your mature student, visit www.fafsa.ed.gov. We recommend applying for your PIN number early, as it takes quite a lengthy time for the government ot generate it and to have it mailed, and to submit your information and school choices early. Once you select a school, they are notified about your student’s potential interest in their program, and it makes any early application interview visits with the Financial Aid office that much more productive.

Be sure to ask all the colleges about special student enrollment assistance options to defer the costs of college tuition. Key questions you will want to discuss if money is a concern for you are the following:

  • Does the college offer scholarships, grants, or other enrollment incentives of it’s own, separate from Pell Grants or Stafford Loans?
  • What tuition payment options do they offer? Can payments be deferred and set to a budget allowance?
  • Are students able to buy books by special order from sources other than the campus library–and does the college have a book list ready for incoming freshman students or required courses? [Are used books available?]
  • Does the school offer assistance finding rental houses or apartments for students who are interested in off-campus housing (as a possible cost effective alternative to campus dorm housing)?
  • What meal plans are available to students, and do they have reduced rates available for financial hardship situations?
  • Will students be provided with a laptop or will they have to bring their own computer? What computer facilities are available on campus for student use–and what are the charges for time online, copy machines, printing, email, Internet packages?
  • How many credit hours are required courses and how many more will be needed for each major declared? Is it a good option to extend schooling from four to six years and declare a dual major (such as to achieve a BS in Computer Science and a BA in Business or Marketing).

To find out more about the Federal Student Loan application process, we recommend visiting Peterson’s article, "An Overview: The FASFA". Offering good advice and an accurate assessment of the process they say, "The fastest way to apply for federal student aid is over the Internet using the interactive FAFSA on the Web at http://www.fafsa.ed.gov/. This site hosts the online application, as well as an abundance of information about filling it out. You can look up the codes of the schools you’re interested in, find out what information you need to gather, and sign up for a pin number which serves as your electronic signature on the application. (If you’re not applying as an independent student, you and one of your parents must apply for the pin.)" We second the motion.

Feel free to contact Tri-Ed Tutoring at any time with questions about the college application process. We have qualified consultants and Education Specialists who can help coach you and your student through every step of the way. Visit www.tri-edutoring.com and complete our contact form. Someone will be back with you in a matter of just a few business days, if not hours, to help you. For urgent assistance, email tutoringnva@gmail.com to reach one of our faculty directly.


One comment

  1. […] Jay TeanHHowever, with rivalry to impart into college and scholarship assets not ever exertion to equilibrate quite adequacy of the playing crunch, it is primary to think unstoppered grants and enrollee give funds. … […]

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