Financial Aid for Students


Guides students through the process of locating and applying for financial aid.  Prepared by the Congressional Research Service for Members of Congress.

The basics: getting started


High school counselors
College and career school financial aid offices (where you plan to attend)
Local and college libraries
Student Aid on the Web (U.S. Department of Education)
Other Internet sites (search terms student financial aid OR assistance)

FinAid: for Parents
College Savings Plan Network (state "Section 529" plans)
Tax incentives for higher education expenses

Cash for College
FinAid: The Smart Student Guide to Financial Aid
Financial Aid: You Can Afford It
Looking for Student Aid
Mapping Your Future
Paying for College

Department of Education
Federal Trade Commission

Student aid and where it comes from


Basic assistance categories:

Colleges and universities provide some 20% of aid, most need-based. Check university websites and the institution's financial aid office when you apply for admission.

Private foundations, corporations, and organizations offer scholarships or grants:

College Board Scholarship Search
Grants for Individuals

Targeted aid for special groups


Interested in public service?

Federal assistance programs seek to encourage people to work in geographic areas or professions where there's a particular need (such as doctors in underserved areas); encourage underrepresented groups to enter a particular profession; and provide aid in exchange for services provided (such as military service).

Repaying your loans


After college, the federal government has ways to help you repay your loans.

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