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Obtaining Financial Aid for Business

Okay, so you've been accepted to that cool out-of-state college that you've been wanting to go to since you were eight but your parents are on your back about the costs? No problem, there's always a way to pay for an education.

A lot of people are working under the assumption that you have to have all the money for college ready by the time you enroll. That's not true. In fact, you can pay for college AFTER you attend. There are a few different ways that make this all possible and here they are.

Grants

Grants are a great way to pay for college because the government/college gives you money that you never have to repay. When you fill out the FAFSA forms in January or February, it creates a profile for you as the student and determines how much financial aid you will need in order to attend college. If you have a lot of financial need, you'll likely be awarded a grant to help you with the costs of college. This is applied towards your tuition and is tax-free.

Grants are great because they can really help out with the costs of college but don't expect them to pay for everything. Grants are usually pretty small ($1000-2000) so you'll still need to find more ways to pay for the rest of your education.

Scholarships

Scholarships are also great because they're financial awards that are given to you based on your grades, community service, or athletic abilities. Some scholarships also take financial need into consideration so if you're having a hard time paying for college, they'll take that into consideration when awarding the scholarships.

The only downside to scholarships are that they sometimes have specific requirements. For example, some scholarships require you to maintain a 3.5 GPA and if you fall below that, you can have your scholarship taken away. So if you're awarded a scholarship, do yourself a favor and keep studying!

Federal Work-Study Program

The work-study program is a program that allows you to take a job on campus and your earnings are then applied towards tuition. This allows you to shave some money off the cost of attending college by working part-time. The nice thing about these programs is that they have very flexible hours because they understand that your education is your top priority. However, you're also limited in the amount of hours you can work so don't expect to pay for a whole lot of your education by doing this.

Loans

Loans are another form of financial aid that help you pay for college but, unfortunately, they have to be repaid. Because these loans are secured by the state or federal government, the interest rates are usually fairly low and you don't have to worry about paying your loans back until you get out of college.

Loans are usually taken out by the student so you'll be the one repaying the debts. However, if your parents insist on helping out with your student loans, they can take out a Federal PLUS loan, which is like a student loan that the parents pay.

It's important to be careful with loans. You don't want to rely solely on them because when you graduate, you'll be burdened with a large monthly payment. As with all things involving college, be sure to weigh all of your options when you receive your financial aid package.

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