Financial Aid

Interested in Completing a FAFSA for student financial aid?

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is a program run by the U.S. Department of Education. Completing a FAFSA application will help determine your eligibility for federal student aid. A description of each of the federal programs may be found here.

How does it work? 

Student aid is generally available in three forms – grants, scholarship and loans. Grants and scholarships do not need to repaid. Loans must be repaid and should be used carefully. To be eligible for financial aid you must:

  • Be a U.S. citizen, a U.S. national, or an eligible non-citizen
  • Have a valid Social Security number
  • Have a high school diploma or GED
  • Be registered with the U.S. Selective Service (male students age 18-25)
  • Not owed refunds on any federal student grants
  • Not be in default on any student loans
  • Not have been found guilty of the sale or possession of illegal drugs while federal aid was being received

What can you do?

FAFSA

Studentaid.gov has free links to the FAFSA and studentaid.gov website for share here - presented in English and Spanish.

Employer Tuition Assistance

What is it?

A Tuition Assistance or Tuition Reimbursement program is an employer-financed opportunity that either reimburses students for tuition or pays directly for tuition. Often, these programs are offered as an employment incentive or to help employees upgrade their skill and value to the company.

How does it work?

Employee assistance will vary depending upon the company. Some common practices in companies that provide tuition reimbursement or deferment involve funding based on the performance of the student. For example, you may be required to pass courses with a “C” letter grade. Also, some employers require that you agree to stay with the company for a certain time period after you receive assistance. In addition, some employers require that your courses or degree program be directly related to your current position, or another future position within the company. 

What can you do?

Because employee assistance varies from company to company, you should contact your company Human Resource office or company-based College Coach. 

Payment Plans

Many colleges and universities will allow students to set up a payment plan with the Bursar’s (billing office). This may benefit students not applying or using federal financial aid or other types of loans to pay tuition. Likewise, many Bursar Offices will set up payment arrangements for employees receiving tuition reimbursement so that employee’s do not have to pay up front, but can wait to pay tuition once reimbursement is awarded (usually 10-30 days after a semester has ended). 

Scholarships

Scholarship programs help students pay for all or a portion of a student’s tuition and do not need to be paid back as student loans do. In general, scholarship programs can require you to meet specific criteria (for example, over the age of 25) and you typically have to submit an application. 

If applying for scholarships, it is a good idea to complete the FAFSA first as some scholarship programs require you to have a FAFSA on file. 

Visit the Resources and Tools page for scholarship search tools.