What you should know about the six federal grants available to students
To apply for federal grant aid, you must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). This one application is required to qualify for six federal grants, as well as numerous state and local grants and scholarships. The FAFSA requests a variety of information regarding your financial status and the financial status of your parents if you are still living at home. Information about the FAFSA can be found at www.fafsa.ed.gov. The Web site also enables you to complete your FAFSA, submit it, and track its progress. The following grants are federal aid grants.
- Federal Pell Grant This is available to undergraduate students, and it is based on financial need, school costs, and your status as either a full- or part-time student. The amount awarded can change each year depending on the available funding.
- Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) This grant is up to $4,000 per year in exchange for a four-year commitment to teach full time in a high-need field in a school serving low income students. If you receive the TEACH grant and then do not fulfill your commitment, the amount of money awarded will be converted into a Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan and you will be required to repay it.
- Academic Competitiveness Grant This is available to first- and second-year college students who were part of a recognized rigorous secondary school program. Full-time students can receive up to $750 their first year and $1,300 their second year if they maintained a 3.0 GPA and already received the Pell Grant.
- National Science and Mathematics Access to Retain Talent Grant (SMART) This grant is available to third- and fourth-year college students who are eligible for the Pell Grant, maintain a 3.0 GPA, and are majoring in physical, life or computer science, math, technology, engineering or a foreign language considered critical to National Security. This grant is up to $4,000 per year.
- Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG) This grant is based on extreme financial need, and it is on a first-come, first-serve basis. Students can receive any where from $100 to $4,000 per year based on financial need and funding.
- Federal Work Study (FWS) This grant enables students to get part-time employment on campus. The money is given directly to the student as pay for their work. Many on-campus jobs will only hire work-study students because then the students pay doesn’t come out of their budget.