Going to college can be expensive, and the costs keep rising, whether it’s for an online program or a traditional program at colleges and universities. Fortunately, grants are available, and yes, even for online courses. What is a grant for online students? Essentially, it’s an amount of money that a student receives based on merit or financial need, and it doesn’t have to be paid back. Additionally, there are different types of scholarships. Read on below for more information.
Need-based scholarships are typically offered by the federal government and can cover all or part of your tuition depending on your financial need. The determining factor for this scholarship is the gap between the expected family contribution and the total cost of education. If this gap is within the guidelines, you will be a contender. But the first step in applying for a need-based scholarship is to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
It is commonly thought that a merit-based grant is only for students with only good grades and lots of extracurricular activities. But that’s not the case. If you volunteer, take on projects in a certain field, or show that you can juggle a part-time job while being the captain of a sports team, you may also qualify. This shows that you are motivated and passionate, and that you can handle a demanding workload. Thus, both accomplishments and earnings count in the selection process.
Departmental Academic Grants
The Departmental Academic Grant is for those who already have an idea of what major they want to pursue. How exactly does it work? First, if you have already chosen a major, you look at options within the department to narrow it down further. For this, you can always ask your professor or the school’s office for help, as they can check to see if there are any grants available.
The corporate grant can be an option whether you are working or not. This grant is usually given by large companies, such as Coca-Cola or Burger King. However, they are most often available to employees, their spouses or partners, or even their children. To find out if the companies where your parents work, for example, you could check to see if they have scholarships for online students. You can also ask your advisor, as he or she is very familiar with the application process.
Grants from professional associations
These grants are awarded by those who organize professional development workshops, networking events, and even mentoring programs. They often have a budget that can be spent on grants or scholarships. For more information, you can go directly to the relevant professional associations’ websites.
How to apply
There are a few steps to follow in order to obtain a college grant. The first step is to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), which will let you know if you qualify and apply for financial aid. This allows institutions to estimate the amount of financial aid you are eligible to receive. Financial aid is a type of aid that helps students and their families pay for college by covering the cost of education. Grants, work-study, and federal student loans can all be included in an institution’s financial aid package.
Then, before the deadline, fill out the FAFSA. Many grants are awarded on a first come, first served basis. So complete your FAFSA as soon as possible after the October 1 start date. Because the FAFSA requires your family’s tax returns, you should allow time to obtain these documents before beginning the application.
After you submit your FAFSA, the institutions that have accepted you will contact you with financial aid offers. You will find out from these offers if you are eligible for university grants, as well as other types of financial aid, including scholarships, work-study programs, and federal student loans. You do not have to accept all financial aid offers.
College or university education in general can be quite expensive, so having the option to apply for a scholarship can be extremely helpful. Even for online courses, as these can be expensive as well. Hopefully, this article will give you an overview of the grants available for online universities.