Going to college can be expensive. One way to ease the financial burden is to apply for an education grant. Primarily offered by state and federal education departments, but also by businesses, grants can provide some much-needed funds to pay for school. You may be able to secure a grant with sufficient research and a timely application.
Ask your school guidance counselor or financial aid officer for information and advice. They are likely to have up-to-date information regarding grants and eligibility requirements. They may also be able to tell you about grant opportunities offered by your own school.
Apply for a federal education grant. The website fafsa.ed.gov lists all the available financial aid packages for students, including grants and loans. Each opportunity has its criteria listed and, if you meet the criteria, you can apply online.
Research discretionary education grants. These are financial packages offered to individuals by the Department of Education. Visit the website of the Department of Education or the education agency in your state to find the most up-to-date information.
Ask your employer or your parents' employer whether they administer a grant program. Some large employers such as Walmart have grant services for employees and their dependents.
Check whether businesses give grants for individuals studying your major. There are some grants available for certain academic subjects. Hewlett Packard, for instance, gives education grants for those studying technology.
Begin compiling your grant application well ahead of the deadline. Many are administered through the grants.gov website and each will have its own application criteria. You are likely to need to submit academic records.
Submit your application before the deadline. The deadline may be several months before the academic year starts.
If you miss your deadline, check with the Department of Education grants forecast website for future grant opportunities.
Applying for education grants should be free. Avoid companies that ask for a fee to submit your application.
Dirk Huds has been a writer/editor for over six years. He has worked for bookshops and publishers in an editorial capacity and written book reviews for a variety of publications. He is currently studying for his master's degree.