How to start looking for free money for college
The first thing to do is to meet with your high school counselor or the someone at the financial aid office at your college. You should also fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, better known by its popular acronym FAFSA. This will allow you to apply for federal loans or federal grants for education.
Free money for college
You may be eligible for free school grants, fellowships or scholarships. Do a college scholarship search to see if there are any such opportunities that you might be eligible for. Typically you qualify through academic achievement, athletics, or because you belong to a group that is eligible for certain types for financial grants for education. The FastWeb free scholarship search engine is a great resource to explore such financial aid opportunities, although you should be dubious of scholarship schemes that seem too good to be true.
You may also be eligible for a Federal Pell grant or a Federal Supplement Educational Opportunity Grant if you can demonstrate economic hardship (such as low family income) and are working towards a bachelor’s degree. Another grant that applies to students who are eligible for the Pell Grant is the Academic Competitiveness grant. This grant can provide financial aid for college to the tune of $750 in the first year and $1300 in the sophomore year as long as the student keeps their GPA above 3 and completed some advanced placement credits in high school.
Junior and senior year college students may be eligible for National SMART grants (SMART stands for Science and Mathematics Access to Retain Talent). You need to maintain a grade point average of 3 or higher, and need to be eligible for the Pell grant, and to major in a hard science or technology discipline, or some foreign languages relevant to national security. You can get free school grants of up to $4000 annually through the SMART program.
These are just a few of the ways to get free money for college tuition. There are many other fellowships and grant opportunities available, which I will cover in another article. Good luck in your college scholarship search!