High school education is very important for you to qualify for any basic jobs and is also a prerequisite for your college education. However, once you earn your high school diploma and are ready to go to college, many people find that the high expense of college becomes a huge obstacle in their career path. In most cases, this lack of finances for students can end up inhibiting them from ever enrolling in a college or university. This is why going to college can be one of the most challenging things you do.
Fortunately, if you are a high school senior or student who is struggling to find a way to pay for college, there is financial aid available to you. Since education is very essential, several government and non-profit organizations have established both school grants, and scholarships for high school students. When you become a scholar, your school fees will be paid by the organization depending on the agreement. However, not everybody can avail of scholarships. Every grant and scholarship program has it’s own unique qualifications and requirements that need to be met in order to avail of the financial support.
What is The Difference Between a Grant and a Loan?
The main difference between a grant and a loan is you never have to pay back a grant. Financial aid grants are essentially “free money” that is given to qualified students who really want an education but truly lack the finances to do so. Where as, student loans is financial aid given to students of the same situation but can end up leaving you in enormous debt after you graduate. This is because unlike grants, if you pay for your education expenses with a loan, it will always have to be payed back later. Therefore, it is encouraged that you try your best to pay off your college expenses by applying for multiple scholarships and grants for high school students.
Exploring Financial Aid Options – Different Grants for High School Seniors
When the time comes to apply for a grant or scholarship, the best thing you can do is make an appointment with a college or high school counselor to see which programs you are eligible for. The circumstances are different for everyone, and whether you qualify can depend on your ethnicity, gender, major, and even your health. A good place to start is to look at the different categories of grants for high school students and get an idea of which ones you might want to apply for, some examples are seen below.
- Federal Grants
- Local Grants
- School-based Scholarships
- Scholarships for High School Seniors
1. Federal grants
Applying for federal grants are some of the most recognized grant options, for the awards are plentiful and widely available. For most government grants, the income of your family is one of the most important factors when determining whether or not you will be able to avail of the funding, such as the Federal Pell Grant and FSEOG Grant. Priority is usually given to students with an annual income of $20,000 or below. The amount of money you will be receiving depends on the assessment of the specific committee issuing the funds.
2. Local grants
The local governments that some schools belong to also provide grants for qualified students. The most important qualification for this grant is that you are a resident of the area and are performing well in school. This is determined by your overall GPA throughout your high school career, as well as any extra-curricular activities that you might be involved in.
3. School-based scholarships
Certain high schools also provide scholarships to students who perform outstandingly in academics. Students who also join certain school organizations such as writing clubs and dance clubs also receive grants that are school-based. Information regarding these scholarships can be taken directly from the school administration.
4. Discover Scholarship Program
The Discover Scholarship Program is open for high school juniors with a GPA of 2.75 for 9th and 10th grade. The program provides scholarship to 10 individuals a year who can receive up to $25,000 each.
5. AFSA scholarship
The American Foreign Service Association provides scholarships to high school students whose parents are not with the American Foreign Service. The applicant will be enrolled in an essay writing contest where the topics are mostly regarding global issues and concerns. If the student wins, they are awarded the scholarship and other benefits.
6. Scholarships for high school seniors
Finding a college scholarship as a senior high school student is the same criteria as it is for any individual. It requires basic qualifications such as having above-average grades and proof of need for financial assistance. College-based scholarships are also available for top performing students. Other non-government organizations also offer ethnicity and career specific grants such as minority grants and nursing grants for American and non-American students.
If financial incapacity hinders you from going to college, then you now know that there is a solution. Scholarships are given to individuals who are truly dedicated to achieve good education. All you need to do is apply and put in the effort in school to show government organizations and non-profits that you care about your future.