Types of Financial Aid

mini graduation cap with financial aid money and coinsFinancial aid is funding provided by federal and state governments and universities to help students pay for their educational expenses. The office of Federal Student Aid offers more than $150 billion to students each year, in the form of grants, loans, and work-study funds. This type of financial aid is money that can pay for school expenses including tuition, room and board, and books and supplies.

After you fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), your institution of higher learning will be in contact to explain the options they can offer you. Below is a list of the four different types of financial aid available to students seeking help.


A student must maintain eligibility to keep this need-based award. Federal Pell Grants are given to undergraduates who don’t already have a bachelor’s or professional degree. More so, a student will need to be enrolled at least half-time. University grants have limited funding and awarded to eligible students based on their need and their FAFSA


A scholarships is a merit-based award that you do not need to repay. These awards come from the federal government, state government, your college or career school, or a corporate, private, or nonprofit organization.


Loans are a type of financial aid that require repayment with interest under varying terms and conditions. You will have to repay these loans after you graduate, withdraw from college, or drop below half-time status. If you plan to take out a loan, consider federal student loans first. Compared to private student loans, federal student loans often have lower fixed interest rates and you may be able to adjust your loan payments based on your income.


Getting a work-study job is another great option to help pay for school. Eligible undergraduate and graduate students will be able to earn at least minimum wage. Students in the Work-Study Program will employ in community service positions, or jobs relating to the student’s filed of study.