Paying for college
It is possible for everyone to afford college. There are many ways to pay for school and to get help paying for it.
How much does it cost?
|4-year private||4-year public*||2-year public|
|Tuition & Fees||$23,712||$6,185||$2,361|
|% Increase from 2006-2007||6.3||6.6||4.2|
(Source: College Board)
But college is more than just tuition and fees. It also may include:
* Food and housing (~$6,000 - $8,000 on-campus per year)
* Health insurance
* Lab fees for certain courses
* Travel expenses to go home on weekends or holidays or to commute to campus
* Books and other supplies such as notebooks, folders, computer, calculators, etc.
* Other personal expenses such as pizza, movies, laundry, groceries, etc.
But there are lots of ways yo get help paying for it!
What kinds of aid are available?
There are three main types of financial aid students can get:
1. Grants and scholarships: Grants usually are given to students who have financial need to pay for college. (Did you know that MOST people going to college get some kind of financial aid?) Scholarships are usually given to recognize academic success, athletic skill or other talent. Scholarships may come with conditions, such as maintaining a certain major or GPA. Grants and scholarships do not need to be repaid.
2. Student loans must be repaid, usually with interest, after you graduate or stop going to school. Parents also may take out loans for their children’s education.
3. Work-study is a government aid program run by colleges that allows students to work to earn money to help pay for school.
To qualify for most kinds of financial aid, you will have to fill out a FAFSA.
Who gives financial aid?
There are several sources of aid:
Federal (government) aid — Pell Grant, work-study, Stafford Loan, Perkins Loan and other loans as well as some grants and scholarships
State aid — Guaranteed access grants and educational assistance awards (loans and grants). See the Links section to get to Maryland-specific information
Colleges and universities — Many use FAFSA data to determine if a student qualifies for need-based and other aid (loans, scholarships and/or grants)
Private organizations (companies, foundations, clubs) — May use the FAFSA data along with other requirements such as essays and applications for scholarships
Check out the links to the left, or visit
the Maryland Higher Education Commission (MHEC) to learn details about finding money for higher education.