Grants and scholarships are funds you don’t have to repay. Yay!
But these funds are usually limited, so it’s important to apply as soon as you can. There are two main sources of grant and scholarship funding:
- the school you attend and
- private/civic sources.
Grants and scholarships from government sources (Federal/state) are very limited for graduate and professional students. Ask the financial aid office at the schools you’re considering about availability and apply as early as possible.
The school you attend may award its own scholarship and/or grant assistance to students who meet certain eligibility requirements, such as a strong undergraduate academic record, demonstrated financial need, special career objectives and so on.
Make sure you ask the following questions about any grant and/or scholarship you’re offered:
- Will it be renewed automatically every year? If so, will it be renewed for the same amount or will the amount be adjusted?
- If the amount is adjusted, what are the criteria for making the adjustments?
- If the award is not renewed automatically, can I reapply for this or another grant or scholarship next year?
- Will my academic performance affect the amount of my award in subsequent years?
- Does this grant or award have a service component?
- Are there any special application procedures or deadlines I need to be aware of?