If you’re planning on attending college, you may be worried about the cost — and with good reason. With rising tuition and room and board fees, the majority of college graduates leave school with student loans.
Student loans vs. gift aid
A recent survey found that student loans and parent loans cover approximately 20% of undergraduates’ education costs, whereas scholarships and grants covered approximately 25% of students’ costs during the 2020-2021 academic year.
How gift aid impacts your finances after graduation
Gift aid can range in value. Depending on the source of the award, scholarships and grants can range from $500 to an amount covering the total cost of attendance. Even if you only qualify for smaller awards, they can be combined to reduce your education costs dramatically. Over time, they can help you save even more in interest charges.
Where to find free money for college
The two primary forms of gift aid are scholarships and grants. Scholarships are typically awarded based on achievements in specific areas, such as academics, athletics, or music. Grants are usually issued according to financial need.
Other resources for finding free money for college
Utilizing gift aid will reduce how much you have to pay for your education out of your pocket or with student loans. Over time, using gift aid can help you save money and pursue your other financial goals faster.