Grants and Scholarships in Pennsylvania
Students finishing high school and looking forward to their college education face some daunting obstacles, not the least of which is finding the necessary funds to pay the ever increasing costs of tuition. For resident students of Pennsylvania, there are a number of scholarship and grant programs to help offset the high cost of a college education. The Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency provides valuable information on both Federal and state programs designed to make a higher education accessible and affordable to all.
The Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency is there to help students plan their college education. Through PHEEA you can apply for and manage your Federal financial aid, as well as apply for state supported scholarships, grants and loan forgiveness plans. For residents students in the state of Pennsylvania, the financial aid options are many and varied, and The Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency is there to help guide you through the financial aid maze.
Federal Financial Aid
The Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency provides all the forms and information needed to apply for Federal grants, scholarships and loans to help you pay for college. Students must first fill out and submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA, to be eligible for any and all programs supported by the Federal government as well as the state of Pennsylvania.
PHEEA can help resident students apply for the Federal Pell Grant and the Federal Supplemental Education Grant, as well as all of the Federal governments education loan programs. For details on the student loan programs offered by the Federal government refer to Go College's guide to Federal Student Loans.
State Supported Financial Aid Programs
Resident students attending one of Pennsylvania's colleges or universities have access to a number of state supported financial aid programs. These programs are designed to encourage and support students pursuing their post-secondary education within the state, and include grants, scholarships and loan forgiveness plans.
The most notable financial aid programs currently being offered by the state of Pennsylvania include:
- The Pennsylvania State Grant Program provides qualifying students with much needed financial to help cover the costs of college tuition. Students must be residents of the state, and must be attending one of Pennsylvania's state supported colleges or universities.
- The GEAR UP Scholarship Program is open to undergraduate students attending a state university or college. Qualifying students must be eligible for the Federal Pell Grant, and must be enrolled at least half-time in a post-secondary school. Grant amounts vary depending on enrollment status and availability of funds.
- The NETS (New Economy Technology Scholarship) Program is open to college level students pursuing their studies in science and technology. Applicants must be residents of Pennsylvania and must maintain a minimum 3.0 GPA. Awards range from $1000 to $3000 per year.
- The PATH Program is a need based grant program offering financial assistance to students enrolled at a participating Pennsylvania college or university. Students must be nominated by a community partner, and must have previously qualified for a Pennsylvania State Grant.
- The Agricultural Education Loan Forgiveness Program provides up to $2000 a year on outstanding education costs to students with qualifying degree in the agricultural field who return to Pennsylvania to work within the state.
- The Pennsylvania Chafee Education and Training Grant Program provides state supported funding for children aging out of foster care. Award amounts vary depending on available funds, with the maximum available being no more than the total cost of tuition less any financial aid previously received.
These are only a few of the many programs put in place by the state of Pennsylvania to help their resident students achieve their higher educational goals. The Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency also provides information on financial aid programs targeting military service personnel and their dependents and the children of fallen law enforcement officers and emergency response workers. Parents will also want to make use of PHEEA's extensive information on 529 savings plans and prepaid tuition programs that make it easy and profitable for parent's to begin saving for their child's college education.
For resident students in Pennsylvania the financial aid options are extensive and lucrative. The state is dedicated to making post-secondary education accessible and affordable for all of it's college-bound students.