JJuly 23, 2016 – Just as we try to get the word out about how people who qualify for Pell grants are not applying for them, Congress proposes to slash the Pell grant budget by $1.3 billion. According to National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC,) in 1980, the Pell grant covered 100 percent of the cost of attending a community college but only half the cost by 2014.
Last year the maximum Pell grant was $5,775.
It’s important to note that most students do not receive a full Pell grant because the award is based on family need and the income of each student’s parents.
The Pell grant is available to students attending any of more than 5,400 schools including community colleges, qualifying career training programs and four-year colleges and universities.
Everyone applying for school should apply for a Pell grant by filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
A Pell grant is a scholarship and does not need to be repaid. As Pell grant funding decreases, more low and moderate-income students will be forced to take out loans to cover the shortfall in Pell funding. Student loans must be paid back and cannot be discharged in bankruptcy.
Readers of “A Degree Fast! For pennies on the dollar” know to fill out the FAFSA but to not fill out the CSS/Financial Aid Profile unless required to do so by the college.
The CSS examines parents’ income and net worth when calculating parents’ expected contribution. So whatever equity is in your home is part of the CSS calculation when determining parent’s expected contribution.
The FAFSA considers income and not net worth.
Fewer than 300 schools use the CSS and most are selective-enrollment institutions.
Shelley Owens 16 years as a journalist, 10 years as a jobs and education columnist, one year as a curmudgeon trying to save prospective college students from overpaying for college. Now available for reading on all devices on Kobo: A Degree Fast! For pennies on the dollar 12 Secret Strategies to Help Your Child Get a Degree in Half the Time - at Half the Cost to You