Financial aid helps students pay for higher education. That includes students who studied at home. Homeschooling has come a long way since a few years ago in terms of college admissions as well as financial aid. Today, colleges welcome homeschool students as long as they meet the school’s eligibility criteria. As for financial aid for homeschooled students, they can pursue almost all avenues as traditional students. This includes loans, grants, work-study programs, and scholarships. Some of the financial aid offered is need based, some merit-based.
Federal Financial Aid
The U.S. Department of Education offers federal financial aid. They are the biggest providers of college financial aid.
Federal financial aid includes Pell Grants, student loans, and also work-study programs. Each of these have their own qualify criteria. Your total federal financial aid package will is based on your family’s income and a few other factors.
To qualify for this aid, you must file and submit the FAFSA or Free Application for Federal Student Aid before the deadline. The FAFSA opens every year on October 1, for the following year’s academic year.
State Financial Aid
Each state offers financial aid to resident students. This applies to both, students who pass out from the traditional school system as well as homeschooled students. Some states only offer aid to resident students enrolled in colleges located within the state itself. Other states offer aid to resident students enrolled in a college anywhere in the US. The criteria, amount of aid offered and terms of the aid differ from one state to another.
Institutional aid refers to the financial package that every college puts together for accepted students. This package is customized for each student based on the information submitted through the FAFSA. Every college uses their own computation to calculate the aid that a student qualifies for.
Scholarships are a form of free financial aid. Most scholarships are merit-based but there are a few that are offered to students who belong to certain demographics. Every scholarship organization sets their own qualifying requirements and award amounts can range from a few hundred dollars to thousands of dollars. Some are one-time awards, while others may be recurring awards. You can apply to any scholarship as long as you meet their qualifying requirements. Additionally, there are scholarships for homeschool students.
1 Important Thing To Know About Financial Aid For Homeschooled Students
Some financial aid opportunities and scholarships explicitly state that homeschooled students are eligible to apply. Others may not mention it as part of their requirements. If it’s not mentioned, go ahead and apply.