The California Student Aid Commission understands that the search for financial aid sources can sometimes be difficult. Many families and students are convinced that college is too expensive. Attending college does cost money, but there are many programs available that can help you obtain the money you need. Additionally, don't rule out higher cost schools until you have talked with the campus financial aid office; higher cost schools may provide a higher level of aid.
Here are a few suggestions to help you in your search:
Internet Access: A great place to start your search for information on scholarships and grants is the Financial Aid Information Page. While visiting the site, make sure to use FastWeb's free scholarship search to find all of the awards for which you may qualify.
Libraries and Bookstores: These locations have books on the various sources of financial aid.
Loan Programs: Qualified students and their parents can borrow money for education through low-interest federally supported loans. the loans are made by banks, savings and loans, and credit unions and are guaranteed by the commission's subsidiary, EDFUND.
For specific information on EDFUND, and the programs they offer, visit their web-site at www.EDFUND.org.
State Financial Aid: Administered by the California Student Aid Commission, State aid for the most part is, reserved for California resident students with financial need as determined by the information contained on their Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). In addition, the well funded Cal Grant programs require academic qualification as derived from the Student Aid Commission Grade Point Average (GPA) Verification Form. Both the FAFSA and GPA Verification must be postmarked by March 2nd each year.
Click here for more information on Cal Grants and other Commission Programs.
Click here for more information on the ScholarShare College Savings Plan
Click here for the ScholarShare Website
Campus Based Financial Aid: Students should directly contact each college that they are considering, for specific information on applying for financial aid at that school. Each college will have programs available only to their students.
Private Scholarships: Hundreds of privately funded scholarships are available nationally to qualified students. Scholarships are considered gift aid, which does not have to be repaid, and are often awarded for merit in academics, athletics, or a particular field of study. Scholarships may also be awarded based on ethnic background, religious affiliation, and special interests.