How to Find Money for College - Financial Aid, Scholarships, Grants, and Other Funding
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How to Find Money for College - Financial Aid, Scholarships, Grants, and Other Funding

Money for College can be found almost anywhere if you look hard enough. Sign up for Financial Student Aid (FSA) through the FAFSA program to receive funding from the government. Also learn about scholarships in your area that will help you pay a fraction of your college expenses, or even all of it!

Are you having a hard time finding money for college? Don't worry - below are techniques to find scholarships for your school funding so you don't have to pay out of your pocket.

Sign up for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

The basis of all college funding is signing up for Federal Student Aid. If you haven't done so already, sign up for FAFSA. You will need your first and last name, social security number, and your latest tax file. If you are a dependant (living under a parent or guardian), have them sit with you while you are answering questions. 

Even if you think your parents make too much money, sign up for FAFSA anyways. Depending on your situation, you could receive at the very least a $500 Pell Grant. You could also receive low-interest loans that you could pay off a few months after you graduate from college. 

Participate in Local Scholarships

In my experience, local scholarships are often easier to be accepted for than other types of scholarships. Not only are they usually easier to apply for (since they are geared for that campus's students), but the competition is generally much lower.

You can find Local Scholarships if you ask your Financial Aid advisor. You can also find posters and advertisements on Cafeteria Bulletins, on hallway walls, and online on the official college website. 

Apply for Minority Scholarships

Minority Scholarships are by far the most common out of all scholarships. If you're a minority in the United States, odds are there is a scholarship out there for you. You could check out 200 Free Scholarships for Minorities to find a scholarship that's right for you. Don't worry about deadlines as most of these scholarships are on an annual basis.

Try out for "Weird" Scholarships

Can you run with a milk mustache? Is your last name Valkenburg? Are you majoring in anything Potato Related? 32 Weird Scholarships Almost Anyone Can Get is a great website with the top thirty-two weirdest scholarships. If you are humble enough and got what it takes, why not sign up for some now?

Sign up for

If you're having a hard time finding some online scholarships, have no fear! is an absolutely free website where you can sign up and receive lists of scholarships on a regular basis geared toward you, all in your email inbox! You could also use to find colleges that are in your budget, and fit you for your future goals. 

If you don't want to sign up, you can still use the website to find scholarships. categorizes their public scholarships in the following ways (use one that's right for you):

Tips for Winning Scholarships

  • A lot of scholarships aim for individuals who are young, particularly in High School or just-out-of High School. Try to apply for Scholarships as early as you can.
  • Touch up on your essay skills. Some Scholarships require you to give your opinion on a contraversial topic, or write about an experience that changed your life. As best as you can, practice writing in all formats before or while you're in college.
  • Scholarships LOVE extracurricular activities. Are you in sports? Are (or were) you part of your High School ASB? Do you regularly volunteer for charities or food shelters? There's an array of scholarships that will look favorable to you.

Warning about "Fraud" Scholarships

  • As with any applications that require your personal information, be sure to always research the scholarships before submitting anything. There are Fraudulent scholarships out there that try to get your Name, Address, and Social Security Number in an attempt to steal your identity. Be careful.

Additional resources:

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Comments (2)

Great information if you are looking for scholarships. Grades are not always a factor. The internet is very useful for this.

I am a full time student in grad school for a Master's in Education. It is extremely expensive and I am always trying to find grants and scholarships to pay for my tution. Excellent work. I am following you and Buzzed this up.