A college education is a major investment in your future and can be expensive. Understanding and exploring your financial aid options can help defray your costs.
The first step in applying for financial aid is completing the Free Application for Federal Aid (FAFSA).
This form, which must be completed every year, is required to apply for Pell Grants, Perkins Loans, Stafford Loans, work-study, all state and many school student assistance programs. Your FAFSA must be filed after January 1 and before your resident state’s individual deadline.
Types of financial aid
Loans are borrowed money that you must repay. There are three types of loans: student loans (Stafford Loans or Perkins Loans), parent loans (PLUS loans), and private loans.
Grants are based on your financial need and do not require repayment.
Scholarships are gifted money that do not require repayment. Scholarships usually require you to meet specific criteria, such as academic performance, special qualifications or interests in a particular field of study. Scholarship databases, such as Johnson and Johnson -The Campaign for Nursing’s Future can often be found with a web search.
Student employment includes work-study programs and part-time jobs. Nursing students may be eligible for employment as a student nurse after one semester of clinical nursing experience.
Tuition reimbursement is often available to employees of health care agencies and other work settings as an employee benefit. Eligibility for tuition reimbursement varies and may depend on your length of employment, minimum number of working hours per pay period, and commitment to work following your graduation. Employment as a student nurse does not usually qualify you for tuition reimbursement.
American Association of Colleges of Nursing
Johnson and Johnson -The Campaign for Nursing’s Future
National Black Nurses Association, Inc.
National Student Nurses Association
UNCF–United Negro College Fund