Paying for College

Paying for College

It is recommended that everyone going to college complete the FAFSA which will provide information on money available for colleges and how to apply.

Financial Aid Terms:

FAFSA – The Free Application for Federal Student Aid is the form used by the government to determine eligibility for federal student financial aid money (work study, grants, and loans).

Financial Need – The amount needed to attend a college after the expected family contribution and estimated financial assistance are subtracted.

Grant – Sum of money generally awarded because of need. As “gift” money, it does not need to be repaid. For example, federal Pell Grants and Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (SEOG) go to undergraduate students based on financial need. Iowa Tuition Grants are need-based state funds for Iowa students attending private colleges. Individual colleges can also offer Institutional Grants.

Merit Scholarship – Scholarship based on academics, talent, or other personal accomplishments without having to show financial need.

PLUS Loans – Federal loans taken out by parents.

Scholarship – A financial award generally based on academics or talent that does not need to be repaid.

Stafford Loans – Federal loans taken out by students.

Subsidized Loans – Loans that accrue no interest while the student is in college. Repayment begins six months after leaving college.

Unsubsidized Loans – Loans with interest that is added to the cost as soon as the money is used. Repayment begins six months after leaving college.

Work Study – Federal, state, or college financial aid programs that provide part-time jobs for students with financial need. Job time will be built around a student’s schedule and may be exempt from being listed as income on the FAFSA.

College Cost Worksheet

Information on tuition, fees and dues, room and board should be provided by the college. They should also be able to provide you with an estimate on the cost of books. The other expenses are going to vary depending on the student.

Annual Expenses: College A College B College C

Tuition ------------- ------------- -------------

Fees and Dues ------------- ------------- -------------

Room ------------- ------------- -------------

Board (meal plan) ------------- ------------- -------------

Books/Supplies ------------- ------------- -------------

Clothing ------------- ------------- -------------

Entertainment ------------- ------------- -------------

Travel ------------- ------------- -------------

Miscellaneous ------------- ------------- -------------

Total ------------- ------------- -------------

Sources of Annual Income:

Pre-college Student Savings ------------- ------------- -------------

Student Earnings in college ------------- ------------- -------------

Parent Contribution ------------- ------------- -------------

Other (gift money, etc.) ------------- ------------- -------------

Scholarships/Awards ------------- ------------- -------------

Total ------------- ------------- -------------

Loan amount needed ------------- ------------- -------------

If a car, computer, etc. is needed for college, purchase it before doing the FAFSA, so that amount does not show up as available for college costs.