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College 101

Article Type: Quick and Dirty

We mentioned earlier that grants are an absolutely wonderful form of financial aid: it's like the taxpayers of America sent around the basket and took up a collection just for you.

The most common grant you could receive is the Federal Pell Grant, which maxes out at $5550 a year. The money may go directly to your school to cover tuition costs, or you could work a deal with your financial aid office that would allow the money to go straight to you. We wouldn't trust a college freshman with better than five thousand dollars, but that's just us.

You're limited on receiving the Federal Pell Grant to twelve semesters...which is four more semesters than you should need to earn your degree. Also, remember that whole FAFSA thing? Yeah. Fail to fill it out your junior year of college, and there will be no Federal Pell Grant waiting for you when you start your senior year. Furthermore, even if you do fill out the FAFSA, any change for the better in your financial situation could result in a drop in grant money. Boo hiss.

If you've had a parent or guardian in the military killed while serving in Iraq or Afghanistan, first, our condolences. Seriously, that sucks. Second, you may be eligible for a larger Federal Grant, so long as you were under the age of twenty-four and enrolled in college at the time of death.

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