• Types of Financial Awards

    • Need- Based: Based only on financial need
    • Merit- Based: Based on accomplishments of the student, as in grade point average, extra-curricular or community service involvement and much more!

    Sources of Financial Assistance

    • Federal and State Financial Aid
    • College or University Scholarships
    • Scholarships from Businesses and Organizations

    Federal and State Financial Aid

    FAFSA The Free Application for Federal Student Aid

    Federal and State Governments use the FAFSA form to determine a family’s ability to pay for college. After the form is submitted, a Student Aid Report (SAR) is sent to each college listed on the form. You will also receive a copy of this form, which will tell you the amount of your Expected Family Contribution (EFC). Each college will then send you an award letter outlining how much and which types of aid that you will be eligible for at their school. The FAFSA is based on the parent’s income for the previous year. Families are eligible to apply beginning January 2nd of the student’s senior year. It is recommended that you apply as soon as possible in order to have priority consideration for aid. Families are recommended to apply online, but a paper application may be downloaded. Eligibility is for one year only; the FAFSA must be submitted each January! The FAFSA website provides excellent info information and an estimator of how much aid a family may be eligible to receive.

    Types of Federal and State Financial Aid

    • Loans
    • Grants
    • Federal Work Study

    The FAFSA determines eligibility for all types of federal and state financial aid. It is not necessary to apply for each grant or loan separately. All Federal and State Financial Aid is solely need- based.
    Federal Financial Aid Toll Free Number: 1-800-4 Fed Aid

    Federal and State Loans

    There are many types of loans offered, but all require repayment with interest. Some are subsidized by the government, meaning that the interest on the loan is paid until after the student’s graduation. Unsubsidized loans may require payment of interest during college. Most loans do not require repayment until after graduation from college. Typically, federal and state loans offer very competitive interest rates. Some types of loans are:

    • Perkins Loans: The college is the lender.
    • Hinson-Hazelwood College Student Loans: Loans for legal residents of Texas.
    • PLUS Loans: PLUS loans are for parent borrowers and provide additional funds for educational expenses. They are made by a lender such as a bank, savings and loan association or credit union.
    • Stafford Loans: May be subsidized or unsubsidized.

    Private loans may also be sought by individual families.

    Federal and State Grants

    Grants do not require repayment by parents or students. Some types of federal and state grants include:

    • PELL Grant: Based on exceptional family need.
    • Academic Competitiveness Grant: Must be eligible for a Pell Grant and obtain a minimum grade point average.
    • Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant (SEOG): Eligibility is based on exceptional need.
    • Teacher Education Assistance For College And Higher Education (TEACH) Grant: Provides funds for future teachers. Includes a four year commitment to teach in a high-need field in a low income school.
    • Texas Equalization Grant (TEG): If you are applying to a private college in Texas, you may apply for a T.E.G. by completing the financial aid form and the TEG application form, which can be obtained from the Financial Aid Office of the private college.
    • Teach For Texas Grant: Offers assistance to those desiring to teach in identified fields or geographical areas experiencing a critical shortage of teachers. Student must complete the Recommended or Distinguished Achievement program graduation requirements. Financial need is NOT a criteria.

    Federal Work Study Program

    The program provides part-time jobs on campus for students with financial need, allowing them to earn money to help pay education expenses.

    College or University Scholarships

    • Can be need-based or merit-based and do not require repayment.
    • Check the college’s website to see if the school has its own financial aid form, which must be completed in addition to the FAFSA. Find out about general scholarship information and applications that the college offers.
    • Check with the department that houses your major at the college to ask about the application procedures for departmental scholarships.
    • Find out the college’s priority application deadline for financial aid applications. You must submit the FAFSA and any other required documents by the deadline in order to be considered for aid.
    • Some colleges and universities also require the CSS/Financial Aid Profile, which is available on the College Board website.
    • Plano East receives some information on scholarships offered by individual colleges and universities and their departments. See the Counseling page on the Plano East website for a current list of scholarships.

    Scholarships from Businesses and Organizations

    • Can be need-based or merit-based and do not require repayment.
    • Scholarship information that the Plano East counseling department receives is updated on a regular basis on Naviance.

    *You are not advised to pay a fee for any financial aid or scholarship information.

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