If you are in “exceptional financial need,” and seeking money to pay for an undergraduate education, then you should consider the Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant. Because it is a grant and not a loan, it does not have to be repaid. To apply, you first have to fill out the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid).

This grant program is actually administered by the financial aid office at each participating school, but not all schools participate in the program. Thus this grant is called “campus-based aid.” Be sure to check on this before deciding to attend.

How Big a Grant Can I Get?

How much money you get from this grant program depends on several factors:

  • the extent of your financial need
  • when you apply
  • the amount of other aid you get; and
  • the availability of FSEOG funds at the school

Thus it ranges from $100 to $4,000 per year.

The Sooner You Apply, the Better!

Bear in mind that a finite amount of FSEOG money is given to the school, so once it has all been doled out, there is no more, no matter how well qualified you are for the program. For this reason, you should make your application as soon as possible, even before a Pell Grant, because funds for that do not run out. You should also check with the school on what their deadline is for application, so you do not miss it!

Grants like these should be an important part of your financial aid strategy, as it will reduce your potential debt upon graduation.

More Information

If you are looking for more information about federal financial aid for college, then download my free book, Applying for Federal Financial Aid: The Definitive Guide for Students and Parents.

For more information about what happens after you graduate, get my free book, I Graduated; Now What? A Guide to Dealing with Your Student Loans.

You can also access the latest news on student loans, get answers to Frequently Asked Questions, and read articles in my Library. Continue to educate yourself as you go through the process of making smart decisions about college financing!

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Steven J. Richardson
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Bankruptcy, Collections, Student Loan, DUI and Traffic Court attorney in Woodbury, NJ.