Today marks an important day in all of our lives.
This marks the fifth, and final step of your, financial aid journey.
Every school may have its own, unique deadlines for financial aid, so be sure to get all of those important dates from your financial aid office.
And once you know the dates, make sure you understand and compare all of your financing options.
First, consider all forms of free aid.
Sources of free aid include: Scholarships that you don't need to be paid back, Grants, State Aid, and Institutional Aid that comes directly from your school.
Second, consider self-help aid.These options include the Federal Work Study program which may help you to find part-time work to help cover costs, and the Tuition Payment Plan.
Your financial aid office can give you the low-down on those options.
Next, consider your "first-choice" student loan options. These include the: Federal Perkins Loan, and Federal Stafford Loan.
If you have substantial needs, you may qualify for the Perkins Loan and the interest that accrues on your Stafford Loan may be subsidized while you're attending school.
Excuse me for a second. (gulping sounds)
And finally, if you still have remaining expenses, consider these student loans: The Direct Federal Plus Loan can be used by parents to help their dependent children in undergraduate programs.
And the Plus Loan can cover up to 100% of your remaining expenses and it comes with a fixed interest rate! Also, you may want to consider a private student loan from: your bank, or, another financial institution.
Like the Plus Loan, private loans can cover all of your outstanding eligible education-related expenses.
Excuse me...um... I'm getting a little emotional.
Let me be the first to congratulate you on completing your journey through the five steps to financial aid.
Best of luck to you as you head off into the horizon to college.
And always remember... with college comes great knowledge.
Sign up for the CollegeSTEPS® program and get handy information throughout the year.