Grants and Scholarships

Grants are financial awards that do not need to be repaid and typically come from state or federal sources. They are usually based on financial need. Scholarships are financial awards based on merit or merit plus need and come from government or private sources. They don't have to be repaid either.

You only need to complete one Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) regardless of how many colleges you are considering. The FAFSA includes a section for you to list the colleges to which you want your information sent.

Complete the FAFSA as soon as possible after January 1 during your senior year or the year before you plan to attend college.

You should also check with each college to determine if there are additional forms required.

Merit-based Scholarships

Merit-based scholarships can be earned based on your talents or performance in a variety of areas:

  • Academic
  • Athletic
  • Extracurricular involvement
  • Leadership
  • Volunteer work
  • Art, theater, music

A few scholarships are based solely on merit, but most scholarships use a combination of financial need and merit. Read more about how to find scholarships or review our list of financial aid resources.