Grants and scholarships for furthering your education share one common characteristic – the money you get is not to be paid back. The harsh economic realities in the contemporary world present many students aspiring to improve their education with a number of challenges. While some individuals lack the drive and energy to attend graduate school, others who wish to continue learning with the hope of securing better career opportunities lack the money with which to do so.
Just when you might suppose that paying your way through college was expensive, furthering your education through graduate school confronts you with even higher financial demands. Now, whether or not you have money, there are various opportunities through scholarships and grants that can make it possible for you to continue pursuing your dream by learning. Lack of personal financial resources should not be an impediment to your dreams because various financial aid that can assist you exist.
Why You Should Apply For Grants & Scholarships
Although attending graduate school is costly, forfeiting the chance to do so would be worse because there is no way you will master you chosen career if you stop your education early. To make your dream a reality, you need to consider applying for grants and scholarships. Such applications are open to both undergraduates and post graduates. Grants and scholarships for college and graduate school can create the difference between ending your education prematurely and obtaining an advanced qualification.
Is There a Difference Between Scholarships and Grants?
Various organizations, offices, private entities and government institutions, universities and individuals offer different forms of financial aid for learning purposes. The steps and qualifications for being eligible to get funding vary from one institution to another and from one scholarship program to another. There is, however, a difference between scholarships and grants. While grants are often tied to the needs of an individual even if you are not a leading performer, scholarships are mostly based on merit because they reward exceptional performance in community service, athletics, and in the academic disciplines.
Some specific functions are tied to some grants for graduate students. For instance, you might be interested in furthering your career in specific fields such as nursing, teaching or some other areas of high-demand, and if your career dreams include a particular advanced technical role or a health care responsibility, you could be eligible for funding that specifically support your area of study in graduate school.
Types of Grants
There are various forms of grants ranging from state and federal grants, grants and scholarships for graduate minorities, to school specific grants and alternative programs. There are grants that are specifically designed to promote the causes of minorities and other groups. For instance, Native American students, Hispanics and Asian students have access to funding that target them through various advocacy groups for minorities. Likewise, graduate students from African American communities might get funding from organizations like the United Negro College Fund and others. To increase the enrollment of female students in graduate schools, there are gender-specific grants that target women. Soldiers and their families also benefit from college funding given by the military for the services they offer to the country. There are also various aid organizations that give priority treatment to college students belonging to the first-generation. Most of the other grants are specific to the criteria set by individual learning institutions.
Although the federal government is the largest provider of financial aid for learning, some of the federal grant provided to college students comes in the form of direct student loans. There are also some programs sponsored by the government that give grant money to graduate students like TEACH or Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education. It focuses on stimulating enrollment in training modules that lead to degrees in teaching.
To qualify for the grant, the recipient must be a teacher in a school serving students with low-income. And within 8 years of graduating, they must also complete four academic years of teaching. They should also teach in a high-demand field. There are also service grants for Afghanistan and Iraq which are offered to students whose parents died while in service. The Bureau of Educational and Cultural affairs of the US State Department also sponsors the Fulbright grants. These are just a few examples, but you would need to explore other scholarship and grant opportunities you can qualify to get.
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