Financial Aid for Non-Traditional Students from the Federal Government

Nontraditional students who receive nontraditional qualifications from nontraditional schools may believe they have limited financial aid options. Reconsider your position. Federated Financial has some nice tips on this.

The Fundamentals
The reality is that those participating in eligible programmes at approved schools that participate in federal financial aid programmes are eligible for federal financial aid.
Let’s dissect that. A programme that leads to an undergraduate, technical, vocational, or other accepted educational credential is considered qualifying. Nontraditional students participating in trade schools or credential programmes are eligible!
You don’t have to be a full-time or even part-time student to qualify. In fact, you can be enrolled less than half-time to qualify for the Federal Pell Grant, Federal Supplementary Educational Opportunity Grant, Federal Work-Study, and Federal Perkins Loan programmes.

Pell Grant (Federal Pell Grant)
Pell Grants are almost exclusively for undergraduate students, but if you’re enrolled in a post-baccalaureate teacher certificate programme, you may be eligible. Annual award limits vary by year; in 2006-2007, they ranged from $400 to $4,050. Your Pell Grant amount is determined by your cost of tuition, planned family commitment, eligibility status, and whether you intend to participate for a full academic year or not. You are only eligible for one Pell Grant per award year, and you cannot collect funds from more than one school at the same time. Pell Grants don’t have to be paid back.

Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG) from the federal government
The Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG) is for undergraduates who are in financial need who have the lowest planned family contribution. The annual award sums vary from $100 to $4,000. The amount of your FSEOG is determined by when you apply, the financial need, the amount of other assistance you’re getting, your school’s funding level, and the financial aid office’s policies. The FSEOG does not need repayment.

Work-Study Programs in the United States
You can work part-time to help pay for your education while studying in school under the Federal Work-Study programme. Your total award is determined by when you apply, your financial need, and the funding level of your school.

Perkins Loan from the Federal Government
Perkins Loans are available to undergraduate, associate, and advanced degree students through participating colleges. Undergraduates can borrow up to $4,000 per year (for a total of $20,000). Your loan amount is determined by when you apply, the financial need, the amount of other assistance you receive, and the funds available at your school. You have up to ten years to repay the school loan.