Pell Grants

Pell Grants are usually a foundation of federal student aid, to which aid from other federal and non-federal sources is added, The receipt of the grant aid is totally determined by the COA-EFC formula, and for 2004-2005 topped at slightly more than $4,000.

  • Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grants (FSEOG) are reserved for the most needy candidates, and are paid out in addition to PELL grants.

  • Like the PELL, FSEO Grants are also limited to $4000 per school year, and are ‘supplemental’ in that they are allocated by need, on the amount of aid you get, and the availability of funds at the school.

  • While these are the only Federal grants, the college or university may have other sources of grant money at their disposal.

Federal Pell Grants

Federal Pell Grants are, by far, the most common form of grant aid.

The determination of Pell grant eligibility and amount awarded is premised on the same formula as loans:

COA - EFC = Financial Aid Package

In short, what money is needed to enable the student to attend that exceeds affordability.

Pell grants range in the vicinity of $4,000 on average per academic year.

Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (FFSEOG)

Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (FFSEOG) are given to undergraduates with exceptional financial need. Unlike Pell grants, an FFSEOG might not be awarded to an eligible student – it is not an automatic “given.”

Funding ranges between $100 and $4,000 and variables considered include the date a student applies, determination of need, funding level of the school, and the policies of the specific school’s financial aid office.

The Federal Work-Study Program

The Federal Work-Study Program provides jobs for undergraduates with financial need. The program encourages community service work related to the student’s course of study. However, to ensure employment many students will work in some office or department of their college.

Earnings are at the level of at least minimum wage but vary depending on the type of work and skills required. Undergraduates are paid by the hour. Payment is at least once a month. The school may pay the student directly or use the earned money to pay for institutional charges such as tuition, fees and room and board.

Working hours are limited and those limits cannot be exceeded. Limits are determined by factors beyond need such as class schedule and academic progress.