What is a Grant?

Grants are amounts of money awarded to an individual or group in order to finance an activity. Grants are sponsored by federal agencies or other organizations and usually do not have to be repaid. Most student aid grants are need-based, meaning that you must meet a financial need to be eligible for them. By completing the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid), your financial aid office can determine if you are eligible for a federal grant. Some types of federal grants include:

Federal Pell Grant

When you complete the FAFSA, you are immediately notified of Pell Grant eligibility. Eligibility is determined using the EFC (Estimated Family Contribution) on the SAR (Student Aid Report), which is created when your FAFSA is processed. If you are eligible for a Pell Grant, then you automatically receive the grant and may also be eligible for the Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG). The amount awarded is based on your school’s cost of attendance and your student enrollment status.

Underprivileged students can apply for grantsFederal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)

The Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant is also need-based. Pell Grant recipients are given priority for this grant. You must be an undergraduate student to receive this grant, and priority is given to full-time students.

Academic Competitiveness Grant (ACG)

The Academic Competitiveness Grant (ACG) provides up to $750 for the first year of undergraduate study and up to $1,300 for the second year of study to full-time students who have Pell Grant eligibility.

National SMART Grant

The Science and Mathematics Access to Retain Talent (SMART) Grant Program awards up to $4,000 for third and fourth year of study to students who are Pell Grant eligible and are majoring in physical science, life science, computer science, mathematics, technology, engineering, or in a foreign language that is critical to national security.

Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) Grant

Provides grants up to $4,000 per year for students, the Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) Grant Program aids its recipients the plan of soon-to-be teachers in a public or private elementary or secondary school with students coming from poor families with very low income.