Once we have decided to take that leap to return to school, funding our educational venture moves to the forefront of our minds. There are a ton of questionable websites that claim they can identify funding sources for your education for a fee. Be cautious as there are scams targeted at students. Conversely, there are an abundance of resources available online that are completely free.
The first website that I suggest you visit is Benefits.Gov. This is a great resource when searching for educational benefits (as well as other benefits). It has an easy to navigate questionnaire to lead you to the programs that apply to your specific situation. The programs are explained briefly with a link to get more information and to apply.
The Free Application for Federal Student Aid, FAFSA for short, is an online application for various grants, loans and work study programs for college and career schools. Part of the U.S. Department of Education, Federal Student Aid provides more than $150 billion to students each year. There is nothing I love more than an organized and informative website. You can even populate your financial information from your last tax return on file with the IRS. Additionally, the website offers free assistance throughout the financial aid process.
Fastweb.com is one of the largest online databases for scholarships. This database is great as it looks at student involvement rather than just grades, matching students to groups within their community for assistance.
Talk to other women in your community about your new endeavor. There are many local groups and clubs that offer financial assistance as well as guidance to help you through the journey.
What other roadblocks do you anticipate as you begin your pursuit? Share them in the comments section.